Modelart DAR-21 (advanced kit) / (free model)

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by niebla de fuego, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. Greetings!

    I recently had a surgery, and since this days are recovering time I decided to take advantage of this days of inactivity, and faced a kit I had printed some weeks ago but hadn't dared to start.

    This is the Modelart kit of the small airplane DAR-21. I choose the "advanced" kit that has detailed cockpit.

    This is a free model that can be downloaded from Modelart's website: ML Paper Models: Home Page

    I started building this kit four days ago, but my computer crashed and I wasn't able to upload pictures until today.

    The first picture shows my humble tools:oops: . The following picture shows the printed pages.

    I printed the kit on white 140gr cardstock using a laser printer.

    The last pictures show the beginning of the process according to the instructions. This is the top of the cockpit, which is also a structural part for the support of the wings.

    Instructions are clear, but I screwd up the built and put the grey areas in the wrong direction wall1, so I had to use some gouache to paint the piece and give it a grey colour where it was supposed to be.

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  2. The next two pictures show the cutting of the cockpit parts. Paper frame and clear acetate windows.

    When building the canopy I again screwed things and the result was horrible. Will have to re-print this part to build it again

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  3. I had a terrible experience building the canopy, and the result is too gross to show it :oops:

    But I decided to go on to the next parts, and leave the canopy for the last once I have it re-printed to build it again.

    This pictures show the cockpit accessories: chairs and controls.
    For the control rod I scored the piece, and glued a thin stripe of paper, so once glued and closed it had a more three-dimensional feeling. Then I cut and painted the borders. The result was not bad given my inexperience. But it would probably would had been better if I had just rolled a piece of paper and painted it. I didn't thought about it. But anyway, this is my first complex kit ever, and i wanted to stick to the kit itself without improvising so much. So I think I will use this mistakes as a way of learning for future builds :thumb:

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  4. The core of the landing gear is very easy to build following the stencils provided with the kit. The assembly is very simple and fast.

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  5. When I tortured the paper to form the aft fuselage I first damped it with a spray of alcohol, and then used a rod to give it for. The result is good, but it looks there was a part that was too wet, and the paper de-laminated:cry: (first picture). However, once healed with glue and closed, it was barely noticeable.

    I use sprayed medicinal alcohol to wet the parts before forming so that they are easily bendable. I prefer alcohol to water, because in my past experience as book binder water was a no-no-never-do-it-in-your-life issue. Water (even the cleanest one) can eventually cause stains, and even feed bacteria that will damage the paper through the years . So, alcohol is my choice.

    The last photos show the aft fuselage assembled to the cockpit part.

    Macro photography does not forgive the slightest mistake, and you can begin to see my innacuracies in the assembly. Though I'm sure I was very careful as far as my fat and numb fingers allowed :p

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  6. Last thing I made two days ago was closing the bottom part of the cockpit. This gave me a headache, and I tried to figure out the best way to do it.

    I dried-tested several times, and I found it was going to be difficult for me. I had never modeled a similar part, so I had to improvise.

    To assure a better gluing I used some strips of paper as fillers inside trying to give a bit of extra support to the piece once closed, and to assure that once I pressed to fix the glue the piece would not crackle severly (first picture).

    I glued and closed it. And I thought it was ok. I really liked the way it fitted, because it was barely noticeable.

    That was two days ago.

    This morning when I took the update pictures I found the joints became more visible, and the gaps are reeeeeally huuuge :curse:

    I'm wondering if it was the glue, or if I didn't press enough time as to let it fix properly, or both.

    I used standard white PVA glue for this piece, because my relationship with UHU is very traumatic (to say the least). To avoid much mess and risk too much cleaning afterwards I choose the PVA. Maybe it was a bad decision. And maybe I have to wait more until the glue dries completely.

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  7. I'll be very grateful if you comment about this build, if you have suggestions or advices, so I can learn more and improve for the future.

    This afternoon I will follow with the wings. And will post more pictures tomorrow.

    Have a nice afternoon!
  8. goodduck

    goodduck Active Member

    Jul 26, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Looking good so far. I was eyeballing that model too. Love aircraft like that. Nice to see a WIP.

    I would suggest Aleenes tacky glue next time. It hold and dry fast. If you can't get it in craft stores. Mail order it. I love that stuff the fist time I tried it. I would never go with anything else again. I don't like any Elmer's glue at all. Really waste of my money and time.
  9. Thank you for your suggestion!

    I will have to try and test other glues, so the builds are better.

    I hope this thread will be useful for you when you attempt your own :)
  10. More pictures today.

    This is the progress of the wings assembly.

    The kit has the option of having movable control surfaces. This way the ailerons and rudder can have some articulation.

    Being bold (or stupid, or a mixture of both) I chose to try the movable surfaces knowing beforehand that it would be almost a nightmare for me since I've never tried before anything similar in my life.

    This six photos show the solution I attempted to create a hinge. In this point the kit is very scarce in instructions or suggestions. A novice modeler may have trouble attempting a hinge for the ailerons. But surely an experienced modeler will make it effortlessly.

    At first I tried to insert pins from the ailerons. But soon I found it was easier to have the pins coming from the wing, and their heads secured with some paper to avoid they got loose. Picture may explain clearly what I'm trying to say.

