Saturday, August 19, 2017

Grumman F8F Bearcat or Why I am Building a non-WWII Model - Part 2

F8F-1B Bearcat, Hobby Boss, 1/48 scale, Kit no. 80357

Now that I have de-bagged the parts and washed them (in Dawn and warm water), following the instructions, I am working on the cockpit.

It is nicely detailed.   The seat is very accurate according to photos I have seen.  The ejection pin marks are in places where they do not matter - a nice touch.

These “STEEL” seat belts by Eduard are really nice.  I have used them on other models.  They are beautifully colored and fairly easy to work with.  Since they are pre-painted, I cannot anneal them to make them more flexible for a more realistic draping over the seat.

The instructions are a bit vague on colors, but you can see a virtual reality “tour” of an actual F8F cockpit (and several dozen other naval aircraft) at the Naval Aviation Museum ( 

I started of with Testors Acryl Interior Green (4736) for most of the interior and Yellow Zinc Chromate (4851) for the tailwheel well.

Here is a closeup of the instrument panel.  This is constructed by carefully painting the clear panel piece around the dials and then putting the supplied decal behind it.  The result is very nice and appears quite realistic.

This shows the interior pretty much completed.  The area in front of the cockpit has some braces, part of the exhaust system and two tanks (lubricating oil and/or compressed air?).  This area will be partially visible once the wing is mounted, so I applaud Hobby Boss for supplying these details which could have been overlooked.

My last several models have been built with Tamiya Extra Thin Cement in the 40 ml bottle with the green cap.  I have found this glue to be the best I have used.  The built-in applicator allows precise dispensing.  When it fully sets, it stays set.  I am also using Tamiya Cement in the 20 ml bottle with the orange cap.  The latter is now my substitute for thick CA, as it penetrates through paint and sets up rock solid.

In this last photo, I have cemented the fuselage halves using Tamiya tape and two clothes pins to hold everything together while the Tamiya cement sets.
I am really enjoying this kit.  (All is forgiven for the Hobby Boss Hellcat shaped like a potato.)

As always, thank you for looking.  I welcome any comments.   More on the Bearcat soon.