MIRAGE A3-51


1/32 Revell Mirage IIIO A3-51 of 2OCU


by Paul 'Changa' Mason


Introduction

Serial No: A3-51
Mirage type: RAAF Mirage III/O (A)
Based at: 2 Operational Conversion Unit (2OCU), Williamtown, NSW, circa 1967
Markings:  According to Motty, this was another of Changa's favourite Mirage markings-Natural metal.  The tail markings in this style was called, 'Sunburst'.
Reference: Paul 'Changa' Mason, Mirage IIIO-Colours and Markings pg. 29
Kit: 1/32 Revell Mirage III with resin cockpit and ejection seat. Some scratch building and a re-scribe were also required.  Most of the markings were hand painted by Paul.
Photos courtesy of Darren 'Motty' Mottram

The kit

(posted with the original article submitted at the time)

I am not happy with the finish as I had to re-do parts of it up to 4 times. The seat hasn't been done, the nose gear landing lights have not been installed, I didn't flatten the wheels as Mirage wheels didn't get a big bulge and I hate the "cut off" look that sanding a flat spot on model wheels gives, so I didn't flatten them. There are few mistakes but after the hassle of having to strip and re-paint it 4 times I was glad to see the back of it.

The finish is done with Testors metalliser on the wings with a gloss clear cote, the fuselage is a mix of Testors metalliser, Humbol metal cote and SnJ paint all with SnJ powder buffed into them to get the different tones.

The cockpit is the Planes Bits conversion, which is a shocker. The resin is some of the worst I have seen, I had to do a lot of modifying, cutting and sanding and adding lots of cables and lines just to get it to look like the real thing. I didn't use their seat as 1. the early Mirage I modelled had the OM4 seat and the resin seat is an OM6 and 2. the resin seat is wrong and not the best, I'll scratch build my own.The gear doors are also from the resin set and again needed heaps of work as they not up to par, same as the nose wheel well, very badly cast.

The landing gear copped a going over, being detailed with hydraulic lines and the like.

I also cut out of plastic card a flush Doppler panel.

I used a home made Pounce wheel (courtesy of Darren Mottram) to add all the rivets, that was the longest part of the whole build (other than the re paints, but I won't go there again)

The kit engine also received the one over with the A/B gaining corrugated ribbed liner, which is scale railway stock for making water tanks and roofs, I also cut down the A/B petals and added an internal row as per the real thing.

The Mirage isn't finished, I will get it completed one day, but it has come out okay I suppose, not as good as I hoped but presentable.



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