Time once again for the weekly construction update. Firstly, the jinx plaguing this build manifested yet again. The long awaited second Special Hobby B-18 arrived right on time from Hannants, bringing with it the needed nose transparency for my HAD subject. Or so I thought. Upon opening the box, I discovered the same clear sprue as is in the kit I already had on the bench. Initially I figured I had gotten the wrong sprue, but on closer examination I discovered that the difference between the variants was not only in the clear parts, but that Special Hobby had tooled two different fuselages to account for the different nose configurations! You can argue whether that decision is clever or whether it is ridiculous, but it was absolutely unanticipated on my part.
What this means is that the B-18 I have been working on cannot be finished as either of the two known HAD ships and so has been re-boxed and moved to the Shelf of Doom, the first kit so fated in roughly the last twenty years or so. If I can research a proper ASW scheme I will finish it in that and take another shot at the HAD scheme with the new kit. The problem of the too-narrow canopy is still unresolved, and for the moment I have lost the mojo to keep fighting it. However I was able to resist the impulse to test-fly the model across the modeling room, so score a small victory there.
On to better news. The two B-17s are camouflaged and glossed, and I had enough Starfighter decal sheets in the stash to recover from last week’s insignia masking debacle. I was able to determine colors and patterns on visible sections of the airframes from photographs and make some educated guesses based on other HAD birds for the areas not shown. The photographs show five colors were used, although not all five may have been used by HAD on all aircraft (the B-18 only used four colors). I mixed the colors to match the chips in the Monogram Guide using Testors paints (which mostly behaved well this time). The colors depicted here are: Dark Olive Drab 41, Sand 26, Neutral Gray 43, Rust Brown 34, and Interior Green. Here are the models: