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Convair B-58 Hustler by GrandpaPhil - Revell 1/48 - Finished

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Sometimes you just have to build a plastic model.


They are quick, fun and the possibilities are endless.


I bought this kit off a friend of mine a couple days ago when he said that he was selling it.  It was too good an opportunity to pass up.

I love 1/48 aircraft.  It is a good compromise scale, much like 1/72 for period ship models.  Even larger aircraft can be built at a reasonable size.


To get started, here is the box:


And what comes in the box:

1F3B9A5A-3A9E-45A2-A40A-176EB191603D.thumb.jpeg.9d34355508c74ea768eb2b3be0300093.jpeg2C9AC023-31B8-464A-B20E-F66DAF6FC5B1.thumb.jpeg.eb8b808ed89b02d4a32b4c441e969904.jpegAF3E1C72-7EDC-4F9C-88FA-8AE75BB9E437.thumb.jpeg.5fb644928f8bc552f713d0b00806d3fa.jpeg3202A76C-7348-492C-820D-B79893A4F462.thumb.jpeg.b5b24fa31ed4e2a63f3706d3867daff8.jpegThis kit is huge and will be much fun.


The only trick will be the finish.  It looks like bare metal.  I am debating on using metallics or faux metallics.  In all reality I will probably try to pull off the faux metallics first.  I have had really good luck with that on previous models, such as my Delorean from Back To The Future.

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Hi Phil...


I built this one when I was a kid. Been meaning to do another but not until I get the finish down.... There are many techniques for doing a Bare Metal Finish.... Polished Aluminum is one of the most difficult as my F-104 build demonstrated.......


Will be following closely, pulling up the comfy chair right now.... (in for the long run)



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I too, build that model way back when they were actually flying.  One impressive aircraft though except for nukes it didn't have much it could be used for.  Where I lived as kid (Dayton, OH) we lived near the base there often one of those would come in for landing or take off.... what a sight to see.

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I too built this one as a kid, even though I think mine was possibly 1/72. It did not look as big in my memory as yours looks. It did have opening crew hatches at all three positions though! When I read the history on it in the instructions I had to go out and read everything I could about the plane. This was long before the day of internet research and I spent a lot of time in the library.

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As a kid I lived for a while on a large hobby farm that my parents owned west of Akron, Ohio.  One summer between 1960 and 1965 we began finding shredded Aluminum foil in one of our hay fields.  We later found that these B-58 Hustlers had been testing the Cleveland Area air defenses and dropping chaff on us.  Unfortunately I don’t remember actually seeing the planes.





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Thank you all!


This kit is going to be fun!

Here is the test fit:DD546434-CFED-44BA-8B98-2338BD08B4DA.thumb.jpeg.164a22e4ac5340e7f373a80fb173adef.jpeg

I am going to display it in flight, much like my P-61.


I’ll mount it on a wood plaque with a dowel rod.


Here is gluing started:EEBF7F27-F987-4CCB-AB4A-74BF3D4D8CA1.thumb.jpeg.e2f2d987877d1bfa766c21aee9ba6e14.jpegF1983B21-04FC-4E41-A572-13A966FD652C.thumb.jpeg.907573963c6a9371e740a0f013b4fc2c.jpegA95F8D10-F46C-4FDA-BA8C-AD8B57799884.thumb.jpeg.60152ae8b098cc5b6cdf3b13619ddd40.jpeg40ADBB2A-FCCD-41AD-9D5A-DC1EBB25789C.thumb.jpeg.6da88a551972cace9a27012fea824516.jpegD85C0081-F33E-422F-B815-5D99BAE13C9B.thumb.jpeg.9f8087a837d8bff2b510f742bac8eb8e.jpeg

I am not following the build order, but I am going to display the model with the gears up.  So, I am currently working on all major sub-assemblies.


I am waiting on the interior windows to dry right now.

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decent size model............1:48.......especially if you compare it to your Vic  ;)   the finish is gonna be tough.......I wish I had an idea for ya.   but as Egilman said,  he's been look'in for the holy grail too  🔍  great start........look'in forward in seeing more :) 

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This is a good kit for revisiting the past.  I had the Lindberg version that I started with my Dad, but never finished.


All gaps on the minor sub-assemblies are now filled and trimmed.


The cockpit is assembled and just needs painted now.  The control stick is also now glued in the correct position.


I discovered that the main landing gear doors are not designed to be shown closed and will not fit in that position so I am making replacement plugs that I will carve to shape.



So far, this has been a very fun build.

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I modded the tail fins to make the bombs look more like the B-43 nuclear bombs that they are supposed to represent.


One of the fun side effects of my recent builds is that I am not afraid to just start cutting.  It may not come out perfect, but it will get done.


