Thursday 3 July 2014

Cockpit repair and some further fiddling

Last time, we ended on a very sour note, with a cockpit looking like this :

A 2mm gap because the canopy is stuck against the control panel
The reason was that I assembled the middle part of the fuselage too far forward and the control panel inside turned out to prevent the canopy from closing.

So, the control panel needed some "adjusting". I have a motor-tool just for this occasion. I ground away about 2mm over the entire width of it, and then the canopy closed easily. I wouldn't say it fit perfectly, as the overall fit of the kit seems to be rather wanting, but it's a hell of a lot better than before.

If you do not own a motor-tool, I can highly recommend one, but if you don't want to spend that kind of money, I recommend metal files, not just sand paper or sanding sticks. You're more likely to ruin a perfectly fine (and surprisingly expensive) sanding stick before you manage to remove enough plastic, especially if it's the harder kind of plastic. I once bought a set of 10 metal files for something like €9 altogether. If used only on plastic, these files will probably outlive me before they show any sign of wear and tear.

Normally, I attach clear parts with MicroScale Kristal Klear, which dries translucent and is ideal for these parts, but it's gluing quality is less and probably inadequate for this big piece. So I used white glue instead (plain old "wood glue"). It dries white, but can be easily handled for several minutes after applying so you can remove any excess with a wet cloth or q-tip.

Tip: avoid the regular cement for clear parts, as well as CA glue, as this last one tends to "fog up" the inside of your canopies.

Lastly, because I didn't like the total lack of detail on the inside of the kit, I decided to add some ribs to "busy it up". It's not accurate by far, but gives a better impression than just bare plastic. Or maybe that's just my opinion.


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