Author Topic: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III & D.IIIa in 1/144 scale  (Read 7390 times)

Offline William Adair

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Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III & D.IIIa in 1/144 scale
« on: December 30, 2019, 11:57:59 AM »
Hello everybody.  I've been following the forums for some time and thought I should take the plunge and finally add something of my own.   :)

Alas, I am doomed to follow the cult of 1/144 scale modelling, and thus afflicted I have been working towards adding some much loved WW1 aircraft to my collection.

Currently I'm working on the master for the waspish little Pfalz D.III.  Here's a shot of the fuselage so far with a single pink digit for scale...




The fuselage was made from two laminated pieces of 3mm styrene then carved to shape, using drawings in my Windsock Datafile for reference





Wings were made from acrylic, which resists warping much better than styrene when it is thin.  The end of a steel ruler was shaped to the profile of the undercamber and used as a scraper to do the undersides, then files were used to shape the upper surfaces.  The acrylic is quite good in that you can get a razor-sharp trailing edge too.  I discovered this quite by accident when I inadvertently cut myself with it!   :-[



Part of the acrylic stock was used to create the wing root area, with thinned down Tamiya white putty floated on with a brush to shape the fillets.  The tail and fairing for the motor were slotted in for strength then shaped.  The front of the fuselage has a metal disk added which helps me keep things looking crisp and prevents over-sanding.





The photo above also shows the first attempt at an engine, which wasn't quite right.  It assembled a fraction too high, so I made another one (only 44 parts!).  This one is much better and should clean up nicely.




Over he last few days I've been adding some raised detail to the outer fuselage while thinking about the troublesome upper wing... 





So that's where I'm at dear reader.  If you are still here, I might have a question to ask which I hope some of the resident experten might be able to answer:   

The Winsock drawings show the centre-section of the upper wing of both the D.III and D.IIIa with a rectangular access panel on the left hand side, opposite the radiator.  The Roden kit in 1/32 shows this too as a slightly raised panel.  However the Wingnut Wings kit seems to have nothing there at all.  From what photographs I have seen of the Pfalz, I cannot be sure which interpretation is correct.  Whether the panel was there on one variant, but absent on the other. Or whether the drawings are incorrect and there was no such panel at all on either version.  :-\



Thanks for looking and I hope you like the little wing-gnat so far. If anybody knows whether or not it should be there and on which variant, I would love to know!   ;)

 
« Last Edit: November 10, 2020, 07:14:21 PM by William Adair »

Offline Alexis

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2019, 12:36:54 PM »
Now that is some nice work in such a small scale . Nicely done so far . To answer your question .... Only the rad should be on the top wing . The fuel tank was build in the wing structure and not ivisible once the wing was covered  . Only the filling cap should remain .



Terri
Hurra ! , Ich Leben Noch

Offline lcarroll

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2019, 12:48:01 PM »
   Amazing detail for such a small scale, very impressive!
Cheers,
Lance

Offline William Adair

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2019, 07:57:30 PM »
Thank you for the kind words.  Thank you too Terri for solving that mystery for me! It looks like it will make things much easier too    :D
Still lots to do, but with luck it should work out alright.

Offline Bughunter

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2019, 08:34:19 PM »
Wow - great work in that even more small scale!

But you are building a D.IIIa !
The main difference are the LMG 08/15: the D.III has them integrated into the fuselage, on D.IIIa they are sitting on top for easier handling.

Hera a D.III, only the muzzles are visible:

Source: pinimg.com

Cheers,
Frank
Wikipedia says: A model is a simplified representation of reality.
So I create downscaled originals.

Offline Borsos

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2019, 09:17:55 PM »
Fantastic work on your — like Frank already said — Pfalz D. IIIa. Have a look at the lower wing tips too, they differ as well from the earlier D. III variant.
Andreas
"Deux armées aux prises, c'est une grande armée qui se suicide."
Barbusse.
"Ein Berg in Deutschland kann doch einen Berg in Frankreich nicht beleidigen. Oder ein Fluß oder ein Wald oder ein Weizenfeld."
Remarque.

Offline William Adair

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2019, 10:12:11 PM »
Oh yes!  Don't forget the tailplanes too.  They appear to differ between versions as well.   ;)
I'm hoping I can do both the D.III and D.IIIa.  Mrs Santa was especially kind this year and looked the other way while I ordered some casting equipment.  I'd like to try duplicating the components and converting the fuselage and wings back to a D.III and modifying the lower wings.  There's just too many tasty colour schemes out there to choose only one! 

Offline PrzemoL

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2019, 10:44:44 PM »
144th scale???? I have seen some crude representations of WW1 subjects in this scale in the form of injection kits (Valom). What you are showing us is far far more realistic. My admiration is hard to contain in any words. Needless to say, I will be watching the continuation with great interest.
Ash nazg durbatuluk, ash nazg gimbatul,
Ash nazg thrakatuluk, agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.

Offline RAGIII

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2019, 12:55:40 AM »
WOW! I am extremely impressed by your work to say the least!! Simply stunning work to date and I look forward to the rest!
RAGIII
"A man has to know his limitations": Harry Callahan

"Don't slop it on" Lynda Geisler

Offline Alexis

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #9 on: December 31, 2019, 10:47:49 AM »
Your very welcome , any info you need just let as know . As you see the guys were more than helpful and always will be . They are the best !

What scale drawings are you using ? I noted them in the background .If you don't me asking  These scale drawings didn't mention the differences in the tail planes , guns and lower wing tip between the D.III and D.IIIa ? I just curious is all .


Terri

Hurra ! , Ich Leben Noch

Offline William Adair

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III/D.IIIa - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #10 on: December 31, 2019, 03:48:41 PM »
Hi Terri, I'm using the Windsock Datafiles Number 7 and 21, which deal with the D.III and D.IIIa respectively.  The drawings in both are by Steve Simkin.  They are pretty clear on the differences in lower wings, tail and gun position.  However I think I have sown confusion by referring to the aircraft in shorthand simply as a "D.III"   :P

Bughunter, with luck I may be able to use the components as masters to do both versions, so I've changed the thread title to reflect this.   If that doesn't pan out I'll stick with the D.IIIa.  That D.III you posted is exactly the scheme I wanted!

Offline Alexis

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #11 on: January 01, 2020, 01:49:13 PM »
Thanks for the reply back . Yes I have both datafiles and quite the few other publications . There are a lot of cool schemes for this type .

I do like your idea of casting copies for future projects , would you do this with the wings as well ?


Terri
Hurra ! , Ich Leben Noch

Offline William Adair

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2020, 03:47:07 PM »
I hope to reproduce the wings too.  There's quite a lot of work in them to do the ribs and the radiator.  Whether or not I can do both versions will depend largely on the wings and whether the resin holds its shape and doesn't warp.  The upper wing seems common to both, but I'll make the pointed D.III lower wings as the initial master and modify them afterwards to do the slightly shorter and more rounded version for the D.IIIa.

Fingers crossed that it all works out.  Mind you, it's a walk in the park compared to another project that I have on the go.




« Last Edit: January 01, 2020, 05:55:56 PM by William Adair »

Offline Robin

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #13 on: January 01, 2020, 06:32:00 PM »
Mind-blowing. :o

Robin :)
Found my mojo and clipped it's wings, so it won't fly away.

Offline RAGIII

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Re: Scratchbuilding a Pfalz D.III - Might need some advice though!
« Reply #14 on: January 01, 2020, 11:19:48 PM »
The FE looks INCREDIBLE!
RAGIII
"A man has to know his limitations": Harry Callahan

"Don't slop it on" Lynda Geisler