Special Hobby 1/32 Yak 3

BarryW

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#1
After the abortive Revell 190 I am getting on with this short run kit. I have had both good and bad experiences with short run with Special Hobby, but in 1/32 scale some subjects are just not available unless you turn to these niche short run manufacturers.

These kits have their ‘quirks’ such as very basic engineering and no location tabs. But they can build up into excellent models.
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I have some masks and will depict the aircraft with a red nose.
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Not a lot of parts, not compared to most 32 scale aircraft.
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Instructions look a bit crowded but taking a closer look they seem rather good and well laid out.
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I have been building up sub-assemblies and adding a little extra detail.
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Some very nice resin exhausts. I wondered at first how to cut off the block without breaking or damaging the parts but then I realised I did not have to!!
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I really could not understand this page of the instructions at all. I can see there are alternative decals but why complicate it so much? I just cemented the transparencies into the holes, the applied the decals from underneath, made sure they had the right orientation, job done. Simple.

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Here is how far I have got so far.
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I have to say that I am enjoying this build. The plastic is nice and crisply molded. There is a little flash but it’s nowhere near as bad as Revell. The fit is not bad a all so far and I like the engineering. I am sure this kit will throw up a real challenge or two ahead but so far so good.
 

yak face

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#2
Soviet, limited run ? OK youve got my attention Barry ! Nice start , I'll be watching closely and taking notes as this is one that I will be getting sooner or later , cheers tony
 

Builder

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#3
Interested to see how the fit goes on this one. Goodluck Barry.
 

BarryW

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#4
Well I am still pulling together sub assemblies ahead of painting and I have hit the first real fit issues.

The wheel well walls really do not fit at all.

I spent ages trying to dry fit and eventually tried to fit one end into place and bend the other end back into position. This is how it looked with one end in place.
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It did not work....

I ended up easing them off to try again.
Eventually I ended up with this mish mash. It looks better in the photo than it actually is...
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I have a lot of filling and sanding to do including inserting plastic card to try to make it look something like a wheel well rather than a load of badly fitting plastic.

Then I have a piece to fit somewhere in there. The instructions give you a rough idea but that it something to deal with later.
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Once I have filled the various gaps and smoothed and shaped the joins I will have this to deal with...
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Lots more sanding and scraping away the wheel well plastic to get a wing join....

Such is the challenge of a Special Hobby kit so why get them and why put up with this? Simple, in 1/32 they are the only ones producing certain subjects, even significant aircraft types like this....

You just make excuses for them and when you buy, you know you are getting a crap kit. They are not cheap though.... unlike Revell who at least produce cheap crap kits that you can often throw away knowing someone makes a better version of the subject!!!

Such is life and here I am waiting for them to release their Whirlwind, yes I will probably buy it knowing its a crap kit......
 

BarryW

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#5
A further musing on the challenges of Special Hobby....

I read a couple of reviews neither identified the wheel well fit as an issue. One did identify a wing fit issue and suggested an easy correction.

One review said that this is probably Special Hobby's best kit - well I beg to differ, their Fiat G50bis was a better kit with far fewer build problems. Even their Aircobra had fewer issues, the killer simply being the practical difficulties with the front wheel's engineering on the tricycle u/c, one problem I never did solve.....

So what is it with reviewers? Why do they ignore problems?

Maybe we have a situation like the Emperor's new clothes.... you know the old fairy story. Perhaps we need an equivilent of the little boy to cut though the bull, stop making excuses (oh, but Revell are cheap, oh, but SH are short-run and you expect bad fit) and say it as it is, they make crap kits. Once people stop making excuses for them they will be exposed for what they really are, crap kit makers. Only then may they decide they need to improve. It is possible, look at the huge strides Airfix have made while still offering good value new tool kits (just not in my scale....). We modellers can be our worse enemy, too willing to accept poor quality.
 

colin m

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#6
Just about here I would say something like 'all looking great' but anyway, even though those wheel well parts look identical, did you try reversing them. I've had that on a kit (not this one) were the instructions mixed up left and right.
 

BarryW

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#7
I did indeed Colin. I too read about issues with SP instructions. I spent nearly an hour trying and fiddling around and in the end the two parts got mixed up anyway and I just made sure I cemented them however they fit best. .
 

BarryW

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#9
So far so good.

It was clear that the detail was creating a step so I had to trim back the internal ribbing a little
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Then I painted raised areas black and pressed the parts together to reveal the key sections to sand. I did this a few times in the process.
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After a while I managed to get the pieces to connect after a lot of scraping, cutting and sanding.
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It’s better than it looks in the photo
Next I will need to fill and sand to close some gaps and improve the appearance. It won’t be perfect but I will make the best of it.
 

papa 695

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#10
Your really having to put some work into this one Barry, but your doing a great job.
 

BarryW

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#11
I have joined the wings and have had to use a large amount of Mr Surfacer 500 down the join. Once it has properly cured there is going to be a lot of sanding to do with, most likely further filler treatments.
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This photo represents one of the other challenges of these short run kits. The need to join several parts without any positive location points while have to get the right angles and right position. Sometimes you need child sized fingers and four hands....
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Managed it though, eventually... I really should have painted these parts first but in the end decided that I prefer to face the positioning and gluing first.
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I dry fitted this into position and found that in this case it is a perfect fit!
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It’s a fight but so far I am winning.
 

BarryW

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#12
One thing about Special Hobby is how they have a large number of exceptionally small parts which are difficult to handle with or without tweezers, difficult to position because they lack any positive locations and are often difficult even to work out exactly where they go. They are also often quite precarious with a very small ‘glue area’. These can be plastic pe or resin. If you persevere and get them into place without the carpet monster swallowing them you then find later they some have been knocked off without you noticing... the carpet monster getting them anyway. Several small parts have disappeared like that. Most are so small no-one will notice on the finished model anyway. The only one that annoys me is a part I attached to an u/leg that is noticeable......
 
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#13
I have not posted updates for a few days as all I have been doing is filling and sanding... not very interesting..

But in the end it all came together, seals and joins smoothed and in one piece..

Last night I applied a MRP Black primer to the interior and some other parts to prepare for painting. The primer is particularly necessary because this kit is 'multi-media' with resin and p.e. plus because of the amount of scraping and sanding I wanted to improve the surface and remove any micro scratches wherever possible.
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Tonight and tomorrow I will be getting on with a little more construction and the painting.
 
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#16
Great work Barry. I used to think crap fitting kits were the norm and thats just how models are. Then i built the Tamiya 1/32 Mosquito. Hundreds of parts that fitted together perfectly. And no filler needed anywhere.
 
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#18
I am getting on with the interior pieces with dry brushing and washes.

The ip individual dial decals bed in well.
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Next I use some stuff I managed to source to replicate the dial glass. I have no idea where I got it or how much it costs but is does replicate nice clear lenses and it applies easily with a cocktail stick.
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Once applied it is cured with a light pen.
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Here are some parts weathered ready to install.
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Fitting parts into place.
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