Author Topic: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.  (Read 1050 times)

Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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I have acquired several of the AMT-Ertl/Italeri A-20 Havoc kits and a number of extra ferry tanks from these kits over the past couple of years.  I was intrigued by the ferry tanks as they are intended to be attached to the bottom of the aircraft over the bomb bay doors.  Not a lot of detail to the things other than some rather vague scribing and some generic attachment points where the tank attached to the aircraft. 

Having no intention of ever using the things as described by the kit instructions I let the tanks alone for a while.  Occasionally coming back to visit them in an effort to find inspiration on what to do with the things.  While I have made some progress in assembling four of the things together the tank shapes that are glued back to back now resemble some kind of sarcophagus in shape and I am still undecided as to what direction to take next with the things. 

For now, I have one prototype that is glued together and all of the features have been sanded away leaving a smooth surface all around, at least it looked that way to the naked eye but under the cell phone camera I now see some obvious features that the sandpaper missed.  I suppose a good coat of paint will make that problem go away. 

Attached images to this post:

Image 1 - Three ferry tanks with two tanks facing down and one tank facing up to show the inside and outside details. 
Image 2 - Two ferry tanks glued together. 
Image 3 - Two ferry tanks glued together and the surface sanded smooth. 

The question about what to possibly do with these things.  Two things I have thought about are to make them life raft pods that could be mounted under the wing or fuselage.  The other option might be to make a very large fuel tank with oval cross-section that could be mounted under the wing or fuselage of larger aircraft. 

If you can imagine some other purpose for these things I am open to suggestions. 


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Offline elmayerle

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2017, 01:15:52 PM »
The two together look like they could also be a radome of some sort.  You'd probably need a faired support to mount it on top of or below an aircraft of your choice or fair it into the fuselage the way the "M&M" radome is faired into the bottom of the EP-3E and raised/lowered from the former weapons bay.

Offline Brian da Basher

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2017, 05:25:42 PM »
It's great to see you back having fun with plastic again, Mr Fontaine!

I think drop tanks are some of the most useful spare parts. The halves can be used for tinted canopies, air scoops, engine or landing gear fairings and as Our Resident Engineer said, radomes. I like your life raft canister idea too. 

Whole drop tanks make great engine fairings (like those for a Fokker or Ford tri-motor) in 1/72 scale or power eggs (just attach prop and pipes) in 1/144. Also you can make bombs by attaching fins (hello Bill!) cut from card.

HTH,
Brian da Basher


Offline ChernayaAkula

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2017, 12:58:26 AM »
A 1/48 drop tank with suitable bits from a 1/35 Willys Jeep. ;D
Cheers,
Moritz

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Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2017, 02:06:01 AM »
The two together look like they could also be a radome of some sort.  You'd probably need a faired support to mount it on top of or below an aircraft of your choice or fair it into the fuselage the way the "M&M" radome is faired into the bottom of the EP-3E and raised/lowered from the former weapons bay.
Turning a pair of these into a radome might work.  Size of these tanks glued together is slightly less than the radome found on the Shackleton, Avenger, Guardian, PB1W Flying Fortress in regards to width but the length is much greater.  With several of the Grumman Guardian kits in the stash and a couple of the old ESCI AD4W Skyraider AEW kits I am flush with radomes for that period/era of aviation. 

<snip>regarding your A-20 drop tank question, I suppose you could fashion a nice swimmer delivery vehicle from those.  8) Some fins, shrouded prop, some thingamabob for a control co sole and two Navy SEALs from a Dragon kit.
Funny that you should mention that bit about fins.  I did take a look at what I had in the parts bin for fins that would look appropriate for a pair of those tanks glued together.  So far nothing I have checked looks right.  As a submarine shape, now that might be interesting to take up, length is about the same as a 1:700 Jimmy Carter and it is about four typhoons in beam.  Rather portly looking but might make an excellent submarine tanker or perhaps a SDV in 1:72nd scale.  A lot of tiny bits would be needed to give it the right features, not sure I want to spend that much time on something not 1:48th or 1:35th scale but if anyone else feels up for the challenge I would be happy to send them a pair of tanks so they could make it happen. 

A 1/48 drop tank with suitable bits from a 1/35 Willys Jeep. ;D

You might be on to something with that suggestion Mortiz.  I will not do that but if someone else is interested, I can always send them a couple of tanks to try out. 

It's great to see you back having fun with plastic again, Mr Fontaine!

I think drop tanks are some of the most useful spare parts. The halves can be used for tinted canopies, air scoops, engine or landing gear fairings and as Our Resident Engineer said, radomes. I like your life raft canister idea too. 

Whole drop tanks make great engine fairings (like those for a Fokker or Ford tri-motor) in 1/72 scale or power eggs (just attach prop and pipes) in 1/144. Also you can make bombs by attaching fins (hello Bill!) cut from card.

HTH,
Brian da Basher

Thanks for the encouragement Brian, it is hard to find time to build even with all of the time in the world on my hands, it mostly comes down to being in the mood to model.  Granted the ongoing saga of sorting through all of the model parts accumulated over the years is a bit daunting and leads to a feeling of despair at times, I can often bounce out of that if I start putting plastic in my hands for the purpose of building something. 

As for ideas, I think Moritz has a great suggestion for turning a pair of the tanks into a buggy of some kind and the submersible/submarine.

Other ideas I have had are to consider the idea of huge wing tip fuel tanks (like those seen on early marks of Lockheed Neptunes) or as a gondola under the fuselage holding a large cannon of some kind (Henschel Hs-129).  The gun gondola might be the one with less effort as all you need to do is poke a hole in the front of the thing and stick in a gun barrel.  The fuel tank idea may work if you can get all four tanks to be as close to identical after sanding the external features off the surfaces.  That was one thing that really surprised me on the one set of tanks sanded smooth in the original post.  The engraved features were still there after all the sanding I did, kind of frustrating to be honest. 
« Last Edit: May 06, 2017, 02:38:33 AM by Jeffry Fontaine »
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Offline elmayerle

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2017, 12:22:39 PM »
Regarding submarine tankers, consider the raiding submarine tankers, with towed tankage, from Frank Herbert's Under Pressure.

Offline Klown

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2017, 09:21:47 AM »
Using half of one would be a good radome of some sort or the blisters and bumps you see on some AWAC's aircraft and Electronic warfare aircraft.

Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2017, 01:13:20 PM »
Using half of one would be a good radome of some sort or the blisters and bumps you see on some AWAC's aircraft and Electronic warfare aircraft.
Already considered that but I am flush with radome shapes and these fuel tanks are a bit on the narrow side as they are almost the same width as the A-20/P-70 Havoc.  On their side and glued together they would have enough width for a decent size radar antenna but using just one tank would limit you to a fairing for some ELINT/SIGINT/COMINT antennas.  Not much excitement in that.  :)
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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2017, 02:41:38 AM »
Obvious really:  turn them into entries for the Racing GB:


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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2017, 11:56:32 PM »
My father used P-38 drop tanks to make canoes during WW2. ;)
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Offline Story

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2017, 09:11:47 AM »
Gunpods, either under-wing or mounted to the side of the fuselage.



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Offline arkon

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Re: Fuel tanks and what to do with the excess things in the parts box.
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2017, 12:26:42 PM »
Airship maybe?
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