Comparison build: 1/48 Monogram He-111 H, and ICM 1/48 He-111 H3, Stab/Stg.3 North Africa 1942/’43

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  • David A. Thomas said 5 months, 1 week ago:

    Paul, I’ve lived in temperate climes (Michigan, Indiana), the sweltering and humid Middle South (Missouri, Kentucky), Andean Ecuador (2600 meters up–now that’s living!), coastal Ecuador with its alternating desert heat and torrential rains (although we still love it), Southern California with its sun-and-to-spare (about 20 minutes from Disneyland, in fact), and now Seattle. I’d take any one of ’em over Seattle weather. You have to live here, year after year, to know what it means. Last winter, between October and April there were four (4), days with sun. This year wasn’t much better. It’s not the amount of rain that’s the issue, it’s the constancy of the clouds and drizzle that drives you up the wall. I mean, you have to pop Vitamin D capsules like Sweet Tarts just to maintain your sanity.

    The Lord has me here, but I won’t pretend like it hasn’t been a sacrifice….ugh.

  • Louis Gardner said 5 months, 1 week ago:

    Wow David, that must be horrible. I have also lived in numerous places, and spent some time in Germany when I was in the Army. I can feel your pain, as it does get rather bothersome when the sun doesn’t shine for more than a week or so. Everything just looks so drab and dreary otherwise………………. Hang in there my friend. The “Son” is still shining on you. πŸ™‚ You are a good man.

    Today we have more rain……………….

    So here’s a little update.

    I was pondering how the radio looked…………. and I didn’t like it. My gut feelings were that something was wrong. It just didn’t sit right with me. So I started digging…………..and found this.
    A photo of a FuG 10 Luftwaffe radio set, the same type that was used by the He-111 crews to talk in between aircraft.

    First off I noticed this one is in a color very similar to “Panzer Gray” or even RLM 66. It was not painted black as I had done.

    So you know what I did next…………… Yes I started masking in preparation for a re spray……….

    Since I had the color loaded in the air brush, I sprayed a few more parts as needed…………….

    First up was the upper center section of the fuselage, where the “B” stand gunner would be……….

    I had the whole thing painted in RLM 02, and noticed the forward section actually covers the upper part of the bomb bay. So now it is in the proper color there too.

    Here’s how the upper fuselage part look when viewed from underneath now. You can see how the bomb bay is in dark gray…………….

    Next I sprayed the bomb bay “outer” side walls. These will get installed soon…………

    After the paint dried, I removed the masking and revealed a better looking Fug 10 radio……………

    I discovered during the test fit trials last night, that the locating pins for the fuselage were too tight. In fact they didn’t allow the fuselage sides to butt together as they should…….. So out came the miniature dill bits………..

    I found out that a #64 drill bit was the perfect size…………. Here you can see the red tipped tooth pick pointing at one of the “offending” locating holes……….. and the number 64 in place after the hole was enlarged.

    Here’s another view of one of the offenders ……………… I am pointing at one of the male locating pins with my trusty tooth pick.

    I ended up drilling out all of the female locating pins to a number 64. Now the fuselage parts fit very well when dry fitted.

    Lastly, I painted the knobs and dials to look more like the real thing………… I used Gloss Black, Gloss US Navy Sea Blue, and color I mixed to replicate German Armor Brown for the dials and knobs.

    Now I am happy, and will eat some roast that the misses just fixed……………… It’s dinner time.

    Hopefully tonight I will get the fuselage halves glued together, so please stay tuned…………

    and as usual,
    “comments are encouraged.”

  • Tom Bebout said 5 months ago:

    Now that turned out really nice Louis. Even if we possibly wont be able to see it when the model is finished, you’ll know it’s there.

  • Michel Verschuere said 5 months ago:

    Indeed Louis, never underestimate the value of a good working radioset:

    (the operator is however the most essential part) πŸ™‚

  • Louis Gardner said 5 months ago:

    Hello Tom !!!!!!! I test fit the upper fuselage decking, where the “B” stand gunner’s location is. Luckily, the radio set is right there by the opening so it is very visible. Now I am even more pleased that I decided to re paint the FuG 10 set………….. πŸ™‚

    Michel,
    That was hilarious !!! Yes it’s agreed, the operator is a vital link…………….. This was going somewhere, what was I “sinking” about ?????

  • Louis Gardner said 5 months ago:

    After hearing the sad news about a fellow Imodeler (and friend) passing away, I am dedicating this post to him.

    Bernie you will be missed………………….. I always liked your humorous and witty replies.

    A little over 6 days ago he posted a reply on how the bomb racks for the Heinkel looked like an odd lantern………. and they do in a strange way if you look at them.

