Trainer: Northrop T-38C Talon II – Trumpeter 1/48
This post will be quick and dirty, just like this build. The kit itself is very simple, as is the airframe. It does have a nice petite coke-bottle shape that most can appreciate, and the model itself scream petite when you pick it up. It is very light for a modern-ish jet.
To start, I bought this kit second hand, and the cockpit was already mostly painted, installed (poorly), and the fuselage halves were already together with the intake scoops on. The fitment of these parts was again somewhat poor, and the seams were sapped with liquified styrene. All this, and set of Caracal decals for $14.99. Not a bad deal, but also not a great deal. I think the kit itself likely has decent fit if time is taken to ensure that seams are flush before slapping them together. The biggest issue I had (primarily due to the PO fitment of the cockpit) was properly fitting the canopies. The sills that the cockpit sit on were pushed too wide, which meant I had gaps to deal with, and in my opinion I did quite poorly, but it won't keep me up at night.
Fast forward through a lot of seam sanding and preparation, I was able get this one tidied up for the display shelf in a hurry. As of yesterday morning, this kit was without primer, but masked and ready to go. Fast forward again through one coat of Mr1500 Black, Tamiya XF-2 White for panel mottling, Vallejo USAF Med Gray, Vallejo Gunship Grey, Tamiya X22, Decals, some panel washing, and then a mix of X-22/X-35 to finish it off... I'm calling this one done.
I kind of enjoy these trainers, and have more in the eventual pipeline (none begun as of yet), including T-2, T-34, T-45, T-50, to name a few. Interesting note about this scheme, it seems that some squadrons at the same AFB would sometimes share planes, thus the "banner" at the top of the vertical stab is different from one side to the other. Pretty neat! Also, I see a lot of these getting Matte coats when completed, but looking at photos of many of the well maintained units, they are very glossy... so fyi.
7 additional images. Click to enlarge.