Airfix HC3 Merlin - FINISHED!

Cave_Dweller

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This is the coolest looking helicopter I've ever seen. Something about it just fascinated me, and I used to be into flight sims and had this in MS flight sim and I just thought it was bad ass all around. So, when I saw the airfix kit, I just had to have it. Thanks to ECH for a good deal on it!

To start with, it's a HUGE kit, about 18-20" long on the fuselage alone, I'm sure it'll be about 2' in length with the rotors.

And it's a complex kit, there are 4 sprues plus clear plastic for windows. It also has a full set of very nice decals.

I've only built a few world military aircraft in my life, all poorly and many years ago, so this will be quite a departure and a lot of fun.

So, let's get started!



Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr



Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

Very detailed instruction manual


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

And now the sprues...


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

Very nice decals on this one


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

These decals are printed at fine detail, it will be hard to pick a unit I want to paint this as


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

Comes with a manual describing various units that employed this in war.


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

As well as a quite complex map of where each and every decal should go!


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr

And here's about where I've gotten with it so far tonight. Despite the complexity, it seems to be fairly straightforward. The parts are all very nicely detailed and have minimal mold lines, and is an overall well-designed kit.


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr


Airfix EH101 by FreakOnaut, on Flickr
 

nicholassagan

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Wow! That's a lot of plastic!!!
 

Quaralane

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

A lot of plastic, but I think the detail will pay off in the end
 

Myke

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Sweet. I'm quite the fan of chopper builds.
 

Cave_Dweller

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Quaralane said:
A lot of plastic, but I think the detail will pay off in the end
A lot of plastic is an understatement heh. What I'm finding out real quick is there has to be phases for this build. First you've got to completely finish the interior and cockpit before you can build the fuselage around it.

I think I'm going to run out of alligator clips on this one...
 

Cave_Dweller

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

So there's a lot of seats for this bad boy, 20 passenger seats in all. My stubby fingers were not kind to them. The plastic on this kit feels kinda...soft. Not as rigid as Tamiya or Hasegawa kits. I've had several pieces break while removing them from the sprue.



The exhaust vents. I'm trying out citadel liquid greenstuff to fill the seams. These pieces are super thin, like 0.5mm thick plastic, so sanding is challenging. I actually cut through them while trimming off the sprue connectors.



But I did make some good progress today and have some stuff ready to prime already. Hopefully the weather improves as it's been very windy and cold here, not the best for rattle cans outside.



Also, this kit is actually the HC3 Merlin, not an EH101. But for some reason I can't edit my original post to change it.
 

Quaralane

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

There's a time limit for editing your own posts.
As a mod, I was able to fix it for you.

Looks like a lot of work getting done on the model
 

Grendels

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Off to a nice start!
 

Cave_Dweller

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Thanks for the fix, Quaralane.

Haven't done much the last few days except ponder the seats. These bloody seats.

20 of those fragile little buggers was definitely a test of one's patience. They can be built up or down, I decided for mainly down with a few that are up.

Then it became apparent they don't have seat belts, which is a minor detail I suppose, but one I think will add a lot of authenticity.

Quick websearch showed this is what the seat belts on a typical RAF Merlin might look like:





Here's where I ended up after a little bit of experimentation with paper.

 

THE NEW ONE

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

nice detail with paper, and I have trouble too with little details, I have very stubby fingers
 

Tailor

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Great start!
 

Cave_Dweller

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Thanks guys, big step today: primer!

Hopefully this cures by this evening and I can start painting. I'm pretty happy with how the seat belts turned out. I'd like to find some more miscellaneous things for the cabin, like bags, gear, water bottles etc, but I haven't seen that stuff in 1/48 scale. 1/35 scale accessories might work, especially for things like duffel bags, and those are easy to find.

 

Quaralane

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Nice trick with the belts there
 

warped_one

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

the seats look like they where a nightmare
 

Grendels

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Lots of tiny seats.....

Looking forward to the end result!
 

Cave_Dweller

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

The seats definitely were time consuming. I just started painting them and some of the interior.

My airbrushes are giving me a lot of trouble. Namely spattering issues. I hate spattering!

I've kept them reasonably clean and the issues are worse at lower pressure and happen when I pull off the trigger. I gotta sort this out before I do much more work.
 

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Cave_Dweller said:
The seats definitely were time consuming. I just started painting them and some of the interior.

My airbrushes are giving me a lot of trouble. Namely spattering issues. I hate spattering!

I've kept them reasonably clean and the issues are worse at lower pressure and happen when I pull off the trigger. I gotta sort this out before I do much more work.
it has to happen, it has to happen
 

Army Vet

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Looks good Cave_Dweller . The seats look good . How do you like the green stuff ?
 

Cave_Dweller

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Re: Airfix HC3 Merlin

Army Vet said:
Looks good Cave_Dweller . The seats look good . How do you like the green stuff ?
Thanks man, still painting the seats at the moment, I haven't had much motivation this week, I'm hoping to power through them this weekend.

The liquid green stuff reminds me a lot of Mr. Surfacer. You can brush it on and thin it with water, and clean your brushes up easily. It doesn't harden very well, though, and you can scratch it off with a fingernail.
 
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