Part 6: Wing Tips & Paint

The wingtips, which are molded separately and designed to be attached with hinges, are not a very good fit.  As the Rufe was adapted from the Mitsubishi A6M2 Type 11, it did not have folding wings.  There is not much surface area to glue the tips to the wings, so I tried attaching the photo etched hinges for a more solid joint.  They would not align properly, so I clipped the hinges and glued them in place with CA.  The hinge line in the wing top needs to be filled. I used CA.

I cleaned up the wing/fuselage seam along with the wingtips.  After thoroughly washing the model with 90% isopropyl alcohol to remove any oil from my fingers, I painted the underside of the aircraft.  I used the out-of-production Aeromaster acrylic Nakajima Navy Gray.  This color is slightly lighter than Model Master's Japanese Army Air Force Gray Green.  I wish this paint was still in production, as applies so evenly in thin coats.  The underside looks like the plastic changed color rather than being painted.  Trumpeter's surface detail comes to life with a layer of paint.  I am anticipating the panel lines and recessed rivets to hold a wash beautifully.  Nice job on the molding, Trumpeter!  I still have a couple of areas to touch-up with Gray.  (Isn't this always the case?)

After the Gray cured for forty eight hours, I applied Aeromaster acrylic Nakajima Navy Green.  This color is slightly more "blue" than Mitsubishi Green.  Because of the sharp angles to the underside of the floats and wings, I was able to paint it freehand.  It took about a quarter of a bottle to paint the green.  I only have a double action airbrush, but I would imagine that a single action brush would work well on such a large bird.  Since I was using acrylic paint, I could not spray from a distance without running the risk of the paint drying on the way to the model.  It took quite a while to paint this way.  There is a lot of "acreage" to this model!

Once dry, I dry fit the main and outrigger floats for these pictures.  The outriggers fit tightly, and don't even require glue.  The main float can be attached with a couple of drops of CA to the tab that fits to the corresponding slot in the lower wing.  This way, you can paint, gloss coat, decal, wash and weather the aircraft without having the floats in the way.  You can attach them at the completion of the project without worrying about marring the finish.

My next step will be the application of Future, followed by the decals.

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