Alright, all of this work was done in the past, so these posts are going to be quick. I did take pictures as I went, and I have a set of notes that I took, so that I could do this when I could get around to it
As most of you know, I am an Active duty Submariner, and I am currently serving onboard a Virginia Class Submarine USS New Mexico.
So back to the work, FIrst things first. I contacted Matt Thor and after a few discussions with him, he provided me with a new sail casting for my model. I didn't need a new one, but I want to eventually end up with a slick sail version as seen in the pictures above, and a PD raised mast version.
I started to strip away the paint on my old sail casting, and somehow I broke the cast piece for the top of the sail, so I changed the plan a little, I decided to go with one scope up, the esm mast, and the comms mast.
I ended up grafting together three piecees for the top, the forward section with the BLA-4 mast hole opened up, the mid section with all the mast sections and the bridge closed, and the aft section with the BRA-9, #2 Scope, and IEM mast open to accept masts. I also drilled out the #1 scope hole.
Here is after I have grafted on the new top and have started to fit the masts. I bent all of the ladder rungs on the sail from .020 brass rod and super glued them in. That step alone took me three days.
I Don't use any exprensive paints, glues or anything elseb facy. I know that other people elsewhere profess that you cannot be a serious rc submarine modeler if you don't use the finest automobile laquers and specific body fillers. I find that the professional grade bondo products work just fine, and my primer is plain old Rust-o-loem wet sandable automobile primer in a can. for attachment, I use Gorrilla super glue, and my epoxies are the small repair kits I get at West Marine for 20 dollars.
When surfaced, the bridge access hatch can be optionally open or shut, however, when submerged it is required to be shut. (Really a no s***t precaution from a procedure in use in the sub fleet today.)