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      In case you have missed the announcement, the reason that the forum has been slow at times since the minor version update the other day is due to a Denial of Service attack, brute force attack on our email, and judging by the lag with our FTP response, that too.  If you're feeling like you're experiencing a glitch in the Matrix, you're not wrong.  This is the same MO as the attack in September 2016 that occurred when we transitioned to the new version 4 of the software.  We're currently working with US and UK cyber-crime departments, who specialise in this sort of thing, and we're hopeful that we'll be able to track them down this time by using the accumulated evidence already held.    We are pretty certain that it's a continuation of the same attack last year, only at a reduced intensity to deter people from using the site "because it's terribly slow", rather than taking it down completely, and we're also sure of the motivations of those responsible.  Spite.   Please bear with us in the interim, and wish us luck in dealing with these.... "people".

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  1. Time to return to a long-running project I've been doing on and off over the last 5 years, namely Aircraft my Father Fixed. I started this project with this topic back in 2012: Aircraft my Father fixed! As you can see in that thread I've build quite a few of the aircraft so this thread is a bit of a re-tread as I'm going to build another Hurricane IIc from my Father's time with 5 Sqn in Burma. The reason being is that Fly came out with a IIc Trop kit which is better than the conversion I was forced to do in the original build (Here if you are interested). I also want to get the colour scheme right this time but more importantly build a diorama depicting a story my Father told me when I were a nipper... One night when they were all resting in their tents, everyone was woken by a loud CLANG! Rushing out of their tents they saw a red-faced ground crewman in the cockpit of a Hurricane and the aircraft's bombs lying on the ground under the wings! Turns out he'd accidentally hit the bomb release switch and released the bombs by accident. Thankfully the bombs didn't fall far enough to fuse themselves! So my aim is to try to depict that scene - how well I achieve that aim will have to be seen! To start with here is the box of the Fly kit Lots have been written about the surprise appearance of these kits last year, but I'd just liek to say its great to see new kits in differing scales of important aircraft. Next, the obligatory sprue shot The brown styrene sprues are from the kit, the other bits are the extras I'm adding. These include Montex canopy masks, HGW fabric seat belts (although these MAY get saved until I do the Hurricane IId when it gets released...) plus some figures etc that I'll describe individually below. The kits comes with a small PE fret which contains radiator grills, cockpit details and some seatbelts The bombs come from the spares box, in particular from the Tamiya Spitfire IX from a few years back Next, is the figure of a pilot in shorts and bush hat, I can't for the life of me remember where I got this from but for several years I've been looking for figures appropriate to this diorama Next another figure with a bush hat, the flash has obscured the title but it says "LRDG no.2 Into the Sun". I'm going to replace the head as I don't like the heavily bearded look. I've ordered some "expressive" heads from Hornet that will be used to depict the appropriate reactions of the participants. Next is a selection of legs, torsos and bush hats donated by the Airfix 1:32 Australian Infantry set. The white one is from the Airfix 8th Army multipose set, which is 1:32 while some of the other figures are 1:35 - careful positioning around the diorama should mitigate the discrepancies between the scales. The white figure will be the one standing in the cockpit looking shocked. The grey figure will have arms and hands adjusted to looks shocked and may have the head replaced. The final figure is from Ultracast and will need some modifications and a replacement head I'll also add some bits and bobs including some boxes and various bits from these The base will be an old picture frame, suitably treated with claycrete and vegetation etc etc
  2. Fokker D.VII (Early) 1:32 Wingnut Wings Introduction The Fokker D.VII first appeared over the western front in May 1918, as the Great War was entering its final phase leading up to the November Armistice. At first issued in small numbers to elite pilots, it proved to be a very capable fighter and began to build a formidable reputation. Production contracts were awarded to Fokkers' main rival, Albatros, such was the need to get production ramped as quickly as possible. In fact Albatros produced more D.VII's than Fokker themselves, and of better quality. The early machines revealed a tendency to engine overheating, so various attempts were made to increase the airflow around the engine bay, mainly by cutting vents and louvers in the cowling panels. The number and location of these vents can often be of assistance in identifying the age and manufacturer of particular D.VII's in old photographs. Much has been written about it, but it was an outstanding fighter often awarded the accolade of being the finest such machine produced by any side in the conflict. The Kit It was something of a surprise to see this kit announced on Wingnut Wings website a few months ago, but it is certainly very welcome. All their previously released versions of the D.VII sold out long ago, and have been fetching silly money on auction sites. As usual we start with the wonderful Steve Anderson artwork adorning the box lid, depicting a pair of Jasta 15 D.VII's in a clear blue sky. Opening the box reveals that it is packed from top to bottom with a host of individually shrink wrapped sprues, leaving no room far anything to rattle around. It is a good idea with any Wingnut Wings kit to carefully unpack it in sequence, putting each item in the upturned lid as you go. Then reverse the process to get it all back in, otherwise you might find you can't get the lid back on properly. There is that much packed into every kit! Wingnut wings have previously released four other boxings of the D.VII in Fokker, Albatros, OAW, and Fokker D.VII(F) forms. They naturally share a lot of common parts, with the individual variations being taken care of by other sprue(s) unique to the particular version. Construction starts with the cockpit, and here sprue A holds most of the parts. Pay attention to the instructions to make sure you select the correct ammunition tank and machine gun mounts. They vary in height according to early, mid, and late production. The etched fret provides seatbelts, which look very good once painted up and applied to the seat. Having made several of these kits already, I have a number of previous 'build' photographs that are useful here. The cockpit framework builds up very precisely, so you must ensure that you scrape any paint away from mating surfaces, and that you fit items like the firewall and ammo tank correctly. Any incorrect fitting will result in the finished unit 'bulging' and being too wide, which will then interfere with the fuselage sides closing around it. Several items have pins that fit into sockets on sideframes B10 & B11. It is a good idea to ream these out with a micro drill after painting. As usual, Wingnut Wings provide superb instructions, showing detailed colour photos of the interior of the Memorial Flight Associations meticulous replica. These are accompanied by coloured CAD drawings showing how it all fits together, with paint references. The engine bay is made up of several beautiful mouldings that replicate the welded steel tubing of the real thing. Take care with parts B14 & B15 when you remove them from the sprue. On my first build I inadvertently cut them at the front where the engine mounting plates end. But these 'spigots' that stick out are later used as radiator mounts. My fault, the instructions show them clearly but I wasn't paying attention! I absolutely love Wingnut Wings engines, they make super little models in their own right, especially if you go the extra step and wire up the magnetos to the plugs. Fine copper wire is ideal for this, and I often use a little bit of artistic licence and paint them in a light colour. After all, If I have installed all the ignition leads, I want them to be visible. Alternate air pumps, intake manifolds, and decals are provided for whichever of the five colour schemes you select. The Mercedes D.IIIa engine powered many different German aircraft, and thus features in several Wingnut Wings kits. This one was built for the initial release of Wingnuts Fokker D.VII. The fuselage halves are closed around the completed interior, but only the top seam is glued. Once dry, the bottom can be glued, and a strip of 'stitching' fitted in to a channel running along the underside. This works well, and is the only way the stitching can be replicated without having a join line right down its middle, which would then be lost as you sanded down the seam. The two LMG 08/15 Spandaus are provided with etched brass jackets, but if you are not confident optional full plastic