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Thread: 1/48 Stearman PT-17

  1. #1
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    1/48 Stearman PT-17

    To get my mojo back I picked this up.

    First plane that I've built since the late 70s. I'm going to do the Army Blue and yellow scheme.

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    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

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    Senior Contributor Stitch's Avatar
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    Sweet! That should look nice when you're done! And I'd go with the blue & yellow scheme, also; it looks MUCH better than that all-blue scheme.

    BTW, haven't forgot about you asking about the E-100 I have been working on for three (!) years; I'm ALMOST done, I just need to finish the two little SS dudes in their camo uniforms, and then I'll be done. I may post some pictures of it before then, anyway, though.
    "There is never enough time to do or say all the things that we would wish. The thing is to try to do as much as you can in the time that you have. Remember Scrooge, time is short, and suddenly, you're not there any more." -Ghost of Christmas Present, Scrooge

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    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    There are actually 2 reasons I went with the Blue scheme.

    First is, IIRC, Yellow is a pain to get good even coverage.

    The second is, if I decide that I like building these flying things, this caught my eye and would tie in nicely

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    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

  4. #4
    Senior Contributor Stitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    First is, IIRC, Yellow is a pain to get good even coverage.
    Yes, it is! The only color worse than yellow, in that respect, is white.

    I don't know how you were planning on painting it (airbrush? regular brush? rattle can?), but I'm still stuck in the 20th century, and use a brush and rattle can for my models. Use flats whenever possible, as they tend to cover much better than glosses; the glosses tend to "pull" away from edges and corners, so you always end up with inconsistent coverage (especially with light colors, like white and yellow). Plus, the flat paint gives more "grip" for the succeeding coats of paint (or clear gloss).

    You can always go back and hit the flat paint with clear gloss, if you need to decal it.

    BTW, you really can't go wrong with a Revell kit; they've come a long way since I started building their kits back in the '60's, and some of their more recent offerings are on par with the more expensive Hasegawa and Tamiya kits.
    Last edited by Stitch; 03 Jan 16, at 01:03. Reason: Additional Info
    "There is never enough time to do or say all the things that we would wish. The thing is to try to do as much as you can in the time that you have. Remember Scrooge, time is short, and suddenly, you're not there any more." -Ghost of Christmas Present, Scrooge

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    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    did a little today. Raining outside and our persistent red tide has put a halt to fishing.

    took care of the cockpit, internal framework and did a test with the paint to see if I wanted to do a silver base coat before the colors. The real airplane had alum paint sprayed over the canvas prior to painting.

    Not sure how I'm gonna paint it. I have a detail airbrush that works great for 1/350 boats. But this thing is huge, in comparison. I may rattle can it.

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    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

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    Patron Zad Fnark's Avatar
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    I've got that kit sitting around.

    No clue what colors to put on it, as she seemed to wear about a million different set of markings.

  7. #7
    Senior Contributor DonBelt's Avatar
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    Don't know if it helps, but here are a few pictures of Collings Foundation's PT-17:
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    On to the model at hand. From where we left off, I closed the cockpit up, did a little filling and sanding then shot a base coat of chrome on her.

    After that brush painted the fuselage with Vallejo Dark Blue. First time using Vallejo model color. I'm lovin them. Good coverage, levels out smooth, no brush marks. Didn't know acrylic paint had come this far.

    Next tried to put down a coat of MM Chrome Yellow. Horrible results. Tried spraying it. Looked like crap. Tried brushing it. Looked like crap with streaks. Ended up buying a rattle can of OSHA Yellow (Same color, different name). Adequate for this build. Now I' waiting for the paint to dry. Do a little final assembly (Stick the engine and wings on) then on to rigging.

    My picture taking skills are worse than my model building skills. From my cell phone

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    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

  9. #9
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    Enamels and acrylics don't mix esp if they are tacky. Acrylics are a little more environmentally friendly. Depending on what you are using smell better. I have found you can do anything with acrylics that you can be done with enamels. The same rules apply mix well, clean the surfaces before application, and burnish your mask to prevent bleed. Here a link: http://www.craigcentral.com/models/thinning.asp

    Looking forward to seeing your completed build.
    Last edited by Dazed; 15 Feb 16, at 18:00. Reason: Unsolicited advice

  10. #10
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    never had problems mixing the two. Just remember you can spray acrylics over enamel but not the other way.

    The only paint I was using previously was Polly Scale. Wish/hope Vallejo comes out with a naval line. Especially since Polly Scale naval colors is no more. And I'm running low on Deck Blue

    I think next yellow plane I will use a base coat of flat white. That seems to be the current "Best way" on the model forums I read. Since they took the lead and chromium (damn Safety Nazis) yellow has been a hard color to do right. Very translucent.

    I like this little bird so much, I got another one.

    This may sound funny, but the biggest problem I'm having is dealing with the size of the parts. They are huge. All of my tools are sized for 1/350 scale and I'm use to handling that size. This thing is huge. Its like putting 2 hulls together
    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

  11. #11
    Senior Contributor Builder 2010's Avatar
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    Keep the faith. It looks good to me so far.

    I like Tamiya paints best since they thin with isopropyl alcohol 91% which can be had in great big bottles for very little $$$. I use Vallejo also and generally like it. I used Model Tech which is now own by Badger Air Brush. It can be sprayed without thinning directly from their bottles which conveniently have the same threads as the Badger suction cap. Yellow is best sprayed over a first coat of white. I have a terrible time with yellow. I didn't like Polly Scale at all. I liked Floquil, but can't use it in the house since it was solvent based. I just bought a couple of bottles of the new line of acetone based RR colors, but I don't like how it brush paints, and again, unless I can build the spray booth, I'm not spraying acetone based stuff in the basement.

