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Discussion Starter #1
I finally got around to working on this kit the other day... Overall it is a good kit, but definitely not Tamiya. It takes a lot of work.

The main hull halves fit together well, but be very careful how you glue them. If you glue the left and right halves together tightly, the deck will not fit by about .5 to 1mm. The deck itself does not fit very well either and takes some putty both at the front, back and along the side.

Here is the back of the deck after its been sanded smooth. I had to fill around the fins also, using Tamiya Liquid Surface Primer.



The sail is problematic, as was pointed out in another build here. If you glue the left and right halves together, the top will be too wide and will overhang the sides. I glued the top to one half, making sure the side and top were flush. Then glue the opposide side in place. You will have about a .5mm to 1mm up the front and back, as the sail sides are too narrow. If you follow the kit instructions you will have a lot of fit issues. The diving planes also do not fit well and take some filling.



The front of the hull fits very well, and the windows fit well also. Unfortunately the windows are thick and oddly "hollow". If you look at the next photo you can see the funny ledge caused by the thickness of the parts. The windows are also curved although the miniature had flat windows. The curve and the thickness of the lip around the inside, and the hollow nature, make it difficult to add interior framing.



The engine pods fit pretty well. Since the seam for the fins is on the bottom face of the fin, I used some extra putty to allow for feathering in the putty.



The baffles that fit inside the engine pods are grossly undersize and do not fit properly in their grooves. Be very careful in fixing them so they come out more or less centered.

The pods fit well to the hull although I did use some Tamiya Liquid Surfacer to fill the joint lines.



I used the paper advertizment from the kit to cut templates to make a floor and ceiling for the viewing room in the sub's nose.

 

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Discussion Starter #2
To make the window braces, I drilled along a ruler into some Evergreen sheet styrene. You might think using the pre cut strips is easier but it is not. Drill into a large piece of plastic, then cut it into a narrow strip after the holes are done. It is really not very hard. I did not bother to measure the holes for spacing, as long as I have 7 holes per brace.



Here are two braces temporarily tacked down so I can paint them with Tamiya X-11 Silver Leaf enamel paint, which is very bright.



The first three braces were fixed with a small amount of CA glue. You can't get the frames very close to the windows due to the incredible thickness of the window lip, the hollow nature of the windows, and the curvature to the glass.



You really can not see very much inside the front windows of the model, even with a bright light. The available photo etch interior is quite well done but IMHO overkill as you just can not see some of its complexity. I made a simple interior using Evergreen sheet plastic. I cut a floor, a back bulkhead with closed off door, and a semi-circular ring for the top. The side walls come partly forward and curve roughly to match the curve of the nose of the sub. I painted the interior of the kit parts the same wood brown for the interior paneling. There are gaps between the interior insert and the sub nose but they are totally invisible. Nothing has to be terribly precise.



The interior is made up from six main parts, plus the forward hatch, table, and some small strips glued to the side walls to represent maps, tv screens, etc. The table is made from Evergreen sheet with four stretched sprue legs.

I used Poly Scale Rust for the paneling color, US Navy Blue-Grey for the Floor, and Tamiya silver enamel for the ceiling ring and table.

Here is the interior bracing as seen from outside with a light shining through. Note the thickness of the clear window lip.

 

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Dave you have been Bizzy!...very cool job! The interior is great!
The engine baffles have pins that locate them in the proper orientation.
Either your eyes are better than mine or mine fits better, I heven't used an 8th of the putty you have...
Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yes the baffles have little pins, but if you locate them properly in their grooves and glue them to one side... when you glue the other side of the pod in place they are off set. You can actually see past it.

Its really not that much green putty. But I want to be able to blend in some areas, especially on the engine pod fins. And I do not want any seam visible. The parts fit pretty well. The fit of the hull just fore and aft of the deck took the most work, and the sail.

I want for the model to look solid without things just stuck on... so I spent some extra time on things like the diving planes, tail fins, etc.

I have about 3 hours into the model not counting drying time.
 

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You, my friend are kicking butt on this one...I'm leaving the engines off untill I shoot the white paint, But the fins on mine only needed a wisp of putty wiped off with alchohol. it's like we have two different kits fit wise, my bow was a little disfigured by a sink mark near the window, and that messed up the raised seam in the middle of the "forehead" Yours looks fine...go figure.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I thought about leaving the engines off but they need to be puttied into the side keel...




I use the Tamiya Liquid Surfacer to fill the small gaps. It can be wiped off easily while wet. But for the bigger gaps... Squadron Green Putty works well. You can see the fine lines of the Tamiya stuff... its white here.



The last two braces glued in place in the nose... I decided to have one central brace versus a brace inside the two front windows... mostly because the area is so small I did not want to box off the already limited vision inside.




 

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So far, so good! But I admit to being concerned with just how little of that interior is actually going to be visible because of the curved bow windows.
 

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I figured the engine side keel seam is a quick fix compared to trying to mask/ paint the hull white around the rudder/engines.and stuff.
Your interior really looks cool I have some PE crew left over if you want some.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the crew offer. I have some Eduard pre-painted 1/350 crew and some of the new injection molded plastic ones. However, you can't really see them. I don't think I will bother...

Even in the 1/128 kit its hard to see much inside at all.

I just wanted SOMETHING inside the windows besides a cavernous, hollow, hull.

You know, a simple printed paper interior insert (like in the little Flying Sub) would largely suffice. Even by forshortening the forward room on my interior and moving things as close to the windows as possible you still can't see much.

At least its not hollow... and it was fun to make the interior.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I am lucky I can work on models at work... so I painted the inside of the clear parts with Future and glued the interior in place.