ones are supplied as an alternative. Two styles of windscreen are on sprue C, which is typical of Wingnut Wings attention to detail. They are tiny and very similar, but you get both. Not all manufacturers would do this. Sprue I holds all the engine cowling panels, and it is this whole sprue that is completely different in the OAW and Albatros releases of the kit. Even within each kit there are multiple options for all the cowlings, such was the variation among early, mid, and late production from even the same manufacturer. As an early machine, the ones applicable to this kit are the plain ones, or those with only a few louvers - some of which have to be cut off anyway. The instructions make it all perfectly clear. The area is finished off by fixing one of two different styles of exhaust to the engine. Sprue D is provided in duplicate, with all those items that you require two of. Three different wheel hubs are present, but only one style is applicable to the Fokker built machines. The wings are simple to build and feature lovely rib detail. They can in fact be built, primed, painted, and decalled while the main construction of the cockpit/fuselage is going on. Final assembly involves beautifully moulded three-way cabane struts, parts B8 and B12. Use a drill to clear out their lower end mounting sockets at the top of the undercarriage legs. The tolerances are tight, so make sure nothing is clogged with paint. All the struts will fit precisely, and the bonus is that hardly any rigging is required. Markings and decals. Five different schemes are offered, with option C having a variation on the colour of the nose area, either red or yellow. A. Fokker D.VII, 262/18, Emil Thuy, Jasta 28w, mid-1918 (35 victories) B. Fokker D.VII, Rudolf Berthold, Jasta 15/JG2, mid-1918 (44 victories) C1.Fokker D.VII, Max Kliefoth, Jasta 19, October 1918 (3 victories) C2.Fokker D.VII, Hugo Schäfer, Jasta 19, October 1918. As above but with red nose area. D. Fokker D.VII, Reinhold von Benz, Jasta 78b, August 1918 (1 victory) E. Fokker D.VII, Bruno Loerzer, Jasta 26/JGIII, November 1918 (44 victories) Four A4/Letter sized decal sheets are supplied, with the first sheet containing all the individual markings for options A to E. As always they are close to perfection, with perfect colours, register, minimal carrier film and superfine detail. Some of the tiny data plates, shown at least double real life size, are completely readable. Produced by Cartograf, need I say more? Two sheets of lozenge decal accompany the main sheet, one of four colour lozenge and another of five colour. The five colour is especially interesting as it provides two types of underside lozenge. The 'normal' and an overpainted set, replicating where pale blue paint has been washed over the lozenge fabric. I have never seen this on a decal sheet, but it looks great. The lozenges are just visible underneath, and having it provided like this takes all the risk out of having to do it yourself. Options A an B both use it, the others use the normal four colour decal. An interesting variation is that Option A actually uses five colour underside lozenge on both wing upper surfaces, with normal upper five colour on the ailerons. Certainly a very interesting and attractive scheme. The decals themselves are in 'cookie cutter' format, designed and shaped to apply directly to the wing surfaces, complete with rib tapes. Be sure to paint the wings first, to give the decals something to 'bite' onto. Don't be tempted to think you can apply them directly to bare plastic. You can't, because they wont stick. The Fokker 'streaky' camouflage can be rather daunting to paint, but Wingnut Wings have made it simple by creating a full set of 'streak' decals for the fuselage. These are the same as provided in their original Fokker release, and found that they give an excellent result when applied over a pale green (or clear doped linen) painted fuselage. Again referring back to my earlier build; (flash photograpy does't 'arf make the colours look bright! It a lot more subtle in real life). Conclusion. Wingnut Wings other D.VII's sold out rather quickly, so don't hang about with this one. Another benefit is that this boxing contains all the plastic parts and options that were in the original (now out of production) Fokker D.VII release. So if like me, you have the original kit but wanted to build more than one option from it, then you now have everything to assemble an early, mid, or late production Fokker built D.VII contained within this box. But if you missed earlier Fokker built D.VII completely, now is your chance to fill that gap in your collection. Buy two and build an early version straight from the box, and use the other one with Wingnut Wings own decal sheet 30006 'Fighting Fokkers part 1', which gives options for some later Fokker D.VII's. Another absolute beauty from Wingnut Wings, very highly reccomended. Review sample courtesy of Previous builds; 32011 Fokker D.VII (Fok) 32027 Fokker D.VII (Alb) 32030 Fokker D.VII (OAW) with decal sheet 30009 Fokker D.VII (OAW) Fighting Fokkers part 4
