WIP: AMT/ERTL A-Wing Part 1

Already Started on the Next Model

With having today off work, and being quite pleased with the result of the X-Wing, I thought I’d crack on with a “new” simple model.  Although I still have a Blood Claw on the go, and had started looking at my old Millennium Falcon again, I wanted a smaller model to chip away at too.  The one I chose was one I bought around 6 or 7 years ago from eBay; an old AMT/ERTL A-Wing.

This is quite a basic kit, doesn’t have much detail and has raised panel lines, but it’s got an old school feel to it that makes me feel a bit nostalgic.

The A-Wing itself is a bit unusual for Rebel Alliance ships in that it’s not got a whole bunch of greeblies on it like the other craft (I suppose the X-Wing is pretty streamlines too), and has more organic curves to it.  I believe that by Return of the Jedi they could start using rounded canopies due to improvements in filming technology – it’s why in previous movies all the canopies were made of flat window panes.

It’s not my favourite Rebel ship, but it’s an interesting shape, and I picked up the kit really cheap.  The box was damaged, and I remember when I received it just thinking that I’d put it in the stash for the future.  Today, that day finally arrived.

i haven’t got a picture of all the parts on sprue, but I can tell you it’s quite a brittle plastic, and not the greatest molding in the world; compared to the modern Fine Molds or Bandai Star Wars kits it feels low quality, but it does have a certain charm to it.

For a change, I thought I’d try to follow the assembly instruction order (rather than starting with pilot and cockpit as I would normally), so first point of call were the two engines and tails.  The exhaust was a really oddly shaped part, with three round bumps on it that seemed out of place.  Even if intentionally present and part of the kit, I didn’t like the look of it, so I shaved them flat with my trusty hobby knife, and used my mold line scraper to clean it up.  I then cleaned up all the other edges and sprue connection points,

With older model kits like this there’s more to clean up as often the connection points are on visible areas, so it’s important to get these bits smooth.  There are gaps, so I’m going to have to break out the putty and fill them up before I can even think about painting.  It’s going to be a little tricky painting the inside of the exhausts with the engines put together, but if I really wanted to paint the, before assembly, I’d pretty much have to paint the whole model unassembled, which with needing some gap filling would have been messy.

Once both engine and fin sub-assemblies were done, there’s a kind of backplate that links them.  This was attached, and I took quite a bit of care to make sure that this was at 90 degree angles.  There’s a weird kind of flattend figure eight piece still to attach form this step, but it didn’t quite fit too easily, and I was in two minds over whether to paint this bit first, as you can see between the parts.  For now I’ve not decided, so will leave it off until I’ve had a think about it and made a choice.

Where I’m up to so far:

For those who know this ship well, you might notice that the kit doesn’t attempt to replicate the curvature of the tail fins, they are slightly angled (the angle should be more pronounced), but there is no curvature there.  I may think about warming the plastic up a little and bending it, however I’m a little wary of how brittle this plastic is – I get the feeling it won’t bend very well even when warmed up.  It may be best not to gamble on this one.

There you have it, another “double-post” day hahaha

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