First aircraft - Rob's FJ-1

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by Larry Marshall, Sep 8, 2006.

  1. Caveat: None of the warts of this build are Rob's fault, though his kit is facilitating considerable fun and learning at my house.

    Here are the first bits of my first card aircraft model. My initial observations are:

    1) card modeling is a wonderful endeavour.
    2) card modeling requires practice (and I need a lot).


    When it comes to specifics of assembly, I have to say that I find it disconcerting that there are no formers to maintain fuselage shape. I suspect this feeling will become even more the case when I try to stuff a wing and stabilizer through slots cut in a .008" thick fuselage wall in an attempt to get them to align (and stay that way). I decided to build this 'by the numbers' but I think there needs to be some internal structure to support these components.

    What Rob has said elsewhere is true, however. In this size model, the tabbed assembly is no big deal. I do think I'd be more comfortable using join strips and formers but that's just me.

    Having fun in Quebec, though I don't do this quite as fast as Carl, or as well :)

    Cheers --- Larry
  2. Kevin G

    Kevin G Member

    Lookin good! Can't comment on the no formers issue since I have still never built a plane (I found this hobby while searching for model planes, you think I might actually get around to building one :roll: )

    Keep at it and keep those pictures coming, can't wait to see the finished build!
  3. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

    Larry............ Looking good so far!

    On the no internal formers............. that's a FG thing not a Rob thing. (And Rob no longer designs for them so thing will change for the better!)

    But you will find that when you put the wing in it will strengthen the fuselage immensely. Glue one side correctly to the fuselage then after it sets put the wing to the correct position on the other side and glue it in place. This will help define the correct shape of the fuselage.

    Keep at it.......... your build looks way better than my first build.

  4. barry

    barry Active Member


    Try stuffing it with tissue (perhaps not where the wings go though

  5. rmks2000

    rmks2000 Member


    Formers aren't always necessary on small scale kits, except for those with complex fuselages. On some of the FG models, they show a template so that you can make one fomer to give the proper shape. You'll find that Rob's models are especially nice at 1:72 scale, rather than the 1:60 (WSAM) that FG adheres to. I had difficulty getting the wings to conform to the fuselage on the Cougar, but hopefully Rob's redraw on the Panther and Cougar has mitigated the issue.
  6. 46rob

    46rob Member

    The Fury is 1/48 scale.
  7. I understand that as Rob has mentioned their requirements. I kinda-sorta understand FG's view here as they're trying to produce "simple" models. It just flys in the face of my 'get it right' approach to modeling (though in this case my skills cause "right" to be redefined downward :)

    I did place a caveat in my msg about not blaming Rob for any visible warts. I LIKE his designs and can appreciate them without trying to compare them to more sophisticated/larger models. This is why I've bought all of them :) But when I do the DC9, for instance, I'll be inserting formers as his design deserves them.

    Interesting as that seems counter-intuitive to me, though I'm not doubting you. I tried a test fit with the stabilizer and I can sort of see what you're talking about, though.

    I have one of those special cameras that don't recall all the warts :)

    Much of the reason my "success" thus far, rests right here at Normally, if I would have found cardmodeling I would have started by cutting paper and asking questions later. But because I discovered this site (and all you helpful guys) just as I got out of the hospital following surgery, ALL I could do is read your words of wisdom and surf the net. Even now I can only sit at a table for half an hour or so at a time.

    I already had all the tools and was familiar with them so mostly I'm just learning all those tricks you guys know to manipulate paper. For instance, the biggest warts on my fuselage joinery come from some wicking of felt-pen ink (edge-coloring) that's just a shade darker than inkjet ink. It's a trick I have yet to master among many others.

    Cheers --- Larry
  8. Hey, that's worth a try. Thanks.

    Cheers --- Larry
  9. I'm old...I prefer larger, not smaller (though I confess to wanting to try a really tiny build). I'm building Rob's FJ-1 in its "large" form, which is, if my math is correct 1/48 scale (9 1/2" span).

    Cheers --- Larry
  10. It's all your fault, Carl. Would be faster too but I'm spending a lot of time reading your model builds. Not only do you do a great job of documenting your builds, they're full of really great insights and building tricks.

    It's a 'large' version of his FG design and I scale it to be 1:48.