  3. 30021 4 Colour Upper Lozenge Decals & 30022 4 Colour Lower Lozenge Decals 1:32 Wingnut Wings Despite early propaganda the Great War was not ‘over by Christmas’ and instead the months passed and turned into years. Aviation was in its infancy, yet underwent rapid change and development during the four years of active conflict. After two years, by 1916 it was realised that some form of concealment for the aircraft was desirable; both while in flight and parked on the ground. Often this was achieved with paints or coloured dopes, but these carried the penalty of adding extra weight. The Deutsche Luftstreitkräfte (German air force) developed pre-printed fabrics that provided the colours without adding the weight. These were based on the polygonal patterns that had often been hand painted onto various aircraft, in an effort to visually break up their lines. Initially the ‘five colour’ fabric began to appear in 1917, followed later by a ‘four colour’ version. Both types had a ‘lower’ version consisting of light colours, and an ‘upper’ version with darker colours. Both types were in extensive use right up until the end of the war, one did not replace the other or supercede it. While the patterns are not in doubt, the actual colours have been discussed exhaustively over the last hundred years. With no contemporary colour photography, plus the effects of fading, oil, varnish, staining, and a whole host of other influences, it can be pretty difficult to come to absolute certainties. Wingnut wings have gone back to primary sources, I.e. surviving fabric samples, and done their own analysis. In their own words; “Wingnut Wings lozenge decals have been meticulously researched, the intricate patterns were traced from original lozenge fabric material we have examined in person. These same lozenge samples were used to colour match our decals under natural daylight conditions. We were very fortunate to have enough sample material to be able to match the colours to the un-doped and un-faded areas from where the edges had been folded over to sew the panels together. In conjunction with our decal printers, Cartograf, we printed multiple samples of each lozenge decal before we were completely happy that the colours matched or research findings. All of this ensures that our decals match the original colours of our samples as they looked in natural daylight conditions as they were applied to aircraft in the Great War.” The decals are printed on A4 sized sheets with seven ‘bolts’ of fabric on each, to the scale width they would have been. There is a very subtle ‘fabric’ look to them, the printing is razor sharp and the pattern repeats precisely . The colours look very impressive, they do actually start to blend together when viewed from a distance. There should be enough on the sheets to cover at least two Albatros sized aircraft, probably more if only the wings need covering. Plenty of useful information is contained within the instruction sheets, pointing out how aircraft were covered, use of rib tapes, and various anomalies that occurred. In the usual Wingnut Wings style, these are backed up with original photographs from the era. Comparison with an earlier Wingnut Wings decal from my stash (a Pfalz D.XII) in pre-shped format, shows the improvement that this latest research has produced. The earlier decal is a little harsher in the way the colours relate to each other, is probably too bright, and it doesn’t ‘blend’ as well as the newer sets. Lozenge camouflage is such a distinctive and noticeable feature on aircraft in this scale, that these sheets will be great to upgrade your unbuilt Wingnut Wings kits (they do a five colour set as well). And if you have any other manufacturers 1:32 WW1 German aircraft kits, they often have much poorer quality lozenge decals, you’ll definitely need a set of these. Highly reccomended. Review sample courtesy of
  4. Hi All, Another F4 question... I'm just getting up to painting my F4J in the USMC scheme with the blue nose and fuselage surround. I've seen lots of pictures with varying shades of the same colour, but I was wondering if anyone knows if there is one paint out there that's as close as possible to being the same blue that is on the decals? Cheers, James.
