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Online Extra: Painting Monogram's Wildcat

How to apply a simple scheme to an Eastern Division FM-1 (Grumman F4F-4) Wildcat
RELATED TOPICS: PAINTING | AIRCRAFT
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In the October 2019 issue, I showed you how to correct the details and add missing panel lines to Monogram’s 1/48 scale Wildcat, a classic yet slightly clunky kit. You can get a copy of the issue here.

Now I’ll show you my simple process for painting it as an FM-1 (Grumman F4F-4) Wildcat built by the Easter Aircraft division of General Motors. Click on a photo to enlarge it.

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First, I tackled the canopy. I masked it and applied chromate green with a brush around the joint. This was allowed to dry.
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Then I applied Mr. Surfacer 1000 over the painted area. When this was dry, I wrapped sandpaper around the tip of a hardwood dowel sharpened in a pencil sharpener and blended the joint with careful sanding.
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I airbrushed chromate green over the entire canopy.
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For a homemade painting stand, I secured my display rod in a pair of sliding bar clamps and wrapped it in masking tape. I applied flat white primer to identify flaws, which I filled with GSI Creos’ Mr. Surfacer. After these blemishes were fixed, I re-applied the flat white. When this was dry, I masked the location of the national insignia on the upper port wing with a round garage sale sticker and drafting tape.
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Loose note card masks were applied to the fuselage and empennage (tail assembly). I then sprayed a coat of Testors RAF medium sea gray for the upper surface color. After this was dry to the touch, I removed the masks, then set the model aside to dry thoroughly.
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I then carefully brush-painted the engine cylinders with Testors steel non-buffing Metalizer and applied Testors gray enamel on the crankcase.
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To paint the observation windows and tires, I cut and applied masks of drafting tape. A freezer bag protected the rest of the model as I airbrushed Testors gunship gray to these areas.
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When done, I again set the model aside to allow the paint to settle and dry for a couple of days. Then I inspected it using my Mag Lite flashlight; a few sink spots and blemishes were found, fixed, and repainted on the upper wings.
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As I retouched the paint job, I softened the look of the camouflage demarcation with some careful freehand work. After these coats of paint were thoroughly dry, I airbrushed Dullcote over the entire model.

Now I could draw on the panel lines that were lost in construction. Read how I added the many, many lines by picking up the October 2019 issue here.
Here you can see a few shots of the finished Wildcat and its base.

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