Sunday, September 04, 2016

Restoration Project: 1/48 ESCI/ERTL Sepecat Jaguar GR.1A





This is a very old kit compared to Airfix. It almost going to be in my spare box for parts before I realized that this could be very interesting subject!! Well, I'm on it and just try not to waste my old collection so I decided to continue to restore this kit and using as minimal aftermarket parts as possible. Looking in the net I was quite disappointed on the coverage of this particular ESCI/ERTL kit. As matter in fact there was none of ESCI/ERTL kit featured and Airfix kit was ruling the hot spot for the build-up/ review etc. I'm hoping this build-up will benefit for the owner of this lame, old plastic kit! Plastic will always be plastic... it's up to us how we gonna shape it! ;)



I bought that Airwaves Cockpit photoetched set recently... I've got it dirt cheap on the net so... just bundle it together and see what comes out..

here it is... all that is left...

Decals still in good shape (after 13 years)... But I don't know whether it will give out when decal application  process... let's hope not!


Some of the plastic yellowed due to old age,dust, etc. Take note the ejection seat was from other ESCI  Mirage kit and the Sidewinder launch rails from Italeri Tornado kit. Original kit seat was a shite and sidewinder was not included. therefore some modification needed!

Add caption

The cockpit was a nightmare. Esci/Ertl only provide black/white decal for panel instruments, dials etc. No raised details at all.. 

Airwaves photoetched was meant for Airfix kits. But what the hell... i'll try to fit this into ESCI/ERTL kit anyway... Means major surgery!

My scalpel knife is ready for the surgery!

The Airwaves instrument panel doesn't fit so...

Note on the rear panel of the cockpit... plastic card needed

The kit instrument panel was glued onto the body.. need to be remove

the instrument panel removed. Compared to Airwaves set... i don't really mind cutting it...

Oppss... the photoetched is wider and can't fit in...

Means more cutting and sanding

Meantime i worked on the etched parts...

Cut the side panel (both sides) ... backed with plastic card to strengthen the etched part.

Did I mentioned it was raised panel lines???



Side wall, side consoles, canopy railings were installed... Looks much more better...
Take note on the raised panel lines... now where is my scribing tools! At first i decided not to engrave the panel lines... but a few factors makes me to do the otherwise... as you know how messy and take a long time scribing process could be... details in the articles.



A little bit story about this kit... I got it from a hobby shop back in my hometown JB long time ago. I was convinced by the shop owner that this was one of the "state of the art" and very rare kit available at that time.  It was one of the earlier kits I purchased that I added to my collection.  It happened few years after the owner of the shop become my employer (Yes.. my former boss Asrar!) Just recently we chat and I told him I'm into this kit that I bought from him long time ago (after so many years This Jag left in my N.T.D. box).. He simply said "Goodluck" and immediately I know what he meant... after so many years this kit been in my possession I knew I've been "bulled" by his fat a@# that this was not the best kit available. Anyway, here again I take out my boxing gloves and ready to go. Boss! I'll take this as a challenge! This gonna be a decent looking Jaguar I promise! How long it takes to complete this Jag...?? I really don't know :)...


Let's get back to the workbench shall we...

some facts...

The British bought total of 203 Jaguars, divided into 165 GR.1 and 38 T.2's. The Jaguar replaced the Phantom in RAF low level strike role and while RAF pilots missed the sheer solidity of the Phantom and its heavy war load, the Jaguar was fine machine, optimized for low level flight capable of precision attack, as well as operation from rough airstrips. It was not as good a solution for all-weather operation and there were frustrating limitations on strafing and dive-bombing foe a while that irritated RAF pilots, but it was much more survivable than the powerful but notoriously unmaneuverable Phantom.

Several improvements were added in 1990, including upgrade of the Marconi RWR to Sky Guardian 200 standard, a much smarter piece of gear with better threat-warning display; improvements in IFF and radio fit; and addition of an overwing launch rail on top of each wing for carriage of Sidewinder AAM's. The overwing launch rails was designed for the "Jaguar International" export variants, discussed later, and allowed carriage of AAM's without sacrificing heavy underwing stores.

The kit does not include the launch rails ( I reckoned this was the A type wing) and I need to scratch build one. I searched my spare box and the only SW rails that is close to the ref pics is from Italeri 1/48 Tornado IDS kit. This however need to re-shape and extend a bit more to fit onto the Jag wing. The cutting began.. 


on the right two SW rails from Italeri kit, the painted is the original piece and the next was reshape to fit onto the Jaguar wings.


Test fitting and measurement on the length of the rails were obtain from the net 

Test fitting


The rails on actual aircraft

 (both photos courtesy of Airliner.net)


Flaps and slats...

