Friday, August 30, 2013

AMT Imperial Walker Wreck WIP - Part IV

Last night I made up my mind as to what to do about opening up some panels on the AT-AT. I compromised a bit. My fear had been that if I open too many panels, the interior will be visible, or rather the lack of a suitable interior would be visible. So, instead of opening all of them, I only modified two small ones. Specifically, the forward and aft escape hatches on the port side - which is the side that will be least visible.

This was a messy and tricky process. The side wall armor is not only too strong for blasters, but was also sufficient enough to repel a fresh #11 blade. Thus, it was back to the Dremel to fling more plastic! The drill bit made quick work of the escape hatch, but with a sleeping baby in the room next door, the noise was bound to wake her. So, I opted to chip (silently) away at the remaining plastic with my blade until it was completely open...

Then I took a thick piece of aluminum and marked out (eyeballed really) the dimensions of the hatches, then cut them out. They were attached, partially open, with super glue...

Whether or not they are completely accurate is debatable, and perhaps I don't care that much. But they provided a good way to add some character to a model that is suppose to look wrecked and abandoned. Leaving all the hatches buttoned up just wouldn't have made sense in the big picture.
Speaking of big picture, I've altered the composition a bit. I've moved the head closer to the body, though I'm not sure why, it just looks better. I added some bits that will be buried in the snow and I changed the position of the laser gun turret...

The reason for this was because I had so much debris already littering the landscape that the turret kind of got lost in the mess. Having the turret offset on the tower gives it the impression of destruction without having to lose much of its identity...

Now its time to break out the salt and liquid mask! I'll be flinging paint around instead of plastic this weekend. Wish me luck!
Thanks for reading!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

AMT Imperial Walker Wreck WIP - Part III

The Imperial Walker is progressing slowly, held up by my indecision to open up a few hatches but also in my attempt to finish up the USCG Dallas for my father-in-law. With the Coast Guard Cutter completed, I can get back to the Walker full time. Never the less, I still haven't decided my best course of action as far as opening hatches is concerned. But this did not deter me from adding some detail to the interior of the, now broken, flexible neck...

What you see are remnants of a walkway and some broken wires and cables. I covered the openings using plastic card and masking tape to create a Star Wars-esque blast door - one of which is fully closed in the head, while the other is half open in the body.
Its not perfect or amazing by any sense of the imagination but I just need to put something there because that is what people will expect. You can't just have a hole where detail should exist.
If I can make up my mind on how to approach the rest of the hatches, that will dictate my night tonight. Either I will begin painting, or I will modify the body some more. You'll find out soon enough!
Thanks for reading!

JAG Collective 1/700 USCGC Dallas: Redux - Finished

This didn't turn out to be quite the WIP it could have been which I blame mostly on my oversight and perhaps some lazy in taking step-by-step photographs of the progression. So, what you're left with is basically taking my word for it. Which is fine, really, because I have integrity and its easily explained. After all, a few words are worth a thousand pictures, am I right?

When we last left off, I had started the ocean base, which was accomplished easily with some artist oils. I then had to build up some wakes and waves around the boat. This is where my stock in Milliputty is very useful. A little hand crafted waves here and there helped recreate the motion of the ocean...

The waves were then painted to match the rest of the ocean surface and I heaped a bunch of acrylic gel medium on top of that to create texture and give it a nice glossy shine...

The gel medium dries completely clear though the effect of the white looks kind of nice. Once that was dry, I brushed some white on the raised surfaces to make it appear foamy and added a layer of Future floor polish to finish it off. Here she is complete!

I'm pretty happy with it. It was a good experiment in honing my water skills before returning to the PT Boat. I can say it looks a lot better than it did when I first undertook this project to redo the water, and I think the father-in-law should be pleased with it as well.

This project has brought a glaring issue to my attention though, and that is that I need to invest in a better set up for pictures. These were simply the best ones I could take with the resources I have on hand. The others were too dark or blurry. I'll have to figure something out.
Until next time!
Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Sprue Cutters Union #6: Won't Touch It!

When I was young, there were lots of thing I did not like to eat. I was a picky eater, and I am sure a lot of you were as well. Greens like spinach and zucchini were avoided at all costs, and I also had an aversion to cheese and bread crusts. I've gotten over most of the food-phobias I had as a youth, like tomatoes and blue cheese, and have expanded my dietary horizons to include such items. However, there are some things I still haven't integrated into my daily consumption (spinach and zucchini, namely). Old distastes die hard, as they say...or something like that.

