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F7U-1 Cutlass

Collect Aire 1/48 F7U-1 Cutlass Build Review

By Fotios Rouch

Date of Review August 2018 Manufacturer Collect Aire
Subject F7U-1 Cutlass Scale 1/48
Kit Number 4859 Primary Media Resin, Vac, White Metal
Pros Best kit of this subject in this scale Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) Out of production

Build Review

This is the Collect-Aire Chance Vought F7U-1. The Ginter Publication Number 94 by Tommy Thomason is a nice reference for this variant. Most of the references on the web are for the F7U-3 so a little digging around will be necessary. I got involved with assisting the kit designer (Dimitri Malkov, owner of DMold) with references sometime in 2000-01 time frame. Back then the internet was useful but lots of literature research was necessary as well, especially for such an old subject. I was glad to receive my copy of this unique subject and I have no idea why I bought only one kit of this subject. I usually have two or three copies of nice Collect-Aire subjects. So, I reluctantly decided to build my only copy.

The master was very nicely done as usual. The resin execution is not the best with some pin holes and incomplete corners due to bubbles in the molding process and some unevenly mixed resin. Yet this molding job was much better than what I had previously seen from this outfit. Work always starts with washing the parts to get the de-molding agent off. Paint will not stick otherwise.

F7U-1 CutlassF7U-1 CutlassF7U-1 CutlassF7U-1 CutlassF7U-1 CutlassF7U-1 Cutlass

The process started with building the cockpit and joining the fuselage halves. The cockpit is not very rich, but cockpits were simple back then and information on how this cockpit looked was difficult to come by. Before joining the fuselage halves, I painted the intakes blue and added the inside splitter plates. The front wheel well was painted zinc chromate yellow.

F7U-1 Cutlass

I joined the fuselage halves over the period of a few hours. I started with the front and slowly moved backwards a segment at a time, while squeezing and adjusting to get the fuselage halves to conform as they were a bit uneven. The end result was OK but a little putty would necessary.

F7U-1 CutlassF7U-1 Cutlass

I fixed the big resin holes on the sharp corners by inserting sprue rod and super gluing and then sanding to shape. The small surface pinholes were covered with putty and Mr Surfacer.

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Finally, Mr. Surface was applied as a final coat and all the surface lines were retouched with a scribbling tool.

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Next, I have to work the wings. The had dropped slats and I need to clean them up carefully.

To be continued...

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