FJ-1 Fury, Full Review

Discussion in 'Kit Reviews' started by cdavenport, Jul 7, 2008.

  1. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    1. Model Subject: FJ-1 Fury
    2. Scale: 1:33
    3. Publisher and model number:
    4. Designer: Martin Saenger
    5. Distributor: available from PaperAviation
    6. Downloaded locked .pdf

    Please refer to my First Impression review for additional comments:

    Now ¼ of the way through the build, I can say that my first impressions were accurate with three exceptions. First, the model does have a flame holder in the parts pack. Second, the kit provides complete fuselage and wing sections for those who wish to build the model wheels up. Finally, the wheel well and cockpit color looked fine on screen but was “off” when I had the kit printed at Kinko’s. It just goes to show the variation that can occur from printer to printer. Nevermind, there is lots of room for color interpretation on real aircraft owing to weathering and aging due to service.

    1. As mentioned previously, Kinko’s printed my kit on what I thought was 110lb cardstock. The colors came out semi-gloss which is exactly what I was going to do anyway. However, the card was thicker and stiffer than the 110lb I purchased at Office Depot. More than that I cannot say. However, I think that extra stiffness and thickness lead to a construction problem with the nose wheel well assembly.

    2. The fit of the parts is thus far perfect. I don’t mean close; I mean perfect. It is so good that I had some difficulty assembling the nose wheel well into the fuselage (most likely due to the thickness of the card) as indicated by the instructions. I just did a bit of trimming and everything fit. The body panels are detailed to the nines and every panel, inspection port, panel line, etc. lined-up perfectly with no added effort!

    3. I generally stay away from jets because of their complex curves. But, I took the time to roll the body panels to attain complex curves. (See my Hunley build thread for instructions on how to do this: I am particularly pleased with the results thus far.

    4. I spent a whole 12 hours fooling with the cockpit. “Out of the box,” the detailing is very nice, but I decided to spruce it up a bit with some added details which include:
    Simulated glass lenses on the instruments
    Rudder pedals (not included in kit)
    O2 hose (not included in kit)
    Scratch built restraint harness, window crank, gear actuator, throttle, joystick, and joystick boot (in lieu of kit parts)
    3D knobs (punched from the kit and built up with card)

    5. A bit of weathering and shadowing with oils and enamels finished the cockpit.

    6. I’ll start on the center fuselage section next, following the recommended build sequence.

    Attached Files:

  2. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Looking good! Love the jet intake!
  3. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Fuselage and Wheels

    Photo 1- I deviated from the recommended building sequence by finishing the fuselage before adding the spars/ribs for the vertical and horizontal stabs. Otherwise, I feel those spindly projections might have been damaged as I assembled the fuselage sections.

    Photo 2- The empennage spars fit nicely into keyed bulkhead sections thereby assuring perfect empennage geometry. I was really impressed with this aspect of the construction plan.

    Photo 3- I modified the kit flame holder by cutting some additional rings to give the look of a real flame holder. You can also see the nice engineering done by Mr. Saenger on the ducktail.

    Photo 4- I am building my own wheels by laminating Letramax 2000 mechanical board with CA. I have a set of punches to easily punch out circle planks. The partially finished nose wheel is shown along with the rim parts. I turn the blanks on a lathe. You can build your own lathe for a rotary tool; refer to the third page of my Hunley build for links to the plans.

    My only complaint thus far is with the numbering font in the instructions. The 9s look like 8s and the 6’s also look like 8s. It’s just a bit confusing, which forces you to really pay attention to which parts you are using. Well, I suppose that’s ok, then. I haven’t made any egregious errors thus far.

    Attached Files:

  4. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Most Recent Progress

    Everything fits like a glove, absolutely no trimming required. The wheel well is nicely detailed. I moved the rudder just a bit for effect. Notice how well engineered the boattail is. There is still some clean-up remaining such as the trailing edges of the flying surfaces, nothing out of the ordinary mind you.

    Attached Files:

  5. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Making a Canopy

    Making a Canopy

    The kit gives you two canopy options, a paper one with a sun glare texture and a template for cutting one from clear acetate. I chose neither option; both look substandard, especially for a kit as well-engineered and detailed as this. I want a blown canopy which calls for either stretch or vacuum forming. I made the canopy after I completed the fuselage so that I could check its outline against the outline of the cockpit thereby ensuring a proper fit

    1. I assembled the paper canopy with reinforcing strips on the outside. I rolled the canopy to get as smooth a curvature as possible. (See my Hunley thread to learn how to do this: After checking to make sure the outline of the canopy matches the fuselage I mounted the canopy form on scrap board and superglued (CA) it into place. The inside and outside of the canopy also are sealed with super glue for rigidity and as a release agent for the canopy plug.

    2. I extended the edges of the canopy form with masking tape. This is a necessary step for producing a plug to be vacuum or stretch formed because it provides a gradual taper which allows the plastic to stretch uniformly over the plug.

    3. I poured the canopy plug with Durham’s Water Putty which is superior to plaster of paris, Hydrocal, and other mold materials for several reasons:
    a. relatively inexpensive
    b. denser than plaster and does not easily chip
    c. dries quickly without shrinkage
    d. can be easily sanded, carved, drilled, or machined without chipping or splitting

    4. The canopy plug pops out and is ready for finish sanding. I wet sand with 100 grit to remove any imperfections, smooth contours, finalize the shape, and reveal any air bubbles. I fill the air bubbles with autobody glaze. Your favorite putty will do just fine. I wet sand down to 1000 grit. You want a glass smooth finish for vacuum or stretch forming.

    5. I popped the plug back into the form and traced the outline of the canopy. This will help me align the canopy frame onto the canopy later on.

    6. Regardless of how careful you are, there will be imperfections in your canopy which will show up like gangbusters. If you want a pristine piece, you need to treat it just like a real aircraft canopy and sand it to a glass-like finish using Micro-Mesh. This is the full-size aircraft kit that I have used for years. Just follow the instructions and take your time. I had my canopy polished out in about 1 hour. After it’s clean, seal the whole thing with Future inside and out. The canopy will look like glass! I have some small Micro-Mesh kits to sell if anyone is interested. PM me.

    Attached Files:

  6. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    7. The canopy frame needs to be as thin as possible to obtain a realistic look. I printed mine on 110lb card stock and carefully peeled away every layer save the one with the ink. It’s about .002 inches thick. I vacformed my canopy because I have a machine that I made years ago. Stretch or vac; it’s your choice and both are very simple to execute. There are lots of tutorials on the net for both techniques. Notice that the canopy is back on the plug which makes for easy mounting of the canopy frame. I will use Gold Size (Michael‘s or any art store) , a highly viscous contact cement one brushes onto the underside of the frame, to hold said frame onto the blown canopy.

    Final comment: sounds like a helluva lot of time to do this. Wrong. Total hands on time is about 4 hours not including the time it takes for the putty to dry. In the meantime, I completed one wing, and the empennage.

    Attached Files:

  7. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Canopy Finished

    Here are two shots of the completed canopy; it is just sitting in place so you can see the results. Right after I shot these pix, I cut the canopy so that it can displayed in the open position. I still have some detailing to do on it and I will save mounting it for the very last step to make sure it is not damaged.

    To get a nice, flush fit of the canopy frame to the fuselage, I ground down the leading edge of the frame from the underside. It will look even better once glue is holding it firmly to the fuselage.

    Once again, Mr. Saenger's engineering was flawless! The canopy frame fit perfectly over the vacformed canopy. Boy, am I having fun with this model!

    BTW, if any of you are thinking of purchasing this model...AND YOU SHOULD, PM me and I will work out the cost of vacforming a canopy for you. I am not trying to send my kid to college on your dime. I'll charge you what it costs me and save you the trouble of doing the work yourself.

    Attached Files:

  8. pahorace

    pahorace Member

    Hello cdavenport,
    your "FJ-1 Fury" is exceptional! :thumb:
    The explanation for the construction of a canopy is textbook and rich of data and pics.
    Thank you for this perfect thread. I learn a lot from this.


  9. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Grazie per il vostro complimento! Il mio progetto seguente sarà Dornier Do-335 con entrambi i motori DB-603.
  10. pahorace

    pahorace Member

    Hello Chuck,
    meanwhile, I immediately bought the FJ-1 Fury " by Martin Saenger.
    It's a wonderful model, I like very much!
    Will follow, with very carefully, the construction of your "Dornier Do-335".

  11. Wily

    Wily Member


    Crisp build - and neat!! Your canopy is excellent, too. Thank you.
  12. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Volete un baldacchino? Posso ricercare l'affrancatura in Italia.
  13. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Thanks very much, Wily. The lesson to be learned is that when one purchases a kit that is this well designed, the ease of assembly makes you want to work on the model as often as you can.

    Second, since you do not have to waste time fiddling with parts that do not want to fit, you have lots of time to scratchbuild those details that allow one to be more than just an "assembler of kits" but rather a "modeler" who actually creates something from scratch. It's a nice change from time to time.
  14. pahorace

    pahorace Member

    Hi Chuck,
    thanks, many thanks, with heart, you are really kind.
    You have explained so well (it is, in my opinion, the best thread on the canopy) the construction of canopy, which I want to try.
    If I were to fail .... then .... you ask .... if you'll still have possibilities.

    Ciao! Good work, I am here, careful to look.

  15. zealousy

    zealousy Member

    WOW cool tips! Thanks!
  16. YFedor

    YFedor New Member

    Nice model
  17. nh3ave2006

    nh3ave2006 Member

    Outstanding work and the kit looks like it is a nice one! BRAVO
  18. Texman

    Texman Guest

    Wow, I never would have guessed this is almost three years old.

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