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Start Here (for Beginners)
This forum is for younger modelers or people just starting out in the hobby.
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Returning
Bullettproof
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Nebraska, United States
Joined: October 31, 2009
KitMaker: 9 posts
AeroScale: 4 posts
Posted: Monday, September 23, 2013 - 12:42 PM UTC
Hello everyone!. My name is Mike and I am returning to modeling after about a 30 year layoff. I am in a position now where I can dedicate a little more time to the hobby of modeling.

I want to start with something simple the won't require a lot of monetary output at first. The F4U is my favorite plane, so I would like to get a kit of it. Who makes a decent kit that I can pretty much build out of the box with just a little painting, and have a good looking model? I am looking at 1/48 scale, but any scale will do for the plane I would like to try.

With 3 kids and a limited budget, I just want to start cheap.

Thanks for any advice,
Mike
JackFlash
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Colorado, United States
Joined: January 25, 2004
KitMaker: 11,649 posts
AeroScale: 10,991 posts
Posted: Monday, September 23, 2013 - 12:47 PM UTC
Welcome back!
alpha_tango
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Germany
Joined: September 07, 2005
KitMaker: 5,609 posts
AeroScale: 5,231 posts
Posted: Monday, September 23, 2013 - 12:53 PM UTC
Hi Mike,

welcome back!

Take a Tamiya Corsair!!! Might be not the cheapest in the bunch, but is also quite a time on the market and you may get one on discount or second hand (ebay). Nobody beats Tamiya in fit and ease of construction and still the result looks fantastic.

all the best

Steffen
Jessie_C
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British Columbia, Canada
Joined: September 03, 2009
KitMaker: 6,739 posts
AeroScale: 6,034 posts
Posted: Monday, September 23, 2013 - 01:14 PM UTC
If you can't find a Tamiya kit, the new Academy kit is a close second. It's cheaper and you don't have to fiddle with the optional folded wing bits. We did a Corsairs campaign a couple of years ago. If you read through that thread, you can see first hand what several of the most commonly available kits are like.
amegan
#243
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England - North East, United Kingdom
Joined: March 21, 2008
KitMaker: 968 posts
AeroScale: 888 posts
Posted: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - 03:50 AM UTC
Welcome back, and I love your choice of the bent wing bird. Have fun!
Joel_W
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
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New York, United States
Joined: December 04, 2010
KitMaker: 9,760 posts
AeroScale: 7,320 posts
Posted: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - 04:36 AM UTC
Mike, welcome back to the hobby, and to Aeroscale. Something about that 30 year mark that seems to be a magic number. My hiatus was also 30 years give or take a few. You'll find that almost everything has changed since your last time around. Might I add most for the better.

Like you, my scale of choice is nearly always 1/48 scale. Although I'm a Grumman junkie, the F4U Corsair series is one of my favorite WW11 Navy/Marine fighters. I've built both the Tamiya F4U-1 & F4U-1A kits so far. The Tamiya kits are superb in design, detail, and fit. Hardly a drop of filler is needed. The folding wings are a compromise so the aircraft can be built either way. With both models I've gone with the wings in the down position, and as Jessica alluded to, takes some work to get right. On the other hand, the cockpit is amazing for the amount of detail that's in there.

The Tamiya Birdcage -1 can be done in either a 2 or 3 tone paint scheme, the -1A in either a 3 tone or over all Glossy Sea Blue scheme, and the -1D in the Glossy Sea Blue scheme as well. The easiest paint scheme would be the 2 tone intermediate Blue/Medium Gray paint scheme on the F4U-1. A glossy paint finish takes quite a lot of effort to achieve that magic mile deep finish.

Are you planning on air brushing since you didn't mention it one way or the other. Please start a build blog so we all can follow along, and enjoy your return to the hobby, and help with any hiccups that might pop up during your build.

Joel
Bullettproof
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Nebraska, United States
Joined: October 31, 2009
KitMaker: 9 posts
AeroScale: 4 posts
Posted: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - 08:52 PM UTC
Well, I'm going to try rattle cans at first. Can a 2 tone paint job be accomplished that way? Do the instructions give a paint guide?
AirLedge
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Cork, Ireland
Joined: July 26, 2007
KitMaker: 292 posts
AeroScale: 265 posts
Posted: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - 09:36 PM UTC
Hi Mike,

I'm also returning to modeling, in my case just 5 years
Welcome back. Rattle cans can indeed be used for a multi-colored scheme as long as you mask off previously painted areas first, tamiya masking tape and blutac work best from my experience. Remember to paint the lighter shades first and try to spray a nice even coat so as not to cover up any detail. Kit instructions give paint scheme and decal guides but most modellers like to check other references, google the kit our markings your doing and you'll find a wealth of resources. Good luck
Bullettproof
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Nebraska, United States
Joined: October 31, 2009
KitMaker: 9 posts
AeroScale: 4 posts
Posted: Friday, September 27, 2013 - 11:54 AM UTC
But if I use a spray can and mask it off, won't it make a straight line in the camouflage? Is there an overlap in the 2 colors. I'm thinking about a Intermediate Blue, gray paint scheme.
Jessie_C
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British Columbia, Canada
Joined: September 03, 2009
KitMaker: 6,739 posts
AeroScale: 6,034 posts
Posted: Friday, September 27, 2013 - 12:13 PM UTC
It depends how you mask. If you use something 3 dimensional to mask with (such as blue-tack or an equivalent), then the paint can have a feathered edge. Other people peel back the edges of their masking tape and put a thread just behind the edge to lift it up off the model's surface a little. Still others use paper patterns stuck to the model with rolls of masking tape, once again holding the mask above the surface.

