Thursday, March 2, 2017

Work in progress vol.20: North American X-15

North American X-15
US$20,00 plus shipping
Injected plastic model with  waterslide decals.
This is a small article on the construction of Dragon's X15. Overall, it is a very nice kit. No filler was used during the construction. Also, the only extra part added was a base to display the finished model. Bellow you will see some pictures of the construction captioned with some comments about the quality of the kit

The two fuselage parts fit together very well leaving a very fin panel line.
Fuselage measures about 10cm in length. It is a small kit but quite large for 1/144 scale model.

This is the ventral fin. I could not identify the rear part of this piece looking at pictures of the real aircraft

I decided to place the speed brake on the open position as they would look like after landing. For the ventral fin, a left off the lower part of the fin that was discarded before touchdown.

The rear fuselage part has a place to add some parts for a late period X-15 that must be closed to build the plane during the early part of it's service life.

Here the dorsal fin, wings and tail were all assembled. Fit of all the parts is very good.

I added some plastic to close holes that were supposed to be used on other versions of the plane. 

This is the two parts for the nose section. The left one is used with the nose probe seen on the early flights of the X15.

You can see that dragon omitted this nose part on the instructions. I have to take some care searching for the sprues to find the small part that would fit the nose probe.

I added the canopy, masked the windows and the kit was ready for painting

Another view of the assembled model.

Despite the fact that most references on the X15 dictates that it was painted in a very dark blue color, most pictures show an almost black aircraft. I went on with Tamiya XF-69 Nato Black and sealed it with future

I took a chance and decided to paint some panels in a lighter tone of XF-69. The areas were masked with Revell masking tape.

Here you have the different panel colors with some high lights of the panel lines using a technique i will describe on a later article. It might look too heavy, but i think it is the effect of placing the model over a black background.

It gets better over a less dark background. Now it is ready for the decals and final assembling.

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