I live in Florida, and even with the bright sun shine, you can't see much inside. I took this picture outdoors. You can see the hatch to the lower level, the edge of the table and the girders if you look closely... but you can't really see any detail or depth. You can't judge much color either... its all dark.



The nose bottom section fits "okay" but has probably the largest seam in the kit to fill. Its not a bad seam... but you should fill it in and sand smooth.



In the above picture and the one below you can see about the only major surface flaw in the kit... the spot light on one side is a faint lump while the opposite side is pretty well defined. Kind of odd... I wish these were clear parts like the big Seaview. Its sort of strange since the nose spot light is clear. I might drill these out and replace them (and the front light) with MV model railroad lenses.



 

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I will have the hull together in a day or so, my tests show that the beams and the crew are visible, I painted the interior white then put a coat of Krylon Glowz..over that hopefully it will help with the visiblity.
That's funny my lower spots were exactly the same, I did drill them out.for lenses.
 

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I'm really liking your buildup! The interior's one of those bits like the interior of a B17 - it can't be seen through the windows, but you know it's there.

The simplicity of the girder attachment is great.
 

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One further thing that I myself have noticed,is the front bottom hull where the FS-1 bay is,Has been corrected. It no longer had the rounded egg shape as the larger model does.

Fantastic little kit.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yeah the kit itself is solid enough and in many ways I like it better than the large kit. At least it is managable to work with and since the hull is not split in half across the middle, there is much less filling and sanding. I think the shapes are better also. But large models often look distorted, funny, or just plain and stark. The little kit has a nice "flow".

Initially I thought about copying the photo-etch girder arrangement since I printed off a paper copy of a picture of the etch set. But to be honest, the more complex "in scale" arrangememnt is totally invisible. You can't see how many girders there are, where they come from on the floor, where they go on the ceiling, etc. Its much easier just to stick some simple girders directly inside the windows, since that is about as far as you will see anyway. And the whole interior only took me a couple hours work in total.

I painted the base with a coat of Poly Scale Deck Tan, which is a nice, rich color. Its also good for the top of Egyptain and Syrian MiG-17 jets!



And a wash of Poly Scale IJA Green, which is just a dark Olive Drab shade. Unlike Tamiya acrylic paints, which are solvent based and will lift each other, PS paints are inert and once the base coat is dry and the wash will not lift the base layer at all.



I have mixed feelings about the base. Its obviously based on the Aurora Undersea Lab base, which was used for their 1970s Seaview issue. However, this base is much smaller and the pedestal parts are much taller. I appreciate the nod to Aurora, but the base is sort of goofy. The pedestals look like tall bundt cakes or clumps of hot dogs, and not any known undersea structure. Plus the scale of the marine plants molded to the base is not so good compared to the sub. Something more rocky or perhaps a ship wreck would be more interesting. IF you do not want to use the kit base, you have to fill the holes in the Seaview's keel. The name tag for the display stand is not so good... the letters are a bit crude and un-even in thickness. Sharp painting is needed there. I may cut a rectangle of sheet styrene and print a nice decal name plate or logo.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The base paints up really nicely.

I used 13 different shades on the base for the final look... Lots of layers of dry brushing, washes, more dry brushing.



Now I think the big pedestal parts look like Cactus. Without the sub in place it looks like a New Mexico desert scene!




I made sure the sub fits the base before I paint the sub itself. The pedestals actually have a rough mold seam up the sides and over the top that should be sanded down.



The props were painted Olive Drab and then dry dry brushed with Testors Gold enamel. I cut some of the sprues off the prop blades in advance, and removed some slight flash before painting.



Some of the gargantuan sprues on the small parts



The bottom of the nose blends in pretty well. I drilled out the poorly molded spot lights. One light was not bad but the opposide light was just a faint lump.



The engine pods and fins are all faired in with putty. I brushed some thinned white paint over many of the parts seams as a final check.



I am not thrilled with the name plate... the thickness of the strokes of the letters varies a bit and they are not well defined

 

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I like your solution for the bottom spot lights, and think that they'll illuminate nicely with light flooding in from the viewport after filling them with a drop or 2 of clear resin in each.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
You wont see anything through the bottom lights since the interior pretty much encloses the viewports.

If I have two (actually three since I would replace the front light) MV lenses I would use those. If you do not know MV lenses, they are little foil-backed resin model railroad "lights". They look like a real glass covered lamp.

http://www.spruebrothers.com/Nexternal/mv-products-mv-lenses.htm

MV stuff is intended for model railroads but they have a huge following in other model areas. Getting the right size can be tricky. If you have a local train shop that sells these, take the part for your model that you want to put the lens in down to the shop to make sure it fits.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Tamiya TS Flat White goes on very well for the bottom. You can see the seam is largely gone. Also, my grey/white color division will be slightly inside the lip of the manta fin.



Masking around the tail fins and engines isn't too hard... I am using thin Tamiya tape. I will use paper to cover the largest areas of white.


The nose with a coat of Testors Flat Gully Grey spray paint. The paint goes on thick (I was lazy and didn't want to airbrush it). The difference between Tamiya and Testors sprays is like night and day. I masked the windows with Ambroid EZ Mask. Generally I don't like this stuff, as its hard to remove, but here it should be ok... the windows are large and the mask comes off bare plastic pretty easily. DO NOT apply liquid masks over Future.

The Seaview all painted and starting to dry... To hold the model I stuck a bamboo cocktail skewer into one of the holes for the display stand... and stuck the pointy end of the skewer into a heavy cardboard box. This way the model just sort of floats in space and doesnt touch anything.



I did not paint the openings in the top of the sail white. Clear color photos of the large surface model do not show it white...



 
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