63-8301 F-105F-1-RE Thunderchief
19 April 1967 while being flown by Maj. Leo Thorsness and EWO Harry Johnson during a raid on the Xuan Mai barracks near Hanoi,
'301'  was credited with a Mig 17 kill. Maj. Thorsness was awarded the Medal of Honor for that mission. Eleven days later, on his 93rd
mission, he and Johnson were shot down by an Atoll missile. They were soon captured and remained a guest in Hanoi for the next 6 years.
He received his Medal of Honor on 15 Oct. 1973.

'301' was later converted to full 'G' standards and survived the war. Stateside she was transferred to the 35 TFW and was slated for
preservation at the Museum of the USAF upon retirement. Sadly, on 6 Dec. 1974 it crashed on the Cuddeback Range, CA. Details

There are things wrong with the Trumpeter kit. I correct what I could with available resin correction sets. The kit is a 'G' model. '301'
during this time period was an 'F' so I had to get the 'F' conversion side panels. The main gear is also a problem. This kit is heavy and they
are not very stable and prone to break. Canopy hinge area another problem. I came up with a fix to improve both.  

I wanted to do 'Jinkin Josie" so I got the Zotz decal set. Not very impressed with them. Tail Code and Serial looked like crap no matter
what I did so I removed them and I made my own along with the Data Plate.  I wound up using more of the kit decals for the data than the
ones that came on the Zotz set. I managed to get the nose art and Ejection Seat warnings on looking descent. Finished with Model Master

Model resides at the Hickory Aviation Museum, Hickory, NC.
1/32 Scale Trumpeter
357 TFS, 355 TFW, Takhli RTAFB 1968
I replaced the Wheel Axle with aluminum tubing. Did the same with the Nose Gear.
F-105G Trumpeter Kit
Aires Cockpit Set
Aires Wheel Well Set
Master Model Pitot Tube
Quick Boost Side Air Scoops
AMS Intake Covers
Zotz Decal Set
  GT Resin Correct Nose, Ventral Fin, Camers
  GT Resin 'F' Conversion Panels
  GT Resin Correct 'F' Tail
  GT Resin 'F' Canopy Frame Set
CAM AGM-45 Shrike
Quick Boost Ejection Seats (2)
What it cost.
The 'F' Conversion
Canopy Frames
Wheel Well portion of the fuselage
and all detail in the Wheel Well
area of the wings has to be
removed for the Wheel Well Set.

I used a rotary mill in a Dremel
tool at the lowest RPM. Too fast
and you'll melt the plastic.

Hideous Ventral Fin removed with
a rotary saw in a Dremel tool.
Correct 'F' Tail
Correct Nose, Ventral Fin
and Camera
Fuselage side panels were cut out with rotary saw and
Dremel tool. Don't cut too close to the kit panel lines. Use a
file to get to the panel lines. You'll have to file the resin
replacement panel too. Make small cut and fit.
The Resin/Photo Etch Cockpit Set- To glue resin together or
anything to resin, you have to use CA glues.  Once I had the
pieces fit, I used a small drop of Formula 560 Canopy Glue
#PT-56 made by Pacer to hold them in place. Leave dry
overnight. Then I used very small amounts of thin CA glue
to hold everything together. I did not use the supplied seats.
I opted for the Quick Boost seats. The molded in belts look
The Resin Nose was a real project
to get it to fit. Had to squeeze the
fuselage with clamps to fit it to
the profile of the nose. I glued
one section at a time. Once that
was right, I glued on the camera.

Correct Tail and Ventral Fin
installed. Lots of filing/sanding
required on the Tail.
Canopy Frames- You have to remove the tab molded on
the canopy. The frames do not fit the curves in the canopies
very good. I used a couple of applications of Formula 560
to glue them to the canopies leaving each one overnight to

Drill a hole in the Rear Canopy Frame the diameter of the
Large Paper Clip. Drill 3/32" diameter hole in the Rear
Bulkheads of the Cockpit. If you are not using the Resin
Frames, glue a short piece of 3/32" diameter Plastic Tubing
to the Canopy.

