B747-8F/-400F New progress

Hello everyone,

Today I wanted to share a quick update about the work being done with the B747-8F / -400F.

I have been working around the nose area and have started the work with the main deck. So far all is going well, I think the most critical points on the design have been overcome, I am currently working on the nose cone interior as I am pausing for a bit the work of the main deck.

I need to refer to this project in a different way, since “detail set” probably does not represent the contents of the set, as a reminder, this is being made to be used with the Revell 747-8i or 8F models. The set will include both fuselage halves (except the tail cone and tail section), nose, main deck, cargo holds and cockpit. From the Revell kit, the wings, engines, landing gear and tail cone will be used.

This project is advancing steadily and I have the hopes that it can be finished this year, (Christmas seems like a good deadline for me). I always thought it would take me much longer to complete, at least to reach the stage in which the project is currently.

There is however, time to be dedicated to other things too; the 1/12 B737 cockpit project which has also been progressing very well.

There is extra work done that I haven’t fully shared yet; new baggage carts that will feature the moving towbar up and down and a linning covered version. Some other smaller GSE are also being done (The Pulsar 7D cargo transporter that you have seen in a previous entry).
The biggest of the Schopf family, the F396 is a finished and tested model now, but production of it needs to start.

So there will be two release dates; one for the release of the B787-9 cargo holds, restock of the B787-8/9 galleys, pitot tubes, antennas, radomes, sharklets, and a second release that will include the new baggage carts, the F396 and most surely other smaller GSE items such as the Pulsar 7D. The 1/72 Schopf F59 will also most surely be released then.

I will be giving a final release date for the first bunch of new items next weekend.

Best wishes,

B747-8F/-400F progress

Hello all,

I am currently advancing with the B747-8F/-400F detail set. I am working alongside the other projects but despite that, the progress done so far has been very big, at least for what I am used to, in a sad way I can focus a lot more in work now, and hopefully the following renders will show:

There were two major areas that I needed to actually test before proceeding any further, one was the wing root connection with the Revell wing and the tail cone section.
Fortunately, both fitted properly
, as you can see from the above render, the fitting of the Revell wing is basically the same, only that the upper side is flattened down, as such, a small portion of the Revell wing needs to be removed, which is something that will be later properly specified in the instructions.

The inner structure:

As you can see, there are several “windows” and each has an engraved line going across the fuselage passing through the sides of the cargo holds.
These openings are for the interior lights. The reason for the engraved line is to fit in the 0,5mm optic fiber that I plan to include in the set.

I have been thinking about using LED lights, but can you imagine how many wires would be in there for so many lights?

Instead, with a couple of LED lights placed in the center of the aircraft, using them as light source, several 0,5mm fiber lines can go through the different openings till reaching each light point. There are going to be a couple of small indented areas (for both AFT and FWD holds) to show the limit of the area where the fiber needs to be attached at, because that same area is the open section for the cargo holds.

Although I need to test this properly, it is one of the very few ways I could come up to have these sidewall lights in the model. Of course, this will mean that once the optic fiber is installed, it will need to be “buried” with a bit of putty, therefore, the extra detail to add on the inner side of the fuselage will be done with photo etch.
Photo etch will be used for the light panel frames as well as for the lining unions (seen in the image above with thinner lines for placement reference). Amongst other elements, photo etched will also be used for the ladder that connects with the cockpit.

At this point, I hope you can understand my reasons for wanting to make my own fuselage and stay away from Revell’s, the modifications needed were quite complex to carry on, at least I could not make them as fitting-precise as I can now.

The main gear bay; I tried to keep the assembly of those simple, one thing I do not like at all is the way Revell makes their design, having to later apply putty all around the belly to cover the union, instead I just made a simple bay, with detailing inside and the same fitting points as the Revell kit, so the original landing gear can be used.

Another area I struggled quite a lot has been the bottom side of the cockpit:

At the same time I am designing each part, I also need to assure everything will fit perfectly later. In this case, all the detail under the nose will be added as one piece, fitting at the bottom of the windshield.

A similar step will be done next with the front area under the main deck. I am also making the different areas taking into account the measurements, so that the opening of the nose door equals the same of the real one in 1/144, same for the positioning of the side cargo door, etc.

I hope this project is of your liking so far. At this moment I am also preparing several new items for their release. it is taking me some time but I am doing the best I can to release it all soon.

Hope everything is going well for you, take good care everyone.
Best wishes,

1/144 B747-8F/-400F Part 1

Hello everyone,

Today I wanted to dedicate this entry to the B747-8F/-400F main deck detail set project.

