Home  |  What's New  |  Features  |  Gallery  |  Reviews  |  Reference  |  Forum  |  Search

Revell's 1/48 scale Eurofighter "What if"
Turkish Typhoon

by David W. Aungst

 

Eurofighter Typhoon

 


Revell's 1/48 scale Eurofighter Typhoon is avalable online from Squadron
 

Introduction


 
This is another one of my projects the "just happened". I heard some good things about the new-tooled EuroFighter Typhoon kit from Revell(AG) and decided to get one to check it out. The things I heard about the kit were all true and before I knew it, it had displaced what was my current project, and I was actively building the Typhoon.

The Kit

The kit is not quite the quality of Revell's Strike Eagle and Rafale kits, but it is not very far off. The detailing is a touch "soft", but not anything worse than vintage Monogram of the 1980s (which I never found to be bad). There is a little more flash than I would expect from a newly tooled kit, but it is not unmanageable. The fit is good. There was some need for filler though since the "soft" quality made the pieces have rounded corner edges, thus the seams are more open than some other kits.

The scribing is recessed, heavier than Hasegawa scribing, but with paint it was be fine. The cockpit is raised detailing. The main instrument panel looks really nice. The ejection seat is a five-part assembly and looks good when built. It could stand adding some seat harnesses, though.

The Typhoon has some complex airframe shapes like the Rafale. Revell did well to capture these shapes without making the kit too difficult to build. The engine exhausts are deep enough and the engine intakes have enough ducting to make them look nice, although the intake ducting does have some nasty seams to address. The wheel wells are nicely molded and deep enough. The main wheel wells are especially nice looking.

One of the truly wonderful parts to the kit are all the weapons options. The Typhoon is being billed as a multi-role "jack of all trades", and the weapons mix in the kit supports this with both air-to-air and air-to-ground weapons and even includes a recce pod. There are two full-size trees of all sorts of exotic (and not so exotic) weapons, all molded nicely. Included are:

  • 3 x 100L External Fuel Tanks
  • 2 x AIM-9L Sidewinders
  • 4 x AIM-120B AMRAAMs
  • 2 x AIM-132 ASRAAMs
  • 4 x Meteor AAMs
  • 2 x IRIS-T AAMs
  • 2 x Taurus Stand-off Weapons
  • 2 x Storm Shadow Stand-off Weapons
  • 2 x GBU-24B Laser Guided Bombs
  • 1 x German Recce Pod
 
Click to Enlarge
And then there is the decal sheet -- WOW! Markings are provided for seven aircraft including aircraft from all five air forces currently flying the Typhoon (RAF, German, Italian, Spanish, and Austrian). And, there is a ton of data markings, even extensive markings to go on all the weapons. The decals are numbered up into the 270s. I live for data decals and this sheet had me all hot and bothered from wanting to use it...  

All in all, a very nice kit, well worth the Squadron price of $14.49 (IMHO). I have to stop buying stuff like this if I ever want to finish my other current projects...

 

 

Construction

 

Since I started this project sort-of by accident, my initial construction items revolved around items I needed to help me with test fitting the model together. First on this list was the main wheel well. This built up quickly and fit perfectly onto the lower wing/fuselage piece. I then drilled out the locator holes for the weapons pylons in the lower wing (I was so proud that I remembered this for a change) and attached the upper wings into place. With the wheel well and upper wings in place, the fuselage dry-fit quite nicely onto the wing assembly.

 
 
I moved on to the cockpit next. The ejection seat built-up easily after a short time of tinkering to remove mold lines and ejecter pin marks. I cut and cleaned the center console, control stick, and throttle, then attached these all into the cockpit tub. The ejection seat did not want to fit easily into place inside the cockpit, so I trimmed some lower details and got it to slide into place.

By this point in the project, I had decided I was doing a "what if..." model. I was curious about how all-black cockpits can be painted (I have plans to do some Israeli aircraft that get all-black cockpits), so I decided to try it out on this model.

To that end, I painted the whole cockpit in Interior Black. I painted the instrument clusters in true black. I dry-brushed things in L.Ghost Gray (F.S.36375) to pop up the details and made some highlights in red, yellow, and silver. The end result seemed busy enough for my taste.

(Note: The effect seen in the image to the right on the CRT screens is just light reflecting off the gloss paint.)

With the cockpit finished, I assembled the fuselage and trapped the cockpit inside. The seams around the edges of the fuselage were not too bad. I used liquid cement and allowed some excess plastic to squish out of the seams, filling them. After the cement dried and the plastic hardened, I filed off the squished out plastic and had completed seams.

 

 

I needed to tinker with the fit of the spine piece. There were mold lines and flash that prevented a close fit on the spine. I took time to find the high points that were effecting the fit and trimmed them down. When I was done, I needed no filler on the spine piece.

