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Jim Sullivan
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1/48th Hasegawa F-14A Tomcat

May 24, 2022 · in Aviation · · 22 · 1.2K

This model has a bit of a story to it. It's a 1/48th F-14A that was started over ten years ago by my son who modeled with me for many years starting at an early age. Fast forward to about ten years ago. He had come back home after serving three years in the Army and picked back up on his modeling hobby. Shortly thereafter he decided to marry his love interest and he and she moved into a home of their own. That ended his modeling career, but he left behind a Tomcat that he had started on. I've attached a photo of it. It sat in a box in our model room on the top of his modeling desk which I had left undisturbed. I often looked at it and wondered how it would have looked if he'd finished it.

Recently I checked in with him asking if he'd be OK with me finishing it for him and he said he'd like that, so I went ahead and dug into it. He had opted for some heavy weathering, and I attempted to follow along those lines. He wanted it to be in the markings of VF-103 and I followed that also. I decided to model it during the transition period where that squadron switched from full colors to a toned-down set of markings. That's the story on how this model came to be. I think it would qualify as a rescue from the shelf of doom. Only PE seat belts and aftermarket decals were used with the kit parts. Part of the gray paint was Model Master and part was Mr. Color. The grays were blended to achieve the final colors. The model, when completed, received a clear coat of semi-gloss to blend things in and to seal the decals. It was a bit of a challenge to dive into a started model that was pretty well underway and take it to completion, but I'm surely gad I did that.

Any and all comments welcome.

Reader reactions:
7  Awesome

9 additional images. Click to enlarge.

22 responses

  1. A wonderful result, Jim! A fantastic story behind it, too!

  2. Nice rescue. Maybe he'll rediscover the hobby with you doing this.

  3. Great Story Jim, and also great work on bringing that baby back to life. Let's say she was sitting in storage and recalled to active duty, But first had to go through overhaul. Nice, real nice.

  4. Nice save, Jim. Diamond in the rough. Hope your work re-inspires your sons modeling interest.

  5. Great model and even better story. Thanks for posting this.

  6. Great looking results! Remember when the Jolly Rogers were VF-84 and VF-103 were the Sluggers. After being married with children for a time is when I got back to modeling.

    • Thanks Robert and indeed, I do remember VF-84 and VF-103. I had the privilege of photographing planes from both squadrons on several occasions during visits to NAS Oceana.

  7. Good to see this one finished, Jim @bentwing
    Excellent result and it definitely might decide your son to get back into this hobby.

  8. Great work. That’s not an easy kit to start with.

    • Thanks John. I can't comment too much on the building as I 'inherited' the kit with most all the basic construction done. I have never built that kit from start to finish although I do have one still in plastic wrap in my stash. Perhaps one of these days I'll give her a go.

  9. That is so nice; both the model and the story behind it! ?

  10. Nice SOD save! Looks good!

  11. The Hase Tomcat has broken the spirit of this modeler more than once. Good build!

    • Thanks Dan and sorry to hear of the challenges while building that kit. Due to the way I got involved with finishing that semi-built Tomcat, I only did some minor construction work on it and that was mostly in the cockpit. My challenge was matching the gray colors my son had used. Since he had 'custom mixed' the grays I just had to use the mark-20 eyeball to try to come close to what he had come up with.

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