What does this have to do with modeling? Well, this week's Sprue Cutters Union assignment asked us what models would likely never reach our workbench. Much like I can guarantee you that neither zucchini or spinach will ever reach my dinner plate, I can tell you there are certain subjects that will never enter my house in kit form for my own personal benefit (I'll clarify this statement in a bit)...

The phrase never say never was first recorded in a book by Charles Dickens, you know, the same author who has wrought untold misery upon many school children after being forced to read such literary masterpieces as "Great Expectations" [shudders], which is a book that will never find its way into my personal library. In high school I took nothing away from Mr. Dickens' writings, and I'm certainly not going to start now. So, when I say never, that is unequivocally what I mean.
Now we are clear. Lets move on.

The Good

If you're going to call me on a technicality, it will be with civilian automobiles. As a matter of fact, I've recently done one and had a blast doing it. But, there is a reason I call my blog "The Combat Workshop" and that is because I focus mainly on combat related vehicles, equipment and scenes. Red Ferraris, and bright orange Chevy convertibles don't fit well into that criteria. But you did a Chevy pickup truck you say. Yes, that is true, which is why its under the "Good" category. But, I'll explain further.
As cool as fancy sports cars can be, I don't want to build one in scale. I could blame this on any number of things, like my unwillingness to pull off a mirror gloss candy apple red finish, but in all seriousness, I can narrow it down to one factor - character. To me, a show floor automobile model lacks character. Don't get me wrong, I've seen some impressive looking finishes, and incredible engine detail, but the pristine look doesn't appeal to me. I need a story; one that is told in rust and chipped paint, not one that sits in a garage until the local car show rolls into town. That is why you will never see an automobile on my workbench unless its falling apart.
Now, I said I would explain what I meant by "my own benefit". I have a son who likes cars. I hope to one day pass on my passion for this hobby, and if it means building a beautiful glossy '69 Corvette, so be it. But I can maintain with certainty that no such vehicle will be sitting in my stash ear marked for me.
No way.
No how.

The Bad

This shouldn't come much as a surprise considering what I already stated about civilian automobiles. I find nothing attractive about civilian airline subjects at all. I have no personal attachment to them, and I have no artistic vision for them either. The only thing that would remotely interest me would be to model one crashed...but that seems like poor taste, even for me. So, really, its best if I just leave them alone.
No way.
No how.

The Ugly

Yes, I love building military subjects, but I do draw the line some where. Like your first date, I feel there needs to be some level of attraction between you and your subject before you take it to the next step. I'm sorry, but I'm not going to spend time and money building an airplane that would only appear good looking to me after huffing too much enamel paint. Call me shallow. It is what it is.
The Fiat G.50 is an ugly aircraft, no two ways about it. Are there uglier? Yes there are. But when the topic arises, Italian World War II propeller driven aircraft usually come to mind first. In all fairness, the Macchi 202 is like the Fiat's hot friend, but in this case, I ain't taking one for the team.
Don't think I'm picking on the Fiat alone here. There should be a contest of ugliest planes, and there would be plenty of entries - Fairey Swordfish, PZL. PII, Ju-88, Polikarpov I-16 - I could go on for some time. Most pre-war aircraft would fit the bill.
In short, if I look at a kit and recoil in disgust, its not likely going to have the pleasure of a date with me at my workbench.
No way.
No how.
Albeit, the homely Fiat would have a better chance with me than a car or airliner.

To sum it up, I'd like to think that I have a pretty diverse set of interests. Some may say I'll try anything once but that isn't true of me. This hobby can be expensive, so spending my money wisely is always the priority. When it comes down to it, I'm just not going to drop coin on a kit that I don't find interesting, or compelling to build.
You can't make me!

Thanks for reading!  Feel free to comment!


Part of being in the Union means you must include links to fellow contributors' posts within your own response. If you liked this post, then perhaps you'll enjoy what some other modelers have to say about this topic!