    At least until food gets dumped on it and the Duco tube squirts all over it :)
    How you recovered your P-47 from that is beyond me.

    Cheers --- Larry
  11. I've made a bit more progress and the fuselage is getting longer and contains more warts :) The one minor problem I have is that while the tail cone section fits perfectly to the fuselage, the inner exhaust tube is too small. I'll have to do another one, making it a bit larger I guess.


    What do you guys do to stiffen up the paper gear so that they don't fold? Cardstock inside? Wire?

    Sure having fun even with the mistakes.

    Cheers --- Larry
  12. 46rob

    46rob Member

    I shave off a bit of flat toothpick and glue the strut around it. Wrap a couple layers of paper around the exhaust tube to make a snugger fit... I always like to glue it to a bulkhead--as there is usually a bit of air space between the exhaust and the skin.

  13. I now have a plan. Thanks Rob.

    Cheers --- Larry
  14. So much to much to learn. My FJ-1 progresses and more warts are addeds to its carcass. Clearly my techniques need to be honed but nevertheless I plod forward, realizing that the goal of perfection with a first card airplane is silly.


    It was with some intrepidation that I started cutting slots for the wing. It wasn't as bad as I thought it might be, though my wing must be slightly too thin at its root as the hole, as marked by the cutout, is slightly too big. Oh well, airflow into the turbine is important so maybe a bit through the fuselage side will help :) As, I believe Rick said, with the wing glued in place the fuselage is much stiffer.

    The canopy piece is 'just right and molded to the fuselage without a hitch. It's starting to look like an airplane, albeit one that has landed VERY hard :)

    Cheers --- Larry
  15. Ken Horne

    Ken Horne Member

    Looking Good Larry,

    "It was with some intrepidation ..."

    These jets of Rob's are perfect to cut your teeth on. One of the things that I love about this form of downloaded paper modelling is that there is so little pressure. The absolutley worst thing that can happen is that you completely bugger it up an toss it. Debit: a bit of ink, a couple sheets of paper and some time. Credit: You've learnt what not to do, and even with less than expected results the time spent is usually enjoyed.

    That being said, it doesn't look as though as any time ink or card has been wasted yet :)

    Keep going my friend, this is a lot of fun!

  16. I think you're right, Ken, and I need to gnaw on half a dozen of them just to get my joinery to an acceptable level. I'm coming to believe that my use of Aleene's Quick-Dry Tacky Glue isn't the best, at least for a newbie like me. It seems too thick and acts too quick, which can be a double-edged sword it seems.

    I couldn't say it better. I've never felt so much freedom to experiment.

    Well...if I stand on the other side of the room to look at it....

    I'm afraid that my lack of joinery/paper skills is in full evidence but that's ok...I wanted to post these so that maybe other people like me will consider doing likewise. While the builds by the master-builders are wonderful, builds by beginners can also provide information I think as we're building different sorts of models than the masters are building.

    Cheers --- Larry
  17. rickstef

    rickstef Guest


    try Original Tacky Glue from Aleene's also

    takes a little longer to dry and set up, but it should work better for you

    i prefer it over elmer's

  18. Rick Thomson

    Rick Thomson Member

    I swear by, or is that at... UHU Alleskleber myself.
  19. Good recommendation. The reason I used the Quick Dry stuff is that my bottle of Tacky Glue had, somehow, lost its top and was mostly dried out. I hope to get out to get some tommorrow.

    Cheers --- Larry
  20. I'm sure you've heard before how hard (impossible?) UHU products are to find in North America. Here in Quebec City it's hard to find any of the normal model products and UHU isn't available.

    Is the Alleskleber a clear, cellulose-based glue? I've read Carl's description of it and it sounds like Duco but slower drying. I can't buy Duco here either but I manage to keep myself supplied by smuggling it from the US when I make trips there.

    One thing I'd like to hear, from both Duco and Alleskleber users is how it's used. With the white glues, I've been following guidance I've found around the web, squirting some out onto a palette and then applying it with my finger or toothpick. I tried this with Duco and, of course, by the time I got it applied, it was dry :) What are you doing? Oh, and how do you get around the 'stringing' that Carl has mentioned takes place with Alleskleber? I hate glues that string as I'm too clumsy to keep up with them.

    Cheers --- Larry

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