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Zvezda Bf-109 F4

Hey there, fellas. This is my attempt at Zveda’s 1/48 F4. The kit is very detailed and has a lot of options, but the build can be a little finnicky with all the engine parts.
I have mixed feelings about kits with such options: it seems like a waste not exposing the engine, specially a well detailed like this one; on the other hand, it robs the finished kit of the aircraft lines, which is a case in point of the streamlined beauty of the F series 109. The problems in the build were self imposed: I started it planning to show the engine and changed my mind along the way. That meant shaving a few parts after they were glued on the firewall. I was disapointed with the large step of the oil cooler cowling, but then again, perhaps it has to do with my mistakes. The decals looked not so good, so I researched a bit on a great profile art website by Mr. Mark Styling and chose a suitable replacement scheme. Unit emblem, number and staffel markings are from ICM Decals, an excellent brazilian supplier that makes Luftwaffe decal sheets that allow you to build lots of aircraft. Luftwaffe buffs should check it out. I used the kit supplied crosses and stencils, and they were not as bad as I imagined. The paints are also local, and I was surprised they worked so good after some 10 years stored. TBH, I don’t know if they still exist, but they sure made some good acrylics. The last 109 I used them on has long vanished in a shelf collapse!
Other than the decals, the only aftermarket is Eduard Steel seatbelts, which are great in that they do not chip the paint while you conform them to the seat.
And that’s it. Zvezda’s kit can be a little demanding, and the instructions a bit confusing and cluttered, but the finished kit looks good. As always, all feedback is welcome. Cheers!

12 additional images. Click to enlarge.


16 responses to Zvezda Bf-109 F4

  1. Looks nice, Thiago….I like it – good job!

  2. As I’ve said on other occasions, it’s the best F-series 109 in 1/48, in my opinion.

    Nice job, Thiago.

  3. Thiago, great work and good camouflage!
    I can relate to your pains while building this beauty. Your closed engine panels were very nicely assembled. Only someone who has built this kit will understand how hard to get that area can be. I like it! The details you added in the canopy/ cockpit area are very well done, which I could do that (and looking so good) one day 🙂
    One photo seems to show a cracked rear canopy, while in other photos that isn’t noticeable?
    One remark if I may, the UC legs are too straight, they need an outward angle that judging by the photos is absent.

    • Thanks for the kind words, Pedro! Whenever I build an aircraft with a tilting canopy I try to add some hinge detail to add interest, although more times than not it looks a bit overscale. Just for fun, I also added a “map” in the map case, more visible on other pictures. The landing gear camber is there, even though the fitting of the legs lacks a really positive attachment. And the cracking on the rear canopy occured from the stress of attaching the antenna. It doesn’t show to the naked eye and also surprised me when I saw the pictures! Thanks again!

      2 attached images. Click to enlarge.

  4. This looks realy nice. Lots of good work here. I like it a lot.

    • Thanks a lot, Mr. Cleaver! Your advice about airbrush and compressor settings was fundamental. I wouldn’t be able to paint the mottled finish without those guidelines. Funny or not, I found out my compressor output knob DOES work – the thing is, it only sets the pressure up or down when the compressor is turned off! After a bit of trial and error I managed to lower the pressure to about 10-12 psi, which worked fantastic with well thinned paint and holding the airbrush very close to the model. I still have a long way to go, and some half dozen 109 kits in the stash! Thanks again!

  5. You really nailed it. Great overall outcome. Sweet!

  6. Very nice! Excellent paint and detail work.

  7. You have done a fantastic job on the 109…………. I really LIKE it……….. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing it with us.

  8. Very nice looking model

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