Still Fireballin’

Still plodding away on the Fireball, and here’s the latest…
I’ve nearly (only nearly) finished construction and painting of the Fireball itself. Yet to be added or painted are the shoulder armor, top hatch, hip plates, and leg-hoses. Is that really it? I’m sure I’m missing something there. Outside of that (to the best of my knowledge), he’s built and painted. I didn’t realize, prior to construction, how fragile that engine section was on the back. He’s a little precariously balanced right now, and every time he falls over backwards, I end up having to re-glue something. Or (worse yet) spend ten minutes crawling around the floor looking for some small piece that fell off the back. It’s been a treat.
The only additions I’ve made to the Fireball are two styrene rods to extend his little "periscope" on the top of his suit. I’ve seen a lot of pictures of Fireballs or SAFS’s built this way, so I had a pretty good idea what I was doing. And it wasn’t tricky at all–just cut two styrene rods to the same length, apply glue, and paint.
In addition–and even though I haven’t applied a clear coat or any decals, I’ve started doing some of the washes, just to build them up and get a better idea how the engine is going to look. And I’m beginning to get pretty pleased with this thing. Painting the entire thing in light gray and then painting the white over that definitely gives him a dirtier appearance that just the pure white. The reason I know this is because I painted the external tank in just white, and it really stands out against the slightly darker Fireball body.  All in all, he’s really starting to come together.
I’ve also decided on what direction I’m going with the base. I’m going to use the slightly larger circular base, stain it in a deep red woodstain, and add a 1:20 scale Tamiya pit crew figure. The pose will be close to what is pictured, but not quite a match. His left arm (straight up) is how he’s designed to be posed, and yes, he’s wearing shorts (apparently Tamiya believes that most Formula One pit crews run around in hot pants or something). So… I’m going to modify his outfit and pose slightly, but that’s probably worth a separate posting.
Finally, I picked up some styrene yesterday, including some 1:24 scale simulated double diamond plate. That’ll be painted (probably in flat aluminum), and added to the top of the wooden base. I may add a little more to that… Haven’t decided for sure yet. Time’s running out, so I need to get this one wrapped up.

This last Saturday was the local club meeting. It was also the annual club auction–basically, any club member can bring in any kit or book and have it sold off–giving a percentage to the club. Fortunately, someone from out-of-town donated a couple dozen kits and a whole lot of books to the club, so the auction went long. Unfortunately, I had to leave before the auction was over, but that was probably for the best–I only ended up spending $13.50. For that price, I walked out with five complete model kits. Four of which may actually get built, but the fifth one was bought specifically for its parts (it’s a 1:24 monster truck, not that that information gives you any insight into what I might have in mind. The other four were (surprise!) aircraft–and all in 1:72nd scale. Considering I paid a total of $4 for three of those four kits, you can’t beat the price.  

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