    This strikes close to home. Each day is a gift, so try to live it like it is, and try to do something good and worthwhile if you can.

    Having said this for my departed friend, lets get on to the model…………………

    Last night, while it was raining here again……………… I got a lot accomplished on the ICM He-111build.

    I started out by doing a lot of test fitting of the parts before committing to glue. Since the Bomb Bay is the center of the airframe, I started there and worked my way outwards.

    **************** UPDATE ************* DO NOT GLUE THE BOMB BAY CELLS IN JUST YET *********** WAIT UNTIL LATER WHEN YOU GLUE THE LOWER WING HALVES IN POSITION ********* DRY FIT ONLY AT THIS STAGE ************ LEAVE THE TOP OF THE FUSELAGE COVER OFF, THIS WILL HELP WITH ALIGNMENT AS YOU WILL HAVE BETTER ACCESS TO THE BOMB BAY CELL WITH THE FUSELAGE OPEN. ********************
    Once I was certain the Bomb Bay was going to fit as intended, I installed the interior wall portions of the Bomb Bay that I sprayed dark gray the night before. These parts fit perfectly, and have alignment tabs on the main wing spars to help keep things squared away. Here I am pointing at one of the tabs with my trusty tooth pick…………

    In this photo, you can see how the added side walls give the interior of the Bomb Bay a finished look……………(but the area is pretty dark) trust me it looks good………. πŸ™‚

    I removed the closed Bomb Bay option part from the parts tree for possible use on a Revell He-111 future build………
    This part is going in the spares bin for sure. It has some nice details scribed into it.

    I also assembled the rudder. Again, the fit was excellent.

    Now I feel like I have made some progress……….. The very first plastic parts tree is bare……… There are no more “A” parts left to install.

    Now I started gluing the interior to the fuselage halves……….

    and you can see how the details are starting to really pop……….. Here’s a close up of the spare MG 15 snail drums and “B” stand gunners station.

    This photo shows the other side and the FuG 10 radio set. Here you can also see the Bomb Bay cells just ahead, painted in dark gray.

    This photo below shows how the vertical Bomb Bay cells look from the forward set of fuselage side windows. Now I understand why these windows were often covered.

    Those of you with sharp eyes have probably wondered why the side window mounted MG 15’s were not added. The reason why I chose to wait until now was simple. You can add them before the fuselage top cover in installed. I chose to make sure they would not interfere with any other parts.

    They almost snap in place, but I used a little “Future” to hold them in place. Here you can see them installed.

    Moving forward, here’s how the cockpit looks now the fuselage has been assembled. There are still a few more parts to be added, such as the instrument panel, which gets glued to the clear canopy.

    I decide that I would test fit the upper fuselage decking, to see what would be visible after this part was installed. It has not been glued in position yet……………

    Here you go Tom B. This is how much of the FuG 10 radio is visible.

    The other side has more details that you can see…………….such as the spare ammunition drums and Compressed Air bottle…………

    and the spent shell casing and link funnel, and some more spare ammunition snail drum magazines for the MG 15’s.

    I ran into a small snag while gluing the fuselage halves together. The problem was with the gondola that is just behind the Bomb Bay. This area didn’t want to go together. So I resorted to gluing it in stages. It still has not been completed…………. I don’t know if this was an error on my part or not, but it probably was. This kit has been perfect so far with the fit.

    Now this is how the ICM kit looks. We are getting closer to being at the same assembly stage as the older Monogram kit. The extra time was needed to complete the very detailed interior.

    I decided to glue the rudder in the neutral / centered position. Now we are on page 10 / 11 in the assembly instructions. I have bounced around just a little, but we are more or less at step number 47, where the fuselage top cover gets it’s details added and installed. The rudder stop limits (part # C-55)also need to be added, which are normally installed a few steps earlier, at steps 43 and 44.

    Now that I can see how much is visible once everything is completed, I have to give praise to the engineers at ICM. The fit has been excellent (other than the lower gondola) and the added details are worthwhile, especially if you want to use this kit as a basis for a Luftwaffe maintenance diorama.

    Don’t get me wrong. The older Monogram kit is still a good one, it just lacks the inner details that are present in the ICM kit, and the fit isn’t as good as this kit has demonstrated so far. Let’s hope the wings and engine nacelles fit good as the center fuselage seam has been.

    Tomorrow they are forecasting rain again…………… πŸ™‚ So maybe I can get some more work done here at the Iron Werks, (if only David LS will return the Elves after they get done with his Tiger tank………………….). πŸ™‚ Just teasing you David. Keep them as long as you like.

