F-15E Cockpit Set | Progress (Part #2)

Happy New year to you all!  I hope you had a great holiday season and you are all well!  

In my Part #1 blog post I showed you all how I made the CRT screens for the instrument panels.  in this Part #2 I want to touch on a technique I use in creating cockpit detail and modelling using my one of my favourite mediums; Aves Apoxie Clay and Sculpt products.  These products, combined with traditional modelling techniques are what I used in creating our F-15E Cockpit set.  Heres a demo showing how I get things started.  In the series below I demonstrate how I started the F-15E cockpit tub sculpting details with Apoxie Clay.  For demo purposes, I'm using a old cockpit tub from my spare's box.  Check it out:

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The F-15E cockpit so far

Here is a shot of the cockpit with details added.  The greenish grey areas rear of the cockpit are Apoxie Sculpt while the white bits are details created with styrene stock.

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Side walls and details

I completed the sidewalls next using styrene stock.  I've found that its quick work to use Tamiya Extra Thin Cement I worked as it is fast acting and bonds the styrene strong.

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More details added

I typically and repeatedly test-fit, and re-check my work during construction.  It's a good idea to do this, as it helps me avoid unforeseen fit problems, accuracy issues and or missing detail.  I go on to creating flight controls and other details. 

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Front office sculpt

Next off I begin completing the final shape of the front cockpit, pilot's instrument station.  I've learned in scratch building that you want to start with basic shapes and then refine as you go.  I started with the basic shape of the station according to references.  I knew that I would need to finish by employing a bit of sculpting to capture the final look.  After establishing the basic shape I was ready to start sculpting the contour of the instrument dash.

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The completed front console

The sculpting was a success and I am very pleased with the result of our effort using Apoxie Clay.  This stuff is awesome!  Now the fun continues.  I'll add details to the top portion of the instrument dash.  These details are actually components of the HUD.  I'll add these details with tiny bits of styrene stock, copper wire, heat-stretched sprue and solder wire attached with superglue and diluted white glue.  Here are a few pics of the completed pilots front console station.  Click through the photos below to check it out:

The HUD

Finishing the unique HUD for the Strike Eagle was fun.  The distinctive octagon-shaped heads-up-display aids the pilot in A-A as well as A-G air warfare tactics and weapons delivery.  Simple styrene stock is employed here referring heavily on my reference photos for accuracy.

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Construction complete..and Part #3

So there you have it, all cockpit sub-assembly components are completed and are ready for priming in preparation for the Master mold here at Modern Hobbies.  At the time your reading this, the master mold has been made and I'm hard at work making castings for the production molds and photographing the full colour instruction sheet PDF.  

This was a lot of fun to build!  I continue to learn as well, creating these accessories.  I hope you came away with some new modelling tips as well for your modelling projects.  I would encourage you to pick up some Aves Apoxie Clay and give it a try.  If you have any questions, suggestions about anything I've covered, shown here...don't hesitate to drop me a line and contact me by leaving a comment below or using the Contact me page on the website.  BTW, I don't get any kick-backs for mentioning Aves Apoxie products, (I wish I did.. LOL!)  No, but seriously; much of these new methods I have been employing over the years have been inspiration gathered from the awesome fellow artists, model-makers and movie creature FX sculptors over at the Stan Winston School of Character Arts.  It's all art you guys, right? Right!

In Part#3 we'll look at the completed primed F-15E Cockpit Set so you can see what you the modeller will be receiving.  Keep the radar on!

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