Kinetic’s 1/48 F-5A Freedom Fighter: Joining The Fuselage Halves

Sometimes in building a model, certain steps in the build process can exceed your expectations. I like it when that happens.

The breakdown of this kit into fore and aft sections had me a bit worried. Early on I had tested the idea of joining the front and rear fuselage halves together on each side, and approach the build from a more traditional standpoint. Reading a few reviews and forum posts made that seem a mixed bag- some liked that approach, some didn’t.

Throwing caution to the wind, I decided to go with what the instructions suggested.

After getting the front half of the fuselage assembled, I gave it a few test fits into the rear half. This helped me identify several areas that needed sanding or trimming. I kept up this process over several iterations. Eventually, I slid the front half of the fuselage into the rear half- and it stayed. The join was just about perfect without glue. I placed a few drops of super glue in key places, held the two parts in place until that dried, and followed up with Tamiya Extra Thin cement.

I’ll still add a line of Mr. Surfacer to the join to even things out and make it look like the surrounding panel lines. And the leading edges of the wings will need a bit of glue to get them properly aligned to the intake sides.

But I was really happy with how it all turned out- it was quite contrary to what I expected!

By Jon Bius

Jon Bius is a scale modeler, building models in a variety of genres, including Gunpla, Maschinen Krieger, Star Wars and other scifi. Through his blog and video channel, Jon shares the tools and techniques he uses to produce results than anyone can achieve - and have fun doing so!

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