Havoc Models
Lt. Smash's Models
Eternal Wargamer
Yet Another Plastic Modeller
Scale Model Workbench
Doogs' Models
Build the World With Me
Kermit's Bench
Migrant's Wanderings


Want to join the Sprue Cutters Union? Its simple. If you model and have a blog that is all you need to start. Just write a post in response to the weekly topic, copy the link in the comments section for that week's assignment and you're in! Check out more detail about joining the Sprue Cutters Union.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

AMT Imperial Walker Wreck WIP - Part II

The stops.
I've pulled them out.
Last night's workbench session consisted of me basically flinging plastic all over the place. The Dremel and little hand saw were quite active, chopping and cutting this old model, piece by piece, to fit my vision. I had mentioned on Facebook that I was a bit wary of going overboard and potentially ruining this vignette but after some much needed encouragement, I decided to ruck up and let fly.

I removed the neck and head in an attempt to make it look like either an explosion had separated it from the body, or perhaps corrosion had managed to rent it apart. A laser blaster was removed from the head and the vision block was hollowed out. Some of the legs were also bisected to give them the appearance of peaking through whatever surface they will eventually be buried in - most likely snow...

You can also see a Rebel laser turret, which is the twin of the turret used in Some Like it Hoth. The turret's tower was hollowed out and the turret removed and placed along side it on the ground to appear as though it was blown off. The turret hatch is just a spare circular piece I found in the spares box...

Though I had approached the evening's session with much trepidation, I'm very pleased with how its turning out. The only thing I'm struggling with now is whether or not to open some of the hatches and panels on the AT-AT to give it a more damaged feel. The problem being, there is no interior and scratch building one at this point, with the model closed up, would be near impossible. Just one more thing to work out I guess.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Sprue Cutters Union #6: Can't Make Me!

The Union pretty much established last week that this hobby is all about fun and expression and doing what you want to do. I like to think that I'm pretty open minded when it comes to modeling and selecting my projects and kits to work on. I've just about covered most of the bases, but even I draw the line some where. I don't care who you are, there are some subjects out there that you'd rather run through a room full of Legos in bare feet than actually devote your time and resources to building...

- What will never make its way on to your workbench? -

Though, I'm sure some one will say, nothing, I love modeling everything! There is always one in every crowd who disgusts everyone else with their obnoxious daily optimism and can produce as lovely a finish on a modern tank as they can on any Wingnut Wings Sopwith Camel. Well, it ain't me I can assure you of that. If the assignment last week detailed what I will do, then you can be certain this week I'll let you in on what I won't do. No way. No how.

Remember, all it takes is a passion for this hobby and a blog to go along with it! All you have to do is write a post in response to this topic by Sunday and you can be a member of the Sprue Cutters Union. Take a look at the Sprue Cutters Union page for more detail. Once you've written your post, either email me the link or drop the link in the comment section below.
The goal is to send new readers to our sites, so don't forget to include the links to other modelers' responses when you get an opportunity.
Spread the word.
Join the Union!

AMT Imperial Walker Wreck WIP - Part I

With Jersey Fest Model Kit and Statue Fair being only three weeks away, I felt compelled to have something finished to take with me to enter. I don't normally participate in contests, for a variety of reasons that I won't go into here, but oddly enough I thought it would be a good idea to have an entry this time. So, I'm going with my gut, as they say.
Also, it gives me the perfect excuse to finish up this AT-AT that has been sitting on my shelf, half way between finished model and a decent idea for a diorama. I had received the AMT AT-AT Walker kit a long time ago as a present for one of those special occasions that usually comes once a year and has to do either with my age, or perhaps the birth of Christ...I can't remember which one at the moment.

Either way, I had the brilliant idea to model it, not as a Star Wars vehicle we are all familiar with, but as a World War II what-if! Original, right?? So, first I painted it in a tri-color German camo scheme but finally opted for the all-over Russian armor green. I put a red star or two on it, and plastered one of those inspirational slogans on the side of it that only a Russian could understand. Didn't matter, looked cool.

However, for this project it is back to the roots. I removed the decals and will give it a repaint to represent something from Empire Strikes Back. I also want to model it wrecked. So, I chopped the legs off...

This I did for several reasons. I didn't want to model the Walker in a scene from the actual movie which meant on its side or tipped forward was out of the question. Secondly, it gives it a nice wrecked appearance. It brings the AT-AT down to size, and it will look like a dead animal once I've submerged it into the snow.

I must admit though, I'm not sure how much damage I want to represent. I'm torn between leaving it the way it is now, with minimal surface damage, or really tearing it up and blowing out panels. There is a fine balance between creativity and fear of ruining everything...
You'll soon find out what I do. As soon as I figure it out...
Thanks for reading!