    As usual, comments are encouraged.

  • david leigh-smith said 5 months ago:

    Hi Louis. Enjoying every moment of this thread so I’m hoping for more rain.

    It’s always a great feeling to reach that ‘first empty sprue’ part of a build. That, and getting the fuselage halves together were my favourite moments building as a kid.

    This is such a clean aircraft, Louis, really crisp and precise work. Did you figure out what happened with the gondola- seems out of character in terms of the overall build quality.

    Fantastic work, Louis.

  • Louis Gardner said 5 months ago:

    Hey there David !!!

    Yes it was another rain filled day………………… πŸ™‚

    However, it looks like the weather was rather nice today on your side of the “pond”. The misses and I watched TV early this morning. For fear of losing my “Man Card”, I will not tell you what we were watching, but let’s say it was televised around the World, and you Britt’s really know how to put on a good show……………. Rolls Royce’s, horse drawn carriages, pomp and circumstance, a glorious Church, the works. Being an old Cavalry trooper myself, you know what my favorites were……….. Those “horse soldiers” really looked sharp !!!!!!!!!

    All I’m saying is that sometimes a man’s gotta do what he has to do. Happy wife, happy life. She has gone to many car shows with me, air shows and model airplane events. So this is the least I can do for her. She’s a keeper.

    Afterwards, we went out for a nice lunch and when we got back home, I got busy on the ICM He-111.

    I made a lot of progress, (but I made a few mistakes too), and one was nearly disastrous………….

    Please follow along and I’ll explain.

    I wanted to get the wings installed. After some studying of the plans, I veered away from the instructions………….. again. I hope it doesn’t bite me later down the road.

    I started out by removing the wing panels from the plastic trees. I had them laid out on the table when a disaster struck. Somehow I knocked over the bottle of liquid glue, and the top wasn’t secured !!!!!!! It spilled all over the wings………. I didn’t panic, and I simply picked the wings up carefully and placed them in various other places while the glue dried. Luckily I only had a few small smears, and I think I dodged a big bullet here.

    If you look close, you can see where the glue left it’s mark. The areas that are now shiny are where the glue dried.

    Each wing panel was affected……………

    Some more than others.

    While waiting for the spilled glue to dry, I started cleaning up the mess on the work bench, then worked on the control surfaces and elevator assemblies, where I had another (but smaller “event” happen). More on that later……………. I was almost ready to call it quits but decided against this.

    Once things were back to normal, I started installing the wings with the lower sections first. The main spars make a very sturdy joint. They also hold the wings in perfect alignment. This is a big advantage to the ICM kit over the Monogram one.

    Now if you are reading this and using it as a build guide, let me add something here…………. In hindsight, I should have permanently installed the Bomb Bay assembly after the lower wings were glued in place. It could have been held in place by a friction fit, and that is how it would be done if I was to build another one of these kits………. (which is very likely). πŸ™‚

    Here’s why: The Bomb Bay cells were not exactly squared in the fuselage. The fit is that precise. The slight amount of error in installment caused a rather large gap once the lower wings were glued on.

    I’m pointing at these gaps with two wooden tooth picks. Had I “twisted” the Bomb Bay cells slightly “clockwise” at the rear, the gaps would have disappeared……………… Live and learn.

    So please do yourself a BIG favor and DON’T glue the Bomb Bays in place until the lower wings have been added. By doing it this way, you can ensure a tight fit without gaps.

    1. Insert the Bomb Bay cells, but don’t glue.
    2. Add the lower wings. shift the Bomb Bay to eliminate any gaps while fitting the wing panels in place.
    3. Once the gaps have been eliminated, glue the Bomb Bay cells in position.

    Next I added the upper wing panels. The fit was really nice here. I don’t think any filler will be needed along the wing fillet. I will probably have to use a little gap filling super glue in a few small spots, but if the lower wings and bomb bay were installed properly, this would probably have been a filler free model with careful assembly.

    Here you can see the fit in this close up photo.

    By now the wings were installed, so I added the stabilizer assemblies.

    Just prior to this, I had another small problem to handle during the building phase of the elevator assembly. Either I messed up and got the parts arranged out of order, or the instructions are incorrect with the part number callouts on the stabilizer halves.

    I glued the first assembly together and it fit fantastic !!! Now when it was time to glue the other side together, that’s when I noticed that I had “male” locating pins on BOTH sides of the stabilizers. So I ended up slicing the pins off, and sanding the halves flat. Once this was done, the second stabilizer went together without a hitch. I compared both sides, and they’re correct, a mirror image of each other. The top and bottom sides are identical.

