Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-23ML, Trumpeter 1/48

Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-23ML, Trumpeter 1/48
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The MiG-23 Flogger is a variable-geometry fighter aircraft, designed by the Mikoyan-Gurevich design bureau in the Soviet Union (first flown in 1967). It belongs to the Soviet third-generation jet fighter category, along with similarly aged Soviet fighters such as the MiG-25 "Foxbat". It was the first attempt by the Soviet Union to design look-down/shoot-down radar and one of the first to be armed with beyond visual range missiles. Production started in 1970 and reached large numbers with over 5,000 aircraft built. Today the MiG-23 remains in limited service with some export customers (North Korea, Kazakhstan, Angola, Ethiopia, Congo, Cuba, Libya, Syria & Sudan). The basic design was also used as the basis for the Mikoyan MiG-27, a dedicated ground-attack variant. Among many minor changes, the MiG-27 replaced the MiG-23's nose-mounted radar system with an optical panel holding a laser designator and a TV camera.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Trumpeter kit in 1/48 scale

For this build I used Trumpeter’s Mig-23ML Flogger-G (No.02855) kit and Aires’s cockpit and wheel well resin parts.

After the basic build was complete, I prepared the model for the painting. I washed it with soap water to remove any grease from my hands and dust residues. The first stage started by spraying Mr. Surfacer 1200 primer to prepare the surface for the paint and detect any flaws. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The next stage was to give some shadow effect in the low surfaces using the preshade technique. I used Mig Ammo’s Rubber and Tire black.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The painting then began by airbrushing the lower surfaces of the model with Mr Hobby’s H417 RLM 76 Light Blue .The various shades and highlights were created by mixing the basic color with some drops of Tamiya’s XF-2 flat white.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the paint on the lower surfaces was completely dried, I masked the whole area and proceeded to the upper surfaces. I repeated the preshade technique for the upper surfaces using the A.Mig 033 Rubber and Tire flat black again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the upper surfaces a three-colour camouflage pattern was applied using mixes of Mr Hobby colours. For the lighter color (Sand) I used H318 radome as the basic shade and then added some drops of H27 tan and Tamiya’s XF-60 dark yellow. For the highlights I added some drops of Tamiya’s XF-2 flat white.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the brown shade I used Mr Hobby’s H310  brown with some drops of H72 dark earth to darken it. You could use H27 tan or add some drops of XF2 flat white to highlight the area’s. For the Green color I used Mr Hobby’s H420 RLM80 Olive green with a few drops of H65 black green added to darken it. For highlights I used H303 green. Blu-tak rolls were used in order to mark out the main camouflage pattern.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The radome and the dorsal fin’s grey area were painted with Mr Hobby’s H305 grey.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The masking tape was removed from the lower surfaces and I played a little bit with shadow effects by using the basic color with few drops of white.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the paint job was finished I gave the whole model a coat of clear gloss varnish from Ammo range.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I took a break to fix the landing gear. I applied a gloss black primer and then I sprayed the struts with Alclad’s Aluminium and added some metal foil to vary the metallic color. The wheels hubs were sprayed with Mr Hobby’s H319 light green and the tires with Mig Ammo Rubber black.The landing gear was weathered using Mig ammo’s streaking effects.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The decals were then applied and weathering stage began using PLW Green Brown for the green area, PLW Orange Brown for the sand and brown area on upper surfaces and PLW Black Night for the lower surfaces. Leave the paint to dry for two hours and then remove the excess with a cotton swab lightly dampened with thinners. Next stage was to enhance some panel lines and areas in both upper and lower surfaces. For that reason I used oils: Raw umber, Yellow ochre and Lamp black oils were used to apply some effects and give a realistic finish. Raw umber was applied to the brown shades of the camouflage, Yellow ochre to the sand and lamp black to all lower surfaces. For the wheel wells I used Mig Ammo’s oil stains/grease and PLW Black night.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The engine areas were then masked and painted with Alclad’s Aluminium and Stainless Steel.Then I weathered them (using the drybrush technique) with Mr Metal color’s Iron and Tamiya’s weathering Set F.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally I sprayed a matt varnish from Ammo and left the model to dry for several hours before touching it. This was an enjoyable and colorful project!

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