Bit by bitAs the paint had dried I continued with the building itself, conciously ignoring the little dudes' sleeves bare at this point. My program consisted of installing a curious square-shaped window piece in front of the bottom of the airframe, between the wings. This looked like some sort of a "do we still have the bomb in there, Hans?" window or something. I had never encountered this detail in my previous Stuka models, so I was a bit uncertain of its purpose.
The cockpitThe next step was the traditional mashing together of the airframe and the wings. I was quite concerned of the fate of the poor little guys' shoulders but with some wiggling and a couple of reaimings everything settled together amicably and there weren't any huge gashes anywhere, either. The few gaps were sorted out with a drop of liquid glue and a bit of pressure over a short period of time.
Behind the first part of the engine's radiator (or oil cooler) a new neatly shaped arc was installed. Behind that I attached the main bomb on its amazingly swinging rack. A smarter modeler would've painted those separately, but as we've maybe realized over the years, yours truly is always not quite that smart.
As you could tell by the image 2, I still had space to paint the rank insignia to the arms of the coveralls. Maybe I would have to come up with some kind of ranks for them, but I didn't know anything about these things, what kind of chaps were paired and how they were typically ranked. I guess I could make the radio operator a general and the pilot a summer trainee replacement for an auxiliary loader's assistant. That'd keep us on the track, considering the quality of jokes in this blog.
Landing gearI was very pleasantly surprised by the four-piece landing gear. In theory the wheels would be spinnable and there were even separate propellers for the jericho sirens!
Generally speaking these bits were really good but after assembly the fronts of the cupolas were grimacing more uglily than myself when the alarm goes off in the mornings. So I applied some glue, pressed them together for a good long while and then tied them together with masking tape. In case my first assault wasn't providing me an end-all solution, I'd use pegs for the second one.