Tutorial: Academy 1/72 P-40B Tomahawk – Part 2 – Cutting

Continuing from our previous post “Tutorial: Academy 1/72 P-40B Tomahawk – Part 1 – Research“, after doing the research and defining a plan (for building and painting it) now it’s time to show you how to cut some parts of the Academy 1/72 P-40B Tomahawk. As always, it is very important to perform a good research, to understand the Kit User’s Manual and get familiar with the kit itself, including the sprues, parts location and decals.

Cutting Everything

Academy 1/72 Curtiss P-40B Tomahawk - DetailsFirst, I decided which part needs additional details. So, I choose flaps, exhausts, internal compartments and landing gear bay areas.

Creating new Flaps

I started cutting the fixed flaps and using a scriber to minimize any possible damage in the wing area. This kind of tool allow us to remove a thin layer of plastic every time we pass it over the same line. Then, after removing a few layers, we just need to bend the remaining piece back and forward, without deforming the main part.

Then, I did cut four pieces of flat plastic with the same flap shape and glue them together. After the glue was dried, I started sanding it until the new part is in the desired shape.

Also, I took advantage of changing the entire wing and add more details to it…

Academy 1/72 Curtiss P-40B Tomahawk - Creating new Flap    Academy 1/72 Curtiss P-40B Tomahawk - Creating new Flap    Academy 1/72 Curtiss P-40B Tomahawk - Creating new Flap

Removing the old exhausts

First, I choose a different tool to cut the exhausts off. A small grinding machine.
Then, I choose the correct size of the abrasive and apply it to the P-40B Tomahawk fuselage.
Tension was high 🙂 These abrasives generates heat when you wear out the plastic in that high rotation speed so, basically, you can deform the rest of the piece if you do it without attention and control.

Similar posts

Creating Landing Gear Bay

I always have some plain sheets of plastic with me, so I cut some pieces and build a compartment for the landing gear. In this case, I used an styrene white plain sheet from Evergreen Scale Models, with 0.4mm thickness. This thickness makes the plastic sheet very flexible and easy to use. Therefore, I was able to create round compartment borders and glue them around to the same rounded open space already available in the wing.
The assembly is simple but the visual effect is much better than just an empty space inside the wing.


Cutting the Canopi

For this case, I used a plastic saw from Revell to cut the canopi. Since the piece is transparent, any mistake will permanently damage the part.
So, I used a piece of foam board to level the canopi to a safe height and started the cutting process very slowly.



Additing details to a model is always challenging, especially when working with 1/72 scale.
It requires a lot of concentration, attention to the details and, most of all, patience!

The scriber or the grinding machine, for example… in fact, this is the first time that I’m using them to cut off part of a bigger piece, like this P-40B Tomahawk wing or fuselage. I always needed to remember to concentrate and create an unique straight line with the scriber. It is fairly easy to put too much pressure or speed and then slip from the main line and create a new one. Same for the grinding machine… these tools can really damage your model if you make a tiny mistake, so be careful.

Also, remember to keep yourself safe while handling these kind of tools.
You can find some tips about safety here in this post: Safety Tips: Practice your Hobby Safely

Hope you enjoy the ideas posted here!

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