State of the Union: Modeling Philosophies

This past week, the Union members declared what they believe in, the philosophies that govern their participation in this hobby. In most weeks, answers tend to share similar ideas and I'm starting to see that modelers may be more alike than we think, despite what subject we most often build, or whether we use an airbrush or a paint brush. In reading all of this week's replies it seems, at least, that there is one truth that we hold to be most self-evident, and that is to have fun. But don't take my word for it! If you haven't read them, please take a moment to do so!

Kermit's Bench
Martin's Scale Models
Havoc Models
Yet Another Plastic Modeller
David Knight's Weblog
Mattblackgod's World
Eternal Wargamer
Scale Model Workbench
Doogs' Models
A Scale Canadian
The Combat Workshop

The Union is staying strong, holding a good core of faithful members! Lets keep it going and hopefully add some new blogs to the roll! Stay tuned for the next topic and get your pencils, er, keyboards ready!

For all members, to help grow our respective audiences, don't forget to add the links from your fellow contributors onto your post.
If you want to join the Union, all you need is a blog and a passion for the hobby! Spread the word! Join the Union!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

JAG Collective 1/700 USCGC Dallas: Redux - Part I

The PT Boat is finished and awaiting a proper base. I want to put it in water but I've never done a water feature that will cover that much area before (read: I'm apprehensive). So, I'm stalling a bit. My water skills aren't excellent but they're improving. Water can be hard to recreate convincingly, especially in larger scales, as the PT Boat is. I decided I needed to practice a bit to see what works best in small scale and apply it to 1/72.
So, I found the perfect project to work on in the mean time.

How about a little background information? Okay, sure. Many moons ago, not long after I started taking this hobby super seriously, I built a tiny model of the USCGC Dallas for my father-in-law as a gift. He was retiring from a long and successful career in the Coast Guard, and the Dallas was the first ship he'd sailed with.
After a lengthy search, I found a 1/700 resin kit boxed by JAG Collective of the USCGC Hamilton, which is the same class Cutter as the Dallas. Fortunately, the kit contains many different hull numbers to allow a modeler to create any of the Hamilton class vessels including the Dallas. I ordered the kit, and pretty soon I was hard at work building my first ship, as well as my first all resin kit.
Not only that but it comes with a poop-ton of little PE parts, a medium that, at the time, I was quite unfamiliar with. The final result was the best I could muster, considering my ineptitude, but I was pleased with it and as it would turn out, so was my father-in-law.

However, after a recent visit to his man cave I noticed that the model was no where to be seen. I located it, tucked away in a closet and immediately could see why it had been relegated to the house's equivalent of Davy Jones' locker...

I had used a small display case as the base, a good idea, but poorly executed. There were several holes in the base, allowing for screws or a mirror to be mounted, and these holes I did not fill. Instead, I glued a piece of matte board along the bottom to cover the holes and laid the plaster down on top of that which was molded to form the water. When the plaster dried, over time it warped the matte board and soon it started pulling away from the base, cracking the plaster. After a while, it looked how it does in the picture above. A careless oversight on my part is what lead to this model being rather un-displayable. I couldn't blame him. Its ugly.

So, I've taken it upon myself to fix it! I take pride in my work, you know.

I couldn't get all the plaster off the plastic display base, and I didn't want to simply go over the top of it because I had something else in mind to create the water. So I opted for a wooden base...

I started with a blend of oil paints to make a nice turquoise sea...

More blue added to the mix, then stippled into an area creates some shading, perhaps from a deeper portion of water...

You can see it a bit better here...

The opposite was done in the near corner by adding a lighter green to the mix, creating what hopefully appears to be shallower water...

The boat is in place...

The foundations of the wake are created using white oil paint...

Tonight I will be adding larger waves to the wake using milliput and following this example that Rich from Kermit's Bench shared with me the other day. It all seems simple enough and looks effective in the end. Hopefully I can pull it off.
Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sprue Cutters Union #5: My Philosophy

This week's Sprue Cutters Union challenge is to examine my modeling philosophy and share it with the rest of the group. Discussion about personal beliefs, even in regards to a hobby as simple as ours, can get pretty lengthy and deep. So as not to bore you, or receive a bunch of TL;DR comments, I'll try to keep it short and sweet.

First of all, let me make it perfectly clear that, like other philosophies I hold true, these beliefs are purely my own and I don't intend on swaying you one way or another. Each person clings to a set of ideas and rules about modeling, and rightfully so. Where I think some people go wrong is when they try to force their standards on other modelers. Remember, all modelers are different and are ingrained with their own set of talents, interests, desire, and level of motivation. What I, or any one else has to tell you, may not work for you. Its up to you to figure it out.

