Simulating turning propelers in scale models

I know many modelers like to display their aircraft models in flight. But if it is a propeler aircraft, there are only to ways to go, realism apart: install tiny electrical engines to make them actually turn (and there are rather sophisticated comercial options for that), or simulate the propeler motion somehow. Among the later, one can find the use of clear discs, photoetched accessories, and even those who prefer to simply remove the propeler blades and display the model only with the propeler hub. All methods have their merits (and price). In this short article, I'll show you how I made the turning propelers of my old Revell Tradewind (scale 1/165) using the clear discs method.

I recall a past article in Fine Scale Modeler magazine, where Paul Boyer showed how to use clear discs and flat varnish to simulate the effect. Having failed to find my copy of the magazine, I had to improvise, and I ended up with an acceptable result. The proof is the fact that what you are going to see here is my very first attempt at it. If I did, you surely will too.

This article was published on Fine Scale Modeler magazine, volume Dec/2015. Here are some more pics not included in the FSM article:

I am sure this is not the most realistic method to simulate turning propelers, but it is easy and convincing enough. In retrospect, I should have used the paint thinned even more, but a
s I said, this was my first attempt at it.

I hope you find this tip useful.

Rato Marczak 2009