Sukhoi "Flankers" in 1/72 scale
... continued from page 2...
The next model made was again a Su-27 building the 1/72 new Zvezda kit as described on page 2.
The air force scheme selected was for a Su-27 of the Uzbekistan air force.
Assembly was done similarly. Establishing the Uzbekistan Su-27 P colours of the desert like camouflage scheme needs some judgement looking at photos and info:
-1- lower surfaces Flanker blue paint has been a difficult issue for modellers for many years. But the paint hue can be found in the AKAN series with 73056 and 73061 but my AKAN bottles had dried out.... So for the lower blue, a mix was made of 90% Revell Aqua 371 "hellgrau" and 10% Revell Aqua 52 "blau" blue.
On the upper surfaces, was used:
-2- lighter brown Revell Aqua 16 "sand" with some 10% white;
-3- medium brown Revell Aqua 17 "Africa braun";
-4- darker brown Revell Aqua 82 dark earth;
Masking the upper camoufage pattern is needed, done by hand with a curved cut carton or tape. While airbrushing, the still not fitted vertical tails were not forgotten and also the bits like gear doors.
The large metal areas at the exhausts on lower and upper fuselage ends were now tackled, similarly as for the earlier made Flanker models. Masking is easy as the vertical tails are not yet installed. Theese were airbrushed after masking first Revell Aqua 90 "silber". Also add varnish coat with some drops of blue airbrushed at some of these panels. Finally, on top a few burnished cotton swab strokes were added with AK true metal AK455 paste and quickly polished:
The tails were set in place. The radar nose was airbrushed "off white" and the antenna panels on the vertical tails hand painted green.
After the paint scheme had been applied, the decals were applied. These decals were "home designed" and custom laser printed by a friend as I needed more roundels than the pair supplied on the Begemoth decal set 72-025 "Flanker family (1)".
After decals had been applied, some "sun fading" was done: of each camouflage colour, with a few drops of white mixed in, these were loosely airbrushed at the different areas. As some thin layers were airbrushed over the decals as well, this gives a "blended" in effect.
The installment of the landing gear had the same small corrections as for the single seat Zvezda kits. So set these at about 85 degrees. On each leg #D7 and #D8 I cut off the "triangle corner" that leads to the fuselage. Now they sit better. Some thin metal wire was added and "wash" inside the bays.
The canopy was kept "loose" and got some mirrors from scrap.
UZBEKISTAN / UZBEK
[ area: 449,000 sq.km |population: 35 million | capital: Tashkent | GDP 2,000 USD per capita nominal ]
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the former republic Uzbekistan gained independence September 1991. Current main income comes from metals, oil and gas. An air force was established as part of the Armed Forces' 49th air army and the aircraft operated are Soviet types, in 1991 the MiG-21 and a few MiG-17.
Main bases are Karshi/ Qarshi/ Xonobod with fighters like some 25 Su-27P and 6 SU-27UB trainers along with some 20 MiG-29 and some 30 strike aircraft Su-24, at Dzhizak/ Jizzax with strike aircraft as well like Su-25 and the training school, Fergana with transports, Tashkent with transports and Chirchiq with mainly Mil helicopters like 15 Mi-24 and 15 Mi-8 stationed there.
Su-27 P "21 white", c/n 36911032715, Uzbekistan
Zvezda also released in 2018 a kit of the Su-27UB two seater "Flanker C". Kit #7294 contains many common sprues at the single seat Su-27SM kit.
The kit is well packed in a strong box and inside you will find again fine parts with good detail and neat engraved panel lines as in the single seater kit.
(some parts allready removed)
The vertical tails are larger on the two seaters like the -UB.
In the kit you will also find a pair of nice armament sprues (common with the Su-27SM).
... and now 2 common sprues with a few figures.
Decals in this kit are for 5 Russian schemes presented on a separate coloured glossy sheet:
-a- "red" 20 with a blue'ish scheme of the OKIAP naval regiment;
-b- "red" 64 of the 698 guards unit at Chkalovsk, Karelia, 2002;
-c- "red" 17 of the training center , Lipetsk, 2000;
-d- "red" 10 in an overall grey scheme of 790th fighter regiment, Khotilovo, 2014;
-e- "red-blue" 17 in special scheme with blue-red lines of the training center, Lipetsk, 2015.
You also get in the decals sheet al the various smaller stencils.
The eight page instructions are OK. If you want to display the model "in flight", a display stand #7235 can be separately purchased.
The assemby requires careful alignment of the 2 sections of the upper fuselage.
For the lower engine nacelles, some sanding is needed to get smooth joints.
Some putty and sanding was needed at the wing and fuselage joints. Note that the vertical tails, as with the single seater kits, were not yet installed.
