747-8F / 747-400F – Working with the deck (5)

Hello everyone,

I would like to upload some of the progress that I was able to do with the 747F deck project on last weekend.

This week is a little crazy since it is holiday today and it will be extended till Monday. However, there is not much time to lose so even I reduced to 3rd gear for being national holiday, I still keep on preparing units and working on the 747F project.

Currently making more baggage carts, belt loaders, AST-1 and catering truck. I am also planning the Leap 1A engine for the Neo family, project that I set date to be ready on February at the latest. I will be using the PW as a base instead of having to do a full scratch built like I did with the PW, and although both engines are quite different when looking carefully, it is better to start with some shape (specially pylon-wing union) than starting from zero.

Now onto the progress that has been done on the freighter project:

I have made the floor of the crew rest area which is also the ceiling for the cargo compartment, this was needed as it is also a basic structure for the interior. Not planning on detailing the crew rest area since it won’t be seen from the outside. I may leave the holes for the windows for those who prefer using the clear plastic, but for my build I will have them covered and a decal will represent them.
Revell made a mistake on the upper deck windows, since the 8F is still using the traditional -400 windows for that area instead of those from the 8i but made it right on the L1 door window which also preserves the “old” window style.

After having made the crew rest area, I attached what will be the ceiling (still not all of it is placed), since the ceiling shape change at about section STA1500 towards the end of the fuselage. By adding the ceiling first, I can now see what sizes the side walls are going to be and add the detail on that particular area. The upper side of the ceiling (the one that isn’t seen) will be solid and have the same shape as the fuselage so that it can be easier to place on the concave shape of the fuselage. There isn’t too much space on that area so it won’t be a problem on regards material quantity.

This cargo set will also include the cockpit because there is a lot going on on that area. As you can see from the picture above, the entire base of the cockpit will be putty-filled so that the ceiling is equaly flat on both the cockpit and crew rest area.
Cockpit base will also include all that detail on the edge that is actually seen from the outside. I also marked where the ladder will go, actually corrected instead of standing at the front of L1 door as I mistakenly marked firstly.

I am also not forgetting the cargo bays, I think that it would be a good idea since I have this model open in such a way, to include also both cargo bays. This will also help me to represent the new cargo loader which will feature these different sill height positions, so my idea is a diorama with four cargo loaders fully loading this freighter, nose door, side cargo door and both cargo bays.

I am advancing a little slowly because these modifications require planning and sometimes things do not always come out right at first.

Hope you like this project so far! I am really looking forward to it because it will also give me the chance to create new GSE specifically for loading such giant birds.

Best wishes,
Guillem

Decal liveries, first real print test

Hello everyone,

I can finally present a few photos of the new livery decals; in this particular case, decals for the Brussels Airlines A320, livery that I decided to make since it has white-on-dark decals on the tail area and can be very useful for this test build.

The decals have been rearranged, they are now placed in a more intuitive way and below their category name. There is the white layer decal which needs to be printed separately from the colors, however I do believe it won’t be a big nuisance to place some of the required white decals first. Most of the airliners are white anyway, but I do provide white underlaying decals in case where there is a background color other than white.
The sheet for white decals actually has the same decal numbers as their color counterparts for better understanding.

The generic decals will be available in two configurations, one for white fuselages, the other for fuselages other than white (including more white elements).

I took the chance to add a few details such as subtle people silhouettes on the passenger windows.

It has been a very hard way to come to this result that I present today in form of photos, hopefully in the next month, with a completed build. I had to redesign many lines from the previous artwork and had to change the colors almost on all objects.

Price wise these decals will be practically half cheaper than the previous digitally printed ones, naturally the two techniques are completely different and so are the costs of printing them. My time working on them will be exactly the same because I wish to continue making detailed decal liveries in the future not just for the A320 and A350.

