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Paul A H

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Paul A H last won the day on January 10 2015

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About Paul A H

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    My vocabulary is absolutely big
  • Birthday 16/01/79

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  1. Type 89 Japanese Medium Tank Kou (gasoline early) 1:72 IBG Models The Type 89 I-Go was a medium tank employed by the Imperial Japanese Army between 1932 and 1942. It has the distinction of being the first mass-production diesel-engined tank, although the version depicted in this kit is the early petrol-engined version. Armed with a 57mm main gun, the Type 89 proved to be effective against enemy fortifications in campaigns in Manchuria and China. Despite being upgraded and modernised at various points during its life, such as with the addition of a radio, it was still a fundamentally 1920s design and was considered obsolete by the outbreak of the Second World War. The first variant to be depicted by IBG was one of the earlier petrol powered variants with the later turret and tracks/running gear. Now they have turned their attention to the earlier petrol powered version with the earlier turret. In usual IBG style The kit arrives packed into a surprisingly large top-opening box (I've worked out that their boxes are a standard size, regardless of the volume of plastic contained within) inside which are a large number of sprues of crisply moulded grey plastic. Just because this producer hails from central/eastern Europe, don't think for a moment that this is a limited run kit. It has all the hallmarks of a cutting edge kit, with high quality, slide moulded parts as good as those from any other mainstream producer. Also included is a decal sheet, a small fret of brass parts and colour instructions. All-in-all, it looks like a quality package. Construction starts with the suspension and running gear. The road wheels are split into inner and outer faces which fit either side of the pre-moulded leaf spring suspension units. The suspension and road wheels fit onto the floor of the hull, which then joins onto the box-like structure of the upper hull. The glacis plate is moulded separately. The drive sprocket fits into the side of the hull, while the idler fits into the side skirts before being joined to the hull along with the return rollers. The tracks are very nicely rendered and are of the link and length variety, for which I have a strong preference. Construction of the running gear and tracks looks like it will be quite labour intensive, but IBG have made some use of slide moulding in order to reduce the part count whilst retaining a very good level of detail. With the hull, running gear and tracks assembled, construction turns to details such as the fenders and stowage boxes. These have to be fitted to the sides and rear of the hull. Naturally smaller details such as tools are all moulded separately, which is great for detail-hungry modellers. A rather nice exhaust is included, as well as photo etched parts for the exhaust shroud. This is a shrewd move, as such a part could not be realistically recreated from injection moulded plastic. The turret is made up of six parts, including the rather puny main gun and rear-firing machine gun. The muzzle of the gun has been manufactured using a multi-part mould to save the modeller having to drill out the opening. The commander's hatch can be finished in either open or closed positions. For once you can actually take advantage of this feature because IBG have thoughtfully included two crew figures – and very nice they are too – although they are not mentioned in the instructions and don't even feature on the diagram that shows the layout of the sprues. Two marking options are shown in the instructions, a Type 89 tank of an unknown IJA unit, based in China in the 1930s and a tank of the Special Navy Landing Forces, IJN, based in Shanghai in the 1930s. The decal sheet itself is nicely printed. Conclusion I really enjoyed reviewing IBG's recent small scale armour kits, so it's great to see them turn out another variant of their new Type 89. Detail is excellent and the quality of manufacture looks to be up there with the very best. The inclusion of photo etched parts and especially the crew figures is very welcome too. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of IBG Models
  2. The USA is home to some of the finest paint brushes in the world. The best are manufactured using select fibres from President Trump's own head. Fact.
