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Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 2:37
by smeg1959
Just written a reply to Angus's observation regarding the canopy on the F-Toys' A-10 release and the whole vacform canopy thing reminded me that I have a couple of builds on hold because of canopy issues ...

The first is my Hungarian Ju87B (yes, Fabio, the one you sent me the One Shot decals for) which has stalled because the Bandai canopy was so poorly prefinished, I couldn't use it. I attempted to get the paint/lacquer off, without success. Now normally this wouldn't be an issue with the early Bandai stuff as the kits always included a second unpainted canopy in multiple pieces, allowing you to pose your model with the canopy open, and this indeed was what I intended doing. Unfortunately, the plastic is way too thick and the sliding section sits ridiculously high on the model. I tried a bit of plunge moulding but was unhappy with the result. Clearly, a vacform replacement would solve my dilemma but the question is, does one exist? I thought someone might have come up with one when Eduard re-issued its Ju87B kit (now OOP), but haven't found anything to date. Oddly enough, RetroWings do a resin cockpit enhancement for the Eduard kit but this obviously doesn't include the canopy. Worse case scenario is that I might have to wait and see whether Eduard have the Ju87 as a part of their new 1/144 strategy, then hope someone like Brengun follows up with a vacform.

The second is an F-Toys' Yokosuka Ginga "Frances" that has sat idly for nearly 4 years awaiting replacement transparencies (both cockpit and nose, in this case). Bored with IJN Green, I refinished the model in prototype/trainer orange.
Yokosuka P1Y Ginga - IJN Prototype (02).jpg
Buoyed by the fact that I had succeeded in getting prefinished framing off other gashapon at the time, I set about doing likewise to the Ginga but the whole deal backfired. The framing did come off but I was left with two foggy transparencies (you can clearly see the result on the nose in the photo, taking back in 2016). Again, attempts to plunge-mould replacements weren't very successful, paricularly for the nose. I suspect the chances of a vacform here are very unlikely, so does anyone have the old IMAI/Hasegawa/Aoshima kit? Whilst there's a couple on evilBay in the States, the postage to Oz is more than the Gross Domestic Product of a medium-sized country!

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 4:18
by F_IV
I wonder if a long term soak in Future or it’s antipodean equivalent would help repair the Ginga canopy? :?

For other which are well fitting but extra thick, I have had a lot of luck over the past few years in thinning them down from the inside with dental burs. Grinding out the interior then finishing them off with wet and dry paper, I would them run acrylic lacquer into the inside before tipping out the excess. It works really well and with practice you can get a thickness the same if not better than many vacforms.

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:26
by smeg1959
F_IV wrote:I wonder if a long term soak in Future or it’s antipodean equivalent would help repair the Ginga canopy? :?
I've got the "antipodean equivalent" (bought from Bunnings a few years ago ... lasts forever) and back in 2016, I tried an extended soaking to rectify the cloudiness. No luck. Indeed, the happy snap here was taken after the soak. As it turns out, I'm resigned to replacements anyway as I've discovered a handful of model parts vanished during the exodus from SWMBO back in early 2018, and the two transparencies were amongst those that disappeared through the wormhole. :oops:

The dental burs do intrigue me. I've got a range of bits with my cheap Dremel lookalike and several look like burs, so I will have a play with some old discards in the spares box and see if I can replicate your success. Not sure I won't start hyperventilating though ... the last dental bur I encountered was the result of a molar snapping down the middle after biting down on a Tic Tac! :cry:

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:48
by F_IV
Ouch! I’m well due for a visit to those characters. Hope I don’t get thoroughly gouged in the wallet. :oops:

With the burs, definitely do it under good magnification and work the surface evenly until you get it down to the thickness you want. Concentrating on one patch only creates a weak spot, whereas a gradual excavation seems to let the piece keep its strength. The right size bur for the job is important too. 2.5mm seems good for most jobs, but I sometimes go down to 1mm for corners and such.

If the bur is making flecks of dust, you’re doing great. If you are raising up a curl of plastic, you are taking off too much, melting the plastic and heading for disaster. :o

It feels almost archaeological when you are doing it and is actually quite enjoyable once you get a feel for it. Wet sanding after with 1200 grit works for me. Often I superglue bits of emery to strips of plastic to make mini sanding sticks. The bathroom cabinet yields cotton buds/q-tips that are a good vehicle for polish. Then the clear gets run into the inside to restore the gloss.

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Sat May 09, 2020 13:27
by ID19
Coming back to the initial post of this thread - any news around for a vacform canopy for the Eduard Ju-87B?
I bought the RetroWings cockpits and hid one under the original canopy - hardly anything to see through the thick glazing. Now I'm waiting for a way to display it open on the second Ju. An easier way than trying to sand it down and polish . . .

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Thu May 14, 2020 9:03
by smeg1959
From the initial poster of the thread ... you and me both, ID19. I had a Hungarian Ju87B ready to display, complete with Fabio's lovely decal set, then encountered the shockingly mis-painted (if that's a word) Bandai canopy. I can occasionally get by with a plunge mould or two, but a vacform Stuka canopy ... where are you? :shock:

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Sat May 16, 2020 19:36
by ID19
smeg1959 wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 9:03
From the initial poster of the thread ... you and me both, ID19. I had a Hungarian Ju87B ready to display, complete with Fabio's lovely decal set, then encountered the shockingly mis-painted (if that's a word) Bandai canopy. I can occasionally get by with a plunge mould or two, but a vacform Stuka canopy ... where are you? :shock:
Sigh - I know miracles are rare - or do you still have all of your this year's three wishes?

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Tue Nov 10, 2020 23:38
by smeg1959
The situation with the Stuka may depend upon Eduard releasing an updated version of their discontinued Ju87B, D and G kits. Brengun seems to jump upon these with both vacform canopy and PE fret releases. Of course, any other manufacturer releasing a new Ju87B might have the same effect; so far, Brengun have made canopies for kits from Sweet, Revell, Platz, Mark I/Attack, KP, Dragon and even F-Toys.

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2020 15:25
by ID19
Is that rumours, fact, wishful thinking or fake news? :mrgreen:
It would be great!
But looking at the Eduard webpage I get the impression 1/144 is no longer in their focus. Neither is there anything in the news nor do they bother to publish a specific category for 1/144 - you find the current range under 'other' together with T-shirts and the lot! :(
Fritz

Re: Canopies, Canopies

Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2020 15:58
by Tim R-T-C
Sadly I think the Eduard Super44 range is at an end for now. The fact that many of their single baggings were of kits still available in boxed form can't have helped.

Fortunately Beacon Models' BoB lineup should include a Stuka if all goes well with their initial releases and hopefully if they are popular, etch and vacform will follow!