I use Evergreen #223 Styrene Tubing. You have to drill the
tubing the diameter of the Large Paper Clip. Drill it before
you cut the small pieces. Use a pin vise to drill. A Dremel
tool will create heat and melt the plastic to the bit. I used
the Formula 560 Canopy Glue for the Windscreen.
The trailing tip of the Horizontal was molded with a small angle. I didn't notice it till I had them painted. That has to be corrected. I filed
it a little thicker and bigger so a piece of plastic sheet had something to stick to. Cut a piece larger piece of the sheet and glued it to the tip.
Filed/sanded and painted.
I use a large wood dowel stuck up the tail pipe to hold it for painting.
I previously painted Cockpit area and Canopies before
the Cockpit was installed and the Fuselage was glued
together so the Camo Pattern would line up. Used
Rubber Bands to hold the Fuselage together. I then
assembled and masked the Cockpit to complete the
Keep in mind, I'm using the Aires Resin Wheel Well Set. These 1/32 scale kits are heavy and the Main Gear that come with the kit are
basically useless. It wobbles so bad and in a short time break. By eliminating the majority of the Fore/Aft and Port/Starboard play it
adds some strength to the Main Gear which helps with the breakage problem. If you are an experienced Modeler, you should be able
to adopt this without the use of the Aires Set.
This is what I did.
The Resin Wheel Well Set came with resin Main Gear mechanism. They are not strong enough either. The Main Hydraulic Cylinder is
made with 1/16" dia. Brass tubing and small Paper Clip. The rod coming out of the Hinge is made with small Paper Clip. The Hinge is
made with pieces of Evergreen #169 Strip Styrene .080"x .250", the perfect thickness and width of the resin Hinge. Still plastic but much
stronger than the resin. Metal would be better but I have no way of machining it.

The Hinge- I use "Hinge" because I don't know the proper nomenclature. Cut pieces of the Strip Styrene the length of the resin Hinge . I
traced the outline and holes of the resin Hinge on the pieces I just cut. Cut and filed the piece to the resin shape and drilled holes the
diameter of the small paper clip. I think it looks pretty good. Cut a piece of small Paper Clip longer than you think you'll need for the Rod.

The Hydraulic Cylinder- Cut the 1/16" diameter Brass tubing the length of the cylinder. I crimped the end with a Vise Grip. Cut another
piece of small Paper Clip longer than you think you need for the Rod.
The Resin Wheel Wells-  There is a pin molded in them to locate the Fuselage end of the Hinge. Cut that off, drill a hole the diameter of
the small paper clip. Cut a piece of small Paper Clip and bend it at 90 degrees. One end has to be just long enough to go through the
Hinge. The bend allows more surface to glue the pin to the Wheel Well. Insert pin from the outside of the Wheel Well. If you are not using
the Wheel Well Set, drill the hole in the side of the gear well where parts I1  I2 are glued. Leave a little room at the bottom of the well for
the Hinge. The hole in the Main Gear where parts I1 and I2 fit in needs to be drilled slightly the diameter of the small Paper Clip Rod. Not
too deep. Just enough to hold the Rod.

The Hydraulic Cylinder- If you are not using the Wheel Well Set, remove the locating pins in the bottom of the Well. You may want to file
a flat surface on the Brass Cylinder for more glue contact area.

Main Gear- The sides of the Main Gear where it fits in the Wheel Well need to be shimmed so there is less Forward/Aft movement. I used
plastic card stock and glued it to the Gear.

When all that's done, take the pieces of small Paper Clip (Rods) and bend one end 90 degrees. I used a small Drill Press Vice and a small
Finishing Hammer. Gives a nice tight bend. Cut the short end of the bend so it fits tight in the Hinge and Main Gear. Insert the Rods into
the Cylinder and Hinge as far as they'll go, set it all up in the Wheel Well to see how much of the long end needs to be cut. If it's a little
short, that's okay. It'll slide in the Cylinder and Hinge. When your ready to install the Gear, set it up like this.  When you get it where it
should be, a small drop of thin CA glue will hold it. Make sure everything is where it should be. Once you apply the CA glue you won't be
able to move anything without breaking it. The photos below should help.

Once you get this F-105 done and you sit it on the gear, you'll see the difference.
How I built this kit is for the experienced Modeler so I'm not going to go into detail on how to work with resin
or how to do the Correction or Detail Sets. I will focus on how to make the Main Gear more stable and

I do not give diameter dimension on the Small and Large Paper Clips. That may be different depending on the
source. You should have a set of Number Drills. Micrometer or Dial Calipers will help too.

I've never written anything like this so please bare with me. There are many photos of the whole build I hope
will help.
Finishing the Exterior
I had to fabricate the antennas.
357 TFS, 355 TFW, Takhli RTAFB 1968
'Jinkin Josie'
At her new home. The Hickory Aviation Museum, Hickory, NC