  5. I have begun my dream build - the BBMF in 1:32 scale, starting with a couple of Spitfires and Hurricanes. The first Spitfire is to be the Mark IIa P7350 "EB-G". My base is the Revell 1:32 kit p/n 80-3986, along with "Kits World" decals and "Yahu" instrument panel. My question concerns the Spinner. Regardless of what it looked like in early WW2, I am trying to find the appropriate 3-blade spinner to match what P7350 has today...and it certainly isn't the shape supplied with the kit, which looks - well - too short and dumpy. I have scoured the interwebs, this forum without success...can anyone advise... 1. Which spinner type does full size P7350 fly with these days? Rotol? DeHaviland? Other? 2. Does any after market shop supply this in 1:32 scale (with blades)...I don't mind having to "fiddle" with it a bit. MANY thanks, Eric
  6. Messerschmitt Me-262 B1a/U1 Nightfighter Revell 1:32 Several two-seat trainer variants of the Me 262, the Me 262 B-1a, had been adapted through the Umrüst-Bausatz 1 factory refit package as night fighters, complete with on-board FuG 218 Neptun high-VHF band radar, using Hirschgeweih ("stag's antlers") antennae with a set of dipole elements shorter than the Lichtenstein SN-2 had used, as the B-1a/U1 version. Serving with 10 Staffel, Nachtjagdgeschwader 11, near Berlin, these few aircraft (alongside several single-seat examples) accounted for most of the 13 Mosquitoes lost over Berlin in the first three months of 1945. However, actual intercepts were generally or entirely made using Wilde Sau methods, rather than AI radar-controlled interception. As the two-seat trainer was largely unavailable, many pilots made their first jet flight in a single-seater without an instructor. Despite its deficiencies, the Me 262 clearly marked the beginning of the end of piston-engined aircraft as effective fighting machines. Once airborne, it could accelerate to speeds over 850 km/h (530 mph), about 150 km/h (93 mph) faster than any Allied fighter operational in the European Theatre of Operations. The Me 262's top ace was probably Hauptmann Franz Schall with 17 kills, which included six four-engine bombers and 10 P-51 Mustang fighters, although night fighter ace Oberleutenant Kurt Welter claimed 25 Mosquitoes and two four-engine bombers shot down by night and two further Mosquitoes by day flying the Me 262. Most of Welter's claimed night kills were achieved in standard radar-less aircraft, even though Welter had tested a prototype Me 262 fitted with FuG 218 Neptun radar. Another candidate for top ace on the aircraft was Oberstleutnant Heinrich Bär, who claimed 16 enemy aircraft while flying the Me 262. The Model With the issue of the extremely well thought of Me-109’s and Fw-190, Revell have now released another in their series of new mould 1:32 kits in the form of the Me-262 B1/U1 Nightfighter. Now while the kit is new and a great replacement for their venerable kit from 1971, they still insist on using the horrible end opening boxes, which, if it wasn’t so packed with plastic would collapse the minute you put it in the stash. Inside the box there are eleven sprues of grey styrene, two of clear styrene and a mid-sized decal sheet. The parts are very nicely moulded with some good surface detail, no signs of flash around the parts, although there is a bit on the sprues, no other visible imperfections and only a few moulding pips. The build begins with the front cockpit tub, which is made up of separate side consoles, and side sections of the seat area, rear lower bulkhead, battery tray, floor, which is fitted with the joystick and control cable run. The circuit breaker panel on the right side console is then attached, followed by the three piece rudder pedal assembly and instrument panel. The cockpit assembly is then attached to the front bulkhead. The front section of the rear cockpit floor is attached to the rear bulkhead of the front cockpit, followed by the separate side consoles, rear bulkhead, along with both seats, which are provided with decal seat belts and which you may wish to change for aftermarket etched or cloth belts for added realism. Both cockpits are then enclosed with the two sidewalls, making the structure strong and ready to fit into the fuselage. The Neptune control box and screen is assembled and put to one side, whilst work continues with the assembly of the gun bay and nose wheel bay. The gun bay floor is attached to the rear bulkhead and the nose bulkhead attached to eh floor. The nose wheel bays sides are fitted to the underside, whilst the ejector chutes are attached to the floor itself. The four