GT-R Complete & Photos

I've wrapped up the build of the Tamiya GT-R kit.  By the time I was finishing up this kit, I was remembering why is was that I tried a wooden kit in the first place.  I get worn out on all the painting, the frustrations of various paint types not agreeing with one another, and the fragility of decals.  Although at least with this project, I took away a few valuable lessons that I can keep in mind for future similar projects.  Here are a few tidbits to remember:

- If it is going to be shiny, use lacquer.  Tamiya's gloss acrylics just never behave when airbrushed.
- Don't use the microSOL (aka Decal Melter) until the decal is in it's final place and already partly dry.
- If some of it will be painted over, remove the underlying chrome plating first, otherwise, the paint will just chip off, despite using primer.
- Give the aforementioned lacquer PLENTY of time to dry before putting masking tape on it.  Probably should wait 24 hours before trying.
- One should probably order a second set of decals for a project like this, as some are sure to be damaged.  Alternately, perhaps one could scan them, and buy a self-print decal sheet so one could make replacements (although I'm not sure about the quality difference here)
- Third party racing harness kits, while pretty cool, might not be worth the effort unless the car is an open wheel type.

Anyhow, with this project completed, I spent a few minutes photographing but this car and the last project (WWII BMW r75 motorcycle).  I recently purchased a new lens, which has some macro capabilities, and tried that out on this shoot.  I am pretty pleased with the results.  Here are a few images of the completed models:

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The full galleries are online and can be seen in the completed models section of this web site.

Next up:  Model Airways' Curtis 'Jenny' wooden plane.  Stay tuned for more model adventures!

Model Desk Renovation & Tamiya GT-R

Since the last post, I've done a few things to make my workspace a bit better.

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First I built myself a little shelf, so that I could have better access to my various paints, glues and other toxic chemicals.  I just picked up a small sheet of thin plywood at Home Depot as well as some little 1"x1"x12" blocks of pine.  I worked up some quick plans, drew them out onto the plywood, busted out the jigsaw and started cutting.  After some gluing, drilling, a few wood screws, and a couple coats of gray spray paint, I now have a nice little shelf for my desk (you can also see here the monitor for the cam/computer setup I mentioned in the previous post):

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Next, after knocking over my bottle of high-power plastic cement, and melting all the lines off the middle of my cutting mat, I thought it might be a good idea to make sure that doesn't happen again.  Especially since this was not the first time I had knocked this same bottle over.  After rummaging around a bit, I found some nice wood I had left over from the base I made for the Panzer project (red oak, I think).  I cut a couple squares of this, glued them together, and then, using a hole saw, drilled a hole just a bit bigger than the glue bottle.  A couple coats of polyurethane, and now I've got a little block that keeps my glue bottle from falling over and doesn't look too terrible.

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Before I jumped into another long-term wooden project, I decided to make one more plastic kit.  I settled on the Tamiya Calsonic Impul GT-R kit that I bought a while back, thinking it would be fairly quick and easy, since it doesn't have an engine and only a rudimentary interior.  I had intended to build it straight from the box, but I couldn't resist adding an third party racing harness kit.  Here you can see the completed interior, as well as the mostly-built exterior shell:

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I should wrap this project up in the next few weeks, and then I'll get some proper photographs of both this completed model and the motorcycle model that I finished before this one.  Stay tuned!


A Sneak Preview

Just a quick post to bring things up to date. Here's a quick look at upcoming projects.

This past week I received a kit for another wooden and metal model. This one is a WWI biplane, the Curtiss JN-4D 'Jenny'. I'm hoping that it'll be a challenging build, similar to the Sloop build, except with much more metal and photo-etch. I'm actually hoping to set up a time-lapse recording method for this build, using an old computer, and a webcam. But since I think this might take me a little bit to get set up and tested, I'm going to hold off on starting this build for a little while.

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So, in the meantime, after wrapping up the motorcycle model (which I plan on doing today), I'll be putting this one together:

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It should be a quick, fun build, since there isn't any engine. I was in the mood to make something shiny before I start on a longer build, so I figure I can crank through this one in a few weeks, and should be able to test out my time-lapse setup in the process :)

And there we have it. That's my modeling progress brought up to date. Party on.