I suggest that you get a really cheap practise model and try all these techniques to see which of them produces the result you like best before going on to build your Corsair. Check your local model club and find out when they're having a swap meet to get the best deal on your paint test hulk
Holdfast
Staff MemberPresident
IPMS-UK KITMAKER BRANCH
#056
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England - South West, United Kingdom
Joined: September 30, 2002
KitMaker: 8,566 posts
AeroScale: 4,913 posts
Posted: Friday, September 27, 2013 - 07:17 PM UTC
Hi Mike,
Welcome back to modelling and welcome to Aeroscale

My advice would be to get hold of some cheap models, in what everscale but there are some very good simple 1/72 scale kits out there. Use these to build up your skill level before you tackle you favourite bird in your favourite scale. Include the bent wing bird in your list of cheap kits so that when you are ready to tackle it in your favourite scale you can see how far you have come on. Unless you have the right skill set you might disappoint yourself by tackling a relatively difficult kit first time out. Don't get me wrong as anything you will produce is good if its good enough for you I wish that I had been given this advice when I returned to the hobby many years ago. Admittedly there wasn't the internet back then so I was on my own but I had to teach myself on the kits that I bought and they were the ones that I wanted to build and trying techniques on them wasn't a good idea
Do though post pictures of your progress that way we can help you along and give advice, which ever way you decide to go. If you chose subjects that have hard edge camouflage you can easily do multi-coloured paint jobs with relative ease. Actually, if you do choose to practice on 1/72 scale then hard edge masked demarcations to what in real life was a soft edge won't really matter. The point is that you are practicing so try all the methods that have been suggested The one and most important criteria is to have fun
Bullettproof
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Nebraska, United States
Joined: October 31, 2009
KitMaker: 9 posts
AeroScale: 4 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 28, 2013 - 01:29 AM UTC
Thank you every body for the suggestions! I found a 144th scale F-4 Phantom kit in a discount bin at the local craft store to practice on. So, I'm going to try my hand at that one first, and if I screw up, I'm not out to much money.
Joel_W
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
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New York, United States
Joined: December 04, 2010
KitMaker: 9,760 posts
AeroScale: 7,320 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 28, 2013 - 01:49 AM UTC
Mike, as everyone has alluded to, practice makes perfect. And painting definitely needs some practice time.

When I paint a camo scheme with my airbrush, I don't mask unless I need a hard edge. The correct thinning mixture, lower psi, and a change is needle & cone are all I need to control the feathered edge/over spray. That takes a lot of practice.

In your case of painting with rattle cans, you have little to no control over the flow rate, and amount of paint. Your only options are speed of each pass, and the distance of the can to your model. Rattle cans put out a tremendous amount of paint at a very high psi, they're really designed to paint large areas evenly. The secret is to make smooth, consistent passes, building up nice smooth painted surface slowly. Going to slow, or stopping the can movement( never do that) produces orange peel, and even ripples. Do a few light coats, then let the paint cure for 10 or 15 min before you continue to paint. This does take some practice, so use a cheap throw-a-kit to hone your basic skills.

Masking a rigid demarcation line and using rattle cans will cause a raised paint line, that will have to be polished out when the paint cures. Not a big issue as long as you don't have a ton of paint to deal with. Again, light moderately fast coats is the way to go. Masking with Blutac will give you a nice feathered edge. Jessica has also mentioned a few other options that should do the trick.

As for the paint itself, I would recommend a lacquer based paint like Tamiya or Testor ModelMaster. The cans should be at room temp, and well shaken. I built a spray booth years ago, so I have no issue painting with lacquers indoors. On a nice calm day with moderate humidity, you can paint outside in a semi sheltered area. I've done that with the garage doors opened, and gotten great results. I prefer lacquer based paints because the paint pigment is much finer, you'll get a smoother finish, the paint line is that much less to deal with, and it dries much quicker then enamel paints. In fact, days quicker.

Again, practice 1st till you get the hang of it. Don't decide to use cardboard or wood instead of a plastic model. Paint will soak into those surfaces, making the painting process completely different.

You could also do a few Google searches. There are dozens and dozens of U tube videos on just about any modeling subject. Seeing someone using a rattle can, and viewing their end results will clarify the whole process for you.

Joel