by David W. Aungst
The seeds for this particular project were planted several years ago while I was working part-time as a clerk in a hobby shop (that is sort-of like a wolf guarding the sheep). I noted one afternoon that between Arii and Revell all the Century Series fighters were actually available in 1/144th scale. I decided to acquire them all as I had always wanted to build a complete Century Series, although I usually though of doing it in 1/48th scale.
While I was at it, I checked the decal racks in the hobby shop and found that four of the six aircraft actually had after market decals available from SuperScale. There was even a selection to choose from! I picked markings that were as colorful as possible for each subject, attempting to depict wing commander aircraft when possible.
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The key to any good collection is to find a display that enhances the overall presentation. After considering several designs and options, I finalized the design on a hexagon shaped central block stand with one aircraft mounted on a brass rod coming out of each face of the stand. I further decided to alternate the heights of the the models with every other model mounted higher than the others.
I decided on .090" Plastruct sheet styrene for building the hexagon shaped central stand (since that is what I had on hand) and K&B brass stock for the aircraft mounting hardware. The rods used for the actual mounts were 3/32" brass rods and the tubing used as a receptacle in each aircraft and inside the central stand was 1/8" brass tubing. This tubing has an inside diameter of 3/32" to match the brass rod.
I cut out two hexagon shapes (one big and one little) and six identical trapezoids from the Plastruct sheet styrene. I cut six 4" lengths of the brass rod and twelve 1" lengths of the brass tubing. Drilling out holes in the trapezoids, I mounted six of the brass tube pieces in the trapezoids (the other six got included into the aircraft contruction). With the tubing in place, I then glued the hexagon shaped central block together. I used gobs of super glue to fill and shape the corners of the block into smooth corners.
For markings on the stand, I decided that brass trim, to match the brass mounting hardware, would look good. So, I polished the block to be smooth and metalized it using some old Metalizer brand Brass metalizer paint. I then buffed and sealed this paint. On my computer, I created nameplates for the aircraft and printed them on clear decal film using a laser printer. On the computer, the nameplates were black rectangles with white writing, so on the printed decals, they were black rectangles with clear decal film for writing. Applied to the now brass colored stand, the brass showed through to make brass colored writing on the black rectangles. After the decals had dried, I masked off the black rectangles and painted the whole stand black. After the paint dried, I unmasked the black rectangles and applied several coats of Future Floor Wax by air brush to give the stand a high gloss shine.
When the aircraft models were completed, I polished the brass rods with metal polish and sealed them with clear gloss paint. Then I glued the rods into the rear of each model. I carefully measured and cut the rods to possition the models at the proper distance from the hexagon shaped central stand. Then, I slipped the brass rods (now attached to the models) into the holes on the appropriate sides of the hexagon shaped central stand.
See the links below to visit individual pages describing each of the aircraft in the collection.
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Models, Description and Images Copyright ©
2000 by David AungstPage Created 21 February, 2001