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WVrailfan's blog
Posted by WVrailfan | Sep 22, 2013 @ 08:13 PM | 1,811 Views
I covered the white part of the wings with white vinyl. For the black stripes I masked the wing and spray painted the stripes directly onto the white vinyl. This is the first time I have tried this hybrid wrap and paint method of covering a plane. I put some tape on the painted vinyl and peeled it off and the paint stayed in place.

Once the wings are done I started on the fuselage. I use the same method, start at the rear and work forward, using small pieces for tight curves and bends, larger pieces for lessor curves and flat areas. I also covered the white area with white vinyl and masked and painted the black stripes. I also covered the nose area with chrome and then masked and sprayed the blue. I'm hoping if any blue paint peels the chrome will show, bare metal, much like the real planes.

Once the paint had dried I added the decals from Callie Graphics. I then sprayed some light weathering, exhaust along the sides and soot around the guns. I painted the inside of the gear doors aluminum, the gear bays and area exposed when the flaps are extended field green.

I'm pretty happy with the plane. Like my other wrapped planes, it is not perfect and I don't pretend it is. It looks best from a few feet and should look really good in the air.

Jim
Posted by WVrailfan | Sep 12, 2013 @ 12:05 AM | 2,587 Views
I got in a little time on the West Virginian today. Working on the wings now. You will have to over look any mess you see in the background of the photos, my workshop is indeed a mess.

I am going to try something new as I go on this build. I am going to do some painting directly onto the vinyl film, particularly the black invasion stripes and some of the blue on the nose of the plane.

I started the wings the same as the tail feathers. Removed the decals and filled the panel lines with Dap brand "Fast N Final" lightweight spackling. I think you can get it at most home improvement stores in the U.S. I'm sure there is similar products for other areas.

Once the spackling sets, I sand the wings and then hit them with a light coat of automotive gray primer from a spray can. This is just to prevent any drastic color separation from showing through the vinyl.

Once I am satisfied with the surface I cut several 1 X 2 and 1/2 X 2 cm pieces of the film and start applying it to the wing tips and wing roots working from back to front. The tighter the curve the smaller piece I use. This technique will avoid a lot of wrinkles.

When I have the wing tip and wing root done I start cutting larger pieces to fill in the top and bottom of the wing. I use chrome for most of the wing, but I use silver for the ailerons and white for the invasion stripe area. I will mask and paint the black portion of the invasion stripes directly onto the white vinyl later.

I am posting...Continue Reading
Posted by WVrailfan | Aug 27, 2013 @ 12:51 PM | 2,322 Views
Once I finished the vertical tail I used the same technique for the horizontal tail feathers.

I start on the rear most corner, cut small 1 X2 cm or 1/2 X 2 cm pieces and work from back to front. The sharper or tighter the curve, the smaller the piece I use. I did the elevator control surface first in silver then the rest using the chrome.

At my local hobby shop I found some Sharpie brand pens that use paint rather than ink, so I picked up a black and silver to try on this build. So far I am happy with the results, they write clean and the paint should be more permanent than the normal Sharpie ink which can be removed by repeated rubbing/handling.

When finished I tested fitted the two pieces together. I am satisfied with the way they came out.
Posted by WVrailfan | Aug 16, 2013 @ 10:38 PM | 2,535 Views
Okay, I thought replies would show up as part of the blog, so you will have to check the comments to see the second installation of this build blog.

I got to work on the tail some more today, and I also removed some of the factory applied decals from the fuselage. I have to repeat myself, FMS has obviously found a secret to getting paint to stick to foam.

When I peeled the larger decals off, some of the paint came with it, but not without a fight. The paint comes off with the consistency of second hand chewing gum. If you are buying one of these planes and like the factory paint scheme, you need not worry about minor bumps causing the paint to crack, peel or flake off.

All the more reason to hope for undecorated models in future releases.

But I digress, more on this later, back to the tail.

Once I am happy with the surface I start cutting some small pieces of vinyl for curves and tight corners. The vinyl is marked on the back with 1 cm squares making it easy to measure and cut. I like to work from the bottom up and back to front. Working back to front keeps overlaps rear facing so the air passing over the plane won’t be able to work under a small piece of vinyl and raise it up or peel it back.

Even though the Mustang is an all metal plane, the control surfaces are painted cloth. In photos of Lt. Powell’s plane the rudder and other control surfaces appear to be painted silver. So I began at the rudder with silver vinyl. I cut a bunch of 1 X 2 cm...Continue Reading
Posted by WVrailfan | Aug 14, 2013 @ 05:27 PM | 3,598 Views
I have never attempted a "blog" before, so you will have to be patient as I learn what I'm doing as I go.

After reading many glowing reports on how well the plane performs, I ordered one of the FMS 1450 mm P-51B models. I got the Dallas Darling, but I plan to strip and cover the plane with Oracle vinyl film and polyester chrome film to replicate Lt. Robert Powell's plane, The West By Gawd Virginian.

I'm proud to be from West Virginia, and still call it home, so it was either this plane or Chuck Yeager's and I figured there were several models of General Yeager's plane already flying around RC fields, plus, I really like the blue nose scheme of the 352 FS. Lt. Powell's B model crashed on take off due to engine failure in July 1944. He survived and carried on in a P-51D.

I am taking some modeler's license as I am going to model the plane as if it survived the war and was now doing the air show circuit. My plane will be clean and shiny, with just a touch of weathering around the exhaust and control surfaces.