    Suggestion: Use EZ Line for the rigging. It's bought from Berkshire Junction and they have a website at http://www.berkshirejunction.com

    While student teaching at Flint, Michigan in 1967, I built the Sterling Stearman balsa control-line gas model. I put an Enya 35 in it. It looked great. Brought it home and on Memorial Day in a park in front of all our friend, I attempted to fly it. "Attempted" is the operative word in that sentence. I really didn't know the first thing about control line. My buddy was holding the plane and I gave it "Up" elevator and told him to let go. The plane, which was probably over-powered, took off straight up in the air and then turned in a dive directly towards me. The lines came slack, I had no control, I dropped the handle and got out of the way as the plane re-kitted itself on the spot where I was previously standing. It was embarrassing, humiliating, and I never wanted to fly anything ever again. I tried RC once and wasn't much better. Some of us are builders and some of use are drivers. I'm of the former.

    What kind of camera are you using?

  12. #12
    Senior Contributor Stitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    never had problems mixing the two. Just remember you can spray acrylics over enamel but not the other way.

    The only paint I was using previously was Polly Scale. Wish/hope Vallejo comes out with a naval line. Especially since Polly Scale naval colors is no more. And I'm running low on Deck Blue

    I think next yellow plane I will use a base coat of flat white. That seems to be the current "Best way" on the model forums I read. Since they took the lead and chromium (damn Safety Nazis) yellow has been a hard color to do right. Very translucent.

    I like this little bird so much, I got another one.

    This may sound funny, but the biggest problem I'm having is dealing with the size of the parts. They are huge. All of my tools are sized for 1/350 scale and I'm use to handling that size. This thing is huge. Its like putting 2 hulls together
    Yes, the first coat should be a flat white, or even a good flat primer coat would work, too. After that, you can do the gloss yellow (although I'd probably use flat yellow, then a couple of coats of gloss clear for the decals).

    Unfortunately, I only have experience with the Testors Model Master line of paints, in particular their enamels, so I can't comment on other brands (except for Pactra, which doesn't exist anymore). My LHS carries the Tamiya line of paints also but, so far, I haven't been impressed; it seems like their paints are too "toylike" for my tastes.

    I have the opposite problem you do; I think anything smaller than 1/48 scale is TINY! Of course, being 52 with crappy eyesight doesn't help.

    BTW, there's another build for this exact same model over at the Fine Scale Modeler forum, thought you might find it interesting: http://cs.finescale.com/fsm/modeling.../t/169641.aspx
    "There is never enough time to do or say all the things that we would wish. The thing is to try to do as much as you can in the time that you have. Remember Scrooge, time is short, and suddenly, you're not there any more." -Ghost of Christmas Present, Scrooge

  13. #13
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stitch View Post

    I have the opposite problem you do; I think anything smaller than 1/48 scale is TINY! Of course, being 52 with crappy eyesight doesn't help.
    No excuse. I'm 53 with crappy eyesight :>)
    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

  14. #14
    Senior Contributor Builder 2010's Avatar
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    Hey, I'm 70 with crappy eyesight, but I walk around with a magnifying hood on all the time. My nearsightedness started disappearing about 10 years ago and has been replaced with farsightedness. My long-distance prescription keeps getting weaker and my close vision (which used to be at about 1" focal distance) keeps getting worse more towards magnifying glasses. Just get a good magnifier and lots of good lighting.

  15. #15
    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Builder 2010 View Post
    Keep the faith. It looks good to me so far.

    I like Tamiya paints best since they thin with isopropyl alcohol 91% which can be had in great big bottles for very little $$$. I use Vallejo also and generally like it. I used Model Tech which is now own by Badger Air Brush. It can be sprayed without thinning directly from their bottles which conveniently have the same threads as the Badger suction cap. Yellow is best sprayed over a first coat of white. I have a terrible time with yellow. I didn't like Polly Scale at all. I liked Floquil, but can't use it in the house since it was solvent based. I just bought a couple of bottles of the new line of acetone based RR colors, but I don't like how it brush paints, and again, unless I can build the spray booth, I'm not spraying acetone based stuff in the basement.

    Suggestion: Use EZ Line for the rigging. It's bought from Berkshire Junction and they have a website at http://www.berkshirejunction.com



    What kind of camera are you using?
    I was being lazy and used the camera off my old Samsung MP3 player.

    As for rigging, I'm doing a 3 way approach to see which one I like, and which gives the best results.

    I've used EZ line (and doll hair) for ship rigging. Though I would try different things this time.

    Between the struts, I used that old standby Sewing thread. For some reason I didn't run it through beeswax before I put it on the model. Oh yea, because I haven't done a biplane or large scale sailing ship since the 70s. And my "recollecting" was about 5 minutes slower than my "Applying"

    On the tail I used .014 (15lb leader) stainless steel wire. Did a single run through all 7 holes I drilled.

    For the wings I plan to try .020 stainless rod. Cut to individual lengths. The single run just wasn't there.

    I will post pictures of the results later this week. Most of my modeling time happens between Fri-Sun. If the fish aren't biting
    Its called Tourist Season. So why can't we shoot them?

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