  3. M4 High Speed Tractor (3 in./90mm) 1:72 Hobbyboss Based on the chassis of the M3 'Stuart' Light Tank, the M4 was an artillery tractor designed to tow 90mm, 155mm and 240mm guns and howitzers. Over 5,500 examples were manufactured by Allis-Chalmers of Milwaukee, and it was used by the US Army until 1960. The M4 was also supplied to Brazil, Greece, Japan, the Netherlands, Pakistan and Yugoslavia. A flexible and tough design, many M4s enjoyed a second career after their military service, being popular vehicles in the logging and road construction industries. After a bit of a hiatus, Hobbyboss appear to have made 2017 the year of the small-scale AFV. A month or so ago we received their new Land-Wasser-Schlepper for review. Now they've followed up with a mini-range of the M4 tractor, starting with the 90mm version. The kit is vintage Hobbyboss, being well-packed in a sturdy box, beautifully moulded and yet incredibly simple due to a focus on ease of construction and through the extensive use of multi-part slide moulds. Construction is simplicity itself. The running gear and tracks are moulded as single parts, with just the inner face of the drive sprocket, the return rollers and the trailing arm for the idler wheel moulded separately. Obviously some compromises have been made in order to mould the tracks in this way, but they really are pretty good considering the low part count. Even though the inside faces of the tracks are relatively untroubled by moulded detail, I probably wouldn't complain if a lot of my small-scale tracked vehicles were supplied with tracks like these. Once the tracks are complete, they can be fitted to the lower hull. In keeping with the rest of the model, this is a simple structure with just the frontal section of the hull moulded separately. A basic interior, including crew and passenger seats and driver's controls, has been included. This is good, as it really would have shown if Hobbyboss had elected to scrimp on the interior. Although sometimes seen unglazed, many photographs of these vehicles show a windscreen in place, so it's a shame that Hobbyboss have omitted this feature. Once the interior has been assembled and painted, you can drop the slide-moulded body onto the lower chassis. The 90mm ammunition box is a separately moulded part (the 155mm/240mm variant is on the way), leaving just the headlight and defensive machine gun to finish the model off. Small details such as the tools have been moulded in place, which doesn't surprise me given the approach Hobbyboss have taken to this kit. Two marking options are provided, but tn historical notes are included to place the marking options in context, which is a shame. Paint references are included for the Mr Hobby, Vallejo, Model Master, Tamiya and Humbrol ranges. Conclusion This kit marks a welcome addition to Hobbyboss's range of 1:72 AFVs. Whilst some compromises have been made, detail is generally good and the one-piece tracks are adequate for this scale. It's a shame that they haven't provided a windscreen, but fitting some clear film should be within the capabilities of most modellers. Other than that, for what it is, this is a really neat little model. Review sample courtesy of
  4. IBG

    Are the OKB items some kind of flexible resin? That's brave!
  5. No, I'm afraid you're on your own as far as the tail wheel is concerned.
  6. Stridsvagn M/39 Swedish Light Tank 1:72 IBG Models The Stridsvagn M/39 was a development of the L-60 Swedish light tank, and advanced and innovative design first produced in 1934. Lightly armoured and armed, the design took advantage of the powerful but compact 7.9 litre Bussing-Nag V8 engine and torsion bar suspension in order to achieve success as a reconnaissance tank. As the name suggests, the M/39 entered service with the Swedish Army in 1939. The designed was also developed into the successful Toldi light tank by the Hungarian Army. Tanks were also sold to Ireland (2) and after World War II to Dominicana Republic (20). The m/40L version served in the Dominicanan Civil War of 1965. The last examples were only retired by the Dominican Army in 2002. This kit first saw the light of day last year in the guise of the Hugaran Toldi I, II, IIa and III variants. Now IBG have turned their attention to the indigenous Swedish variants, starting with the M/39. The kit packed into a fairly large (about the twice the size it needs to be) top-opening box adorned with the kind of high quality artwork we've come to expect of IBG. Inside the box are a number of sprues of crisply moulded grey plastic. The kit has all the hallmarks of a modern, high quality tooling as good as those from any other mainstream producer. Construction starts with the lower hull, suspension and running gear. The road wheels, drive sprocket and idlers are all nicely moulded and match photographs of the real