cannon and fitted, with their barrels slid through the sub-bulkhead attached to the floor. The ammunition runs are then fitted, followed by two stays between the sub-bulkhead and the rear bulkhead. The instructions say that you will need 15g of weight fitted into the space just forward of the gun bay. I would probably add a little bit more jsut to make sure it’s not a tail sitter, but not too much as the undercarriage legs may not take the strain. The gun bay assembly is then fitted into one half to the fuselage and enclosed with the other half. The cockpits surround is then attached, as is the rear cockpit instrument panel into the upper fuselage and the Neptun radar set and its bracket. The cockpit assembly is then fitted from the underside, where the wings will later fit, followed by the underside cross-members, oxygen bottles, electrical boxes, and control rods. The front and rear spars are joined together by longitudinal bulkheads and attached to the lower wing section which has been fitted with the outer wing panels. The two upper wing sections are fitted with the two flap sections, each of which can be posed extended or retracted, as can each of the two piece ailerons and single piece actuators. The spring loaded slats are also provided as separate parts so that they can be posed extended, their normal position on the ground, or retracted, when in high speed flight. The completed wing assembly is the fitted to the fuselage assembly and it’s becoming to look like a plane now. Whilst you do get most of the engines in the kit, Revell have decided to keep things simple, and therefore cheaper, but not providing a separate engine, or engine covers, so if you want to show off an engine, which will need to be further detailed by the modeller, will also need the separate covers to be cut out. The intakes are made up from the intake surround, internal intake section, bullet fairing and compressor face. The rear section is made up from the exhaust outlet, built, rear stator and rear engine face. The centre section of the engine comprises of fore and after sections split horizontally glued together with a centre wing. With the three sections glued together there are five ancillary parts to fitted, before the nacelle halves are attached covering any engine detail fitted. The front and rear fairings are then attached then each nacelle is glued to their respective positions on the wings. The tail feathers are then assemble, each of the horizontal surfaces are in upper and lower halves, as is the rudder, whilst the elevators are single piece items. Once assembled, they are glued into position along with the separate rudder trim tab. Moving right forward the gun bay panels are attached. If you want to pose these open you will have to cut them in half longitudinally and scratch build a couple of struts. Moving on to the undercarriage, each of the nose wheel is made up from inner and outer wheels with alternative tires and with separate hubs, which will certainly aid painting, these are then glued to the axle on the leg. The main wheels come as two halves and are glued to the main wheel legs, The mains also have separate scissor links which appear t be a little too wide open, with the inner piston of the leg too extended as if it was taken from an empty museum aircraft. You may wish to change this by reducing the piston length and altering the rake of the scissor link. The undercarriage is then fitted to the model, followed by their associated doors, which will need to be split at the appropriate points as they are moulded as one for those who wish to build their model with the undercarriage up, followed by the door retraction jacks and undercarriage actuators. The front windscreen is fitted with a support bar and gunsight, as well as the internally mounted armoured windscreen before being attached to the fuselage. The front and rear canopies are also fitted, and can be posed either in the open or closed positions. Under the nose the bomb racks are attached and fitted with the two, two piece drop tanks. Under the tail section there is a fuel dump tube fitted, whilst at the nose the two Neptun aerial arrays are attached and finished off with the nose cone. Finally the slats are attached, along with the DF aerial, VHF aerials and the clear navigation light covers. Decals The medium sized decal sheet provides options for two aircraft. Messerschmitt Me-262 B1a/U1 “Red 12” 10./NJG 11, Schleswig, May 1945 Messerschmitt Me-262 B1a/U1 “ Red 8” 10./NJG 11, Schleswig, May 1945 The decals are nicely printed, with good opacity, in register and slightly