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Build report: Tamiya’s 1/48 Dornier Do335A Pfeil

Gas and grocery prices continue to climb, and the first thing that often suffers is the modeling budget. So finding a bargain is always a great thing. Parker Ewing made a great find- and shares the story and the photos with us.

I’m picky with my stash. I only buy things I know I’ll build, and have never let it rise over about 30 kits. Each one sits on the shelf, slowly filling with aftermarket accessories….but that’s another story.

Although this kit was lauded as being great and such, I wasn’t really into Dornier’s, so I never acquired it. That is until one day Hobby Lobby had them on clearance for $9.00 each….so I bought three on general principle. They gathered dust until I saw a spectacular build of it on the internet. Don’t know about you, but I’m most often inspired by others modeller’s builds. I’m a total sucker for all those model books and magazines…they dominate my reference section.

So that’s how this one got started. I went from zero interest to obsession in two days. The aftermarket stuff I used followed my trend of using one or two pieces to reveal some internals and add depth while maintaining the lines of the fuselage. The gas tank and exhausts were CMK items, the wheels True Details, and the flaps were Verlinden.

I love dropped flaps on aircraft and always try to add it when possible. When cutting flaps, I always use the thin circular cutting blade on my dremel and cut the two short ends of the flap all the way through. Then I start scoring the long flap panel with a new #11 blade. After only 10 swipes or so, you’d be amazed how easily the flap will snap off using finger pressure. The line is perfectly straight without any bows and cleaning up requires only a light once over with a file. The gas tank area was done in the same way but without the luxury of ‘finger snapping’. It’s very difficult to correct if you cut too much…so I conjured up some patience and went slowly and carefully.

Construction was vintage Tamiya and I hurried up to get to the painting. I prime everything with Mr. Surfacer or Tamiya primers. Whatever paint step I’m on, I lightly sand the surface in between sessions. I know it’s right when I run my finger across the surface and it feels no different than glass. I avoid gloss coats at all costs because they add a slight orange peel to the surface which maddens me and tend to darken paint colors…so usually I paint all my markings. If I’m adding stencils, I’ll grudgingly spray future in tiny little spots to accommodate them.

One thing I tried a little bit differently on this one is I added a Pollyscale satin as a finish to give it a bit of a sheen, and I post shaded with my airbrush. At the time I had just acquired an Iwata Custom Micron. This was supposed to be the ‘granddaddy of them all’ and I was fired up to use it. I mixed up a 90/10 ratio of alcohol and brown black paint, spraying it very lightly selected areas and streaking the sides.

So there’s my first Dornier. Two weeks of fun for 9 bucks…..can’t beat that with a stick. I challenge my wife all the time to find something comparable, but we all know that will never happen.

My name is Parker Ewing, and I’m 39 years old and blessed with a wonderful wife and three wild little boys. I became a Christian at 21 but didn’t discover modeling until around seven or years ago. For me, the hobby is the perfect storm of history, patience and skill. My biggest challenge is prioritizing modelling time and not going overboard with it. I’ll admit I’ve sat through a few sermons thinking about the seams on that B-17. That said, it keeps me home, occupied, and has even made me a little money. Any questions or advice is more than welcomed. I can be reached anytime phudson33@aol.com.

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