Work-In-Progress: 1/32 Trumpeter SBD
This article is part of a series:
- Work-In-Progress: 1/32 Trumpeter SBD
- WIP 2nd Update: 1/32 Trumpeter SBD (Color Challenge Resolved)
- Update WIP 3: 1/32 Trumpeter SBD-3 Midway Variant…need to resolve a decal issue.
- Update WIP 4: 1/32 Trumpeter SBD-3 Midway Variant
- WIP: 5th Update for 1/32 Trumpeter SBD-3 Midway Variant
- WIP: 6th and Final Update: Trumpeter 1/32 SBD-3 “Midway Variant”
- 1/32 Trumpeter SBD-3: Battle of Midway
Here are some pictures showing some of the assembly steps I took in building this Trumpeter 1/32 SBD Midway Edition. It is currently completely assembled, or at least assembled enough to start the painting process. Most of it is built OOB except engine and cockpit wiring, cockpit placards, and some instrument dials for radios and electronic equipment.
The interior was primed in Dark Grey then a coat of zinc-chromate was added to complete the interior base color. Several lighter shades were used to enhance fuselage walls then a dark enamel wash was applied to weather the cockpit sides and cockpit assembly.
The cockpit is very detailed right out of the box. It assembles well and requires lots of fine detail painting. The instrument panel had the dials drilled out to avoid needing to mask the dials prior to painting black. Also the real aircraft has recessed dials not raised dials as provided on the stock IP.
The seat belts for front and back are painted photo-etch. Some from the stock kit others from an after-market kit.
Pictures show the complete fuselage with wings attached being primed in a Dark-Grey color. The canopy sections were masked with after-market masking kit and then 1st painted in green zinc chromate. Then a second coat was applied using the dark-grey primer.
The last stage I completed is the base painting and pre-shading of the bottom surfaces of the aircraft. The base paint is Vallejo USAF Light Grey FS36495. Pictures show how the paint was built up in light layers of pre-shading with white paint only within the panels and rivet lines. This left a darker shade on all the rivets and panel lines from the dark grey primer. I varied the opacity of this white layer to add visual interest to the final coat. I then pre-shaded the recessed panel lines with very diluted flat-black. Finally I used a very diluted blend coat of the base color FS36495. This was applied very slowly in very light coats over all the pre-shading until the pre-shading was nicely blended into the base color and very faint remnants of the pre-shading showed through this blended base coat.
I am at a stand still now as I continue to research the top camo color. I have researched the internet and found several references which point out FS SPec numbers as good matches. Several manufactures make paints that are suppose to match these fs spec codes. I purchased several Vallejo bottles of paint with the exact FS SPecs and Navy "M-" designation such as the required Navy "M-485" blue-grey camo shade used during the Battle of Midway and many Navy aircraft including the SBD. When I tested these paints they did not resemble any of the colors seen on my reference photos. I dont even think they are close. The worst match was the Vallejo Light Grey M-486 supposedly used for the bottom camo color. It was completely wrong and did not even closely match any photo standards. You can see some of the colors tested on a color palette I made using the colors that have been recommended. I am not going to use any of these top colors. Instead I just ordered new paints from BombShell Brew" paints. Their excellent online pallets available on their products page show early US Navy colors and those colors are much closer. Any feedback regarding my color issues is welcomed as well as any suggestions on how to get a better match.
54 additional images. Click to enlarge.