thing very well. The suspension swing arms are moulded separately to the lower hull, however, so care will have to be taken to ensure everything lines up properly with all of the wheels touching the ground. Tracks are of the link and length variety and are very nicely rendered. Photos of the real thing show a very slight sag in the upper run between the return rollers, so a dip in hot water might be necessary in order to achieve this effect. Once the exhausts and a couple of other small details have been fixed in place, construction can move on to the upper hull. This sub-assembly is just as detailed as the lower hull. The driver's hatch is moulded separately, as are the tools and stowage bins. The engine vent and air intake cover are provided for on the photo etched sheet. Fenders and engine vents are all moulded in place. The turret is fairly simple, but features a separately moulded hatch, spare road wheel and separately moulded main gun and coaxial machine guns. The overall effect should be very pleasing. One colour scheme is shown in the instructions, but no specific tank as the decal sheet includes a full set of numbers in order to enable a range of different tanks to be modelled. The decal sheet itself is nicely printed. Conclusion I really liked IBG's Toldi kits, so it's good to see them turn their attention to the original Swedish series of light tanks. Detail is excellent and the quality of moulded parts is up there with the very best. The link and length tracks and photo etched parts are a welcome inclusion too. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of IBG Models
  7. IBG

    Otter Armoured Car 1:72 IBG Models The Otter armoured car was a Canadian designed light reconnaissance vehicle, similar in layout to the British Humber armoured car but based on the Chevrolet C15 military truck chassis. The Otter was both larger and heavier than the Humber, but made up for this with a more powerful six cylinder liquid cooled engine. It was protected by armour up to 12mm thick and was armed with a Bren light machine gun and a Boys anti-tank rifle. The Canadian manufacturer produced over 1700 examples by the end of the War. It saw action with the Canadian Army in the Italy and France, and was also used by the South African Army and the RAF Regiment. After the War it was used by the Netherlands and Jordan. Since the release of their first indigenous kit in 2008, IBG Models have built up an impressive catalogue of models, most notably in 1:35 and 1:72 scale. Don't make the mistake of assuming they are another manufacturer of limited run kits from Central and Eastern Europe though. Having seen their recent output, I would place them at or near the top of the order of manufacturers of small scale AFV kits. This new kit of the Otter is a very welcome addition to the range. It arrives packed into a surprisingly large top-opening box inside which are a two frames of crisply moulded grey plastic, a small fret of photo etched brass parts and a small decal sheet. The plastic parts are crisply moulded and well detailed, although the attachment points for a lot of the parts are rather thick. Construction starts with the engine. This is comprised four parts, including a separately moulded exhaust manifold and fan. The axles and brake assemblies can also be constructed at this stage, along with the leaf spring suspension units, all of which fix to the simple ladder-type chassis along with the drive shafts, transfer box and exhaust. The small, open top turret for the Bren gun can also be assembled at this stage. Apart from the Bren itself – which is a lovely piece of moulding – the turret includes a detailed mount and seat. Once the oily bits have been fixed to the chassis, the floor pan of the vehicle can be assembled. This includes most of what you need to detail the interior, including two multi-part seats, the steering wheel, instrument binnacle and other details. A couple of Lee Enfield rifles are also included for stowage on the inside of the hull sides. The frontal armour includes separately moulded hatches for the driver and commander/gunner, but the instructions show them fitted in the closed position only. A little scratch building might be necessary in order to pose them in the open position. My one real problem with this kit is the fact that although the hatches can (theoretically) be opened and there is a pretty decent interior, IBG have not included the Boys anti-tank rifle. I can't for the life of me understand this decision, particularly as it is shown on the box artwork. Much as I like this kit and am grateful to IBG for producing it, this is a real head scratcher. Anyway, the rest of the build in straightforward, with much of the hull made up of separate parts and nice details such as individually moulded tools (the hallmark of a well-detailed AFV kit in this scale). Extras