Before I did the accent paintwork on the ET and SRBs (and before I glued those assemblies together), I did a fit check of the full stack on the pad to see if everything lined up and would work properly. At this point, it was beginning to look like a Moonraker stack. You can see the too dark coloring of the Tamiya Navy Insignia gray on the SRBs as I hadn't oversprayed them yet. The ET hadn't been accent painted yet either.
Accent paint work over the tank and SRBs was done mostly by masking off panel lines and airbrushing on off white mixtures (flat white tinted with a drop of flat aluminum). In some spots I did entire panels a different color, but mostly I would spray the edge of the mask and that was enough to trick the eye into thinking it was looking at two different colored panels. Once that was done, it was time to glue the stack together. I tried to get as much of the painting out of the way as possible since it would be a lot harder to mask and paint with a bigger assembly in the way. Once the glue was dry from the stack, I test fitted the orbiter to it again and these were my results:
So with the ET and SRBs essentially done except for decals and weathering, the largest part of the build is done and now I can concentrate on the orbiter again. This week will be spent tiling the orbiter and doing similar accent paint work on it. Then I can move onto decals, clearcoating, final weathering and it will be done.
Here you can see a couple spots I am particularly proud of. There is a red checkerboard pattern on the tank near where a conduit line runs on the actual shuttle. I cut pieces of Tamiya tape into 3mm squares and painted these areas with Model Master RLM 23 "Rot" (German red, which is slightly pink). I then misted some flat white over the top to fade the squares further. The modified LOX feedline can be seen as well in this shot. Both it and the ET nose cap were painted in Tamiya flat aluminum. You can also see orange tunnel rails running up the sides of the SRBs. I noticed these in Jon Allitt's (b26354's) screen caps, yet I couldn't see exactly where the orange terminated and the white began as shots of the top of the SRBs showed the rails being white instead of orange. So I compromised and did the change where the rails cross over a black and white checker pattern on the foreward most SRB propellant segment. It gives a nice color accent to the mostly white SRBs in my opinion, even if the debate is out on whether it is accurate or not. Eitherway I can live with it.