Next I attached the nose wheel well to the lower wing/fuselage piece. The upper side of the nose wheel well piece has the start of the engine intake ducting. I clipped and dry-fit all the rest of intake pieces. This is where I found out how much work the intake seams were going to be. The top and bottom intake pieces meet in the middle and do not look too bad there. The issue is with the outer portions of the intakes. These use a portion of the fuselage halves that fills the gaps between the upper and lower intake pieces to complete the duct and the fit is not so great. I was originally going to paint the intake trunks white before assembly. After seeing the seams, I decided I would be better off assembling and filling the seams before I painted the intakes trunks.

The image below highlights the killer seams (highlighted by black lines in this image). The inboard seams (marked "A") were not too bad. Before the wing is attached, you can even get at them to fix them. The outboard seams (marked "B") are no contest. Revell has a four-piece jigsaw puzzle coming together to form the outboard ducting. I trawled super glue in as best I could to try to reduce their being noticed. Smoothing them off is a futile effort. I am afraid I'd do more harm that good if I tried anything more.

 


Intake Seams -- Trying to Fix Them
 

I left off the intake plug piece that closes off the rear end of the intakes. The intakes are deep enough and angled such that the plugs did not really do much to help the model. By leaving them out, I had an easier time shooting white paint into the intake ducts after assembling the wing and fuselage. This second image below shows how I did at hiding these seams. It is not contest quality, but then, this is not a contest model.

 


Intake Seams -- As Fixed As They Will Get
 

As the time to start camouflage painting got closer, I started getting excited. I cut and cleaned all the little do-dads that go on the outside of the fuselage. Just because Revell provides the options to open certain things does not mean they should be. I have found no images on-line of Typhoons with their in-flight refueling probe open when parked, so I glued this in the closed position. I liked the look of the ball sensor on the left side of the upper nose, so I assembled and attached this into place. There are a half dozen or so little antennae to attach all around the fuselage. I did these quickly with no problems.

For the wings, I assembled the weapons pylons and flaperon actuator fairings. I attached these into place. The countermeasures pods on the wing tips caused me to pause for a moment. Would the camouflage painting be easier with or without them? I decided to go for the gusto and assembled the pods, attaching them into place on the wing tips.

It was time for camouflage painting...

 

 

Painting and Markings

 

Revell did it again with their crazy color call-outs, just like they did on the Rafale kits. Does anyone really know what the exact color is when they say "Light Grey", "Grey", "Dust Grey", or "Anthracite Grey"? And then, the instructions wanted me to mix ratios of these colors to get the actual colors in which the model needed to be painted ... YEAH, RIGHT! Like I did before on the Rafale kit, I decided to build a "what if..." model and tossed the cryptic Revell color references out the window.

I was working on the painting and decals for this model in late November. I was trying to decide between Spanish, Turkish, and UAE markings. A couple friends insisted that the only appropriate nationality to put on a "what if..." model in late November is Turkey. If you live in the US or have knowledge of the US holidays, you will understand the reasoning here. I chose to "go with the flow" and applied Turkish markings to the model.

This is a fictitious model of what a Turkish Typhoon might look like if they continued the process to modernize their Air Force. Being sensible, they would figure out that simple gray aircraft are boring and decide to apply some nice desert-like camouflage scheme to their new Typhoon aircraft. I figure this will eventually happen sometime, anyway. One of these days, some high-ranking Air Force general will look at these boring gray planes and mandate that something be done to "dress them up" a bit. This camouflage is my attempt at doing just that.

 


Click to Enlarge

 
 
I actually dreamed up the camouflage for this model as one of my ongoing "what if..." Rafale schemes. However, this Typhoon kit got built first, before I could double back to build more "what if..." Rafale models. So, I decided to migrate the "what if..." concept over to this Typhoon kit. With the two aircraft (Rafale and Typhoon) having fundamentally similar designs, it was an easy task to translate my camouflage design onto the Typhoon. The diagram to the left is the Rafale design I used with only minor adjustments to make it fit the Typhoon airframe.  

I used all Testors Model Master enamel paints on this model. The camouflage is free-hand air brushed in three colors -- sand, gray, and olive. The sand color is Radome Tan (F.S.33613). The gray is L.Ghost Gray (F.S.36375). The olive is a 50-50 mix of Radome Tan and SAC Bomber Tan (F.S.34201). I originally painted the model with using straight SAC Bomber Tan, but this color was too rich and dark in combination with the other two colors. Mixing it toned down the color to better match the other two colors. The nose cone and assorted antennae are painted in Neutral Gray (F.S.36270).

 


Camouflage Applied -- Ready for Gloss Coating and Decals
 

 

  Decals Left
Typhoon-F2-DecalsUsed.jpg
Decals Left After Finishing
The awesome kit decal sheet is probably the biggest reason I chose to build this kit. All that great airframe data was just begging to be used. This translated to a lot of decals on the model, and I only used less than half of the total kit decals, as seen to the right.  

