Sunday, January 8, 2017

Military aircraft vol.84: Curtiss P40N


Subject:
Curtiss P40N
Scale:
1/72
Manufacturer:
Academy
Price
US$15,00 plus shipping
Description
Injected plastic model with  waterslide decals and photo etched parts.
Comments
The Curtiss P40 was introduced into military service in the Brazilian Air Force in 1942, under the Lend-lease agreement to supply allied countries with equipment to fight the axis all over the world. Brazil received more then 80 P40s of 4 different variants: 6 P40E, 31 P40K, 9 P40M and 41 P40N. Several aircraft were used in the northeast part of the country, fighting the menace of the U-boots in the Atlantic. A few were used in the south side of Brazil, based in Canoas Air Force Base. My P40N represents one of this aircraft, still carrying the olive drab over neutral grey american camouflage. Markings were provided by FCM decals, set 72-23. Artwork on this set is very good, and the decals were printed by Microscale with high quality. Now i have two versions of the P40 in Brazil: the first, P40E, and the last, P40N. The P40s were replaced by the Gloster Meteor F8 in 1955 after a long and useful service live with the Brazilian Air Force.









Sunday, December 25, 2016

Military aircraft vol.83: Focke-Achgelis Fa330


Subject:
Focke-Achgelis Fa330
Scale:
1/72
Manufacturer:
Pavla
Price
US$25,00 plus shipping
Description
Injected plastic model with  waterslide decals and photo etched parts.
Comments
The Focke-Achgelis Fa 330 Bachstelze (English: Wagtail) was a type of rotary-wing kite, known as a gyroglider or rotor kite. They were towed behind German U-boats during World War II to allow a lookout to see farther.The Fa 330 could be deployed to the deck of the submarine by two people and was tethered to the U-boat by a 150 m (500 ft) cable. The airflow on the rotors as the boat motored along on the surface would spin them up. The kite would then be deployed behind the U-boat with its observer-pilot aboard, raising him approximately 120 meters above the surface and allowing him to see much farther — about 25 nautical miles (46 km), compared to the 5 nautical miles (9 km) visible from the conning tower of the U-boat. If the U-boat captain were forced to abandon it on the surface, the tether would be released and the Fa 330 descend slowly to the water.
The Pavla kit is very easy to build. You should have some experience with photo etched metal parts as most of the model is made of this material. The finished kit is very small, so i decided to place it on some kind of vignette. Some pictures show the Fa330 on e a launch platform, and that seemed to be a nice solution to display my gyroglider. I hope you like it!












Monday, December 12, 2016

Military aircraft vol.82: Lockheed P38J Lightning Yippee







Subject:
Lockheed P38J Lightning Yippee
Scale:
1/72
Manufacturer:
Hobbyboss
Price
US$20,00 plus shipping
Description
Injected plastic model with  waterslide decals.
Comments
 The 5,000th Lightning built, a P-38J-20-LO, 44-23296, was painted bright vermilion red, and had the name YIPPEE painted on the underside of the wings in big white letters as well as the signatures of hundreds of factory workers. This and other aircraft were used by a handful of Lockheed test pilots including Milo BurchamJimmie Mattern and Tony LeVier in remarkable flight demonstrations, performing such stunts as slow rolls at treetop level with one prop feathered to dispel the myth that the P-38 was unmanageable. 
To build my version of Yippee i used Hobbyboss P38L and backdated  it to P38J. I could have used one of several P38J kits available, but i wanted to try this easy kit. Fit is very nice and detail is ok, but Academy's P38J is much better in all aspects. The decals from Iliad performed very well. I was afraid of the effect of the red color under the white markings. However, the density of the white is excellent. I hope you like the result as much as i did!










Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Space vehicles walkaround vol.5: Mercury spacecraft


Subject: Mercury space vehicles.
Location: Museum of science and industry, Chicago, Il, USA, 2014
Comments: This is Scott Carpenter's Aurora 7 Mercury spacecraft.
Project Mercury was the first human spaceflight program of the United States, running from 1958 through 1963. An early highlight of the Space Race, its goal was to put a man into Earth orbit and return him safely, ideally before the Soviet Union. Taken over from the U.S. Air Force by the newly created civilian space agency NASA, it conducted twenty unmanned developmental flights (some using animals), and six successful flights by astronauts. The program, which took its name from the god of travel in Roman mythology, cost $277 million in 1965 US dollars, and involved the work of 2 million people. The astronauts were collectively known as the "Mercury Seven", and each spacecraft was given a name ending with a "7" by its pilot.








Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Space vehicles walkaround vol.4: Apollo/Skylab A7L space suit




Subject: Apollo/Skylab A7L space suit
Location: Museum of science and technology, Chicago, Il, USA 2014.
Comments: The A7L Apollo & Skylab spacesuit is the primary pressure suit worn by NASA astronauts for Project Apollo, the three manned Skylab flights, and the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project between 1968 and the termination of the Apollo program in 1975. The "A7L" designation is used by NASA as the seventh Apollo spacesuit designed and built by ILC Dover (a Playtex division when the suit was designed). The A7L is a design evolution of ILC's initial design A5L and the A6L, which introduced the integrated thermal and micrometeroid cover layer. After the deadly Apollo 1 fire, the suit was upgraded to be fire-resistant and given the designation A7L.The basic design of the A7L suit was a one piece, five-layer "torso-limb" suit with convoluted joints made of synthetic and natural rubber at the shoulders, elbows, wrist, hips, ankle, and knee joints, "link-net" meshing to prevent the suit from ballooning at the joints, and a shoulder "cable block" assembly to allow the shoulder to be extended and retracted by its wearer. Metal rings at the neck and forearms allowed for the connection of the pressure gloves and the famous Apollo "fishbowl helmet" (adopted by NASA as it allowed an unrestricted view, as well as eliminating the need for a visor seal required in the Mercury and Gemini and Apollo Block I spacesuit helmets). A cover layer, which was designed to be fireproof after the deadly Apollo 1 fire, was attached to the pressure garment assembly and was removable for repairs and inspection. All A7L suits featured a vertical zipper that went from the shoulder assembly of the suit down to the crotch for donning and doffing the suit.The two suits for the astronauts that were expected two participate on the lunar excursion have some differences. Between Apollos 7 and 14, the two lunar module astronauts, the Commander (CDR) and Lunar Module pilot (LMP), had Torso Limb Suit Assemblies (TSLA) with six life supportconnections placed in two parallel columns on the chest. The 4 lower connectors passed oxygen, an electrical headset/biomed connector was on the upper right, and a bidirectional cooling water connector was on the upper left.Covering the Torso Limb Suit Assembly was an Integrated Thermal Micrometeoroid Garment (ITMG). This garment protected the suit from abrasion and protected the astronaut from thermal solar radiation and micrometeoroids which could puncture the suit. The garment was made from thirteen layers of material which were (from inside to outside):rubber coated nylon, 5 layers of aluminized Mylar, 4 layers of nonwoven Dacron, 2 layers of aluminized Kapton film/Beta marquisette laminate, and Teflon coated Beta filament cloth.Additionally, the ITMG also used a patch of 'Chromel-R' woven steel (the familiar silver-colored patch seen especially on the suits worn by the Apollo 11 crew) for abrasion protection from the Portable Life Support System (PLSS) backpack. Chromel-R was also used on the uppers of the lunar boots and on the EVA gloves. Finally, patches of Teflon were used for additional abrasion protection on the knees waist and shoulders of the ITMG.Starting with Apollo 13, a red band of Beta cloth was added to the commander's ITMG on each arm and leg, as well as a red stripe on the newly added EVA central visor assembly. The stripes, initially known as "Public Affairs stripes" but quickly renamed "commander's stripes", made it easy to distinguish the two astronauts on the lunar surface and were added by Brian Duff, head of Public Affairs at the Manned Spacecraft Center, to resolve the problem for the media as well as NASA of identifying astronauts in photographs. Lunar crews also wore a three-layer Liquid Cooling and Ventilation Garment (LCG) or "union suit" with plastic tubing which circulated water to cool the astronaut down, minimizing sweating and fogging of the suit helmet. Water was supplied to the LCG from the PLSS backpack, where the circulating water was chilled by an ice sublimator (ref: wikipedia)