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Pack 4 - Stage 27. Completing the cockpit.

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Stage 27 gives us the pilot's seat and we complete the cockpit assembly.  A lot to do in this stage!


Firstly, we applied;y the decal to the instrument panel.  Most people will float the decal in a saucer of water, but I prefer to dip the decal in water and then rest it on something to let the paper soak.  I scalpel handle is perfect, but there are a thousand other places, the top of a paint jar, edge of the cutting mat, etc, etc.  I do it this was as it avoids any chance of the decal floating off and you having to chase it round around the saucer of water which will risk damaging the decal and may wash the glue off.


Once it slides easily on the paper, carefully slide it into position.  You can use cocktail sticks and/or a paint brush to manoeuvre it into position.  Blot any excess water with a cotton bud or piece of tissue, then leave it undisturbed to dry.


Now to fit the seat.  If you recall from the last stage, I left off one of the seat brackets to make it easier to fit the seat.  If you didn't do this, you will need to trim off one of the pins on the seat back to get the seat to fit inside the brackets.  The seat will still be held securely by the remaining pin.

Put the seat in position, sliding one pin in to the bracket, and fitting the bottom pins into the bulkhead.


Here's a close-up o fit right side.


The left side still needs the bracket.


Which fits like this.  I recommend (insist!!) that you test fit the complete seat before committing with glue.  Make sure everything fits easily.  This top bracket is still a bit tricky to fit.  You might find it easier to fit the top bracket before gluing the bottom mounting points in place.  The instructions say don't glue the pins into the top seat brackets, but it really doesn't matter.


The seat belts seemed to have a life of their own, so I glued them in place with a couple of spots of UHU All Purpose Adhesive.  Other brands ar available, but note that this is actually a contact adhesive, not a PVA glue.  PVA won't give a strong joint onto plastic..


Next, glue in the seat adjusting lever.  Unfortunately I forgot to take photo of this..... but it's straight forward! 

Now we come to assembling the cockpit sides and instrument panel.  I suggest dry fitting the three parts and then running some superglue into the joints with a cocktail stick.  Capillary action will draw the glue into the joint.

Hold the port panel in place.


The bottom fits to the cockpit floor like this.


Put the instrument panel in place.  It's a little tricky to get the pins properly located, but it fits easily once they are aligned properly.  It's little easier if you remove the cockpit lights (glad I didn't glue them!) and they are easily refitted after to cockpit is assembled.


Add the starboard side.  Once everything is securely located, apply glue to the joints while holding the sides together.  


The rear bulkhead is next.  This goes in easily.


The view from the rear.


Wiring next.  Refit the cockpit lights if necessary, and route the wires as shown.  A small flat bladed screwdriver is useful to push the wires into the clips, but be careful not to damage the insulation.


Push the plugs into the sockets.


Add the partition wall (aka fire wall) and screw it in place.  Be careful not to trap any wires.


Note how the pins on the machine gun bodies fit into the partition wall.


Push the oil tank into place.


Glue the engine mount into place.  Test fit this first and make sure the pins go all the way into the holes.  Scrape some paint off the pins if necessary.


That completes this stage.  Here are a few gratuitous beauty shots of the cockpit showing off the lovely detail!!




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