I recently reviewed Tamiya’s small Tony and was so impressed with the simple engineering and fantastic detail of the kit that I reshuffled the projects on my workbench and dove right in.
This kit is a joy to build. The fit of all parts, major and minor, are spot on. When the parts are properly prepped, the entire model literally snaps together leaving no gaps to contend with. What a blast 🙂
On to the build………
Episode One: Cockpit and Fuselage
Once prepped all parts were wiped down with a Kimwipe saturated with Denatured Alcohol (Crown: “For Cleaning Glass”) and affixed to pieces of wood with small wads of putty in preparation for primer.
I like to use “building boards” for such things as holding parts for painting and to assist with detailing small parts such as the gun sight seen in the picture held in place with putty. If putty won’t work to hold a part for detailing I’ll often use a small dollop of red dental wax (pictured).
The parts and internal surfaces of the fuselage were sprayed with Mission White Primer diluted at a ratio of 60:40 (Primer to Mission Thinner) and shot at ~12psi with an H&S Evolution fitted with a 0.2mm tip.
When dry, the fuselage halves and parts were sprayed with LifeColor Sandgelb with a few drops of yellow added for hue and lightened ~10% with LifeColor White. This was diluted at a ratio of 40:60 (paint to thinner) with LifeColor Thinner containing 5% Liquitex and sprayed at ~12psi with an H&S Infinity fitted with a 0.2mm tip.
The seat back, headrest, and various cockpit details were picked out with Blue, Brown, Red, Yellow, White, and Silver using multiple brands of acrylic paints including Mission Models, LifeColor, and Vallejo. To assist in organization and to stop the painted parts from banging into each other, I keep completed sub-assemblies in a parts tray.
The only out of the box detail added were PE belts from Eduard; I mean because you just have to, you know?
Once the Mission Gloss was dry all the cockpit parts were given a pin-wash of Tamiya Dark Brown Enamel Panel Liner applied with a small brush. When the panel liner was dry (~10 minutes) excess liner was carefully removed with a cotton bud moistened with Mona Lisa Odorless Thinner.
After painting the instrument panel black the panel decal was applied with small amount of Mr. Setter. Here Tamiya must be commended as not only is the decal beautifully printed with perfect registration, it also lines up perfectly with the kit part resulting in a very convincing instrument panel with very little effort.
The fuselage halves were assembled with Tamiya Extra Thin Cement, as were the wings. The fit of both major assemblies was exemplary leaving only easily blended seams to deal with.
Okay, that’s it for episode 1. The ease with which this kit comes together is amazing. In fact, this build is going so fast, I suspect episode 2 will be priming and painting: my favorite part 🙂