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Focke-Wulf Ta 154A-0

by Brian Criner

 

Focke-Wulf Ta 154A-0

 


ProModeler's 1/48 scale Ta 154A-0 is available online from Squadron

 

Introduction

 

Here is my 1/48 scale ProModeler Focke-Wulf Ta 154A-0 "Moskito". I picked up the kit the first day it showed up in the stores several years ago and promptly shelved it.

Several build-up reviews identified serious fit problems, inaccuracies as well as warped parts. Disappointed with the bad reviews, I moved it to the bottom of my to-do list.

A few years later I ran across the Verlinden update for the Moskito, and picked it up, just in case I ever became a little sick in the head and decided to actually build the beast. Last year, I came across yet another set of detail parts for this model from Cutting Edge (VS 9 props and new spinners), and for some reason decided to buy them.

Now I was in that "Modeller's Catch-22". I didn't really want to build the kit, but I had invested too much money to let it just sit on my shelf. Somebody help me!

Well, once I started on this monster, I was determined to do a decent job.

 

 

Construction

 

I started prepping the fuselage to receive the Verlinden parts. Though the Verlinden cockpit is a big improvement over the kit parts, I found the resin cockpit difficult to fit.

 

 

The next hurdle was the warped wing. Right out of the box, there was a very noticeable torsion in the wing. I tried the "hot water" technique for softening the plastic, and basically just twisted the thing until the wing started to crack. Once the wing was straight, I cut out the flaps in order to add the resin dropped flaps.

One characteristic of the Ta 154 that was noticeably absent from the basic kit was the characteristic nose-high squat. I decided to recreate this by cutting the main gear oleo struts out and adding Minimeca tubing. This dropped the main gear by about 2 millimeters. I then added a cut piece of a syringe needle to size and replaced the nose oleo. This added about 2 mm to the nose gear strut.

With the new stance, I knew I would encounter some serious center of gravity issues, so I started adding leading fishing sinkers, hammered out to shape, into the engine nacelles, lead shot to the leading edge of the wing and to the nose cone. I dry-assembled the parts to see if I had added enough weight for a normal sit. It wasn't enough! The aircraft teetered and then gently squatted back on it's tail.

 

 

Dismayed, I thought maybe the addition of the resin props from Cutting Edge might be far enough in front of the CG to pop the nose down.

Sure enough, with the addition of those props, the nose gently rode down.

 

 

Painting, Markings and Finishing Touches

 

After enduring the construction woes of this model for almost 13 months (I shelved it several times to work on some more, um, user-friendly kits), I was finally ready to paint.

The rest of the kit construction went relatively smooth, although I must have used half a bottle of micro-sol getting the decals to disappear.

 

 

In addition to the Verlinden and Cutting Edge resin parts, I also added photo-etch antennas from an old DML kit and wheels from True Details.

Though I came close to pitching this model a few times, I liked the final result.

I hope you enjoy it as well.


 

 

Additional Images

 

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:


Model, Images and Text Copyright 2003 by Brian Criner
Page Created 08 October, 2003
Last Updated 05 May, 2005

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