such as a photo etched pierced steel plank and mud flaps are also included. Markings are included for Otters of the 12th Carpathian Rifle Division of the Polish II Corps, Italy and HQ Platoon, 11th Field Company, Royal Canadian Engineers, 2nd Infantry Division, Normandy 1944. Conclusion I really enjoy reviewing IBG's kits, and it's great to see them turn out another cracker in the form of this Otter. Detail is excellent and, apart from hefty attachment points, the quality of manufacture looks to be up there with the very best. The inclusion of photo etched parts is welcome too. It's a shame that crew figures, such as those included with their recent Type 89 tank, haven't been included. It's even more of a shame that the Boys anti-tank rifle is missing too, but nonetheless this kit can still be highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of IBG Models
  8. Excellent! I wish I could finish a model that quickly
  9. Eduard Photo Etch Detail set for Trumpeter HMS Queen Elizabeth 1:700 Eduard It's been a while since anything in the patient man's scale (1:700) dropped onto my desk from Eduard. It's nice to see they haven't forgotten us small-scale naval modellers, particularly when their latest release is for Trumpeters excellent 1:700 scale kit. In usual Eduard style, all the parts are held on a single large fret, and as you would expect, the details are as impressive as they are small. Included on the fret is pretty much everything you will need to go to town on Trumpeter’s model, including a full set of anchor chains, ventilation ducts, ladders, funnel caps, stairways and ladders. Of particular note are parts for the radar arrays, the Supermarine Walrus, the ship's launch and life boats, cranes and the splinter shields for the anti-aircraft guns. The details even extend to a set of eight tiny caps for the ship's 15 inch main guns Conclusion Anyone thinking of building Trumpeter’s Queen Elizabeth should give very serious consideration to picking up one of these sets to go with it. I really can’t think of anything that isn’t included on the fret that should be there, and some of the finer details are stunning. Review sample courtesy of
  10. Spitfire Mk.XVI Dual Combo 1:72 Eduard More than any other aircraft - at least on this side of the Atlantic - the Supermarine Spitfire has attained the status of a true legend. An unrivalled reputation and its role in the Battle of Britain have combined to ensure the type is ingrained in the nation's psyche. One of the ultimate Merlin powered variants was the Mk.XVI. The Mk.XVI was essentially a Mk.IX, with a licence-built Packard Merlin 266 in place of the Rolls Royce Merlin 66. The Mk.XVI was optimised for low-altitude combat, and a large number were produced with a cut-down rear fuselage and bubble canopy for improved pilot visibility. Just over a thousand Mk.XVIs were produced at the Castle Bromwich factory by the end of the War. Eduard have earned an excellent reputation in recent years with world-class models such as their 1:72 Hellcat, Bf110 and MiG-15. Their models typically feature a mixture of exquisite detail and superb – if complex – engineering which puts them right at the pinnacle of modern kit manufacturers. The latest all-new 1:72 kit to roll off the Prague production line is actually a range of kits, covering the late mark Merlin engine Spitfires, including the Mk.VIII, Mk.IX and Mk.XVI. This kit represents the latter. To kick this particular marquee off, the first edition is a dual combo edition containing two complete kits as well as photo etched parts and pre-cut masks. The kit arrives packed into a glossy, top-opening box adorned with a picture of both high and low-back examples. Each of the two kits comprises well over 150 plastic parts, as well as a small fret of pre-painted photo etched parts and a set of die-cut paint masks. The instruction book is a glossy, stapled A4 affair which includes full-colour painting diagrams. The overall impression is of a really premium package. The quality of the mouldings is up to the usual Eduard standard, with clean, crisp details and no flaws anywhere. As with other recent kits from Eduard, there is plenty of fine detail, with parts such as the cockpit comparable to high-end resin items (which, in turn, should tell you how good Eduard's resin cockpit is). The surface detail on the outside of the airframe is exquisitely rendered, with fine recessed panel lines and delicately engraved rivet and fastener detail. Eduard take an uncompromising approach when it comes to detail, resulting in a cockpit that is simply fabulous, particularly so in this Profipack edition. I don't think I've ever seen a Spitfire kit in this scale with a seat made up of three parts, so it's just as well that a set of pre-painted harnesses have been included too. There is a choice of plastic or photo