Some wing pylons as per kit were set.
For this model, it was decided to finish the kit in a scheme of the Eritrea air force for the World Military Aircraft series. A few Su-27 Flankers were flown in Eritrea.
I had 1/72 decals from Begemoth set set 72-025 "Flanker family (1)".
Note: Berna has also decals set BD-72-87 "African Air Forces MiGs and Sukhois" which I also had and of which I used the camo drawings.
This scheme sports a grey with green camouflage scheme. The information of the Begemot instructions scheme "21" was also used but adapted a bit for the -UB. For the Eritrean colours, "guesstimations" were needed looking at photos in the book "Soviet and Russian Aircraft in Africa" of Yefim Gordon and Komissarov, pages 112-116, see references.
These acrylic colours were airbrushed:
-1- lower surfaces Flanker "russian blue" paint has been a difficult issue for modellers for many years. A mix was made of 90% Revell Aqua 371 "hellgrau" and 10% Revell Aqua 52 "blau" blue.
... and for the upper surfaces:
-2- blue green Gunze Sangyo 50;
-3- medium grey Gunze Sangyo 338;
-4- darker green Gunze Sangyo 319.
The demarcations lines of the camouflage pattern are "hard", so masking foil was used. I enlarge the drawings to 1/72 and cut out these with the foil.
... and the result... (also airbrush the vertical tails).
A pair of Sirene RWR fairings were added made from thick card similarly as on the early Su-27 models. These were hand painted.
The insides of gear doors and so on were airbrushed red. The gear bay insides themselves were painted medium grey with acrylic paint Gunze Sangyo 337 (about FS35237).
The installment of the landing gear was done and I suggest the same small corrections as for the single seat Zvezda kits. So set the main gear struts at about 85 degrees. On each leg #D7 and #D8 I cut off the "triangle corner" that leads to the fuselage. Now they sit better. You get a different pair of main -UB wheels, which is nicely done by Zvezda. Some thin metal wire was added to suggest the hydraulics as was some "wash" inside the bays and on the legs using thinned varnish with a few black paint drops.
The areas near the hot exhausts are metal and were given the same treatment as described above.
The vertical tails were installed as well as the radar nose that was airbrushed "off white" as well as the tail antenna panels. Note: for the right vertical tail, a pair of white kit decals will be used.
Before adding the decals, the model got a gloss surface to avoid "silvering" (that is getting air bubbles below each decal that spoils appearance). A few coats of gloss varnish were airbrushed on the model with my usual mix of Johnson Future/ Pledge, thinned with IPA.
Decalling was done.
It was a bit unclear if the wing has Eritrea roundels. I think it has one on left upper and lower side. On the tails are only a pair of small flags. Note also the white panel on the tail achieved with the kit decals.
A "fake canopy" was hand painted on the lower nose.
As with the earlier made models, after decals had been applied, some "sun fading" was done: of each camouflage colour, with a few drops of white mixed in, these were loosely airbrushed at the different areas. As some thin layers were airbrushed over the decals as well, this gives a "blended" in effect.
The final details were now handled. The Eritrean Su-27UB has a IRST fairing set in the middle at the wind screen. This is as provided in the kit. The various pitot tubes were set as well.
Completing the paint work, the model got a semi-gloss varnish coat overall. This was done with a couple of airbrushed layers of Johnson Future/ Pledge acrylic varnish with a few drops of Tamiya X-21 "flat base" matting agent mixed in.
The cockpit was fitted with a pair of K36 seats, detailed as described on the other kits.
Oddly, the Zvezda kit for this two seater has a 2 part canopy! So not a single part. This is rather unusual and I needed to slice off a 1 mm cross section with a razor saw as the total length was too long.
Inside the canopy, a central mirror for the instructor was added and a pair of mirrors in the front frame from scrap.
The canopy set and the model was ready!
[ area: 117,600 sq.km | capital: Asmara | population 6 million | GDP per capita US$ 1250 nominal ]
The conflict with Ethiopia in 1998 led to the acquirement of not only MiG-29's but also Su-27 Flankers as also Ethiopia opponents had these. Apparently a few ex-Ukrainian refurbished Su-27S and a Su-27UB trainer were put into service in 2003 by no.6 squadron at Asmara though the actual number of Flankers acquired is unclear but probably total about 10.
More information about the Eritrea air force can be found on my MiG-21 page here...
Eritrea Su-27UB, c/n 96310424045, ex-Ukraine "1407" of Ukraine 831 regiment, blue "82"; now Eritrea "609"
Note the painted "fake canopy" on the lower nose and front of gear door.
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Created this page
Oct 5, 2022