A Clumsy Build: Star Wars Virago starfighter

Igard

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May 16, 2011
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Grendels said:
It seems like a normal kit to me!

That's 'cos you're the sorceror of seams, the gap master, the professor of putty, the wizard of .... wide gaps? Scratch that last one. ;D

Fact is, I'm still rubbish at fixing seams.

And nick-names too. ;D
 

Solander

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Jun 8, 2010
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Hey, great work here, ClumsyModeler. Keep it up! ;)

P.S.: Guys, am I correct assuming this is the only Star Wars kit of a vehicle from Expanded Universe ever commercially produced?
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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Blergh. Spent all day (minus a few hours of going out for some sundries) working on the kit, and I'm really getting peeved with just how bad it is. The wings have had their gaps filled (essentially all the way around the wings) and I've started putting some of the fuselage together.

Completed wing (imagine doing this x4!):

14kds84.jpg

And the fuselage. Keep in mind that I'm trying to put it together according to the instructions (test-fitting at this point) but notice how it isn't together? Yeah, there's a reason for that. Two pieces fit into the sides of the lower fuselage and are glued into place at the same time the thruster housing at the rear of the fuselage is glued into place. Unfortunately the upper fuselage can't really go in unless the side plates are left off. Ugh. We'll see if I can either pull the side pieces off, or if I can sneak the upper fuselage into place after painting.

34yp8b7.jpg

After so much putty was applied and sanded off, I washed off the parts and set them out to dry overnight. Tomorrow I'll start hitting them with primer and paint. Trying not to be discouraged here. I'm thinking this kit's too much of a lost cause for me to care to do an awesome job on it, so I'll use it for paint/masking practice and move on.
 

Kryptosdaddy

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Oct 26, 2011
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Damn, a crap kit is just a crap kit. When you beat it and it's sitting on your shelf finished and looking nice you will forget about all the problems and just enjoy it for what it is. A crap kit you beat! LOL hang in there, it gets better. ;D
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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You're right, KD. I'm not giving up on it, in fact the parts are drying after their first coat of primer. I'm pressing forward on this, just not going to keep puttying and sanding my butt off to make it look great. I'll probably backfill some gaps with CA touched with accelerator, but won't bother with sanding or making it "perfect".

Painting should take very little time compared to the rest of the build, so I'm sure I'll make my two week deadline easily. Welp, back to moving furniture around the house. ::)
 

Glorfindel

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May 2, 2011
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:eek: Is that actually how those halves line up? Wow. Not all is lost. Try sitting that lifted part in hot water (not boiling) for a few minutes then pull it out. Test fit it...you may have to let it sit in hot water several times to just soften the plastic and render it malleable. When you get the parts to align up somewhat test fit them again, rubberband them, clamp them, tape them, what ever it takes to get them to clam together then stick the piece into the freezer to cool down the plastic and hopefully set the plastic straight. Once it's corrected you should be right on track. This procedure can't hurt and cost nothing. Give it a whirl.
If it closes the gap considerably then I would say you have success. You can then make up some two part 5-minute epoxy and clamp the halves together. 5 minutes later you'll only have seam work to do and by the looks of it you have that pretty much under control.
Good luck, Anthony.
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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The upper and lower fuselage doesn't align like that, it's just kind of sitting in place as far as it can go without starting the "push, pull and bend as far as it can go without breaking it" mamba. There's a couple of tabs that interfere with one-another (if I had image manipulation software on this laptop I would highlight the areas), that I'm sure if I bend things juuuust right, and take a little material off with my file riiiight there I can get them in place. I'm just griping about the poor instructions leading people to have to do just that.

This kit sucks, but in lighter news:

qyctc8.jpg
 

Ziz

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Sep 24, 2011
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Wait until you get to the interlocking gear mechanism for the wing movement. THAT will be fun. ::)
 

Igard

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Oh my oh my what a horrible kit! Hang in there man. You'll get there.

I think your attitude is the right one. Treat it as a learning exercise and get her looking as good as you can. You appear to have the seam filling down nicely.

Good luck mate! :)

Great pic! ;D
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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I'll definitely need a "good" kit to build next, it'll help me recover from this one, LOL. No pics of my progress today as I've only primed the assemblies and played around with my new Iwata Eclipse HP-CS airbrush. I wonder if I can replace the regulator on my compressor because the one I have sucks. I can't get it to adjust whatsoever and it stays at 20PSI regardless of how I adjust the regulator. I'm going to make it work though, so a different compressor will have to wait until later.

The primer is still curing and it'll need a little sanding to clean it up (rattlecans of cheap primer, bleh), so paint won't start flowing until tomorrow night.
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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You know that reminds me that I didn't say just how pleased I was with the HP-CS. From my limited experience I can say it's the best airbrush I've ever used. That's not saying much - this is only my second one. The first one was the least expensive Paasche double action I could find. :D

No painting or progress tonight - I'm taking the night off and will get back to it tomorrow.
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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I haven't given up - far from it. Life is just getting in the way a bit. A bunch of honeydo's hit my desk, and I've only been able to spend a small about of time on this build over the last week. As such, I'm allotting another week to getting it done, though I'm pretty sure I can be done in a few more evenings.


Here's the most recent pic, a bit of painting and learning my airbrush. I have resolved to switch over to acrylics as soon as feasible, though. Tired of all the solvents involved with enamels. I also learned that the higher humidity here in San Antonio can be a bit of a problem. I may switch to a CO2 setup if I can find a good supplier in the local area.


2q1vtxe.jpg


I'll probably head back out to the garage and try to get the second color laid down after I mask everything else off. I'll update when I have more pics to share.
 

blakeh1

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Oct 26, 2011
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This lit was one of the worst for gaps and parts fit. Congrats to making it to the painting stage

It will pay off when done though
 

Grendels

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I live in College Station about a 2 hour drive from you and I don't have the problems with humidity that you speak of. But I do spray indoors and I usually have the AC running when painting to keep the humidity down.
 

ClumsyModeler

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Feb 21, 2012
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Well, I do have a little compressor with no tank. It loves to heat up and that seems to make matters worse. I'm also doing my spraying in the garage, so it's more humid in there than the rest of the house. Once I get my "cave" built, that problem should go away - hopefully. It is good to hear you're in TX too, and not far away. I'm coming to your place to hang out! ;)

Once I get home from work I believe I'll get the last bits masked off and ready for the last color. The engines are masked, as is one of the four wings. The "cockpit/canopy" is going to be a PITA, I can tell. The edges are very soft so it's going to be difficult to consistently mask where the edges should be. Blegh.

I may have a second Virago kit land in my stash in a day or two - this one for free. It won't be getting built as a Virago, but will rather be a parts stash for kitbashing. There's some nice shapes in there for sure. :)
 

Grendels

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One thing that would help is to put a moisture trap on that compressor, they are not expensive and it will take out quite a bit of the water.

It is good to hear you're in TX too, and not far away. I'm coming to your place to hang out!

I might be headed to San Antonio in the next week or two, drop you a note if I do.
 

ClumsyModeler

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Grendels said:
One thing that would help is to put a moisture trap on that compressor, they are not expensive and it will take out quite a bit of the water.
I've got one that came with the compressor, attached at the compressor itself. The problem was pronounced with just that one at that location and I've heard the water vapor condenses into droplets the further the air travels from the compressor. My AB came with another water trap, so I added it as well and it has helped a bit. Looks a bit goofy with two traps, but what are you going to do? LOL!

I might be headed to San Antonio in the next week or two, drop you a note if I do.
Awesome, perhaps the Mrs and I can host you for dinner or something? Let me know!
 

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