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FGR.1 Phantom II

by Mike Kean


FGR.1 Phantom II


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I am not going to get into a history lesson on the McDonnell-Douglas famous F-4 Phantom II. Anyone with even a slight interest in military aviation will probably have some knowledge of this aircraft. However, since I have never seen this aircraft in real life (yet - I live in hope), I can best sum it up like this:

“A machine comes on a practice diversion to our timid training command airfield. We all tumble to watch it go round the pattern. It cruises through the circuit in and our, trailing long plumes of smoke from its smoky engines.

The pilot bends it around the sky in a startling display of reverberating thunder. Our trainers are also in the air, but they are minute in comparison and they are silent compared to the muted thunder of this beast. Its great bulk is full of menace, threatening; indeed the trainers are forced to climb out of the way because it overhauls them rapidly in the pattern. To me, it looks evil and brutal , a bull shark entering a pool full of minnows and pilot fish, a dreadnought battle cruiser surrounded by trawlers.



It departs suddenly, in an appropriately spectacular fashion , accelerating vividly around the finals turn , blasting past over our heads with its tail on fire and then pulling up to punch a hole through the clouds , its bulk belying its speed . When its gone , the trainers drop back into the pattern , fluttering down to buzz around the circuit , like clockwork motors in comparison to the war machine that has just departed . This makes the ultimate impression on me... “

I know what you are thinking , and yes , I copied this from a book called "F-4 Phantom , A Pilot's Story" by Robert Prest  I did not have much knowledge of the British Phantoms , so I needed to obtain a large amount of information about this aircraft as it differed significantly from its American counterpart. The most notable difference is the engines as the British used the Rolls Royce Spey engine as opposed to the American J–79’s . Thus the intakes were a little bigger on the British ones as well.





This is Hasegawa's 1/48 scale FGR.1 Phantom II kit in 1/48 scale

The kit is presented in Hasegawa's typical quality with engraved panel lines and very few fit problems. The kit comes with rubber tires and metal rims.

The model was built basically out of the box with the exception of the scratch built missile covers.

The cockpit has all raised details so a good paint job with the combination of dry brushing is certainly pleasing to the eye.

I wasn’t too fond of the seats supplied with the kit so I used True Details seats for this project.


RBF tags were added to the cockpit and a boarding ladder
(thanks to David Aungst) completed this area of the kit..



Painting and Decals


I finished the model using Gunze acrylics.

Since RAF Phantoms were painted without a soft edge , I used “fun tac” for masking off the camouflage scheme. This gave me the hard edge I was looking to achieve.

The various shades of metal work on the kit were depicted using Alclad II and Testor's Metalizer paints.



I then applied a coat of Future to the model in preparation for panel line work. I used a black wash of thinned enamel paint on all the panel lines on the aircraft. I then used a post shading technique to further enhance the subtle but weathered look of the dirty Phantoms.

The decals were used but I felt that they were a bit thick , even after solvaset setting solution. I recommend aftermarket decals instead of Hasegawa's rather thick kit items. I applied another coat of Future to seal the decals and finished it off with a coat of Gunze Flat Clear.





This was a fun kit to build. It took some researching, but I obtained a lot of the information on this aircraft from a friend's book collection, and the afore mentioned book by Robert Prest.



I plan on doing another one in the future as I obtained an F-4 Black Box cockpit set.

This kit comes highly recommended.



Additional Images


Click on the thumbnails below to view larger images:

Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2002 by Mike Kean
Page Created 14 December 2002
Last updated 04 June 2007

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