Author Topic: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale  (Read 171 times)

Offline lone modeller

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Evening All,

I have been through a complete loss of mojo recently: after completing the Dornier Rs II and base I was looking for a similar challenge and I had tried to continue with a 1/72 scratch build of an FE 2d, (an FE 2 with a Rolls Royce Eagle engine instead of a Beardmore), which I have been working on for about a year, but when I found that I will probably have to make a new nacelle I simply baulked at the idea: no particular reason why, just the thought was enough to put me off. I then floundered around with several different ideas and decided that perhaps a change in scale might offer a new challenge. This would mean that I would be abandoning the Sacred Scale, but I am determined that I will return to it in future as I have many interesting subjects on my “to scratch-build” list that I wish to make. I was looking for a subject to scratch build of course, and rapidly came to the (for me), obvious conclusion that it would have to be a pusher of some kind. I looked up several types but kept finding that I lacked enough information concerning the details of engines or interiors as I was thinking of 1/32 scale where details matter. In 1/72 scale I can make parts from drawings that look right, but in this larger scale I would need accurate 3D drawings and other information, and for many of the types that I considered such information could not be found. I also had the feeling of “done that” for some of the subjects I was researching. I do not usually like to make the same subject twice which may have been why I was put off the FE 2d - it is too much like the F E 2b, which I have already made.

Then I happened to find a cut-away drawing of the Vickers FB 5 Gunbus. A couple of years ago it had been suggested to me that I try a cut-away model but to do this in plastic in 1/72 scale would be very difficult and probably leave a weak model. There are several cut-away model kits in PE in 1/72 scale but I do not like PE and I am not a kit builder any more, so that idea was a non-starter. But what about a cut-away in 1/32 scale? Problem: the engine. I can scratch build or convert engines in 1/72 scale and just get away with it, but that would not be possible in this scale, so I looked around to see what engines were available as aftermarket items. I went back to some earlier ideas and thought about either a DH 1A or the FB 5 Gunbus as engine kits are available for both. In the end I decided that I could not find enough information on the interior of the DH 1A so I settled for the Gunbus. I have built a Gunbus in 1/72 scale already - it was a conversion from an Airfix DH 4 but it was one which I started in 1981 and finished 31 years later! I am not planning to take quite so long this time….





This will be a CBSB (Classic British Scratch Build), - a basic, limited run kit with some aftermarket parts. As it will be a partial strip down the parts count will probably be quite high. I frequently leave my models unarmed but on this occasion I decided that I would model an early variant with the Vickers mg so I bought one of these from Gaspatch: it is resin.



I also needed an engine - a 100hp Gnome rotary to be precise, and Wingnut Wings make a beautiful aftermarket specimen for an affordable price. (



Another difficult item to model is the wicker seat for the pilot but I found that Baracuda make one of these in resin.



These three items are all little gems in their own right. Finally I have bought some PE instrument bezels, (I only have to cut and fit these so I can just about manage), and transfers from Airscale for the instrument faces.



The remainder of the kit will be made from the usual plastic sheet, rod, strip, wood, brass bar for the wing spars and rod for the fuselage frame and booms. The fuselage nacelle of the Gunbus was made from steel tube, as were the booms, so I am going to have to learn how to solder brass rod and bar as CA will not be strong enough.
 
My intention is to make a model that looks similar to the drawing I found on the net, with half of it cut-away showing the underlying structure, and the other half covered. I scaled up the plans from the DataFile number 56 and ordered some plastic strip from my LMS so that I could make the wing ribs. That was a mistake: after a month the shop had still not been able to get the strip, so I cancelled the order and got some in three days by post. I will not be using my LMS in future unless they have the items I need In stock, which is annoying because I like to support local traders: unfortunately that one will not be getting much of my custom in future. While waiting I had tried to make wing ribs from bass wood but these were not particularly good - I could not make the triangular hole at the front end and the very narrow slot at the rear, and cutting square holes for the spar to go through also proved to be almost impossible, so I intend to use 180 x 40 thou plastic strip instead. In all I have had a frustrating month ordering parts and supplies but getting almost nowhere in terms of actually making anything, except that I did manage to carve a propellor. This was made from 2 pieces of hardwood, (I know not of what type), which I regularly use for propellors. Gunbus propellors seem to have been coated in a dark varnish and this wood is just the right colour. The kit propellor (grey) is an example from a Wingnut Wings kit which was Kindly lent to me by fellow modeller Epeeman. The first shot simply shows the wood:



This shows the wood being carved - the blade on the left has been shaped, the one on the right has not - taken from the side of the propellor. The extra thickness for the boss was unnecessary and was removed:



The completed propellor - still to be varnished and a boss added:



So after all the frustrations and stop-starts of the past couple of months I have at last begun a project which I hope will bring some results in the not too distant future……

Thanks for looking.

Stephen.

Offline Juan

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Re: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2018, 10:37:43 AM »
Stephen, looking forward to your magic being worked on this beauty.  You already have lots of goodies to get your mojo going.  Looking forward to your progress.   :D :D :D
« Last Edit: June 11, 2018, 11:20:21 AM by Juan »

Offline lcarroll

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Re: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2018, 11:44:21 AM »
Stephen,
    Very exciting introduction to what, I am certain, will evolve into a classic Build Log and result in another exceptional model! With your Scratch Building skills this should prove a relatively simple project and I look forward to following along as you bring it all together. That prop is a great start, very nicely done!
Cheers,
Lance

Offline gbrivio

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Re: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2018, 03:19:46 PM »
Nice introduction with the carved propeller and a nice old gunbus, will be an interesting build I'm sure.
Ciao
Giuseppe

Offline RAGIII

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Re: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2018, 09:20:17 PM »
Stephen,
I am really looking forward to following your processes on this one! Seeing the results you achieve on smaller scale subjects I have no doubt this Gunbus will be terrific! Nice start with the prop!
RAGIII
"A man has to know his limitations": Harry Callahan

"Don't slop it on" Lynda Geisler

Offline pepperman42

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Re: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2018, 11:30:43 PM »
Nice start. To my eye take a little more off the right blade at its lowest point
I was clean,shaved and sober and I didnt care who knew it.

Offline lone modeller

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Re: Scratch build partial stripdown Vickers FB 5 Gunbus 1/32 scale
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2018, 04:22:29 AM »
Thanks everyone for the kind remarks - they are much appreciated at a time when my motivation is only just returning.

Steve - thanks for the comment about the propellor - I have checked again closely and agree: a very small amount has been removed!

Stephen.