I used to be terrified to modify a kit too much, so this is significant for me.  I have learned a lot from this site.

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I built up the main landing gear bay doors from basswood that I carved to shape.  There are three pieces on each side.


I carved a piece to fill the main gap first:


Then I filled in the gap where the main gear would go:23385538-497D-4C7E-8B45-2CFD21CC6FED.thumb.jpeg.5b142fe31e5ded78b166653e330f61da.jpeg

Lastly, I made a piece to replace the ridge on each side:E424CEBE-FB0D-46D7-AEE7-BB67347B775E.thumb.jpeg.39eb22bd0e8d4e6712129b278e4ddcb2.jpeg


This modification took about an hour total.


I am going to mount this model on a flight stand when it is done.

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The ejection seat and flight deck are now mostly painted.


I primed black and basecoated a haze gray:

B4BDDB72-77BD-4FD5-9949-45D5AA6EF22F.thumb.jpeg.cb040cf27881153f832a9ff813a4a132.jpegF5F26A08-F05B-4AAF-B038-1E6325032057.thumb.jpeg.fa81be324385f3527235c514df8c20a4.jpegI washed with black and rebasecoated gray on the flight deck.


After the rebasecoating:

I mixed my own orange for the ejection seat:4518F20F-6FF0-49C4-AA01-A02E8B74C07C.thumb.jpeg.ccf2b6232907ac29abd58a1d695273e6.jpeg

Then detailed it:0BBF59B9-7554-4FB2-B672-1BB21623BFA8.thumb.jpeg.fc721e35ca7e776b957fa713cb6a2c6b.jpeg044669FA-536C-4F85-8AA0-9B9BB1FDBD92.thumb.jpeg.e9c08549287c21864c33af31b01862a6.jpeg90184E7A-4741-48DF-92AA-FB5FC3356431.thumb.jpeg.4f97723ed7c468a5605bcb5ac6be6bbe.jpeg

It now just needs installed after I highlight everything to bring out the gauges and other detail.


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46 minutes ago, Old Collingwood said:

Looking good Phil,   what an unusual set up  for the bang seat  with that canopy.



Thank you, OC.


The bang seat is actually an escape pod to enable ejection at supersonic speed.  The canopy has a shield that comes down and encapsulates the pilot.  Very neat setup.

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The engines, the bomb racks and the centerline nuke are all attached.1E64CD5D-02B1-4118-91EF-1C2336C2E081.thumb.jpeg.56278fb29625047dc30c5a70248fe80d.jpeg

Once they dry, I’ll trim and fill all gaps.  The. It will be time to paint.


I have been slowly painting the four B-43 nuclear bombs that go on the underwing racks


I’ll attempt to use faux metallics for the brushed metal look which makes up the lion’s share of the plane, first.  If that fails, then I will use metallics.

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The Hustler was designed to move fast (Mach 2), outrunning Soviet interceptors and then hit the Soviets hard, preferably in multiple locations (one target good, 5 targets better), from high altitude.


The Air Force decommissioned it in the late ‘60s because the USSR came out with high speed and high altitude surface to air missiles and the survivability of the Hustler came into question.  Also, the Hustler was incredibly expensive to maintain and operate.

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22 hours ago, GrandpaPhil said:

The Air Force decommissioned it in the late ‘60s because the USSR came out with high speed and high altitude surface to air missiles and the survivability of the Hustler came into question.  Also, the Hustler was incredibly expensive to maintain and operate.

The Air Force didn't want to give it up, McNamara ordered it to be decommissioned..... over strenuous objections......  Besides they were working on the TFX Tactical fighter system to be used jointly by the AF & Navy off of carriers.... (the TFX eventually developed into the FB-111, a far superior aircraft to the B-58 in the low level nuclear delivery role once the fighter role was dropped) The FB-111 could do supersonic nap of the earth flight profiles which the B-58 could not......


The soviet missile was the S-2 Guideline, similar to the Nike-Hercules and was almost successful in taking down a couple of SR-71's that's why they stopped overflying Russia & China with the SR-71...... (eventually they were going to get one and that would be worse than getting the pair of U-2's they did shoot down)


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looking good Phil........looks real good on the stand :)   did you add a 'guide tube' in the fuselage for the rod.   I did it for the Wulfe Hound,  so that when the attachment peg was inserted,  it would add rigidity so it would retain the 'slant' I intended for it.  I didn't go wide enough on the base though........there is the threat of it tipping over.  I might make another with a larger base to cure the issue,  but for now I've left it as is.  the gaps look good......well done there ;)   great job on the cockpit!

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  • GrandpaPhil changed the title to Convair B-58 Hustler by GrandpaPhil - Revell 1/48 - Finished

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