matt. There is quite a bit of carrier film between the Balkenkreuz lines as well as number 12 markings. Naturally there are no decals for eh swastikas, so these will need to be sourced by the modeller. The markings were researched and designed by AirDoc. Conclusion This looks like it will build into another great kit. Revell really have upped their game with the latest releases of 1:32 aircraft. Being nicely detailed, there is still plenty of room for those who want to really go to town on it, yet easy enough for the intermediated modeller to have a go at and get some good results, the price point is also worth considering as it is half the price of a similar Trumpeter kit. Review sample courtesy of Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit
  7. US Navy Deck Crew Videoaviation 1:32 [165032] the latest release from Videoaviation.com is this set of a USN Deck Crew, a set of five figures for your big dioramas. Two of the set have been previously released, namely the crewmember with chocks and the one with holdbacks. The other three crewmembers, two shooters as a fly operator are all new moulds. The set is manufactured in the standard creamy beige resin which is really well moulded and detailed. Crewman with holdbacks - The crewman’s body, head and legs are moulded as one part, with the arms moulded separately. The holdbacks, of which there are six in the box, are moulded on separate blocks, but only by a couple of points , so should be too difficult to remove without breaking them. They can be attached to the crewman’s hands or if you are doing a launch diorama can be fitted between the deck and the aircraft. Deck Crewman with associated chocks - The crewman body, head and legs are moulded as one part, with the arms moulded separately. The chocks are in five parts, two parts for each chock and the fifth for the bar. Shooters – A mostly a single piece figure kneeling on one knee with a separate arm, one shooter pointing, the other with his thumb up. The Fly Director – This is another single piece figure with a separate arm outstretched. Unfortunately the instructions don’t come with colour photographs of the crewmen showing the standard flightdeck uniforms. Instead the call-outs are written down with pointers to the appropriate items. Conclusion This is another very useful set for those modellers who like to build dioramas/vignettes with their large scale models. This set is certainly the one to get even if you have bought the previous figures. Review sample courtesy of
  8. AEG G.IV Late 1:32 Wingnut Wings The AEG G.IV late first started to appear with front line units in early 1917 although it wasn’t until the summer that were available in useful numbers. Developed from an early concept of the heavily armed ‘battleplane’ which was designed to fight it’s way through enemy formations, it was the first of the line to be intended solely as a bomber. The battleplane concept was proven to be flawed after heavy losses were suffered, although it partly resurfaced in later years with the Me.110 ‘Zerstorer’. The G.IV is less well known than the Gotha series of bombers, but in fact was able to carry a heavier bomb load. It was also the most popular amongst aircrews as it was considered to be the easiest of the twin engine bombers to fly. At first it was used as day time bomber, but heavy losses soon saw it switched to night bombing raids. Another lesson that was re-learned in second world war. The kit was reviewed almost exactly 2 years ago, but deserved to be allocated sufficient time to tackle the build, which has taken until now. [Edit] Forgot to say there is a Work in Progress here.[/Edit] It is not one for begginers, but is not actually that difficult to build if you have a couple of Wingnut Wings kits under your belt. Of their bigger kits I would think it is one of the simplest to build. There are no wooden areas to depict, the rigging is actually pretty straighforward, being mostly 'X's of wires in the wings. And the fit is so spectacularly good it self aligns everything as you fit it together. The only thing to be wary of is whacking things on your workbench as it gets bigger. There are options to display the engines fully cowled or fully opened. I follwed the suggestion in the instructions to 'mix and match' to create a mostly open framework with the lower parts using elements of cowling. Almost any combination is legitimate, as period photographs will show. It is anothe winner from Wingnut Wings, as I thoroughly enkoyed the build from start to finish. It has proven to be more of a challenge to photograph, due to it's size. Hope you like it. To give an idea of its size, here it is with a WNW Albatros. Thanks for looking, John
