Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Mike Grant Decals 1/72 Royal Canadian Navy Sea Furies

A few years ago I assisted Jennings Heilig a little bit with some RCN Sea Fury profiles that later expanded into a magazine article. Now we have a very nice new decal sheet based on those profiles, and Jennings's artwork, by Mike Grant Decals. While Mike Grant started in the decal business with ALPS decals, he soon graduated to waterslide decals printed by Microscale.

RCN Sea Fury schemes have all kinds of minute details that are often misinterpreted, and misrepresented, both in profiles, descriptions, and in decal form. (See the VX690 on the new Xtradecal sheet for an example of a misinterprtation of the RCN Sea Fury schemes.) Thankfully these decals get it right. You get one option in the low demarcation Extra Dark Sea Grey over Sky scheme, four options in the RCN Dark Grey over RCN Light Grey scheme, and the WEE Cold Weather Flight aircraft in the rather rare high demarcation Extra Dark Sea Grey over Sky scheme with red high viz panels.

The decals themselves are well printed in good register and while markings are included to model all the options on the sheet, only two sets of full stencils are included. The colour instructions are quite clear and contain everything you need to know to finish your kit. (They also reference Jennings's article in Model Aircraft Monthly and in Hyperscale for the full story.)

In my opinion this is an excellent sheet and highly recommended to all RCN Sea Fury fans.

See Mike Grant Decals for ordering informtion.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

How To Build a Model

First I paint some bits. Twelve hours later add a second coat. Then spend 15 minutes worried that it isn't smooth enough. Then strip both coats and start over. The second attempt is better, but still not smooth enough...strip again and try again. After the third try, finally give up and just live with this streakiness, justifying to myself that with the canopy closed you really won't see it. Stay up that night worrying, "you might be able to see it." Try to paint the detail and instruments. Curse the world for not being able to paint a little straight line. Try to scrape some paint off with a toothpick to get a straight lines. Prick finger with toothpick. Yell at dog for being in the room to vent frustration. Give up and worry it looks like a child painted it. "Will it really matter under the closed canopy?" Stay up all night worrying that my modeling skills suck. Finally decide to stick bits together. Spill some glue on the painted bits screwing up the paint. Yell at the dog again. Obsess about if I'm going to fix it or not. After three days, decide the model will suck and press on. Stick more bits together. Find that while the dry fits were perfect, the fuselage halves now need mucho filler. Get angry. Curse modeling and think about giving up. Yell at the dog again. Apply trowels of filler. Look at the piles of filler on the model and wonder why I do this. Do a little sanding and feel my blood pressure rise. Put the kit back in the box and go to sleep. Unfinished Model 1, Jim 0. Wash, rinse and repeat for months on end...