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Wingwalk Stripes – Painted

I am building the AFV Club U-2A, which has very prominent wingwalk stripes on the wings. I have Cutting Edge decals that include wingwalk stripes, so, after painting and glossing, the wingwalk stripes were applied. First, I noticed that the black stripes seemed a bit narrow, but not enough to fuss with. The more serious problem was the stripes on the outer portion of the wing did not have the correct angles to fit the wing panels (these decal sheets were made for the old Hawk/Testors U-2 kit, and were designed years before the AFV Club kit was released). I applied all of the stripes, but was not happy with the results...what to do? I decided to strip the wings and paint the stripes.

I reprimered the wings using black Mr. Surfacer primer, and set about looking for my 1mm tape, but it had disappeared in my clutter drawer. Now, since all of the "non-essential stores" are closed, I was in need of some narrow tape to stripe with. What I came up with is shown in the pictures. Basically, I went the pragmatic "el cheapo" route, using a roll of 1" common masking tape, and a #11 Exact blade glued to a piece of Evergreen .030" plastic. Checking references, it seemed that 1mm was a bit narrow, so I found that a blade glued to .030" plastic gave about 1.5mm height. While holding the blade against a flat surface, I pushed the roll of masking tape against the blade, while twisting the tape roll to make a cut through several layers of tape. The result was a constant-width piece of masking tape, approx 1.5mm wide. I applied the tape where the wingwalks would go, sprayed some Alclad Aluminum, and, "voila!," black wingwalk stripes.

4 additional images. Click to enlarge.

9 responses

  1. Absolutely genius!

  2. Brilliant. Define the problem then develop a solution using what materials are at hand. Great tip.

  3. Great outside the box thinking.

  4. Great! I love El-Cheapo ways. Sometimes they turn as good as the non elcheapo ones; or even better.

  5. Thanks, Spiros: I guess we modellers have become spoiled with all the great stuff available these days. When I started building plastic models long ago, there wasn't much available, so we had to use whatever we could find. Today, kits, aftermarket, and supplies, are plentiful, so we generally just buy what we need, and not going back to the old ways. I guess this masking tape trick is simply going back to a simpler time. Thanks again!

  6. Simple, yet very effective. Great idea.

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