Just a quick update to say that by the end of this week, between next Thursday/Friday I will be restocking the 1/144 AST-1 and the 1/144 catering truck.
I’ve been working on a new chasis which was build having in mind a better casting process later on. For this reason, several things had to be redesigned in the instructions and hence the delay on the re stocking of these items.
As I am getting deeper in the livery decals, I will be incorporating the 13micron (standard/normal/regular) decal paper on decals that are quite big as I’ve seen several airliners that have a big portion of the fuselage with an artwork. The 8 micron decal paper is perfect for small and medium decals, but those that cover a bigger area of the fuselage will be printed on the 13 micron (normal) decal paper.
I have been thinking about providing the decals with both paper types, but currently it is not within my capabilities and the 8 micron decal paper is just perfect for those small to medium sized decals.
Wish you all a nice week and hopefully I can give a better update on the current projects, but I am waiting to have more progress made to upload here that can be at least, worth the upload.
Just wanted to inform that during the next week all livery decals will be unavailable due provider mishap, they will be back in stock again in 7 days (if shipping is as it should).
I do keep my raw materials in stock and calculate when to buy more as I keep a balance of sales/materials, everything would have been just in time but the provider sent me 13 micron decal paper instead of the 8 micron ones. To me, it is important to use the right materials for the right things, even though the 13 micron is a standard decal paper which is still very good, the numerous small tiny decals are best printed with the 8 micron thin decal film.
I know some may think that I should keep more material quantities but to be honest, this year, customs are killing me.
I do not want to talk about politics cause this is a modelling blog, but to be honest, I used to buy a raw material from a country whereas now it would be impossible to do without rising my item prices.
I researched and researched and found another place where, being a bit more pricey, there isn’t any custom problems, still, producing these model kits with the best materials I can find (still using since I begun) and with the strong headed mind that I am not going to rise prices on my items.
For many years buying overseas, this never happened before, now for everything coming outside the UE I have to pay 21% tax over the total package value (item + shipping) and another aditional 19 Euro just because the guys handle the paperwork at the airport.
If that is fair or unfair I am not going to debate it, but I just wanted to mention that prices aren’t going to change as I am at the moment, finding those materials closer to me.
Again, apologies for the delay on the decals, sometimes things do not depend on ourselves, but to counteract this issue, I am doing my best with new liveries that I plan to release on next month.
Thank you all for the understanding!
PS: Starting to work with the remaining half of both sidewalls on the B737 cockpit, photos and an update this weekend!
Finally after a few months since I started this project, I have been able to upload the LEAP-1A engine into the store. There have been 9 new livery decals made as well of the A320Neo and a new one for the A350-900. The P&W Neo engines have also been re stocked.
After the last photos, I wanted to attach the engines to an actual model, in this case the A321 from Zvezda:
This has been quite the inversion for me, I used more material than I thought in order to have a backup step in case things got messed up. I do not use a 3D printer so everything is done according to blueprints and images, thus if I did a wrong step on the master part, without the continuous casting, there wasn’t a returning point and work of months would have gone down the drain.
I also wanted to pay special attention to the engine decals because I think those will give an extra realism finish to the engines. I must confess that the P&W engine decals did not sell that much together with the resin set, and I understand that is because customers already purchased A320Neo decal sets from other manufacturers, however, you need to take into consideration that the decals that are sold separately (and included in each Neo livery decal set from the store) are specifically designed to fit the resin models, this is important on regards the pylon decals as I used the resin parts as template.
Why I decided a long ago when I released the P&W engines to sell the resin sets and engine decals separately was because a couple of reasons; one to make the resin engines more affordable if you really did not want the decals and second, because if a customer purchased a livery decal set from the store, those engine decals are already included and therefore there was no need to have them in the engine set.
The LEAP-1A engine is not the only item to release today, but also the A350 new sharklets for which I made all the decals of the -900 version to choose from.
The new liveries included in the catalogue:
A couple things that I wanted to mention on regards these decals:
The EasyJet decal does not include the orange areas as decal, the reason is because the engines share the same color as these areas of the fuselage, so I preferred the modeler to actually paint these areas rather than having to try to find a paint for the engines that could match the orange decals, does this make sense?
