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1/3rd Classic Scale Tiger Moth -

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Hi all,

Well here I go again. Another big scale build. I must be addicted to cyano fumes or something or maybe I'm just certifiable..

This will be the build of all builds for me and when you see the kit contents I think you will understand why.

First of all here is a photo and the video that will be my inspiration..


The photo and video is of a model that has been throught the hands of a couple of the Dawn Patrol. It was built in 1992 by modelling supremo Peter Neate.
When I first saw it I fell in love and spent a bit of time trying to buy one, but despite seing a few Practical Scale ones, I couldnt see anything that matched the quality of the Classic Scale one.
I had all but given up, but one day whilst sitting idly on another forum - actually reading the posts about the Moth above, someone posted the following "I have a Classic Scale kit for sale"....A KIT - A COMPLETE AND UNSTARTED KIT!!! - These are rarer than rocking horse droppings!
Without hesitation I bought it - £700 for a 20 year old kit...Had I gone mad??...
Well that was March 2013 - the kit has been staring at me for almost 2 years - The 1/3rd scale Mick Reeves Pup is finished, the 1/4 Scale Fokker Dviii is in the stages of the last bit of weathering, so there is no reason to put it off any longer...


Edited By Jez Harris 1 on 08/12/2014 04:57:48

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So...Just what on earth possessed me to cough uo £700 for a box of wood?

Well, there isnt actually too much wood - especially not much balsa...

There are mouldings - lots of them...

moth 001.jpg

And some more..Fuel tank.

moth 002.jpg

And more..

moth 003.jpg

And more..Close up here of the crash pads, dashboards and instruments - you cant tell from the picture but they look like leather.

moth 004.jpg

This marvellous lump is the exhaust system - or is it the engine mount?...No wait its both...specifically for a Zenoah 62.

moth 005.jpg

In its installed orientation..ish..

moth 006.jpg

Its like Christmas - most of these bits havent been unwrapped before!


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On to the other bits then..

Here is where it gets serious...Kits are either laser cut or Die-stamped/crushed or cut - yeah?

moth 007.jpg

Err no! - this is 100% hand cut!! and there are hundreds of pieces. - much of the kit is mirror ply so a lot of intricate work has gone into it.

moth 008.jpg

Like these ribs for the horizontal stabiliser......

moth 009.jpg

moth 010.jpg


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And there is also the teensy weensy matter of a bit of metal work...

Struts..Which you may think are just a few profiled brass tubes...moth 011.jpg

Some are but others are ready to go..moth 012.jpg

Then there is the undercarriage...

moth 014.jpg

The detail is stunning..

moth 015.jpg

2 different springs for shock absorbing and damping..

moth 016.jpg

The aluminium training edges are pre-bent for the rudder outline.

moth 013.jpg


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So - A bit more wood then!

All hand cut again..

moth 020.jpg

I cannot imagine the time this lot must have taken!

moth 021.jpg

Some ribs..

moth 022.jpg

The ribs slide onto the spars so all the little boxes must have taken a while.

moth 023.jpg

Plenty of dead straight spars and stuff.

moth 024.jpg

Even the hinge line for the elevators are pre-drilled to take robart pin hinges

moth 025.jpg

As are key points at the ends of the main spars..

moth 026.jpg

Getting near the bottom of the box now...Here is some ply for the deckings..

moth 031.jpg


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And then you come accross THE PACKAGE...

This is part of what makes this model unique - its what transforms a model into a replica in my opinion..

moth 032.jpg

Inside are 6 sheets of metal brackets, plates, fixings, etc that when folded up, soldered and screwed or bolted into place will reproduce every detail on a Tiger Moth...Some of these will be fully visible whilst others just sit under the covering creating the outline of the bracket throught the fabric.

moth 033.jpg

moth 034.jpg

moth 035.jpg

Aluminium too - note how the cowling side cheeks are cut ready for the hinges - not that 'hinges' are supplied - however you do get the pieces you need to build them....

moth 036.jpg

moth 037.jpg

moth 038.jpg

I think I will be learning a few new skills here..


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Too be fair its not bad - there are some drawings of individual components and its reasonbly clear. I'm sure I will muck up at some point with this one though.

moth 041.jpg

How about the plans then.

Errr...some of them are a bit err..Ahem..Airfix?

moth 043.jpg

The rest are just....


moth 044.jpg

Nothing that taking my time, and reading things over and over and over again wont sort..

And when that fails there is always good old Mr Ian Redshaw - He has built a couple of these in his time so I think I will be alright..


Edited By Jez Harris 1 on 08/12/2014 05:54:04

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Jez, you are such a lucky blighter to find a kit for this fantastic model, or miniature replica. I would love another and might even be tempted to re acquire the model in the video! Chosen a scheme yet? My two were all built from the plan using the metal parts and mouldings. One thing that I would say is essential is on the bracketry for holding the wings on and other loaded ares like the u/c. When you get there, the bolts that hold the panels on need washers soldering onto the brackets. This makes the brackets last much longer and makes them 'servicable' in that you can simply take the washer off and solder on another. Just softy solder is best.

Jealous is not what I am, honest!!!


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Ok, so it all looked good, but then I started..

First job was get all of the pieces together - so a few ribs, a couple of hardwood spars with the hinge points already drilled ready to go, a couple of pieces of metal work etc.

The assembly process is to build the stabiliser as a keel structure - however its not just the stab - you also build the elevators at the same time - simple enough it sounds...

This is the first part - the centre plate for the stab.


Next up the ribs..

Look at the cut outs..Iyou have to install all the ribs onto the balsa core, then slide both the spars through the cut outs and then slide 2 more balsa cores through each elevator half. Imagine building one of those kiddy chuck gliders..only a lot more awkward.

It was a right pain - firstly most of the cut outs needed a bit of ---loving! - they had to be filed out to allow the spars to slide through them to prevent the wood splitting.

Secondly all the instructions tell you to do is "assemble the pieces over the plan" - Cheers for that!

It took a few goes to get everything in the right order and sitting properly.


Here is the assembled keel, spar, and rib assembly - note the drill bits poking through the spars - I put these in to ensure the pre-drilled holes lined up. I would have preferred to have drilled these after I think as lining the spars up, and the keels and the ribs was a nightmare - you cant glue it as you go along really



Next up was forming the leading edge - simple enough as you are provided with a length of 6mm aluminium tubing which you simply bent to shape over the plan using brute force and patience.


This was then glued to the cut-outs in the nose of each rib using epoxy - here is my way of dealing with epoxy - lots of stirrers from coffee shops and a stash of post it notes. just mix up your glue on the post-it note, use it, then tear of the sheet and stick it and the stirrer in the bin.


Getting to this stage took over 5 hours - none of that was waiting for glue to dry as its simply a case of positioning everything then sloshing thin cyano over the joints. It was just a lot of faffing around and brain work.

Still, silver solder is on order for the brasswork and I've bought a bottle of drain cleaner to pickle the metalwork in before and after soldering.


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Much fun! I did that job full-size four years ago on our Tiger. I was worried for a second that you might have the spars fitted the wrong way up because the hinge points are nearer the top than the bottom, they look symmetrically drilled on the kit according to the plan.

I have loads of detail photos of the fin/tailplane/elevator uncovered and their fittings if you need anything in particular. There are some photos in the Falcon Tiger Moth thread.

Keep going!



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