MicroAirWar... the Continuation

Next in the line of 1:300 scale WWI aeroplanes to take to the gaming board is this SE5a of 1917. The model is by Skytrex.

It's OK as a gaming piece, but those wings are very, very thick. And that's after quite a lot of filing. As usual, struts were added in wire.

Painting the RFC roundels by eye is a bit nerve-wracking; they never turn out precisely round. However, I think they look OK for gaming purposes.

This is how I make my magnetic flight stands.

I glued together a 90° MDF jig, to the bottom-plate of which I glued a steel strip for the neodymium magnets to stick to, and on the back-plate, a magnetic strip for the dressmaker's pins to stick to.

I used a set square to draw 90° lines on the magnetic strip to align the pins by, and at the same time, drew lines from the bottom of the square on the steel strip. This ensured that the pins and neodymium magnets were centred on each other.

In behind where the magnets go, I put a few layers of masking tape. This creates a stand-off for the magnets so that they're not inadvertently glued to the MDF back-plate, and also pushing them hard against it centres them on the pin shaft, so I don't have to do it by eye every time. I checked by eye with each layer to make sure I was getting the right thickness of tape; in this case, I needed three layers.

Then it's a simple matter of dipping the pin-head in super-strength 24-hour epoxy and aligning the shaft on the lines drawn on the magnetic strip.

One other thing: I draw on the end of the magnets with a Sharpie when they're still on their stack, before I place them. This ensures that I can keep all the magnets in the same polarity just by making sure that the coloured end is always up.

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