Author Topic: Su-15MV Soviet Aggressor - FINISHED  (Read 17582 times)

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Offline Weaver

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Su-15MV Soviet Aggressor - FINISHED
« on: May 12, 2014, 05:52:14 am »
Hi folks, well I've given up on the Frogspawn, so I'm starting a new project for this build. What if the Soviets had formed US-style aggressor squadrons to train their pilots in dissimilar air combat? What might they have used to simulate large western aircraft such as the Phantom?

Well I'm going with this:



The idea is to make a Soviet aggressor squadron Su-15 with minor physical vismods and a paint job to enable it to play the part of an F-4E Phantom in wargames. The idea is to convey the general outline of the enemy aircraft, not reproduce it in every detail (an F-5 looks nothing like a MiG-21, but the USAF didn't do anything except paint them), so physical vismods will be limited to an an undernose "gun fairing", a deep spine, non-functional tanks on the outer pylons and fake underscale twin Sidewinders on the inners. The paint job will be approximately USAF SE Asia scheme, with tweaks to simulate the F-4's undercut engine nozzles, dihedral outer wing and Sparrows. The markings will be a big white bort number on the tail (simulating the USAF base code) and white triangles and bars to simulate the visual effect of the US stars'n'bars marking without actually copying it.

I had intended to use a PM two-seat Flagon for this, but then I managed to pick up a sensibly priced Trumpeter one at Huddersfield, so game on...

I'm calling it an SU-15UP because Google Translate tells me that the Russian for "simulated enemy" is Uslovnogo Protivnika", but I'm very dubious of these translation programs so if anyone knows better, please don't hesitate to suggest an alternative.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2014, 12:45:10 pm by Weaver »
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2014, 09:48:41 am »
Just read a highly useful build up of the related Flagon-A kit here:

http://www.ratomodeling.com/finished/flagon72/

Noted with alarm the comment about long surface marks, apparently caused by the slide-moulding process, along the top and bottom corners of the fuselage, went and had a look at mine, and yep: I've got them. Still forewarned is forearmed: I can now fill them FIRST, rather than when I'm juggling a half-painted model, so cheers to Rato Marczak for the info!  :thumbsup:
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2014, 04:28:44 pm »
Spent the evening dealing with the slide-moulding marks. Not terrible: the ones on the top surface, which you'd notice the most, don't cross that many panels, so you can sand them relatively efficiently. The ones on the bottom cross a lot more of the small rivetted panels, but that actually makes them easier to hide because they're more broken up anyway. For the latter, I've mostly scraped them off in between the panels with a small curved knife blade, then tidied them up with fine sanding sticks that don't threaten the detail.

Found my spine fairings, and with entertaining irony, they're gun pods halves from the same Airfix Phantom who's instructions I'm using as a paint guide..... ;D :thumbsup:
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2014, 04:42:06 pm »
Started reading reviews and builds about this kit and it turns out there are about four times as many problems with it as I thought there were.... :rolleyes: Most of these I'm going to leave alone on the "looks like a Flagon to me" principle. I'm not even going to go for the two most popular upgrades, a resin nose and a resin cockpit, because the nose on mine is going to be non-standard anyway, and the cockpit glazings are so small that you can hardly see anything. I might have some canopy masks though.

However, there are a few things that are annoying and either need fixing or can be fixed without extra expense.


1. The cockpit deck.

The Trumpy kit has a seprate deck around the cockpit area so that single and two seat versions can be made. This deck is thin, bendy, barely touches the (bendy) fuselage sides and has hardly any support. Anyone who's nightmares are still haunted by a Matchbox Meteor NF.11 will find it distressingly familiar. The middle of the deck is quite well supported (I think) by the cockpit tub bulkheads, but the ends have to rest, for no apparent reason, on four 1mm square tabs, which would be poor if the deck fitted, but since it's at least 0.5mm too short... :rolleyes:



Why Trumpeter couldn't put those white bits in is beyond me. Behind the fuselage, you can see the cockpit deck with a shim attached to it's front end, ready to be trimmed when it's dry. I'd have preferred the shim at the rear where it would be partially hidden by my spine mod, but unfortunately panel lines don't allow it.


2. The engine nozzles.

This one is just head-scratchingly barmpot.....

Exhibit A. Each nozzle is made from three tubes, there being (left to right), the afterburner flameholder (and blank), an intermediate tube, and the variable nozzle. These are suppose to be glued together in a stack and inserted into the tail fairing as you can see in the background.



So what's wrong with this? Well it puts the flameholder nearly six scale feet inside the aircraft, which is more than twice as far as it should be, as is readily apparent from any number of walkaround pics on the internet. This means that Trumpy havn't just got it wrong, they've actually put in two complete extra pieces that make it more wrong: you can leave out the intermediate tubes completely and what's left is STILL too long.  :rolleyes: It's a damn sight better though, easily fixable, and actually means that someone might see the flameholders after you've struggled to paint them. So I shall, be building it as per Exhibit B below, but with the lips sanded off:




Tomorrow I'm off to get some cockpit paint. I had thought it would be the usual lurid turquoise colour favoured by the Russians, so I went looking for mixing intructions. It turns out that there are a huge number of real life variations on this colour and everybody has a favorite shade or mix, but I then found out that Su-15s didn;t generally use it, and actually had a more muted blue-grey shade, which I reckon is a dead ringer for RLM 78 Himmelblau in the new Humbrol RLM range.

Good walkaround of a somewhat dilapidated Su-15 single-seater here: http://walkarounds.airforce.ru/avia/rus/sukhoi/su-15tm/index.htm
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline ChernayaAkula

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2014, 06:09:43 pm »
Cool project!  :thumbsup:
Cheers,
Moritz


Must, then, my projects bend to the iron yoke of a mechanical system? Is my soaring spirit to be chained down to the snail's pace of matter?