 


  Major Markings:   12 Decals  
  Airframe Data Markings:   195 Decals  
  Weapons Markings:   120 Decals  

  Total:   327 Decals  

 

The decals actually come from a number of sources. The Revell kit decal sheet provided most of the decals (all the airframe data and weapons markings). I got the Turkish national insignia, serial numbering, and "buzz numbers" from a CAM decal sheet for F-4 Phantoms (48-007). The "mounted knight" unit crest on the vertical tail comes from a Zotz decal sheet for F-16s (ZTZ32007).

I was not sure I should mix the unit markings up like this -- the "1" in the "buzz number" is for the 1st wing while the knight markings is for 152 squadron (which I do not think is part of the 1st wing). But, what the heck! This is my daydream and I liked the markings this way.

 


Decals Applied -- Ready for Washes and Flat Coating
 

For weathering, I used my typical style of thinned down enamel paint washes and air brush shading. I finished the weathering with some dry brushing to pop out the surface details. For a more complete discussion of what I do to weather my models, see my posting on "Weathering Aircraft".

 


Weathering Applied -- Ready for Final Assembly
 

Finishing Touches

With the camouflage work done, I turned my attention to the wheel wells. When the wheel wells are open and exposed like on the Typhoon, I generally choose to paint them after the camouflage. I find it easier to mask around the wells and paint the white into them rather than stuffing them full of masking material in hopes of trying to protect them while I am painting the camouflage around the wells.

The landing gear in the kit is nicely molded with plenty of detailing. I had a bit more flash in my kit than I would have expected for a newly tooled kit, but it did not take too long to clean up the mold lines. I assembled the landing gear and painted it overall white. A quick black wash popped out the detailing, then I applied some details in silver, gray, and black. The tires are painted Engine Gray (F.S.36076). As comprehensive as the decal sheet is in the kit, there are no decals for the landing gear ... :-(

 


Completed Landing Gear
 

With the landing gear painted and finished, I plugged it into place in the wheel wells. Everything fit as expected.

I had to make some decisions on the weapons. The kit provides enough weapons in the box to fully arm three or four Typhoons. After some careful thought, I selected the weapons I thought looked the most interesting (to me) and assembled these.

Based on the camouflage and other details, I determined I am building this model as an interdiction aircraft. With that as a premise, I decided a couple of the unusual looking stand-off weapons was the best load to carry. The Storm Shadow weapons just looked too cool to ignore. Having some extra hard points made me also choose to add some Hasegawa AGM-123 "Skipper II" bomb/missiles (rocket assisted GBU-16s). I have enough models in my collection that use standard GBUs that these "different" weapons will be a nice switch.

I painted the Storm Shadows in Neutral Gray (F.S.36270). The kit decals provided lots of data for the weapons to make them look appropriately busy. The "Skipper IIs" are Olive Drab (F.S.34087) bodies with Green Drab (F.S.34086) guidance and fin sections with Steel (metalizer) rocket units. Hasegawa provides the data decals for these weapons.

I also included a fuel tank on the centerline hard-point. The tank is painted in Neutral Gray (F.S.36270) with the pylon painted in the camouflage colors. I chose this because I felt the tanks would not be getting the elaborate camouflage painting and would be left in whatever color they were delivered in. This gray color seems close to the right one for the Typhoon in RAF service (where the tanks would supposedly have come from).

I also included self-defense air-to-air weapons. I decided to be just as exotic with the self-defense air-to-air weapons and chose to use the Meteor and IRIS-T missiles. I figured I have enough models in my collection that use AMRAAMs and Sidewinders. I painted the missiles up in L.Ghost Gray (F.S.36375). Again, the kit decal sheet provided a ton of data markings to make these nicely busy.

I made a slight change on the Meteor missiles. The kit provides only rear fins, but the web pages I looked at for painting information showed that they also have forward fins, just like the AMRAAM. I hacked off some AMRAAM forward fins from the kit-provided AMRAAMs and attached these to the Meteor missles. The image below shows all the weapons after they were painted, just before attaching them to the model.

 


Weapons Assortment
 

 


Weapons Mounted

Weapons Mounted
 

The final touches were a few miscellaneous antennae, the navigation lights, and the four sensor vanes under the nose. Attaching and painting these marked the end of the project.

 

 

Conclusion

 

This is a really nice kit. It is not perfect, and it will have you exercise some modeling skills to build it, but nothing extraordinary. The kit is well worth the price I paid, and the decals and weapons made it even better. On-line listings from other modeling sources seem to indicate the kit costing more from these other sources. Perhaps I got a lucky break when I ordered it from Squadron. If Revell can ever get their act together on defining the paint colors, I will not have to keep making "what if..." models.

 

 

Additional Images and Project Summary

Click the thumbnails below to view images full-sized.
Click the "Back" arrow on your browser to return to this page.
 

Project Statistics

Completion Date:

16 December 2006

Total Building Time:

48.3

Research:

2.7

Construction:

16.9

Painting:

17.9

Decals / Markings:

9.7

Extra Detailing / Conversion:

1.1
 

Model, Description and Images Copyright 2006 by David Aungst
Page Created 28 December, 2006
Last Updated 21 February, 2007

Back to HyperScale Main Page