Tug and Trailer

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Well. This combination was inspired by another very attractive space-going tractor-trailer. The tug started-off as a 1/48 scale F-14 engine module, but it just looked too large tug sitting atop the toner-cartridge trailer, so I turned it into the White Tiger fighter. I started a new tug, again an F-14 engine module, but in 1/72 scale. The command module atop the engines is the F-14 bottom fuselage.

Like in software engineering, the tricky part is in the interfaces. Before dumping the old tug I had already built the mount for it on the trailer. Now I had to add more supports closer together and further back. I took the opportunity to fix it so that the tug would not just sit atop the trailer, but be anchored to it. The clamp on the front of the trailer is a part from an old, hence disassembled, CD or Video player, used here because it just turned out to be the perfect height to fit over the tug's nose. I added a tail to the tug to nestle almost anthropomorphically between the cheeks of the trailer. Initially the fit was so tight that the tail did not survive Career Day (where all my ships were far more interesting than Programming). A new tail was an easier fit.

Like always, I didn't think what kind of decals to use before deciding that I wanted tug and trailer to be yellow and tan stripes. After the tan basecoat I thought about what decals to use. Oopsie.

I knew adding detail to the trailer would be either tedious or absent. Since I abhor tedium, I knew I'd have to add interest with paint and markings. And since there was so much plain landscape, I'd have a chance to use some huge decals. I would have loved putting American markings on these guys to further their kinship to the White Tiger but, as is typical in a life that eschews planning, the last model contest (and vendor's bazaar) was a couple of months earlier, and I'd had no thought to buy truck or large-scale military decals. All was not lost, however, as I'd earlier contracted with Jeffrey Waclawski of JTGraphics for various sizes of alien-esque writing. The letters were in oh-so-safe black, so I had to make them look like a part of a company logo. Hence, the yellow stipes.

So that the yellow would have something to contrast with, I painted the tug and trailer light blue and green. After adding the decals, and even I was amused by the following, I found the color scheme too dull. So I added some panels in the same red-brown I used on the White Tiger. Weathering was again with India Ink heavily diluted with Future Floor Wax, followed by a too-heavy hand at light-gray dry-brushing.

A unique build, for me, but another that I'm just as happy to be on the "done" side of. The size and color, though, made it popular with fifth-graders at McCrae Elementary. And, although I enjoyed working again with F-14 engines, I am easily resisting the temptation to try something similar to the tug, but with Russian aircraft engines.