    I have the elevators installed on the stabilizers with the control rods for the trim tabs facing upwards on both sides.

    It’s starting to look like a He-111 now !!!!! The ailerons have been built, but not installed yet………….

    Here’s how it looks with the ailerons test fitted in place. The fit is very good, and these are held in place by friction alone.

    Here’s another view. You will also see the top of the fuselage has been temporarily placed into position too.

    Now was the moment I was waiting for………….. I placed the Monogram model next to the ICM kit…………. They are both close to being in the same construction stage as each other. Here you can see both kits side by side.

    ICM is on the left, Monogram on the right.

    Today’s events removed two more complete plastic sprues………… The box is starting to look a little barren.

    To answer your question David, I’d venture to say the plastic was a little “misshaped” at the gondola. Once I removed the sprue attachment point, the part was a little sprung. It also may have been caused somewhat by my inaccurate placement of the Bomb Bay cells.

    I’ll chalk it up to poor construction habits on my part.

    Hopefully the areas that had glue spilled on them will look OK once a little primer is sprayed on. I may try sanding them down a little first using a very fine 2000 grit wet / dry paper. Time will tell…………..

    As usual, comments are encouraged. I’ll go back and edit the section on installing the Bomb Bay cells now………………. just in case someone is using this as a build guide.

    Good night !!!!!!!!!!

  • Paul Barber said 5 months ago:

    Don’t panic about the ‘Man Card’ Louis, I watched it too (and I have to say if I’d have still been in Blighty I’d have avoided it like the plague!). My thinking was clearly that my lovely wife wanted to discuss dresses and princesses and cellists and such-like, and that these are the necessary compromises for being tolerated myself when the next kit gets unpacked and spread all over the dining table!

    Glad to hear the weather is bad!! The Heinkels are going great guns – those interiors are incredibly clean, but there is a clear difference between the kits. Thanks for letting us learn with you again! It is always a great experience.

  • david leigh-smith said 5 months ago:

    Well, Louis, as you know some of my provenance it won’t surprise you to know my own thoughts of the monarchy tend to sympathise with our French cousins, who in turn learned a thing or two from ‘your’ revolution just a few years earlier…

    …so the only TV being watched here was a re-run of ‘Aces High’

    Great film and far superior entertainment.

    The Heinkels look just stunning and the ‘money shot’ of them together was worth the wait. There is a qualitative difference in the two and right off the bat my money is going to ICM.

    The ‘gluegate’ issue was handled well, I have to say the photos of your cement splattered wings took me back to my childhood where this was the norm. Usually with giant scale fingerprints to accompany them.

    This is a great thread that I’ll undoubtedly use instead of instructions when I get around to buying one of the ICM kits (as I will). Enjoyable as ever, Louis. Keep ’em coming.

    1 additional image. Click to enlarge.

  • Pedro L. Rocha said 5 months ago:

    Quote : β€œThe β€˜gluegate’ issue was handled well, I have to say the photos of your cement splattered wings took me back to my childhood where this was the norm. Usually with giant scale fingerprints to accompany them.” Ahahah So true, your paragraph just about gets exactly what I was thinking just now when looking at the photos Louis posted…
    Anyway, Louis as usual you are doing a superlative job in both building and describing in detail both kits. ICM seems to be a superior kit, but I still have a weak spot for Monogram. That and 2 boxes on the stash πŸ™‚ I did however purchased that other new medium German bomber you also tackled in another post, ICM Ju 88 A-5. Now it’s on my to-do list 2019.

  • Tom Bebout said 5 months ago:

    Gluegate aside, the HE-111’s are progressing well. Glad to see all the radio work was worth the effort. Good progress buddy.

  • david leigh-smith said 5 months ago:

    The ‘gluegate’ phrase seems to be sticking…

  • Louis Gardner said 5 months ago:

    Thanks fellows for the words of encouragement.

    Gluegate is now following any “gate” event in that the whole thing is undergoing a cover up process.

    Here’s how it looks after a light sanding where the glue was spilled.

    Other than the staining of the plastic, it’s not too noticeable. Once it’s ” covered up” under some paint, it should look presentable.

    I have not had very much time at the work bench lately even though it’s been raining.

    I did get a little more work done on the engine nacelles on the Monogram kit, but nothing else is photo worthy just yet.

    Today is another busy day so I hope that I can get some more work done on the He-111’s.

    But I’m not counting on this.

    As usual comments are encouraged.

  • Pedro L. Rocha said 5 months ago:

    One quick question: I see that you already installed the MGs on the side windows. Are you masking the barrels during the later painting or will you just repaint them in the end? Just asking because this is the part that I hate most during bomber construction

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