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

Decals – First test passed

Hello everyone,

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
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
  • Catering truck
  • Cargo loader
  • Pushback AST-1

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!

Best wishes,
Guillem

The importance of colors

Hello all,

Finally, finally I have been able to do sucessful test prints for the decals, I did prints with color and with white. Naturally it is impossible to match such small details in two print passes to have white underneath the color, usually a 0,5mm marging can be left, but some details are even smaller than 0,5mm. Despite that, white layer will be included for any specific decal color for which surface on the model isn’t white. Being the thickness of the decal carrier 7 microns, it won’t be an issue having it underneath. I have been told of the several Russian artists who also use this method.

This will represent in a modification needed for all the artworks I’ve done so far, as well as do some further tests for very small decals as I am still checking the settings for best results.

There is one thing that I would like to comment and that is the color of the decal once printed. Naturally, since the backing paper is light blue, decals tend to have a bluish color, but that won’t be the case once placed over white.
For that reason I have printed an extensive color swatch with many tonalities and CMYK color codes so that I am sure that the decals match the real color that I see on the color swatch.

I will not guide myself for the colors I see on the screen as these widely vary from monitor to monitor, instead, I will be selecting codes for what I consider a closest match to the real aircraft colors.

Here is a quick example:

I slided the decal to the right, you can see that from left to right, there is the backing paper, in the middle is the color as seen once printed over the blue backing paper and on the right, the true real color once placed on a white surface, both colors are the exact same decal.
Tonalities can change a lot, so do not be alarmed  if the decal colors doesn’t seem right on the blue paper, they will once over white.

Last test on colors was to actually place the decal of the white surface next to the printed color swatch (printed with the same printer) and tone of the decal is 100% the same as in the color swatch, ths will allow me for a better selection of colors while creating artworks.

So far I am pleased with the results, it was about time I could have some… now I will need to rework the decals I have designed so far.

 

This weekend I may not be able to upload any progress on the two current projects, reason being that I won’t be able to work on these. During this week I have started to prepare more units of the catering and the cargo loader, unfortunately one of the cargo loader molds broke, therefore I need to redo this mold and will also make new ones for the rest of the set.
After having made new molds for the LD3 trolleys, Neo engines, and carts A, I need to reorganize the material and put the molds in a proper place. My space is limited so keeping things in order is a very important aspect.

Will keep working on the projects as soon as I have these things fixed.

Best wishes,
Guillem

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