Prior to getting into details, I would like to take this chance to say that I won’t be able to restock things on the 15th because of the Holy Week which is a national holiday here. As my father will also be on holiday, I will help him with some things we have to do at home plus the post office will remain closed on the following Monday.
The delay won’t be so long as I postpone the restock till next Friday 22nd.

This is the first and most probably the last screenshot of this project as you know I always prefer share things done rather than computerized but for the sake of a general idea, this is what the project is going to be (part of it):

Needless to say this is in its very bare bones, no wingroot, no panel lines yet, simply the basic structure of the fuselage which may also require some fine tuning.

I have decided to make my own portion of the fuselage for several reasons that I would like to mention here.
I know that probably some of you are against this route (because it may increase the costs), but to be honest, in order to make things right, I felt that most of the fuselage had to be re made in order for me to allocate all the areas and details I would like to represent.

The main reasons why I opted for this are:

  • Wing mounting had a conflict with the interior of the original Revell’s kit. The wing root placement is so deep that it goes behind the fuselage, this would interfere with the main deck as it crosses its level.
    The solution is, with the new wingbox/wingroot I plan it to be ready to fit Revell’s wings, but not as deep resulting in the need to remove a few millimeters from the original wing base which can be done with a simple cut.
  • Overall structure of the cargo holds. Now being able to assemble the cargo holds directly on the fuselage, allows me to make connecting points so that everything can fit perfectly, the fuselage will be ready to allocate the cargo holds for the reason that they will be designed to fit in it. This is very different and much easier than having to make a part adapted to the original fuselage with the limitations of the plastic thickness/landing gear/wing root design.
  • Thickness. The plastic thickness does not represent the thickness that can be seen around the edge of the door openings, both for the cargo holds and the side cargo door considering the work on the door edges, also, if you pay close attention, the thickness varies at the nose door opening, whereas the bottom side is thicker than the left/right side.
  • Main deck. Making the main deck having as a reference the fuselage I am making will make things so much easier for me and later for you to assemble altogether. Fuselage will still be joined from both sides, so it is going to be important to make the fitting of the main deck to be completely perpendicular on both sides, so when you put together the whole thing, it fits perfectly.
  • Lighting. The B747 has lights at the sidewalls besides the ceiling, this presents a challenge if lights have to be installed in such places. My solution to this is to make some sort of gutter that goes from the light panel down past the main deck, so wires can be placed and later covered. I am also thinking about the panel lights to be some sort of frosted for a better diffusion of the LED lights.
  • Cockpit. As I mentioned before, the plastic thickness gives away the realism I wish for this project, so by making my own fuselage I can make the cockpit opening thinner for better detailing. The windshield will be presented as a precut acetate, (which may include the multicolor effect known as optical birefringence). What I am still considering is including the cockpit windows frame as photo etched or include a masking template to paint the frame, I am leaning more towards the first option although I may include both, but an assembly scenario I think of is painting the PE frame, gluing it on the acetate and then gluing the set onto position, this won’t require to mask anything (simply cover the interior) in the fuselage painting stage since the windshield can be placed later.

Being able to work directly on the fuselage interior will allow me to make a complete new cockpit as well as upper deck. For this reason and due lights being able to be installed, the correct window openings will be made, as you may have noticed, Revell’s kit has used the passenger window shape/size of the -8i for the upper deck, but actually the -8F uses the old type of windows like the -400 variant.

Fuselage. The advantage of making this portion of the fuselage myself is that I would later be able to make the -400F version.

So basically, with this whole set you will be able to use from the kit; engines, wings, landing gear, horizontal and vertical stabilizers (with the fuselage cone section).
As I am going to make a wing root specifically for the Revell kit, that does not mean that with a little bit of extra work, you can still use Zvezda’s B747-8i for this purpose.

The next step I will take is to print the rear end of the hump section to check if the hump postwork that I need to do will be possible. Also, test the end cone that will fit with the original Revell section, for that area, the bulkhead part will aid in the assembly of both parts.

The hump was not easy to make, the transition in the original aircraft is not “smooth” but you can see from some angles (specially top) that it looks like a dome, the shape is very well defined. Hasegawa 1/200 models nailed this, Revell’s kit is very close so hopefully I can do a test first prior getting any further and see if I can represent it as close to the original as possible.

I am going to take the chance to look at the wing root fairing, because I am not sure Revell’s is 100% similar to the original, so I will take this chance and correct this if needed. Another challenge will be the landing gear bays which will be ready to fit Revell’s landing gears.

That is all for now, I am continuing with the work and with the projects, I am also working everyday on the restock process, for which PE is the remaining thing to make.

Best wishes,