This is my second approach to recreation of fully visible inline engine for the aircraft. First engine I did was Jumo 211 for Ju-87 Stuka bomber. I had a lot of fun with it and it turned out pretty much ok, so I decided it is time for another try hoping that the resulting engine will be even better than the previous one. Read on to find out if I succeeded.
First think you notice after opening box of Eduard aftermarket set #648417 is really astonishing number of resin parts included in it together with quite steps heavy instruction booklet - I am really impressed with this set! As always, I started with the careful study of the instruction booklet, checking which of the original plastic parts will have to be modified to accommodate this addition and what are the following steps of the building process. Having done so I had general idea on how I want to approach the assembly. One of most important aspects as well at that stage is to figure out which parts I can assemble together and which should be left separate for painting. Aside of the resin parts included a lot of different cables and pipes should be imitated. I used for that different lead wires from plusmodel - they are excellent for such kind of work as they are very flexible and it is quite easy to form required shapes, though you have to be careful when handling them with the tweezers to not to damage them.
First thing with the resin sets is to remove them from the casting blocks and then clean them up. My go to tools for this kind of work are Proxxon 230/E, modeling razor saw for bigger parts and side cutters for small elements which are easy to brake. As soon as I removed all the parts I started cleaning process. For that I use two invaluable tools modeling blade and high quality scraper. Additionally I used sanding paper of different grades. At the end I used one of my airbrushes to clean the parts from the resin residue, moistened them with IPA and wiped everything with the brush. After all the treatments resin parts were ready for assembly.
I started with assembly of supercharger with carburettor unit and central engine which included smaller units like distributors, breather, vacuum pumps, generator and others. Next I glued both subassemblies together. Unfortunately I used CA glue which bounds very quickly and when I noticed that whole supercharger unit is twisted a couple of degrees it was to late - it is almost invisible but it is there. Lessons learned though - next time I will use epoxy glue for this kind of connection. Now I assembled Kauffmann engine starter - I did it separately as it will be much easier to paint it first and then attach to the engine.
Now all resin parts and subassemblies were primed with grey Mr. Surfacer 1500. Next I selected all elements which would have metallic finish and airbrushed them with Mr. Color GX2 to create glossy base. Then so far assembled engine was airbrushed with duraluminium, on top of which I applied coat of scratches effect fluid. As soon as it was dry I airbrushed off black color (mix of black and white in 8:2 proportions). A few minutes later when it was dry to the touch I started chipping process using stiff small brush.
To protect the work I airbrushed sating coat of Hataka XP08. Then I applied another layer of scratches effect fluid and prepared another mix of off black color though this time a bit darker (7:1) and more diluted. I airbrushed it lightly onto the engine, especially in places where it wash chipped before - in this way I wanted to achieve more interesting and realistic chipping as well as slight color variations to make it more interesting to the eye. After another chipping process (this time with the help of toothpick) it turned out quite ok, though next time I will make bigger difference between the two dark shades. Next I added imitations of cables and hoses using aforementioned plusmodel lead wires.
Now it was time to start detail painting of all the wires, cables and hoses. I used different shades of metallic paint to introduce a bit of subtle variety, to be exact I painted with Mr. Metal Stainless Steal and buffed it later on, as well as Silver paint from A.mig. At this time I detail painted smaller subassemblies which then were glued to the main engine.
Next I took care of coolant tank which will be attached to the front of the engine. First I airbrushed front of it with grey green and then back ring with black. The narrow ring at the connections of the colours was then brush painted again with grey green (mix of Vallejo Luftwaffe Cam. Green and White). Next I painted small details with Silver paint from A.mig. Then I glued the coolant tank to the front of the engine. Next I airbrushed exhausts with chrome paint and then applied Track wash as a first layer of weathering and then glued them with the CA glue to the engine. Now it was time to protected engine and front coolant tank with transparent gloss layer which I did using GX112 paint.
