Jim Lund has sent in his latest batch of images and notes charting his progress on the construction of Mike Herrill's new 1/72 scale vac-form kit. This time Jim, having built the hull, now turns his attention to the main wing. Jim say's:
"Here, I'm scraping and trimming the main wing halves. Because of the nature of vacforming, both the top and bottom are pulled around the nacelles. The lower wing must have the nacelle faces and sides removed to the center line, as the lower wing is the flattest of the two".
"The crossed-out portions marked in black ink here are to be removed to facilitate a neat join of top and bottom halves".
"Oh my, how quickly this sequence went, as we see the wing placed onto the hull. Sorry, this is just a tape up to check the fit. Now we face hours of tedious work. First I'll tape together all of Mikes 1/72 drawings, and trace them all...very carefully. Regardless of whatever drawings you prefer, you must use Mikes as the entire kit is based on these and only these. Then, remove the tape and get to work. All the panel lines and control surfaces must be etched into the plastic. Use a fine tip black permanent marker pen and then score with a #11 Exacto knife".
"Displayed here is what the builder needs to assemble this very large subject. You might be able to get by with a table 36" X 30", but not me. I need one at least 6 feet long to shuffle all the material around. Also shown are the tools you will need. The main spar and center core made of wood, carefully contoured to match the wing is shown here as well. More next week...!".
One thing that is becoming obvious as we go on and that is Jim's consistently neat workmanship and forward planning, both elements that are required for any vac-form kit to be a success. As it begins now to take shape the sheer bulk of it will become awkward as you try to move it around the workbench. I well remember hitting the wall with the nose of the XB-70A Valkyrie as I was building it, twisting and turning it to sand seams down! Also, another factor in a neat build is the work that has gone into the pattern making by the manufacturer and this one looks first-class and a testimony to the skill of Mike Herrill. Mind you, there is one other factor that is becoming apparent as the build continues; this is one very big model! Where are you going to put it when you have finished it.....?
Can't wait for next week's episode....!