After surfing the net for more photos of the Jag, I noticed most parked a/c have its flaps lowered. So, I decided to give the aesthetic look into this old kit by doing the same thing. Paragon have the resin sets for Flaps & Slats on the Jaguar, but it was so expensive and hard to get. I don't think there's any other company who'd produce the sets except Paragon (not to my knowledge).

So I added the amount of work by cutting the kit parts and try my best not to lose interest if I ever screw it up! (at least not for another 10 more years!)... But so far seems to be going to right direction...


but first... the panel lines update...

referring to the line drawings "Jaguar In Action" (Squadron Signal book No. 197) the lines on the kit was accurate and spot on!. It makes my scribing job easier by  just scoring from the kit panel lines. 

The flaps were cut... took about a week to decide to do so...

Praying for the best...

left was the modified flaps and right is the unmodified...

I used original removed kit part and extend by adding plastic card

This was hard to do... for the rest of modeler who wants to do this... better do it before you glue the wing halves together. 

I making the grove by using scriber and triangular file... carefully... The groove is for the  flaps to fit in

aahhh... there you go...

Test fitting....

test fitting again...

next will be the starboard side...

it sit nicely!...

another view from the top...

with the sidewinder rails on....
on the actual aircraft

take note on the airbrakes door interior...

starboard side...

The Payload

The Jaguar GR.1 could carry 4,765kgs (equivalent to 10.500 pounds) of stores, including external tanks, iron bombs, cluster bombs (particularly Hunting BL755 cluster bomb), rocket pods, and US-built AIM-9 Sidewinder AAM’s for self-defense.  Oddly the Brits, despite their enthusiasm for the Jag, were slow in comparison to the French to qualify precision-guided munitions on the type. Other stores included a WE177 tactical nuclear store and BAC-built centerline reconnaissance pod. The pod featured a forward-facing film camera in the nose, a fan of four horizon-to-horizon film cameras in the middle, and stabilized steerable Hawker-Siddeley Type 401 infrared linescan imager in the rear. Two of the center cameras could be swapped out for two wide angle vertical survey cameras.

Countermeasures included the US-made AN/ALQ-101 jammer pod. Carried on an outer wing pylon, and the Phimat chaff pod, carried on the outer wing pylon. Later on, two US-built AN/ALE-40 chaff-flare dispensers were scabbed on to the lower fuselage. Jaguars usually operated in flights of four, with two aircraft carrying jammer pods and two carrying sidewinders.

RAF Jaguars obtained two Vinten VICON 18 Mark 600 Long Range Optical Pods (LOROP) for reconnaissance in 1990 and these pods were used in the Gulf War conflicts.

Over 600 combat sorties were performed by RAF Jags during the active air war, roughly same number of AdA (French Armee de l’Air) Jags sorties. They often carried CR V7 70mm unguided rockets pods, as well US-built CBU-87 cluster bombs units, though since these were longer than the traditional British BL 755 cluster bombs only one could be fitted on a pylon; two BL 755s could be carried in tandem.
Alright the story continues... As the surgery goes I decided to fully load my Jag as the line aircraft during Gulf War conflicts. Through reference pic, British Jag normally equip with Laser Designator pod, Bombs and center line fuel tank. 


the kit pylon (top). ALQ - 101 is from 1/48 Buccaneer kit.

Cut and fit to the Jag outer wing pylon

the fuel tank doesn't require a modification





Landing Gear

The kit provides average landing gear with minimum flash but some misaligned for the cylinder shape hydraulic strut, however with my Jag fully laden with all the pylons, the munitions and gadgets I need to “weighted” the aircraft accordingly. So, more surgery will take place. after all the alignment need to be corrected anyway.




The kit provide decent landing gear (compared to most monogram kit with heavy flash and unnecessary molded hydraulic line)


The surgery begins... Left the untouched – Right the one always get sacrifices first J

I drilled a hole to insert copper wire to strengthen the joint. Once welded with super glue perhaps the joint can withstand the weight of complete aircraft. Basically the purpose is to serve as a concrete beam.



Looking good...



3 comments:

bob villa said...

oii, in the late 80's ,early 90's ESCI was the ONLY 1/48 kit.
AS for the airfix kit it is not much better. May be the "longkang" size scribe/gouge panel line and lousy fit may be of some consolation to you.
Yes you need a lot of hard work and luck to put a nice complete kit , but them i never doubt the skill of my 'Padwan'.
May the force be with you, my young Padwan.

kf.B said...

Yes, Master Yoda..

bob villa said...

http://sepecat.info/b/books/