Offline Captain Canada

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2014, 06:51:12 pm »
That is a cool project ! That's one aeroplane I love the look at....so nice yet so ugly !

And Holy ! Nice work by that Rato guy....and in 72nd scale ? Woah..... :banghead: :thumbsup:
CANADA KICKS arse !!!!

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Vive les Canadiens !
Where's my beer ?

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2014, 03:24:13 am »
That is a cool project ! That's one aeroplane I love the look at....so nice yet so ugly !

And Holy ! Nice work by that Rato guy....and in 72nd scale ? Woah..... :banghead: :thumbsup:

Indeed. I'm toying with the idea of copying his air intake mod, not so much for accuracy as ease. Using the standard "buckets" that go on the back of the intakes would mean you'd have to paint a black "bulkhead" at the bottom of a silver "tube", whereas having the end piece separate means you can paint it black separately before joinnig them up. And I have black plastic....
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline McColm

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2014, 03:34:56 am »
It was the Russians that came up with with the colour schemes used by the Americans worn by their Aggressor Units. The Russians used the Mig-21 through to the Su-27 on their Aggressor Units.
Interesting twist.

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2014, 04:30:50 am »
Didn't know they had one at all, but having just gone looking for it: yup!

http://thelexicans.wordpress.com/2013/08/12/soviet-aggressor-program/

Nice one McColm: looks like my "Phantomski" will fit right in!  :thumbsup:
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline McColm

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2014, 11:52:56 am »
I've seen drawings of what the Russians thought the F-4 Phantom looked like, you're not that far away with your build. Just wish I'd hasn't sold the magazine I saw it in.

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2014, 12:01:54 pm »
Okay, well progress has been painfully slow here, but it is being made. This is the first Trumpeter kit I've actually made, and all I can say is that if I'd actually paid full price for this one, I'd be pretty hacked off by now....  Just about every pair of parts that look nicely engineered don't actually fit together when you try them, and locating pins and slots don't actually align things where they need to be aligned....  :banghead:

Anyway, first a reasonable success story: the intake boxes.

1. I cut the back off the closed intake trunk and stuck it on further back as a spacer:




2. I added two pieces of black plasticard plus lots of spacers to the top and bottom surfaces, then glued an outer piece in at an angle, resting on the intake trunk back plate:




3. When that was all dry, I added an oversize inner wall that covered the lot:



The result is that the intakes "fade off into blackness" instead of stopping at a black wall too near the front.

BTW, yes, that's the remains of a Beatties price sticker on the black plastic. That means this piece must have been sat in my old modelling kit, then various junk boxes, then my new modelling kit, for over 25 years, 'cos Beatties are long gone, sadly.
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2014, 12:09:12 pm »
Next up: wings.

They look good, with the trailing edge being moulded in one piece with the lower surfaces, and the upper surface meeting it at the "natural" panel/control surface line, which is pretty complicated. The only problem is: the upper and lower didn't meet at the line: the uppeer was oversize and needed fiddly filing down in order to fit.

Then when the upper and lower fitted along the line, the next problem cropped up. The very tip of the trailing edge is not moulded in one piece with the lower surface, it's split top and bottom, and the top is much too thick. You probably wouldn't notice this if the rest of the trailing edge wasn't so fine, of course.... :banghead:  So that needed lots of careful sanding too, which then revealed the next problem...

The mating face of the upper right wing surface was convex, so no matter how you fettled the joint line, it still wouldn't sit down onto the lower surface properly. Much more sanding and much clamping:



 
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline Weaver

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2014, 04:25:31 am »
Cockpits:



Doesn't look too bad now, but it's been a fiddle to say the least.

1. The seats are a decent shape, but lack both straps and cushions, so I made then out of masking tape and little squares of Evergreen respectively. Actually the lack of cushions worked out quite well, since the straps could be attached to their backs and then wrapped around the front, giving convincing routing.

2. The support pegs for the tubs are odd. The front one has vertical grooves on the tub which lock into ridges on the fuselage. This would be perfect if the tub had to be suspended catilever fashion, but since it sits on the nose gear bay, it's a bit redundant. The rear tub however, does hang catinlever-fashion between the air intakes, so it could really use the groove system, however what it actually gets is a pin underneath the floor and a "stop" in front of the bulkhead. No positive location and no support for the back end, which means there's a distinct risk it could come unglued and fall backwards after the fuselage halves are joined. To prevent this, I added the vertical bar you can see under the back of it from sprue.

3. Having glued the seats, dashboards and sticks in, I then put the cockpit "deck" on and discovered that the rear seat was crooked (my fault), the front seat was way too low (Trumpeter's fault) and both dashboards were at the wrong angle (Trumpeter's fault again: no positive location). so I had to pull both seat and the rear dash out again: luckily then came away from the glue without damage. I shimmed the front seat up by nearly 2mm to get the pilot's eye-line at least over the sill. It still looks wrong to me, but I don't want to go any higher due to canopy clearance.

« Last Edit: May 22, 2014, 07:49:58 am by Weaver »
"We thank you, but this diversion is not true. Things never happened thus."

"Oh, but it IS true. Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are
the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."

 - Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

Offline NARSES2

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2014, 07:22:37 am »
Your'e getting there mate
Decals my @r$e!

Offline major

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Re: Su-15 UP Soviet Aggressor
« Reply #14 on: May 22, 2014, 09:46:08 am »
Oooh! How did i miss this till now!
Had a similar thought last year, using the PM kit. Was going to do a North American A-5 Vigilante scheme.
Gray, white, colourful splashes. As usual, put on the long finger. Will be following this. :thumbsup: