Mirage Hobby 1/48 PZL P.42 Build Part 3

Welcome to Part 3 of our build series of Mirage Hobby’s 1/48 PZL P.42. In this article I’ll be getting everything prepared for decals, panel line wash, adding details and the final reveal.

 

Step 28 has the belly wing root photo-etch attached along with landing gear and a few other smaller parts which are best added after the finished painting has been sealed up.

It is a good idea, however, to make sure you have everything cleaned up and ready to go. The landing skid in my kit needed quite a bit of sanding and is very fragile, as is the pitot tube, and would be easily snapped off with a wrong word.

If you take a look at Part 2 these PE parts were added and look great.

In Step 30 Mirage Hobby has cleverly designed a way to add 14 delicate parts with a minimal amount of effort.

I found it easier to snip the fret away from the wide end so it would allow the ribs to rest tightly on the leading edge where the builder’s guide suggests.

This is fine on paper but you’ll find the best place to attach them depending on how your sanding efforts went.

The single rib on each side is better attached to the slat instead of following the instructions. I did make a few attempts but knew my way was less hassle and helped with forming the shape.

When the ribs are placed correctly they fit well into the slots on the underside of the slats. Overall the look is really impressive.

Depending on your skill level you’ll want to set aside a good few hours to complete these details. Forming the curves in the slats took some time because of the different lengths and shapes of the ribs. Then you’ll need a CA glue with a high shear strength to fine tune the ribs to fit perfectly in the slots. Once again, many thanks to Mercury Adhesives for the advice on cleaning the brass and sending over the accelerator. A fantastic product to work with and be sure to have a fine cement applicator and needle tweezers.

Step 31 is straightforward, yet I’d remind you how soft the plastic is, so go slow with your drill. A little tip is to put some extra-thin cement on plastic burrs to smooth things out. With a bit of effort, you can bring out more detail.

In Step 32 you are supposed to assemble the engine cowling, but this was test fitted in Part 2 and will become part of the last things to be added.

Step 33 joins the wind guide to the cowl. Just remember to paint the underside the same as the inside of your cowl.

I made the mistake of adding the spent cartridge holder (I think that’s what this is.) during the build. This made it a little difficult to spray underneath and another reason to add all the minor details after everything else is completed. The channel from the machine gun needed some sanding and sculpting to bring out the detail.

After a dull coat, the colours will be more apparent, but a coat of new rust was liberally covered with Tamiya X-19 Smoke. As a builder’s tip, I used rubber and the ends of old pipettes to sheath the jaws of my alligator clips to protect the finish of other areas.

Far too much handling of the kit needs to be done yet, so attaching this would not be wise.

I’m not one for painting things on the frets, but sometimes it makes sense. In this case, these grab handles were sanded to give the paint something to bite onto. I would suggest to Mirage Hobby that the Art-Deco font is changed to one which is easier to make out.

After sanding and a feather coat of primer has cured there are some panel lines which need to be scribed. I have plenty of tools for this but wanted to try these Tamiya Saw II scribers. A definite must for the modeller. Nice sharp 0.1 grooves that look terrific when you brush some cement on the new line. I always have a soft brush to clear away dust and debris.

As Paul Tosney rightly points out, there are very few photos of this aircraft so it was a flip of a coin to choose “Black Basing” or “Pre-shading”. The trouble is there are so many panels that too much shading will make it look like a quilt after post shading.

Naturally, it’s your choice and mine was to have a more subtle look.

None the less, I did a few panels to see what the look would be like and wasn’t convinced to change the coin toss.

Vallejo “Sky Blue” was used for the belly and looks very close to the colour call-out in the paint guide. After a 3 to 1 mix with white and 1 part thinner, the post shading will look more interesting for the eye. That said, there isn’t really any need considering the belly wouldn’t have seen that much sun.

Tamiya tape is excellent for the edges and I learned many years ago to always mask-off everything to prevent over-spray.

As mentioned previously I opted to use Tru-Color Paint for the main finish. Their pigment mix out of the bottle is not only ideal for the primary look, it’s also easy to mix with a 4 to 1 ratio for the “Post-shading”.

A Neo for Iwata was set at 22 psi and reduced with 1 part of their thinner. These Tru-Color Paints have a satin finish but will darken and blend once given a dull coat.

This is why the panels are slightly over-brightened otherwise the look would have been lost.

The canopy parts are taped on the inside then temporarily fixed with Blu-Tac. Mist coating works well to preserve the black highlights.

This brings us to the end of Part 3 of the build. Let me reiterate that decent ventilation is advised when painting and taking your time with the photo-etch is strongly recommended. I hope these tips have helped and thanks again for following along.

H.G.

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