Eduard Mikoyan MiG-15 Royal Class Build in 1/72 Scale Part II

After the major assembly is complete comes the chore of sanding.  This is always a low point for me but it is unavoidable.  Overall the fit of these kits is good, but mine needed some work to eliminate the seams around the intake rings and the panel under the nose.  Nothing which can’t be cured with a little elbow grease.  There were minor gaps at the wing roots on a couple of the MiGs which were addressed with Perfect Plastic Putty.
My go-to primer is Mr. Surfacer 1000.  I checked all the seams and sanded and primed again to correct any errors.  The Mr. Surfacer is a good idea in general, but it is vital for a natural metal finish as it prevents flow lines in the plastic from showing through.  If a super shiny finish is the goal this is where you should start buffing, the smoother the surface the more reflective the final finish.
I will be using Alclad for the NMF on this one, so the model received a coat of the Alclad black primer.  The NMF is unforgiving, so any errors must be corrected at the priming stages or they will show through the finish.
Here it is under a coat of Alclad Dark Aluminum.  The Alclad dries quickly and results in a very hard and durable finish.  Still it is wise to keep handling the surface to a minimum so the model is moved and stored using the wire in the tailpipe.
The nose of this particular aircraft was painted red with a cutout for the side numbers.  I measured the decal for the numbers with dividers and then transferred that measurement to masking tape which was applied to the appropriate areas on each side of the nose.  Then I masked off the rear border of the color and enclosed the model in a plastic shopping bag.  I find red is a very persistent color, it always manages to find a way onto unwanted areas unless you take precautions.

Part III here: