Author Topic: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger  (Read 3207 times)

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Rafael

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The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« on: September 29, 2008, 03:11:53 PM »
This is my first post of my works here. Thanks to the Admins and Moderators for providing the space. I live in Caracas, Venezuela, and build models since the age of 10. Now I'm 44 and returned to the hobby, only to find no hobby stores in my country. I have an old stash of plastic models, but I itched all over to build something else. Thus I found scratchbuilding, and, as a self-taught apprentice, I made some stuff that I will post here.

One of the characteristics of my modeling is that I dream stories and situations in which each of my subjects would play a central role, so I write and build a model.

THE SELVA (rain forest), JUNE 2016:

General Suarez awakened with the chirping and singing of the local fauna in this hellhole. In his hammock outside his CP he felt the onrush of a sledgehammer headache that Excedrin or any other medication would not make go away. As the years passed by, he discovered the growing grumpiness of his character, and the fury of his behavior toward his troops and employees.

Rising from the hammock, he let fall an empty scotch bottle, his only companion at bedtime. The breaking of glass sent shivers down his spine and an anger took hold of his body, preparing him for a new day in the office.
–“Pedro!!!!, Maldición, Pedroooo!!!!”.
His faithful assistant, consigliere, and associate emerged from inside the CP hut. –“Sí, Señor General, what do you need, señor.?”

-“¿Have the troops arrived?”
-“Yes, mi General, they are one hour away by the river”
-“¿AND.......?”
-“They caught the diamond miners and a cache of little stones, as well as gold”
-“Make sure they are delivered to me. And, this time, por dios, dissapear the condenados peasants effectively, no traces, and keep the media away!!. Dismissed!!”
-“Sí mi Genera!!”

As Pedro hurried away to carry out his orders, the general started his daily inspection of his facility. Disguised as a military installation in the deep of the selva, it was, in reality, a most profitable enterprise. Hidden behind his supreme authority in the region, he was a close ally of the Guerrillas, who paid him for protection, he got paid by the drug lords, who had an extensive network of jungle labs, all guarded by his uniformed men (also paid by him). He also collected from the illegal immigrants, who risked their lives crossing the selva, and provided them with original ID carnets, wich he also sold. He also controlled the supply of gasoline in the region. And robbed the illegal miners. He was God, with an attitude, the owner of all life and property in this godforsaken region of the country.

The Cuartel had a group of semi-hidden buildings, which were used to store impounded goods, minerals, money, transient people, and a few labs of a white, profitable powder. All his. All under his command. All contributing to his growing, immense fortune, safely tucked away in a Florida Bank, where he owned a big, big house, and five shiny new Humvees.

Up in the River Delta, Tens of kilometers away, a group of six, quietly droning twin-boomed-twin-turboprop aircraft approached the facility to give the general a good-morning salutation. Ahead, near the facility, a large team of Special Forces, cops, and other specialists waited since last night for the arrival of the air support that would open the fireworks leading to the shut-down of this facility...

-“Ballpark, Slugger, we’re at the IP” radioed the air group (slugger) commander. Rearranging his non-reg ball cap, matching his non-reg blue jeans and flowered shirt, and watching attentively the surrounding jungle, he heard Ballpark’s answer: -“Slugger, Ballpark, Catcher is in the Pit”. Ballpark was the Julieta, a mineral ore carrier transiting the River delta, almost out to sea. A modified cargo ship, it had a small expanse of surface which served to dispatch and recover the planes. A Mini-Aircraft-Carrier, of sorts.

Catcher, The ground team, was prepared to jump in, with tranquilizing gas, and an assortment of other more-lethal weapons, to execute the assault on The Pit, the target facility, to shut it down and to kill or capture General Suarez, AKA Hardball.

Minutes passed away, and while the General, in the middle of his walk-around talked to some men, all hell broke loose. A ripple of rockets tore into several buildings, mercilessly sparing the human transients deposit. A strafing run took care of the only AAA site in the installation. Several buildings were selectively attacked and put on fire. All around a group of fast, small airplanes were shooting everything and everyone to pieces.

A series of thumping sounds echoed across the surrounding jungle, and clouds of a white gas blossomed everywhere. Shots rang out, and a cacophony of sounds assaulted him. More gas, more shots and more shouts. A man standing next to him collapsed bloodlessly in a heap and he started running towards his CP. His legs felt leaded, his breath, the breath of an eight-mile jogger, failed him, and his vision turned to gray. He saw his soldiers and employees crazily running around, like zombies, while more thumping and popping sounds and erupting gas clouds blossomed all around. Strange, but now, the shooting sounds sounded like coming from the jungle, not to the jungle.... The ground met his face with force, and Pedro collapsed nearby him, uncocked gun in hand.

More minutes passed, and Catcher reported in: -“Ballpark, Catcher. Boring game, everyone’s asleep. Hardball is in the pocket, retrieve the Glove”. Immediately, a couple of MV-22E Ospreys approached and landed on a clearing, where everybody gathered orderly and boarded, with prizes like gold, money, stones, papers, drug samples, photos and the unconscious forms of Suarez, his aide, and several other criminals.....