etched parts for the pilot's armour, and further tiny photo etched details for the control column and throttle controls. The instrument panel also benefits from the addition of photo etched parts, with a detailed plastic alternative provided if you don't fancy using the metal parts. Unusually, the cockpit sidewalls have been moulded separately. I can only think that Eduard have done this in order to maximise the amount of detail they have been able to pack in, as well as paving the way for their resin cockpit, which uses the same approach. Once the cockpit has been assembled and painted, it can be fitted between the vertically split fuselage halves, along with the engine firewall, a blank part into which the propeller is fitted later on, and the pilot's head armour. The leading edge wing root also has to be fitted at this stage. The fact that these parts have been moulded separately to the rest of the kit is testament to Eduard's commitment to detail, if not buildability! The breakdown of the wing is no less complex. As you might expect, the lower wing has been moulded as a single span, with separate upper wing surfaces. Between the two you must sandwich seven parts which together make up the walls of the main landing gear bay. The ailerons and wing tips have been moulded separately, which allows both regular and clipped wing variants to be built from the same moulds. The same applies to the rudder and elevators. Multiple alternatives are included on the sprues, so make sure you use the correct version for your intended subject. The upper and lower cowlings are moulded separately, with the former split along the middle. Even the wing radiators are made up of six parts each, with the surface of the radiators themselves picked out in photo etched metal in this boxing. Turning the model over, the undercarriage is just as detailed as the rest of the kit. Each of the main landing gear legs is made up of seven parts, with the tyres moulded separately to the hubs and photo etched parts to represent hub covers (where fitted). The separate tyres will make painting easier, which is just as well as the included paint masks don't cater for the landing gear. A long range fuel tank and a couple of small bombs are included and the wing cannon barrels are moulded separately, which means they can be added at the end of the build in order to avoid accidental damage. For the high back version, two different rear canopy sections are included so you can finish your model with the canopy open or closed. A single rear canopy is provided for the low back version, which can simply be posed in open or closed position as you wish. As this is a ‘profipack’ edition, a full set of canopy masks has been included. I’ve used Eduard’s pre-cut masks a number of times now and have always found them to be excellent for turning a time consuming chore into a quick and easy job. Eduard are usually pretty generous with the decal options in their profipacks, and this is no exception. Choices are provided for a giddy eight aircraft: Spitfire Mk.XVI TB900, No. 349 Squadron, Wunstorf, Germany, Summer 1945; Spitfire Mk.XVI TD341, No. 443 Squadron, Uetersen Airfield, Germany, August 1945; Spitfire Mk.XVI TB675, No. 485 Squadron (RNZAF), W/O M. Lond, Fassberg, Germany, Summer 1945; Spitfire Mk.XVI SL721, Flown by Air Vice Marshall Sir James Robb, 1948; Spitfire Mk.XVI TD240, Flown by Squadron Leader Boleslaw Kaczmarek, Commanding Officer of No. 302 Squadron, Varrelsbuch Air Field, Germany, Summer 1945; Spitfire Mk.XVI RR227, Flown by Squadron Leader Otto Smik, Commanding Officer of No.127 Squadron, Grimbergen Airfield, Belgium, November 1944; Spitfire Mk.XVI TB634, No.421 Squadron (RCAF), Pilot Officer A.F. McIntosh, B.90 Airfield, Petit Brogel, Belgium, March 1945; and Spitfire Mk.XVI TB752, Flown by Squadron Leader Henry Zary, Commanding Officer of No.403 Squadron, Belgium, April 1945 All of the aircraft are finished in a variation of the Ocean Grey/Dark Green over Medium Sea Grey scheme with the exception of Air Vice Marshall Sir James Robb's aircraft, which is finished in overall PRU Blue. Each option is illustrated with a four-view colour profile. The decals look crisp, thin and glossy and the colours used are nice and bold. Conclusion Eduard's range of 1:72 Spitfires is simply excellent. The kits are both accurate and highly detailed, putting them some way ahead of most other 1:72 kits on both counts. This dual combo package is particularly appealing because of the inclusion of both low and high back versions, the excellent range of decal options and the addition of photo etched parts and masks makes. The only downside is complexity. Other than that, this looks mighty impressive on the sprue and can be highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  11. Gutted for you. Hope you got some compo from the tour operator.
