1/24 Grumman XP-50 Skyrocket

Jim Barry

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#1
Kicking off another scratch build which catches me thinking I'm offering proof I've lost my marbles. But anyway, it's true. While the Bearcat moves along with a reasonable amount of my time/attention, I've had time to work out the logistics of the Skyrocket project and I think it's going to work. One reason I'm kicking it off is I want to get the messy priming/sanding/primer part done while the weather is still warm and I can work in the garage safely avoiding the toxic fumes. It will slow down the Bearcat, but I will enjoy working on the two of them regardless of what plane gets finished when.

So here's a shot of the 3D rendering of the Wright R-1820 I've come up with. It's off to Shapeways now to get printed. Fingers crossed. Much greater detail than the Bearcat engine mostly because now I have more understanding of how to model stuff in 3D.

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Here's the real thing. There was just one and it perished in a crash after just a few months of life. Love to see it come back if it's just in a model form. Note that it has many ideas that were realized in the Tigercat, but the Tigercat was built from a different prototype all together a few years after this one got going. Note too that it's like the XF5F Skyrocket because well it's basically a version of that but done under an Army Air Corps contract, not a U.S. Navy one. (the XF5F was not approved by the Navy). The XP-50 project lived in the shadow of the competitor prototype , the XP-49, a super P-38 from Lockheed. The XP-49 never really never did much better than the original P-38 and it too never went anywhere.

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yak face

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#3
Great stuff jim , another lovely grumman bird. I love the tigercat and you can clearly see the lineage in the xp50 , from the windscreen forward its virtually the same. Minicraft do a 1/48 xf5f skyrocket but i never really liked the look of it . I mean great idea - putting as small an airframe as you could onto two of the biggest engines you could find but it just didnt look right with the nose level with the wing leading edge, the xp50 looks more like an aircraft to me. Looking forward to the magic , cheers tony
 

Jim Barry

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I'm with you on the XP-50 being much less of a freak show and with the tricycle gear it's just a peach. The XF5F reportedly had great forward vision for sighting the carrier deck. I think the Navy had some reservations about the demands on maintaining two engines on a single plane.
 

Jim R

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Hi Jim
Always in for one of your scratch builds. The engine looks very detailed. I look forward to seeing it 'printed'.
Jim
 

colin m

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This is going to be great to watch. But I have no idea where I would start a project like this.
 

Jim Barry

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Thanks for joining Colin. I like to start with the spine. This was what the did last night. From here I’ll add the bulkheads, insert a bunch of balsa in between the bulkheads and then sand to the bulkhead and spine skeleton edges. The engine nacelles will be the same idea.
 

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Steve Jones

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Jim
Looks like I have arrived just in time. Looking forward to watching you do your thing:cool:
Steve
 

Jim Barry

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Engines are printed. Really happy with results. Interestingly on my weekend trip to Charleston I got to view a ton of Grumman planes at the USS Yorktown museum . Real Wright R-1820 to take notes from and I got to sit in the cockpit of an F9F Cougar (the swept wing version of the Panther).

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TonyBv9

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"Engines are printed."

Can't get my head around that simple statement. I'll certainly enjoy watching.
 

Jim Barry

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I know. It’s funny to type that, still. 99% of my 52 years one printed strictly on paper, not in 3D space. Living the future.
 

John Race

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#15
Impressive work on that engine Jim :thumb2: and looks good in the printed form .
I shall sit a the back and enjoy .
John .
 

Jim Barry

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Thanks gents. I could get into making just engines. Might go commercial perhaps ?? I have thoughts but need more experience first before I stood behind something I would sell. With online portals like ebay and shapeways, it's pretty easy to open the shop, that's for sure.

Tonight I got into the cowling. Of course there are two but I just have to design one and order 2. This is some hard work to get to "3D capable", but once here it's really paying off. This took about an hour from sitting down to ordering them on Shapeways.
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John Race

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Jim.
This is impressive stuff, to think how things are changing in the modeling world. Definitely think there would be a market if the price point was reasonable. Look how much people are willing to pay for PE sets and add on engines in armour.
John.
 

Jim Barry

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Yesterday was a bit slow throwing 3D work into the trashcan kind of thing, but in the end I think I got just what I wanted: Two counter rotating Curtiss Electric props. On the real thing, to feather the prop there's an electric motor in the small hub at the tip and large reduction gears in the large hub. Power is supplied by brushs that contact slip rings on other side of the blades. If you are curious and want to know more, well the starboard side has the "handed" propeller. Handed means it turns clockwise (from the pilots perspective). The port side has a "counter-handed" propeller .

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Steve Jones

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#19
Nice to see modellers using modern technology. Wonderful stuff. Is it easy to do or do you need a degree in tech?

Steve
 

Jim Barry

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It is wonderful, Steve. I enjoy it quite a bit. Perhaps like art there is no real minimum effort before you have "something" so in a sense it's easy. However delivering on miniature military hardware parts perhaps has 50-100 hours of "study time" practicing before you'd claims competence at say something like an ammo box with clips for a 3cm Flakvierling. For me, I was watching youtube videos for a few weeks most nights before it started to make sense. First efforts did take a lot of time, but again with practice you get good. What used to take 10 hours just takes like 2 now. I do not print my own stuff. That's like a hobby too. I just have Shapeways.com do it all for me and they do a great job.
 
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