Several approaches to modeling philosophy that I have read from others mention the Keep it Simple, Stupid methodology. While I do like to keep things less complicated, I'd say my motto is more along the lines of Keep it Different. A lot of people model themselves into a niche that they are comfortable with, not leaving to try something else. Again, there is nothing wrong with this, your passion is your passion.
But you'll notice that I jump around from genre to genre, covering anything from Armor to Science Fiction subjects. The hobby world is vast and expansive, so I don't find it useful or educational to limit myself to one topic. I've even taken quite an interest in the Wargaming community.

There is much to be learned out there, and I intend to discover it!

One of the more hot topic issues in the modeling community is a completed model's accuracy. Truth be told, accuracy can't be argued against, especially when there are plentiful references. We've all seen the forum posts where an otherwise nicely built model is harshly criticized because, for instance, that variant didn't have a tail light for the era its representing...This is all obvious. There is no reason 100% accuracy should be ignored!

Please! Ain't nobody got time for that! Well, I don't any way. To those with the time, the patience, and the money to pursue the greatest extent of exactness possible, I applaud you. However, my main concern is reproducing realism through the finish, not necessarily through the construction of the model. Do I like to scratch build in certain areas, like cockpits? Yes, indeed! But do I find it necessary? No, I don't.
I would rather tell a story with the model through painting and weathering and composition than to worry about the correct number of rivets, or the precise RLM shade. A model is simply a representation of something. It isn't reality...

Furthermore, I don't have to be happy with someone else's creation, only my own. What they do with their model is up to them. I will always be glad to offer constructive criticism, and will take such feedback in stride. What I don't have time for are people who wish to create their vision for my model through me. Wayne Gretzky was a great hockey player. He could make any one on his team a better player. Would they ever reach his level of greatness? Of course not, but he didn't demand that they do either. This hobby is the same. There are extremely talented individuals out there who can do nothing less than improve the skills of those around them. I am certainly no expert, but if you come to me for help, I will gladly respond. When modelers require that others must meet their standards, that is when the hobby becomes less about artistic expression and more about an inflated sense of self importance. At that point, I will tell them to buy their own kit if they want it a particular way.

If you take anything away from this post that is running entirely too long, take this:

Success is "the peace of mind attained only through the self satisfaction in knowing you did the best you're capable of."

Wise words from John Wooden.
The hobby is for my enjoyment. It is my pass time. I don't let the ideology of someone else ruin my fun. Instead, I do what I can with what I've got, and I am content with it!

Thanks for reading!  Feel free to comment, or tell me I'm an idiot!


Part of being in the Union means you must include links to fellow contributors' posts within your own response. If you liked this post, then perhaps you'll enjoy what some other modelers have to say about this topic!

Kermit's Bench - Frogs just want to have fun!
Martin's Scale Models - Martin says Its not life or death!
Havoc Models - Michael likes to Keep it simple, stupid!
Yet Another Plastic Modeller - Jeroen won't be losing any sleep!
David Knight's Weblog - David says make each model better than your last!
Mattblackgod's World - Danny says anything goes!
Eternal Wargamer - Frank is a rebel!
Scale Model Workbench - Craig is all about whatever makes him happy!


Want to join the Sprue Cutters Union? Its simple. If you model and have a blog that is all you need to start. Just write a post in response to the weekly topic, copy the link in the comments section for that week's assignment and you're in! Check out more detail about joining the Sprue Cutters Union.

Revell 1/72 PT Boat - Finished!

The word finished may be some what deceiving, so hopefully I don't confuse anyone. Last night, I finished decaling the PT Boat which was the last remaining step before I could call the build complete. But it would be out of character for me to finish the boat and not create a suitable base to display it. So, the boat itself is complete but the project as a whole has a ways to go yet. Thus ends the Revell 1/72 PT Boat series, and begins the PT Boat Base saga which will come sometime in the future. Keep an eye out for it...

Any how, on to the decals. I had to cut each letter and numeral out individual, less suffer terrible silvering and ridicule. Its tedious but I've come to learn that despite my aversion to this process, its absolutely necessary. The decals were in good condition, considering their age and adhered nicely...

Not really much to show that is worth any of your time. The kit only contains six decals, five of which are just the boat number...

