Sopwith Baby
by Graham Hunter

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This is the old Eduard kit that many of you know. However I am only using about 5% to 10% of the kit. The rest of this build will be scratched. Actually the only parts from the kit that are used are the wings, the fin, rudder and of course the ample PE.

First up were the wings, which were in need of some surgery. When placed on Data File drawings I discovered that the cord was 2.5mm too wide, so I took it off the leading edge and reshaped the wings to match the drawings. Also at this time the starving cow ribs were made healthy, ailerons were cut out and then decal rib tapes applied. The decal ribs used were of a wood colour to create a shadow effect for the CDL. I also painted roundels on under sides of wings for shadow effect.

Second was the rear fuselage frame. This is constructed using soldered square brass rod. Cross bracing is done with ceramic wire. Turtle deck formers are made from plastic stock and S/S wire stringers.
Third was the tail feathers. As the kit tailplane was for an early or Schneider I needed to scratch the correct tailplane. I laminated card stock (10 thou) with strips for frame detail. The fin and rudder were shaped to the drawings, Blue Max Camel decal finished off the rudder.
Fourth was the prop and struts carved from bass wood. I used an appropriately coloured felt pen for the staining of the wood and then sealed with thin CA.
Next was the wicker seat. First attempt ended up with too much CA in the weave and the vertical .wicker. was not crossed so second attempt was made.
Next came the front fuselage framing and vacformed cowl. Again the frame is made from square brass rod.
The last step that I have done is the cockpit assembly. I used a fair amount of bass wood for detail pieces of the cockpit dash, foot rest panels, and rudder bar. The decking is 1/32 inch bass wood sheet thinned to about 0.005, stained with thinned oil paint and sealed with Future. The combing is a ring cut from 0.020 plastic card with thread holes drilled around and then threaded to wood with 0.003 Dai-Riki.
This has been a 3 year project to date, however there have been other life interruptions to the build in that time span. Some schooling, family, and modelers block.
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