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  11. I decided to have only one of each couple of ailerons to be movable. This because after studying the model I found that the replacement part for the movable inner ailerons lacked the blue strip that is present in the wing (first picture).

    An unexpected surprise came when I dry-tested the closure of the wing. The formers were too small, and there's a big gap. :confused: (photos 2 and 3).

    I don't know if that's intentional, or if it is a mistake of the model. Since I yet have to re-build the canopy I cannot test this part to see how it affects the assembly.

    I know it is not a printing mistake, since all pages were printed at 100% in A4 paper. I also know that it was not a mistake on my part cutting the formers, because I followed the line. Maybe when I can fix the wings to the canopy I will be able to understand this.

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  12. The vertical stabilizer and rudder are very easy to build and it only takes minutes to assemble them.

    At first sight I got a bit confused when I saw 2 pieces labeled "part 37". But after seeing the assembly diagrams included in the kit the confusion is clarified.

    I'm still figuring were the "part 36c" is supposed to go. Probably it is used along with an unlabeled thin former to give strength to the front lower part of the stabilizer. In any case, even without those two small formers, once assembled both parts the stabilizer is pretty... well... stable.

    I will follow tomorrow with the tail section, and will probably start the engine section.

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  13. Finished the tail section, and assembled the parts to the fuselage. I still need to clean some bits of glue that found their way to the surfaces.

    After all, I decided I would assemble the plane using the badly built canopy. Since I'm building this model to practice and learn, I can live with some mistakes. And then in the near future when I can have the time I will build this model again correcting all the mistakes I've made with this one, and applying the suggestions received.

    Another reason to use the badly built canopy is that I can't move much this days, and it would take too long to get a new canopy printed in the same place I originally printed the kit.

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  14. ekuth

    ekuth Guest

    Looking good! :thumb:
  15. New photos!!!

    This is the nose.
    This piece is a bit complicated, but with some patience it can be done. Once closed the small front former must be assembled first, and then the rear former. Making it otherwise may bring some huge complications (... please don't ask ^^ยก )
    Fortunately I had practiced the necessary hole in the formers before assembling. This hole is needed for the rotating propeller.

    The propeller is easy to assemble, but since the pieces are so small, it requires again certain patience and fine finger movements. But once is completed, it's very nice.

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  16. A couple of things I didn't like about the nose:

    The lower part that is a grey piece attached to the bottom of the nose does not cover well the black area (which is supposed to be a hole), and bits of the black area can be seen emerging from in the front corners of the piece.

    The other thing I didn't like was the huge gap in the bottom (second picture). The space between the former and the paper is very noticeable at this stage.

    However, this gap is barely noticeable once the communications array in the belly of the fuselage is assembled. The gap is very well disguised (though not completely).

    As with the gap on the wings' formers, I wonder if it was intentionally designed this way.

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  17. It was time for the wheels.

    They are made by sandwiching several discs of paper/cardstock, and then sanding them.

    Since I don't have a dremmel tool or anything similar I cut the discs by hand, and also sanded them by hand.

    The end result is not perfect, but I think it is very good considering the tools and resources available :)

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  18. The rear wheel is easy to build, but it is a very fragile piece. It definitely needs some reinforcement, otherwise it will bend badly once you support the plane's weight on it. I used a pin to create the axle. But I failed to properly reinforce the rest of the piece.
    I thought it was weird that only normal cardstock was used for this. According to the instruction or the parts sheets there were no inner formers, or "sandwiched" cardstock for this part.

    The main landing gear cowlings are not difficult, but their small size is something to consider. It takes sometime to get them assembled.

    Just when I finished, and was ready to glue the final pieces, I found one of the wheels was missing :cry:

    It strangely disappeared from my table. Unless it was one of my dogs that ate it, it will surface someday in any lost corner. By the time being, I quickly made a new one using thick cardboard. Not exactly as the original, but it served well.

    The last part to be assembled is the underbelly with the cameras and communication arrays. It is easy, though I completely failed to imagine where the piece "68a" is supposed to be. :confused:

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  19. Some photos of the finished model.

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  20. Last photos!!!!

    I know this is far from perfect. However, I learned a lot.

    I learned about building techniques, the proper use of some tools, and how to solve certain problems.

    I also learned that it is sometimes better no to follow literally the instructions.

    In this particular kit the written instructions are very general, and the assembly diagrams sometimes indicate wrongly some parts. But fortunately those are small problems that can be solved if you are paying attention to the model itself.

    A bit of creativity is also useful. I should have used some of it to improve a detail: the wing struts may need an inner wire to give support. As you can see in the pictures they are severely curved [​IMG]

    I'm sure I'm learning for the future builds, and the next models will improve greatly.

    I also learned a lot about myself, and about the way I approach this kind of activities, the way I face the problems that arise in the middle of the process, and how I react to good and bad results. I'm glad I've changed. In earlier years I used to trash it all if there were difficulties. But problems are good to challenge yourself and to really put your creativity to the test. In the end it is a lot better if you face the difficulties and try to solve them in the best way you can, than to run away from them or to hide them.

    This model may not win a contest because of its faults. But I really don't care, because I'm proud of it. I also love it.

    I'm proud of it and I love it because this plane has given me more than just a distraction during my recovery time. The whole process has enriched me in several ways, and that's the greatest prize I can get. [​IMG]

    I'm glad I can share this experience with you.

    Have a very nice afternoon!

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