As the Ospreys left, The Chargers of Slugger flight torched the drug-fabrication facility with cluster bombs and headed out to provide escort to the departing Ospreys, enroute to Ballpark, where they would recover silently and head out to sea. Aboard Julieta, a smiling commander announced on his satellite phone -“Mission accomplished. We’ve got more here than we’ve bargained for, according to the preliminary reports of Catcher, Mr. Secretary. Yes, you can tell SecTreas we have the proof and the guilty. Yes, I will pass your Bravo Zulu to all hands, sir. Out”


THE O/A-48 CHARGER:

The charger was an experiment in Special Forces equipment. A very little airplane, powered by two small yet powerful turboprops, and a configuration reminiscent of the O/V-10 Bronco. Such reminiscence had all the sense, because the Charger was a direct descendant of one of the competitors for the LARA project of which the Bronco emerged Victorious. The Convair model 48 provided the basis for this little attack and observation aircraft.

The allied Special Forces were on the lookout for a small, quiet platform to use in low-intensity conflicts. But with a capability to perform ESTOL (Extremely Short Take Off and Landing) operations thanks to its NewCanadair surface-blowing system. It deployed from jungles, specially modified ships, roads, cities, rivers and a plethora of other improvised sites.

Equipped with an advanced communications, detection, surveillance and attack system, the Charger was a common sight in Special Operations fields, training, and installations, never to be seen on actual deployments or photographed during attacks, its swiftness and special tactics made it a terrible foe, almost impossible to contend with.

It was used to provide fire support and protection to operatives on land, and sometimes, perform anti-drug interdiction in cooperation with international drug-enforcement organizations, when not-very-legal operations NEEDED to be executed.

-----------------------------------

Maybe I will catch hell for this backstory, but I’m more afraid of being afraid. I wanted to take out of my system some unjust situations and corrupt behaviors. The names have been withheld to protect the innocent (in this case, Me.)

This is another of my two last unplanned models, the planned one is still waiting for me to carve an important part of it and resting comfortably in one corner of my bench.

I hope you like my rendition of “The Little Charger that Could”, and enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed building it.

Dedicado a todos los hombres libres. (Dedicated to all free men)
Un abrazo,
Rafa


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Rafael

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Re: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2008, 03:33:46 PM »
BEHIND THE SCENES:

Or, how to shake-and-bake your Charger

First off, make your central fuselage out from an old, abandoned 1/100 F-15 Fighter's forward fuselage topped with an 1/72 F16's canopy, make a plaster mold of it and cast it in automotive body repair resin

http://smm.solidmodelmemories.net/Gallery/albums/userpics/normal_IMG_2550.JPG


find a suitable 3-view drawing, do your magic with your graphics software suite of choice and print the thing, mainly for wings, booms and stabilators. Use all the junk you have at hand. In this particular case, plastic card, and balsa plugs for the engines shapes.

http://smm.solidmodelmemories.net/Gallery/albums/userpics/normal_IMG_2552.JPG

Assemble with gusto and fill the gaps and irregularities with a mix of sawdust and white glue, let dry and attack it with your file/sandpaper.

http://smm.solidmodelmemories.net/Gallery/albums/userpics/normal_IMG_2556.JPG

As a last-ditch measure, carve a couple of sponsons for the center fuselage out of balsa scrap, and add a big-Honkin' gun underneath.

http://smm.solidmodelmemories.net/Gallery/albums/userpics/normal_IMG_2555.JPG

There you are!!! ready for a trip to the paint shop and to hang some menacing pieces of ordnance!!!

Fun. Ain't it?

Rafa





Oceaneer99

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Re: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2008, 04:18:04 PM »
Rafael,

Amazing work there!  Thank you for the build photos and the post about how you made the Charger.  The best part about building this way is that you can build models that you could never find a kit of, even if you did have a hobby store nearby.

Did you make the propeller blades from plastic card?

Garet
Seattle, Washington

Rafael

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Re: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2008, 05:24:34 PM »
Thanks, Garet.

Yes, The props were made from plastic card and the spinners from two old bombs conveniently sawed off, for lack of time or energy to make them out of resin. In retrospect, it would have been easier to cast them out of resin with only one bomb on a little plasticine  to make the pour.

Oh, and the purpose of this scratchbuilding is exactly that, to make hard-to-find, or non-existent subjects in model form.

Saludos,
Rafa
« Last Edit: September 29, 2008, 05:26:32 PM by Rafael »

Oceaneer99

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Re: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2008, 10:03:52 PM »
Interesting casting method.  Last week, I was mixing up some boat-building epoxy for a kayak project, and had some extra from one batch, so I poured it into a plasticine mold of some wheels and a Grumman Wildcat engine.  But I'd forgotten about doing that -- they are probably still out on my workbench.  What do you use to get the plasticine off the casting?

Garet

Rafael

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Re: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2008, 04:21:00 AM »
Plasticine is a very useful one-time-use mold material for one-sided small items. I use polyester resin, and the plasticine sticks to it very fast. What I do to clean up the thing is first use the mark 1 finger to rub off as much as I can, then use the hot water faucet and brush the rest off under the faucet with an old toothbrush. Messy, but you end up with a fairly good cast piece.

Rafa

lastvautour

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Re: The little Charger that could - The Convair Charger
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2008, 07:39:05 AM »
Good to have you on board. Your Charger is magnificent. I used most of the morning surfing on line to find some pretty good drawings and pictures. Unfortunately the photos are not great, but then that is where imagination comes in. Thnak you for joining and sharing your work.

Lou