I also plan to make the NEO titles version of the EasyJet A320Neos, this decal set will be released next month.
On the China Southern A320Neo, the dark blue cheatline between the two lighter blue decals wasn’t made. I know that it is perfectly possible to make that decal, make a cut so that it could fold onto the nose, but I had experiences with that before and, as the real aircraft, I preferred that color for that particular cheatline to be painted.
While making those decals I always keep in mind how would I do it if I was to make these models, which would be the best option and which one would give best results, and in this case I think that the combination of the two lighter blue decals with the painted dark blue cheatline would give the best finish. The instructions also cover the steps to do this process indicated as how I would do it.
That’s all for now guys, it has been a lot of work all this time, I must confess I am quite exhausted, but with the completion of the LEAP-1A engines, a new project will come in line, the FMC15i with the posibility of adding the double sill.
The 747 cargo project will also advance and hopefully I can get my hands on the 737 cockpit because it has been way too long since last time.
Thank you all for the support and looking forward to post new progress on these projects!
This is just a quick update to inform that countries have been added to the store where it was not possible to ship items before:
Afghanistan, American samoa, Andorra, Bhután, French polynesia, Guam, Guernsey, Iraq, Ivory coast, Jersey, Maldives, Marshall islands, Mayotte, Mexico, Micronesia, Mongolia, Nepal, Niue island, Norfolk island, Palestinan territories, Saint pierre and miquelon, San marino, Sierra leone, Somalia, Tokelau, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Virgin islands (usa), Wallis and fortuna and Yemen. Users will now be able to register a shipping address with these countries.
At the same time I want to take this chance to comment that I was able to advance further with the B747-8F/-400F cargo set and that I plan to upload more information about this and the LEAP engines this weekend.
I’ve been continously working and testing the decals and came to the conclusion that it wasn’t viable to print two layers in two separate prints. Some tests came out very well, but the success rate was low and thus I decided to include the white decals in a separate sheet and provide two or more white decals when white is placed on dark surface. With a recent test on a black surface I was able to see that with two white decal layers, white was bright and opaque. More info on this coming up soon as I will restock the catalogue during the middle of next week.
In the meanwhile projects that I almost completed are; A320N Frontier N301FR (LEAP), China Southern A320N (PW), Philippines A350 “Love”. Currently also working on all A350 sharklet livery decals for the new sharklets.
These and other new liveries will be available on next month as “April” releases.
Also I updated the shipping info page and removed the “7 day preparation time” in some cases for the decals. They won’t require that time period and will have a maximum of 3 days preparation prior shipping, same rules applied from the other items at the store as usual since they are all shipped from my location.
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.
November the 1st, we are entering into winter and this allows for a better work with the resin, although I really need to get a new mask to protect myself well from all the chemicals I handle, specially due the photo etched process.
I finally have been able to do a proper decal print, I call it a test but it is actually a valid decal. So far I did first tests with the galley decals because I knew I needed to adjust a few lines and redesign the whites in order for them to be printed properly on the new printer.
The next step is to fix the artwork for the A350 and actually test these decals on the model. I am pleased with the results, and although decals going on color surfaces other than white will requiere of the white decal underlayer first, I am sure it won’t be a big problem since most airliners are white.
This decal carrier is thinner than those from the previous decals, but yet resistant, so these will adapt very well. The fact that the white will be a separate layer does not mean it won’t be opaque, it is still opaque as before and I will do some test prints on black surfaces to truly see the result.
I am really looking forward to fix all the artworks that so much time took me to create, the sucess printing those decals has given me more courage to keep designing more liveries in the near future.
Note that white is actually more visible than in the photo
As for the other items in the store, I am currently making more units of:
A320 Neo engines
A320 galleys and cargo holds
Set the goal to have available the first 4 from the list at around next Wednesday.
I also wanted to apology if anybody has contacted me recently and I haven’t given a response back. I found out today (thanks to Frank) that the contact form module needed an update and thus I wasn’t able to receive messages for some time, I ask to those who haven’t received a response from me to please try again as I have updated the form and it seems to be working now.
Thank you all for your time, interest and patience!