  12. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XVI Brassin Resin Accessories for Eduard Kit 1:72 Eduard This brace of new resin sets for Eduard's Spitfire Mk.XVI mirrors those released for their Mk.IX a few months ago. As good as Eduard's kit might be, there are still limitations to what can be achieved with injection moulded plastic. The Czech firm have recognised this and delivered a suite of neat upgrades that should please every modeller keen to make the most of their new muse. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XVI Top Cowl for Eduard Kit 1:72 Eduard Eduard have produced a resin upper cowling for the new kit, which is helpful if you don't fancy dealing with the seam caused by the division of the kit part into separate port and starboard halves. The replacement part is well made and will be handy if you wish to finish your model with an exposed engine. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XVI Wheels for Eduard Kit 1:72 Eduard Nice as the kit wheels are, there is a limit to the level of detail that can be achieved with injection moulded plastic alone. Eduard have therefore produced these resin items as direct replacements for the kit parts. As with the cowling, the quality of casting is excellent. Eduard have included a set of paint masks too, and having used Eduard’s pre-cut masks on a number of occasions, I can vouch for their usefulness. Conclusion There's nothing much wrong with Eduard's XVI, but even the best kits can be improved on. Naturally Eduard themselves have provided the means to enhance their kit, and with a host of photo etched parts (reviewed elsewhere), this new range of kits and accessories is shaping up to be one of the premier modelling projects for fans of WWII subjects. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Fokker Dr.1 Engine 1:72 Eduard To mark the re-release of Eduard's nifty little Fokker Dr.1 (reviewed here) the Czech firm have bestowed upon us a brand new resin engine. Included in the now-familiar 'Brassin' blister pack are just three resin parts and a tiny fret of etched metal which holds the ignition wiring. The resin parts are beautifully cast and tick all the boxes in terms of fulfilling the functions of an aftermarket upgrade. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  14. Eduard Photo Etch detail sets for Airfix Whitley GR Mk. VII 1:72 Eduard There's no doubt about it, fans of early WWII types such as the Defiant, Blenheim and Whitley have been tremendously well served by Airfix in recent years. Important and interesting types that were previously the preserve of tired old kits from the 1960s or limited run kits from Eastern or Central Europe are now staple fayre in model shops all over the place. Naturally Eduard are now doing their bit to help us reach modelling nirvana by releasing a slew of aftermarket parts – on this occasion for the recent Whitley GR Mk. VII kit. Whitley GR Mk. VII 1:72 Eduard Unusually for a model of this size, Eduard have chosen not to issue separate sets for the interior and exterior, combining them instead into a single set. The first fret contains the mainly pre-painted interior details and, as you would expect, there is a natural focus on the cockpit area. Included on this fret is a pre-painted multi-layered instrument panel, harnesses for the crew seats, details for the throttle controls, control column and cockpit sidewalls. On the second fret are parts for detailing the tail turret, the engine nacelles and the landing gear legs. The bombs also benefit from photo etched fuses and there are replacement bomb shackles for the bomb bay. Whitley GR Mk. VII Landing Flaps 1:72 Eduard This set comprises a single, fairly large fret which contains everything needed to deck the kit out with a set of detailed landing flaps. In typical Eduard style, the part count has been kept quite low by making use of folds rather than individual parts. The instructions don't show these folds in great detail though, so you'll need to pay close attention. Although this set appears to be quite complex, the flaps should be quite straightforward to assemble provided the right tools are used. Note that using this set will require some moulded detail to be scraped away. You'll also need to stock up on thin plastic rod in order to complete them properly. Whitley GR Mk. VII Radar 1:72 Eduard This set is a direct replacement for the antennas provided in the kit. Naturally all of the benefits of photo etched parts are present and correct, including fine, sharp detail and greater resistance to accidental damage. The usual drawbacks also apply, however, as all of the parts need to be folded in order to create a realistic scale thickness. These will be fiddly to use, but well worth the extra effort. Whitley GR Mk. VII Masks 1:72 Eduard Most of us are familiar with Eduard's pre-cut masks, so I won't say too much about them here. You get everything you need to mask all of the transparent parts as well as the main landing gear wheels. While these masks may seem extravagant for a smaller kit, they are much less so for a large, extensively glazed aircraft kit like the Whitley. Conclusion Airfix's Whitley looks to be a very good kit indeed (I'm certainly going to savour building mine) and in typical Eduard style, these sets will add detail where it counts. Some of the parts may be a little intimidating for those not used to working with photo etched parts, but once you get the hang of folding them up, you'll be fine. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of