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Thunderbird 1 Launch Bay in 1/350

...from AIP, and GerryAnderson TV

Thunderbird 1 Launch Bay in 1/350

I don't usually even consider building sci-fi models, but this is one which I have wanted to find and build for years. One of the great TV pleasures of my childhood was watching the original TV series of Thunderbirds. I knew the Japanese company of Aoshima did this kit, along with others, but it has been hard to find. Recently a business for GerryAndersonTV have been selling them here in the UK under the brand name of AIP. The basic price I thought a little high, but noticed they had a recent sale with a significant saving so bought this and one for Thunderbird 2, but that will be a different story.
It's a simple enough build, with a base plate that just needs piece of printed card to be stuck down on it, and then 2 walls to be painted and fitted onto the base. The assembly instructions give a good painting guide for the walls as well as the Thunderbird itself. As for Thunderbird 1 it is easy to assemble and all fits well. Also a launch platform trolley and safety barriers to place around it. I didn't find any issue with the build, just cleaning up the joint seam once the two halves of the main body were joined.
The colour suggested for the Thunderbird itself is silver, but to be honest, and to my eye, that seems too bright. What I went for, and it was brush painted by the way, was a Weathered Steel, a colour in a new Metallic set from Lifecolor for 'Engines'. It has a metallic sheen but has a pale grey look to it. Personally, for my eye, it is just right. The launch trolley I finished in a Steel colour, and the inside of the exhaust ports in another of the colours from the new set, Burned Pipes, which I also felt worked well. The light blue detailing used a Medium Blue colour from an AK Interactive set for 'Blues' and again, brush painted very nicely. Two black bands around the main body were masked using 1mm masking tape and again hand painted. All in all I am very happy with the way the whole thing turned out.
I didn't choose to apply any weathering, as we rarely notice any on the TV series, so I chose to leave it be. I'm really pleased to have finally done this and have it in my collection at last.


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