1/48 Special Hobby Reggiane Re.2005 Sagittario

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Thanks all for the feedback and information -it's greatly appreciated. I've been beavering away on this kit hoping to get it progressed before I inevitably lose some motivation! Lots to put up in this post...

Having set up the cockpit I proceeded with the installation of it and the tailwheel well. Sadly both did not sit comfortably within the fuselage - this was expected having done some dry fitting when I had the fuselage and wings mocked up at the beginning. The biggest pain with the cockpit was the armoured head plate. According to the instructions the kit part was to be glued directly above the panel behind the seat. In theory this looked great but the problem was it resulted in the head plate being nearly 2mm too high to fit into the fuselage. I fluffed around trying to re-jig the kit piece but ended up binning it and made one from plastic card (head cushioning yet to be fashioned to fit). Similarly the tailwheel well was great in concept but the only connection to the fuselage was along the joint lines (just above the "molded in place" gear doors) and it was almost impossible to get a proper alignment and a positive fit once both halves were together. I ended up pegging the "box" to the fuselage with a piece of sprue at the top to make sure it was securely fixed in place.
021_RE.2005 Cockpit Installation Issue.jpg 022_RE.2005 Tailwheel Well Installation Issue.jpg
The other issue I encountered with closing up the fuselage was the gaps in the seams. I had to scrape styrene back from each mating surface (especially on the tail) so that all the gaps were sufficiently closed to negate too much filling and sanding. This was compounded by the twist in the fuselage halves that I noted in an earlier post. No matter which way I twisted or pushed the halves around I ended up with alignment issues with either edges or panel lines. I ended up with a bit of an each way bet where nothing aligned perfectly... :banghead:. You can see from the photos there is work still to be done around the cockpit to get seams and the like ready for fitment of the cockpit.
023_RE.2005 Fuselage Close Tail Seam.jpg 024_RE.2005 Cockpit Armour Head Panel Partial Clean Up.jpg 025_RE.2005 Fuselage Bottom Seam.jpg 026_RE.2005 Fuselage Top Seam.jpg
The other job I have been working on is clearing out the supercharger air intake and the exhaust stubs. I found in references that the intake was pretty much a hollow tube without any dust filters fitted, so I proceeded to drill out the centre once I'd joined the two halves. Other things I noticed in reference photos were that the leading ends of the exhaust stub shrouds were open and in the gap you could see the curvature of the leading exhaust header pipe. The detail is probably overkill, but I like to think its the little details that all add up to making the kit look more realistic once done.
027_RE.2005 Supercharger Intake Clearing.jpg 028_RE.2005 Supercharger Intake Clearing Finished.jpg 029_RE.2005 Supercharger & Exhaust Fairing Clearing.jpg 030_RE.2005 Exhaust Fairing Clearing & Scratched Header.jpg 031_RE.2005 Exhaust Fairing Clearing & Scratched Header.jpg
Having done the exhaust shrouds I moved onto the stubs themselves. As you can see they have quite an amount of flash to be removed. I did check to see if there was a raised seam on the real exhausts but all photos appeared to show the seams were ground flat - with a colour variation the only evidence that they may have been two halves welded together.
032_RE.2005 Exhaust Flash.jpg 033_RE.2005 Exhaust Flash.jpg
Once cleaned up I moved onto drilling out the stub ends. I did make an assumption that the exhaust stub from the first cylinders on either side were concealed under the front shroud panel. If this is true then an exhaust outlet should be visible if you look forward along the exhausts - I drilled out a section of the shroud front to represent this hidden stub which you can see in the attached shots.
035_RE.2005 Exhaust Clearance.jpg 036_RE.2005 Exhaust Mockup.jpg 034_RE.2005 Exhaust Clearance.jpg
I do have some more work and photos to post, but I have run out of time today. I will try to put up another post tomorrow with the remaining work done which will bring this thread up to date with my progress.

As always - thanks for taking a look at my project. Constructive criticism, comments and feedback are always appreciated (still learning and experimenting).

Found a couple of spare minutes to post the last couple of photos to bring us up to date with this build.

