McDonnell Douglas (Mitsubishi)
F-4EJ Phantom II
[ page 2 ]

Tamiya F-4EJ model kit in 1/32 scale 
Modelling report

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A step by step approach will be given and depending on the type of work, will not follow the kit steps. The kit step # will be indicated however.

[ Step 0 ] : Overall preparations
The kit has various "re-inforcement plates" on many surfaces (note: these are NOT battle damage repare plates! Phantoms received various structural re-inforcements during their service careers and also on certain variants, the F-4EJ being no exception).
For the F-4EJ  not all plates should be there and some of them are too pronounced on the kit parts.

Start with the main fuselage part and sand off the plates at the mid fuselage and rear fuselage . Also sand off the plates at intakes parts A1+A2. On the wing tips, the plate at the upper leading edge should be sanded off (so flush) and I suggest to reduce some thickness on the mid hinge re-inforcement plate (parts A4 + A8). 

- First fit the panel A7 as seen in step 1 and sand flush (as the F-4EJ has indeed no refuelling boom).
- Also fit part A3 as seen in Step 2, fill and sand smooth.
- A small draining hole is missing on both sides of the fuselage above the root of the wing leading - edge. Make a hole with a 0.2 mm drill.
- Also, drill two holes in the spine (suggesting the refuelling indicator lights) in the round panel in front of part A3 with 0,3 mm
- Fill the RAM air turbine panel lines with putty on left fuselage in center of walkway (not on the F-4EJ) as well the corresponding panel on the right side. 

[ Step 1 ]: Intakes
The intake as provided in the kit gives problems because when you look inside it, you see edges as the intake lips do not match the intake tunnels/ducts. You can repair this with some effort (alternatively buy aftermarket resin "Seamless suckers intakes").
Repair requires some cutting and sawing but can be done: 

a. Separate the two forward intake ducts as moulded on the main fuselage with a razor saw; use caution and try to saw in a straight lines.
b. Assemble the ducts (parts B26+B42, B27+B43); do not fit the compressor parts yet.
c. Fit the sawed off plastic ducts onto the assembled ducts
d. Dry fit the whole assembly and carefully determine where to fit the outward intakes A1 and A2
e. Make an assembly as seen below

f. Using Milliput, make the internal edges invisible. This may take some layers. 

g. Continue with the splitter plates: they have some vents at the lower and upper rear ends. Cut open and add some tiny walls from card. The ramp inboard edge is indeed correctly angled down in the kit.  Assemble the splitter plate parts and fill the rear with putty; sand flush after drying.

h. Spray the entire ducts matt white as you are unable to reach them with the airbrush later on. Also spray on white paint at the rear flat panel on the splitter plates.

i. Glue on the splitter plates onto the prepared intakes and make sure they are well aligned with the main fuselage. 

Here you see the whole intake assembly, being much better now. 

[ Step 2 ]: leave for later, go to... 

[ Steps 3- 4 ]: Cockpit
Tamiya provides for the F-4EJ correct instrument panels (with new parts). The details are raised with knobs and edges and very good. With some painting you can get fine results. There are however some small errors in the Tamiya cockpit parts which can easily be corrected: 
a. the scope on part F30 is too small in diameter. Cut off and replace.
b. the rear bulkhead wall of part F4 should be vertical and not angled (error in all Tamiya F-4 kits). 
c. the side consoles in the back cockpit of the F-4E do not go all the way to the back. There are shelves with equipment to be fitted. So remove some plastic as seen below and add a floor and new bulkhead. (The top edge of the bulkhead should remain at the same station position.)

Obviously you can add more details in the cockpit and for this model Eduard set 32-041 for the F-4E is also used to add some extra etched metal detailling.

The tub was sprayed light grey. (note: the missing shelves with equipment will be fitted later on).

The area at the rear canopy hinge also cries for some extra details and there is an opening. This was  also drilled open and a horizontal floor inside the spine fitted as seen below with the tub dry-fitted. 

The inner walls of the cockpit got extra details from card, stretched sprue using also some Eduard metal details. Below you see also the fuse panel part A10 also fitted.

The canopy hooks fit into lock openings in the horizontal sides. These were drilled open. 

The instrument panels themselves got the usual treatment with painting with a very fine tip brush, drybrushing, scratching in the dials and using instrument decals is some areas.

The cockpit also got additional details painted on and some sprue.

The instrument decals are from an "unknown" decal source. Add these dials and instruments, using a Waldron Punch and Dy set to punch them out.

On to next [ page 3 ...] 


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Created this page July 10, 2007