At that moment I arrived to the next stage, which is weathering. I started with application of wash which was a mix of black night wash from PLW range and Fresh Engine Oil from A.mig. I applied it over all engine and after 10-15 minutes removed excess with brushes / cotton swabs. Next I did another mix, this time of Streaking Grime and Reinmarks Effects and applied it in certain places where I wanted to depict dirt and accumulated filth. To introduce dust and even more filthy areas I used different kind of pigments which first were diluted with water, then applied to the specific places on the engine and then when it was dry it was blended in with the brush. Next I airbrushed transparent layer of flat XF-86 to secure the work and much reduce the shine of the engine elements. To introduce dislocations due to usage of lubricants and leakage of different fluids I used few different Oilbrushers including Dust, Black, Starship Bay Sludge and Starship Filth which were applied by brush to different element and after 20 minutes or so were blended in with dry clean brushes.
The only downside of this set is tubular engine support framework. Parts are very fragile and as much as I tried not to damage them while removing from casting block and cleaning up I failed. Another problem is that main engine bearers seems to have a bit different shape which additionally complicates completion of the whole structure so that it is aligned properly to the engine and the front fuselage firewall. That is way I decided to paint all the parts separately and then attach them to the engine in specific order. First I glued two parts which create central framework of the engine support. Heaving that in place I attached left and right engine bearers which at that point adjusted their shapes by applying pressure so that they connected with the already glued central frames. Painting wise, first I preshaded the support framework parts with black paint and then airbrushed layer of grey green base color and then secured the work with layer of GX112. Now I had to glue additional pipes and hoses, both resin parts and lead wire were used for that. All added details were painted with Silver. Next whole engine was airbrushed with the misty coat of X-35 semi gloss clear just to protect the work done so far.
Now it was time to take care of supercharger unit. All parts were black based with GX2 and then I airbrushed layer of Super Fine Silver from Mr.Hobby. To imitated metal discolouration from heat I used Alclad paints. First I applied Hot Metal Sepia in certain places, then Pale Gold and lastly Transparent Smoke - all colours were applied with Infinity airbrush with 0,15mm needle and low pressure. Such work must be done in small steps. At first it seems that after some spraying nothing is visible, but that is not the case - just airbrush a thin layer and, wait a bit and check - it is there. I was very careful doing so and still I thing I overdone it t. Next some parts of the supercharger were brush painted with the grey green (mix of Vallejo Luftwaffe Cam. Green and White) and then whole unit was airbrushed with Alclad Klear Kote Gloss.
Engine support framework and other Grey Green elements were brush chipped, first with lighter mix of of Vallejo Luftwaffe Cam. Green and White, then Silver and lastly Rubber & Tires. In the next step I attached whole super charger unit to the engine and then attached and painted rest of missing parts. Weathering wise, supercharger was treated with Black Wash, then Landing Gear wash followed and additionally I applied Earth Effect on the bottom parts of the unit as well as the lower parts of the Oil and Coolant radiators. Support framework was weathered with washes from PLW line - Dark Grey Green and Green Brown. Next I airbrushed layer of XF-86 to kill the shine and protect the work.
Now it was time to weather exhaust stacks. Effect I was after was to have front of the stacks to be quite clean and the further aft the more soot and dirt to be accumulated - in the end I think I managed to accomplish that. I started with application of Track Wash and then Exhaust Wash. After a few minutes I blended it in with dry, clean brush. Next pigments followed - first Dark Rust, then Smoke and Black which were added around exhausts openings to represent grime produced by the gases and oil of the engine. I protected it with Pigment Binder. Then I applied Black Night wash inside the exhausts to create shadow and avoid openings looking lighter than the exterior. As soon as it was dry I used Silver Weathering Pencil over the rims and openings to add visual interest to the finish. Lastly I added Fuel Stains and Engine Oil washes in couple of places to introduce leakage of different fluids and lubricants.
For the time being I consider the engine to be done. While it will be mounted to the fuselage at the end of the build I will probably add a bit of additional weathering to blend it nicely with the rest of the model.
It was a lot of work to finish this one, but as well a lot of fun! I encourage you guys to do such additions from time to time as it brings a lot of value to the model itself and what is really important it gives great opportunity to try different tools, painting approaches and weathering techniques which in the end makes as better modellers!
Below a gallery of the finished engine. If you have any questions or comments please leave them below. Now it is time for the flaps, fuselage assembly and its preparation for painting - it will be the focus of the next blog entry.