Tuesday, March 6, 2012
When I was searching for Hawk SNJ kits on EBay to rebuild, I noticed they were molded in different color combinations including white, orange, and yellow with black wing! I took a chance and got a factory sealed one, and upon opening it, I was pleased to find I had gotten an all-yellow molded version. The natural yellow of the plastic however was a little too dark, so I was going to have to spray it a lighter shade of yellow to match the Navy's. At least I wasn't going to have to paint black plastic with multiple coats of primer and yellow! And so it came to pass, I built the kit in a day, and sprayed it with Tamiya gloss yellow. The decals were still usable, but they were very thick. I knew this was going to be a problem with the black anti-glare panel piece. On its own, it didn't want to conform to the curvature of the nose section, and the cowling. On top of that, there are two steps forward of the front windshield which the decal has to conform to. Copious dousings of Micro-Sol along with some small incisions with an X-Acto knife were necessary to get this decal piece to properly adhere. It worked well in the end, and prevented me from having to paint this panel black instead (I like to use the original decals whenever possible.)
The hawk SNJ looks great in yellow, the way she's supposed to look. I might build the T-6 version as a companion to her some day. They'd make a great pair!