Radial Engine Repair Mini Diorama
I’ve spent some time working on old, round engines everywhere, from in the shop to replacing parts like propellers busted hoses and “blown jugs” in the field. Therefore, it is only natural to included a radial repair scene in my airport diorama. While the scene takes a few liberties, it conveys the concept of working on these engines, something I’m still doing, only now its 1/48 scale. Here the shop supervisor consults with the engine mechanic about a cylinder problem on the P&W R-985 over a not-so cold, bottle of coke. And would you look at the size of that ball peen hammer? That’s so the mechanic doesn’t have to use those Channel Lock pliers.
The engine is a resin, Pratt and Whitney R-985 Wasp Junior from “Metallic Details.”
This is the cheapest kit on the market at around $12 – once again, scale models at scale prices. I built two of these for my Twin Beech cargo hauler,
so I am getting pretty proficient at tiny radial construction techniques.
The kit requires attaching the cylinders,
so it was a perfect match for the scene. I first attempted to use a 985 radial from the C-45 kit, sawing off the jugs, but it did not have the detail and was grossly inaccurate,
so I sprang for the Metallic Details kit. I left the molding base on the engine, sanding it down to reasonable thickness, making a perfect engine stand.
Note the drilled out cylinders. Sharp eyes will note the cylinder bases are still on the crankcase, but then one cannot have perfect detail all the time; at least I cannot. However, I note others have abilities vastly superior to mine in this regard.
Push-rod tubes are cut from 29 gage needles
and intake manifold pipes are brass rod shaped and cut to size.
The engine has a small 2mm magnet inserted in to the bottom of the engine stand that attaches it to a metal plate fastened to the table top. Thus, the engine can be removed for inspection. Here is the magnet in the first engine attempt
The figures are modified from other kit figures. The guy holding the Jug used to be a Tamiya Navy fighter pilot who now works in the shop. I had to trim off his military gear and flight helmet. The guy with the orange hard-hat was an O-scale railroad figure that had a blob for a face.
His place in the diorama worked out after re-positioning the arm so the hand rested on the 985’s valve cover and grinding away the the oil can and replacing it with the ubiquitous Coke bottle. (There are three Coke machines located around the diorama)
I took the head from one of the Goon’s paratroop contingent and decapitated him. I then cut the hard hat from the original figure and glued it all together, allowing the figure to save face.
Finally I moved the scene into the hanger
The (modeling) memories of man in his old age are the deeds of a man in his prime – Pink Floyd
35 additional images. Click to enlarge.