About eight years ago I started on a 1:48 scale Hasegawa A-4E. (I believe this particular one was a Pro-Modeler boxing, in fact.) The Hasegawa Skyhawks are really neat kits. I've built three and have at least two more in the stash, because there's lots of colorful and interesting subjects for them, and these kits are a pleasure to build. They're not perfect, but they are extremely nice.
In theory, this should have been a quick project and I should have had it done years ago. But you know how it goes. In this case, it was those pesky leading-edge slats. The little rails the slats sit on are molded into the upper wing halves, and are extremely easy to break off with very little effort. One of those took missing. Then another one took missing. Replacements for those are easy enough to fabricate, but then one of the slats disappeared, and that isn't easy to replace. I could cast a replacement in resin, but that was one of those "I'll get around to it" things. The project stayed in the half-built pile, still in gray primer, for years and years.
One day I was searching my box full of spare kit parts. Guess what turned up? Into the bag of parts for the unfinished Scooter the slat went. Now to just get back to the project. That, in itself, took a couple more years. Other things called. Finally, last weekend, I'd finished an intense project. Atop a pile to the right of my workbench was the poor little A-4E. I gave it a second look, and it didn't look so bad. Why not? Next thing I knew, I'd built some new slat rails and painted the little beast, and on went decals and other stuff. Last night I put the last touches on it and snapped some quick photos.
Markings for the specific aircraft are from the old Victory Productions set. I loved that goofy snake on the tail from the moment I saw it on the sheet, and it's the reason for the whole project. (Next A-4E I build will feature another scheme from the sheet.) The national insignia came from the Pro-Modeler kit decal sheet. (Yes, I'm very much aware the red bars are out of alignment.)
And here's a classic A-4 pose. Not only an amazing airplane, but from certain angles the A-4 looked like coolness itself:
So that one's done. It's not perfect, but it's done. I'm relieved and very happy. Wonder what the next kit I'll turn into a years-long ordeal will be?