Special Hobby, in their wisdom(?), decided to provide a separate panel in the nose to show the gun recesses. Its a good idea in theory and gave me a chance to actually drill out the gun holes in preparation for adding some details back up in under the fairing as you can see if you zoom in a bit on this photo. More work is to come on this bit later.
038_RE.2005 Engine Cowl Gun Channels Opened.jpg
Where it all came apart was when I placed the panel into the fuselage and looked back along the top to see how well the guns aligned. Sadly, the part sat rotated off to the port side with the gun recesses not appearing symmetrically on the top of the fuselage. After a bit of measuring and checking what was what I realised that the recesses in the fuselage halves were not even - you can see this clearly in the next photo where I have placed a ruler across the fuselage cut out to compare it with the vertical axis. The bright red line is the bottom of the ruler and the yellow line is perpendicular to the vertical axis and parallel to the line of the block on which the fuselage has been anchored. By way of measurement it was out by almost a full 1mm.
039_RE.2005 Engine Cowl Gun Panel Fit Issue.jpg
The only solution I could come up with that didn't substantially change the shape of the nose too much was to file back 0.5mm of the starboard cut-out and to add a 0.5mm shim to the port side. In this way I was hoping to keep the insert panel "centred" correctly on the fuselage. You might be able to just make out the pencilled line down the centre of this panel that I was using to help ensure I kept it all as straight and even as possible.
040_RE.2005 Engine Cowl Gun Panel Fit Shim.jpg 041_RE.2005 Engine Cowl Gun Panel Fit Solution.jpg
It's all been a bit messy, but I hope that I have it under control now.

Fingers crossed I can get a little bit more time at the bench tonight.

Cheers all.
A bit more to report on this project today.

The large underwing radiator has needed quite a bit of attention to ensure that it fits snugly once offered up to the wing. I spent quite a lot of time thinning the leading and trailing edges of the panel as well as making sure it sits flush on the wing panel - you can see my file marks on the radiator core panels in the first shot. The other thing I changed was to scratch a replacement radiator splitter vane from 0.5mm styrene card. I placed the kit part next to it for comparison - it was just too thick and chunky, especially after going to the trouble of thinning the panel edges.
042_RE.2005 Underwing Radiator Refinements.jpg 043_RE.2005 Underwing Radiator Refinements.jpg
Next up I tackled the starboard wheel well. The kit has some really good detail in this area, but the parts are a bit let down by large amounts of flash and mold seams on all the parts. This is particularly problematic when doing the shafts in this section. The seams push the shafts out of round and when they have to fit through the holes a fair bit of shaping and profiling is required to make it all fit as it should. Great detail but let down by the molds.
044_RE.2005 Starboard Main Wheel Well.jpg 045_RE.2005 Starboard Main Wheel Well.jpg
Finally, I got to work on clearing out the gun channels on the top of the fuselage. The way they were molded just did not cut it for me - in no way did they suggest that the guns were mounted back up the nose. So as I think I showed in an earlier post I drilled out the channels and, as you can see in the second shot, extended out the channel by obliquely fitting some cut back styrene tube. The effect is to deepen the channels back up into the nose and make it appear the guns are indeed mounted further back up in front of the cockpit. The plastic card you see glued to the top edge of the insert panel is to slightly extend its length. The cut out in the fuselage was not well aligned front to back with about 0.25mm offset. I tried to smooth this offset out a bit, but this only served to make the panel sit a bit skewed in the gap. To fix properly I squared up the fuselage cut out and added this length ways shim to the panel so that it fits snugly into place. Probably a bit over the top but it bugged me that it didn't sit straight.
046_RE.2005 Gun Channels Mod.jpg 047_RE.2005 Gun Channels Mod.jpg
Will be moving on to the port side wheel well tomorrow - might have some progress to update (or not if I get lazy...).

Thanks again for looking in on my project.
Thanks Berny5664 Berny5664 - I do have a copy of the book these shots are from, but your assistance is appreciated. I cant believe how complicated the undercarriage retraction system is on the 2005 - lots of weird angles and odd movements would have been required to get the legs up into the wings. The engineers that designed this were mad geniuses! :lol:

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