As always, color in the photos may be different from the color seen in person, and even then it will be different than once placed on a white surface, that is why I always double check with a color chart printed with the exact same printer and do decal tests first. Decals may tend to look bluish because of the backing blue paper, but the true colors will show once placed on white surface or on white decal.
Examples above may have just too much contrast in some cases, I find difficult to photography decals, mainly due my camera having difficulties to focus, but as I explained in previous entries, I tried to make the color for the different markings to be as subtle as possible in order to keep a good balance between color/scale.

Hope you like the progress so far! Now it will be time to try them out, will record a video while doing so.

Best wishes,
Guillem

747-8F / 747-400F – Working with the side cargo door (2)

Hello everyone,

As I commented on the previous entry, today I would like to upload some of the process I made during the last days on regards the 747F project.

The cargo door still requires more details on the inner side, the two arms as well as some bits of wiring, the rollers etc. There are some minor differences on the panel between the -400F and the -8F, there are also some differences in the deck (besides the lenght) so I will work on the -400F variant later on once I have completed the 8F.

In the previous entries I comment on the issue I had with this particular area of the door frame, now that I have attached (only for reference) the door, I can see that the inner cover has to have an empty space, like a notch so to represent the space needed for the door to fit once supposedly closed.

There is also going to be all that detail for the reinforcement of the fuselage for the door.

Still work to do on the union between the door/fuselage, as I comment before, I need to correct that area.

Now that I have more or less figured out the SCD, it is time to plan very carefully the interior of this beast. Unlike a house, I will start from the roof, I will do so by continuing and modifying the cockpit floor, extending it to the resting area, there, it cuts and a second ceiling is visible. Having the mark of the deck level and having later the level of the ceiling, I will be able to see clearer where the side panels and their detail will go.

There is a Zvezda 747-8i on the way as I would like to do a port from this build in order to be placed on the Zvezda kit, as for somebody it may be easier to find a Zvezda kit than a Revell one, I also would like to do this port to open posibilities for those who prefer to work on Zvezda kits. It will be a challenge because both kits are completely different, a lot of surgery to do, but the Zvezda version will come later once the Revell variant is completed.

Within the next couple days I hope to upload some of the progress done on the livery decals.

Thanks everybody for reading!

Best wishes,
Guillem

Upcoming updates – GSE future

Hello everyone,

There are a couple updates I would like to share in the next few days, no pictures yet but I plan to upload them in due course.

I’ve been able to work a little bit more on the 747-8F side cargo door and I am happy with the results, although there are still some more details to be added. I have also temporarily attached the cockpit as it is literally the ceiling of the cargo compartment, I will extend the cockpit floor as it marks where there is a kind of cut on the cargo deck ceiling (floor of the crew rest area).

I have also done a good progress on the livery decals, successfully printed a set which I am going to put on practice during the Christmas holidays (or earlier) as I will be taking a little break at that time.
I will upload a few pictures of these as well as screenshots that will show the new organized layout for each decal section. I chose Brussels Airlines A320 since it is a small aircraft and a livery that has both colors on white and white markings on dark areas.

Lastly, during the next year I plan to refresh the GSE troop, the FMC15i and the Tug MA50 will most surely be discontinued as I am really looking forward to make new versions (Charlette for the tug first, and other manufacturers later on) with more detail and with a more accurate relationship between size and realism.

For this reason, I thought that the next cargo loader will not have a system to raise or lower their platforms, but rather easily interchangeable sills/platforms with different heights which will allow me to focus on scale/size/detail rather than thinking how to make these things move up and down and sacrifice realism.
This is very important specially because the new cargo loader will have the option to be displayed with the double sill for the bridge, this will be produced having in mind the heights of the 747F nose to floor and/or side cargo door as well as other freighter models.

Come to this conclusion has also been good for two other reasons; to apply the same system to the future 1/144 hydrant dispenser truck and to be able to implement the interchangeable sills in a future possible 1/200 cargo loader. Making a realistic/scaled version with movable bridge/platform has always been a nightmare for me when I was thinking about 1/200 scale, these GSE aren’t toys after all, they don’t have to move up and down since we don’t play with them… so selecting different heights for different aircraft/situations fulfills the purpose.