...and the last is the American flag waving off the stern. I wasn't sure if I should include it or not, but it came together so nicely, how could I not?

And that is it for now! I'll be brainstorming my options for a base so I can get to work on that soon. This isn't the last you've seen of the PT Boat! Stay tuned for more!
Thanks for reading!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Sprue Cutters Union #5: Philosophy

This week's assignment was inspired by Matt from Doogs' Models who replied to last week's topic with a pointed rant against the absolutists of this hobby. He touched on some good philosophy for us to think about, which if you haven't read, you can take a look at it here. I'm going to ride the coattails of his post to study the brains of you modelers. I think we can all agree that we have some idea that motivates us while we model, whether its an unyielding pursuit of accuracy, or a more laissez-faire approach, we all believe in something.

- What is your modeling philosophy? -

It's not uncommon for the phrase its your model, do what you want with it to be tossed around modeling forums and other media centers where hobbyists mingle. I think certainly Ms. Hepburn would agree with that statement, but do you? What is your philosophy that governs each modeling session? Are you a stickler for detail? Or are do you prefer the "looks good enough to me" approach? I hope Matt will still respond, though he's more or less already shared his stance. How about the rest of you? Remember, honesty is the best policy!

Remember, all it takes is a passion for this hobby and a blog to go along with it! All you have to do is write a post in response to this topic by Sunday and you can be a member of the Sprue Cutters Union. Take a look at the Sprue Cutters Union page for more detail. Once you've written your post, either email me the link or drop the link in the comment section below.
The goal is to send new readers to our sites, so don't forget to include the links to other modelers' responses when you get an opportunity.
Spread the word.
Join the Union!

State of the Union: FML Moments...

Two weeks ago, the Union was asked to tell us what their favorite model they ever put together was. Well, if you got a warm fuzzy feeling reading about all those pleasurable experiences, then brace yourself for a terrible kick to the groin this week. This time, the Union was tasked with writing about the worst thing they'd experienced in the fickle and often unforgiving hobby. Of course, the Union responded in good fashion (and record form) and presented a rather depressing litany of hobby mishaps and misfortune. If you haven't had a chance to read them over, please do!

David Knight's Weblog
Lt. Smash's Models
A Scale Canadian
Yet Another Plastic Modeller
Mattblackgod's World
Martin's Scale Models
Doogs' Models
Kermit's Bench
The DogsChuffers Scale Model Workshop
Eternal Wargamer

The Union showed up in force for this one, adding two new members - David Knight's Weblog, and Lt. Smash's Models - to the fold. Be sure to check out their blogs!
Stay tuned for the next topic and get your pencils, er, keyboards ready!

For all members, to help grow our respective audiences, don't forget to add the links from your fellow contributors onto your post.
If you want to join the Union, all you need is a blog and a passion for the hobby! Spread the word! Join the Union!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

"Call the Ball" Weekend WIP - Part III

Most normal people go to an optometrist to get their vision examined. Myself? I prefer to test my pair of twenty-nine year old Mk. I Eye Balls by painting extremely small items by hand. This also doubles as a test of patience. This weekend, I'm happy to say that I believe I passed both tests with flying (no pun intended...) colors.

Seeing as how I glued the little AIM-7 Sparrows to the fuselage of the F-14 before actually painting them, some steady hands and a small paint brush were needed to finish them while attached to the model. It isn't something I would do on a larger scale plane, but it made handling them so much simpler in this scale. Here they are...

A bit closer this time...

 You can see, all the other fine details were painted, ie the drop tanks, and landing gear. She is pretty much ready for decals now...

I gave the F-14 a nice coat of Future to provide a glossy base for the decals. I wanted to let the Future set, so I put the model aside for the night and started working on the base. As you know, I like working with jar lids, and this case is no different. A Nutella lid will be utilized for this scene which would only require a little work to pull off...

The top was covered with white matte board and I stuck a piece of clear sprue in the side which will act as the mount for the Tomcat. Then I painted the surface to replicate an aircraft carrier deck, toward the stern, where the aircraft approach...

And here is a sneak peak of what the completed vignette will look like...

I know, I know...there are some issues. First, there are no pilots. Also, the flats are not deployed, not to mention the air brake. So what? I don't care, and neither should you. This is meant to be a clever way of displaying a ridiculously tiny model, I'm not trying to win contests here.
Any how, decaling will be tomorrow evening and then it will be complete! Hope you like it!
Thanks for reading!