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

Special Hobby's 1/48 scale

by Marcel Meres




Special Hobby's 1/48 scale X-15A-2 is available online from Squadron 



The Cockpit and Canopy Section:

The original resin cockpit supplied in X-15 kit is partly visible here, with modified seat and some detail upgrades. The roof of the canopy is flat without detailing in the kit, so it needed some work according to reference photographs.



By the way, to cut out the oval windows from the clear plastic and then place them into their openings was really something I did not wish to attempt, but it was not so hard to do when I actually tried to!


The Nose Section:

The nose landing gear is visible here. The nose landing gear door with its smaller airbrake/door are made new of the styrene and soda can. It is attached to the nose gear assembly, which was built using polished alluminium tubes, thin metal stripes and the original resin wheels.



The Hot-nose colors I tried to make using polished HUMBROL Metal Cote and ALCLAD over glossy black base.

The pitot-type sensors are probably better and qucker to make brand new as I did, not to upgrade those included in a kit.


The Rear Section:

This is the rear section of a X-15 Bird. The airbrakes are scratch built. The styrene was used for outside surfaces, which are plane plates and very thin metal foil was formed into corrugated inner plates. The internal structure of brakes are made of styrene too.



The airbrake actuators  are replacing those resin ones included in the kit. I made them of styrene and metal tubes of various diameters pushed one ito another.  The same mechanizm was used for both upper and lower twin airbrakes.

Similar metal tubes, needles and wires were used also for the rear  dump (vent) lines  and the upgrade of a resin ground transport dolly included in the X-15 kit. The dolly included in X-15 kit needs to be rebuild significantly or better to be made brand new if you want to resemble closely the reality. To tell you the truth, I have done only part of that work…



The helium tank sitting just to the rear of the vertical stabilator is a metal bullet which changed the original, partly „amorphous“ resin part.



Painting and Markings


The X-15A-2 started their flights painted overall black. 

After servicing, rebuilding and under extreme flight conditions the black color is depicted at many photographs „patchy“ and in many various shades and glosses. I tried to simulate this using high glossy ALCLAD black base sprayed at first, covering it with various greys, browns, blacks, metallic colors and varnishes. The small decals are partly overcoated by matt black.

The white USAF and yellow NASA lettering, 66671 numbers and also the national insignia were airbrushed over black surface, and weathered by water sanding and overspraying. All the masks were made in Adobe Illustrator software according to the original decal sheet included in a Special Hobby kit and then plotted /placed on the X-15 bird and airbrushed.



The propellant tanks were polished into high shine, then covered by thin ALCLAD black base color and finally two different ALCLAD Alluminium shades were applyed.





The Special Hobby X-15A-2 is a very very fine short run kit as I see it today. And I am still thinking about building another one: white or pink skinned this time!

Also bulding the skid main gear in extended position would be the great thing!

So, the next time, maybe…



Additional Images


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images: 

Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2005 by Marcel Meres
Page Created 15 June, 2005
Last Updated 14 June, 2005

Back to HyperScale Main Page

Back to HyperScale Main Page