Model Kit Review: Building a Better Revell Monogram Babylon 5 SA-23E Mitchell-Hyundyne Starfury
STEP FOUR: Large Thrusters
Basically, the same paint scheme applied to the small and medium thrusters were also applied to the large ones. In addition, though, to simulate these large main thrusters being engaged, M.M. Silver was very carefully hand painted onto the inner circles in the engine openings. When dry, several coats of Tamiya Acrylic Clear Blue were carefully hand painted over the silver surfaces. (See following figures):
STEP FIVE: Guns
This was the most work-intensive step. First, all eight large and small forward gun barrels were very carefully drilled out. This was done by first getting a needle, finding the center of the barrel, and making an indention. Then, a very small drill bit was used to slowly widen the hole. Finally, a larger drill bit was used to deepen the hole, along with smoothing out the hole’s inner sides. (See following figures):
Next, the outer rings of the four large guns were filled in with Testor’s White Model Putty and sanded smooth when dry. After this, the inner cavities of all guns were filled in with Strip Styrene and Super Glue, sanded smooth when dry. When construction was complete, the base color was airbrushed onto the guns. Then, the front of the guns were airbrushed M.M. Silver first, followed by being lightly dusted with M.M. Metalizer Gunmetal. (See following figures):
STEP SIX: Starfury Bodies
While building the Starfuries’ upper and lower wing assemblies, I stumbled upon a way to glue the wing/engine halves together more efficiently. Using my trusty-dusty sprue cutter, I removed a section of the rear upper and lower engine sections. Through the holes created, I was able to apply a liquid cement (Tenax) by brush directly to the engine halves FROM THE INSIDE. This reduced most of the cleanup that would have otherwise been necessary for the outer gap areas. (See bottom of following figure):
A combination of M.M. Neutral Gray (75%) and Light Ghost Gray (25%) was airbrushed onto the wing/cockpit assembly. M.M. (regular) Gray was airbrushed onto the top and bottom leading edges of the wings, (which had been masked off). M.M. Flat Black was then airbrushed into the front six and rear two masked off indented areas on the top, along with those corresponding areas on the bottom.
At this point, Sinclair’s Line fighter was masked off and the four yellow bands on the upper wings were airbrushed on. When dry, these yellow areas were masked off and the four black surrounding bands were painted on.
Finally, a template was created for the “02”. This was done by enlarging an image of the Line Fighter that was downloaded from a Babylon 5 Web Site. This pattern was printed out from a computer onto a large label, cut out, and attached onto the center of the upper surface. Flat White was airbrushed over the template. (See following figure):
With Ivanova’s Starfury, after the different colors were airbrushed on, all wing surfaces were coated with Floquil’s Dio Sol. When dry, all decals (including my custom Star/Bird decal) were applied. Then, several coats of M.M. Dullcote were airbrushed on.
For weathering, I decided to use M.M. Metalizer Gunmetal, (since I wanted these space birds to be very dirty). Tape was placed next to the engine panel lines and the Gunmetal was airbrushed onto the taped areas. This was done on all four engines for each spacecraft, multiple times, once for each cylindrical engine panel line. (See following figures):
Next, the Gunmetal was lighted streaked on in a front-to-back fashion in several areas. Afterwards, a very light coating of the Gunmetal was dusted onto the top, middle, and bottom wing surfaces by airbrushing from 12 to 18 inches away. (See following figure):
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