 

After this very long entry today, I hope to be able to upload a few photos during the next days.

Best wishes,
Guillem

747-8F / 747-400F – Working with the side cargo door (1)

Hello everyone,

I have been able to start working a little bit on the side cargo door and the first thing to do was to research the actual 1/1 inner space dimensions.
This has been quite interesting to start, at simple sight when the door is closed, it looks taller, but the actual opening looks more squarish. This is because of the space required for the rollers and the top cover where the two mechanisms are located, so the door actually sits on these areas as well as in the small frame around the opening.

It may be a little complicated to explain, but I hope to work on the next steps and have myself a better view and understanding.
At the beginning I thought that the original kit’s door dimension was wrong, but I do believe it was right.

The next photo does not show much but that I have started working with this area. Actually I had to include plastic on the sides of the opening as well in order to keep the dimensions in scale.

The brighter area is a plastic portion I placed that will be used as a guide to know where that cover and hinges will go, door will cover that area somewhat once shown in opened position.

I am not a big fan of real lights on scale models but I am a little curious in this case, because this cargo will have all its deck visible, I may try to add a few leds or a small led stripe on the ciling as I can imagine this freighter being loaded at dusk.

To me it was important to start another area and leave aside for a moment the deck itself. In fact, it was needed because once I start working on the interior panels, I would already like to have the door opening done.

I also must say that in order to not to forget why do I love to do what I do, I must find the time to build a completed model (A320) to fully and finally test the new decals that I am re adjusting. I have changed the distribution of the artwork so that it is easier to locate things, easier to understand what is what, I am still far from finishing adjusting all the artworks but I am on the way.

Motivation is very important in this aspect to keep working on projects, it is already hard to stay focused onto two projects such as this one and the B737NG cockpit and as a matter of fact, I found out that I am not good at combining both projects, mostly because it is always plan ahead.
I am working on stock units every day, it requires a lot of time and dedication, but I like it very much, only that I do not want to forget the essence of scale models, for this reason I think that the next A320 is not only going to be used as a test for the new decals, but also a project that I need to do to keep my dreams alive.

More updates on the next weekend!

Best wishes,
Guillem

Decals – Success on whites and colors

Everyone,

Apologies for not updating the blog lately with the last projects.
Work has been focused onto creating units as requested and I thought to give a little update on regards the decals.

I can confirm (at least from the tests done so far) that I will finally be able to go on with the decals and therefore creating more artworks and decal liveries.

I’ve done a test on a smoothly-rough black plastic surface with first, a white underlaying decal (left side of the photo) and then with the decal color on top (right side of the photo).

There are a couple things to notice; one is that after several trials and erros I let the door markings as subtle as I wanted them to be, which is in my mind the scale concept between size and colors.
These instruction letters on the doors are unreadable for such a small scale (obviously) but pleased with the subtiness of the decal.
Also the outline for the door handle is grey which really does not highlight too much on a black surface (that is why airplanes that are black or have dark colors on that door area, markings are usually white) but this was just a test.

Overall I am very happy with the result, I have started to adapt the A320 artworks to be printed in this new method so I am looking forward to build a model with them. Another important aspect I wanted to comment is that the decal is very thin (but resistant) so once the white decal was placed and set, there was no issue in placing the color decal on top, it slided very well, approaching it into place slowly and the edges are practically not visible even without using the softener in this case.

 

On regards the GSE and other items to be uploaded at the store this week, I am doing a change in one of the molds for the catering truck to keep things simpler to build for the modeler, so the catering may have some delay of a couple days from Wednesday for that reason. Cargo loader, A320 galleys/cargo holds, tug MA50, A320Neo PW engines are still set to be available on Wednesday.

Best wishes,
Guillem

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