  9. Ok so this one joins my now fleet of three 1:32 F104G Starfighters! The other two were Italeri and this one is a very old Hasegawa kit which was devoid of any detail but ok to build. Thanks to Steve aka Triplex29 who gave me some great information for the build - nice one! Colours were mixture of MrColor, Tamiya and Alclad and the only aftermarket was the pitot. The decals were left over from the Italeri kits as the kit decals were shot to pieces. I don't think the bang seat is the correct one but can correct this later. So I need to find space for more of these! Spanish, Japanese and Danish versions all in my thought processes! Need the forthcoming TF104 as well So some photos of this build and its squadron mates! Chris
  10. Sopwith F.1 Camel "Clerget" 1:32 Wingnut Wings [EDIT] Review build of 'The Duellists' Camel underway in 'Work in Progress' [/EDIT] For the past 12 months or so, Wingnut Wings have been very quiet in terms of new releases. As was apparent from visiting their website they clearly had their ‘heads down’ while they concentrated on producing a Sopwith Camel. This is probably the most eagerly awaited model that WNW has ever released. Anticipation and expectations were very high, due to their reputation for meticulous research and total accuracy, combined with flawless fit and ease of build. The wait was probably longer than most wanted, but it is well known that Wingnut Wings do not release their models according to any pre-prepared schedule. They release them only when everything, and I mean everything, is at the supremely high standard they set themselves. When all was ready for release, there was a big surprise in store. It wasn’t just a single release but Six different kitsets 32070 Sopwith F.1 Camel “BR.1”. 32071 Sopwith F.1 Camel “Le Rhone”. 32072 Sopwith F.1 Camel “USAS”. 32074 Sopwith F.1 Camel “Clerget”. 32076 Sopwith 2F.1 Camel “Ship’s Camel”. 32803 Sopwith F.1 Camel &LVG C.VI “The Duellists’ Wow, no wonder it took so long to research and produce the Camel. Pause for a moment and consider the massive task of project managing all this to Wingnuts exacting standards. All the subtle (but very important) differences between versions, applicable colour schemes, the breakdown of parts and allocations to various sprues, getting the moulds right, and on and on, the list of things that had to be achieved, and decisions made, must have been colossal. The Sopwith Camel. Developed in 1916 as a successor to the single gun Sopwith Pup, the Camel got its name from the ‘hump’ in the forward fuselage that enclosed most of the twin Vickers guns. Entering service in May 1917 and serving right up to then of the Great War in November 1918, the Camel served with many air forces, and was the mount of a large number of allied aces. Initially the aircraft suffered from the poor quality of its Clerget 9B engines, so other engines were tried. The RNAS preferred the Bentley BR.1, and the RFC settled on both the Le Rhone 9J and the improved Clerget 9Bf. The United States Air Service (USAS) received 5 Squadrons of Camels as their forces built up through 1918. A further development was the 2F.1 ‘Ships Camel’ which featured a shorter wingspan and detachable rear fuselage. All these versions are available from the Wingnut Wings range, it only remains to be seen if the F.1/3 ‘Comic’ night fighter joins them. I certainly hope so, and notice that kit number 32073 sits unused between the ‘USAS’ and ‘Clerget’ releases. Could it be for the F.1/3? Fingers crossed everyone! The Kit There is nothing quite like the thrill of a new Wingnut Wings kit, the silver gilt edged box with its fabulous Steve Anderson painting, draws you in to lift the lid and see the latest wonder from our friends in New Zealand. Shown in action here is a very dramatic scene with Camel B3834 ‘Wonga Bonga’ shooting down a Gotha under a moon lit sky. Inside are 5 individually wrapped sprues, all of which are further wrapped in a larger bag, a large decal sheet by Cartograf, and an etched brass fret with seatbelts and gun sights. Also contained is one of Wingnut Wings instruction books, which is way more than just a guide to the assembly sequence. The drawings are very clear and logical, with colour call outs to every step, accompanied by more detailed painting guides at various points. The ‘icing on the cake’ is the inclusion of photographs, both original and modern, to help the modeller understand how everything should look. Want to see how the fuselage interior should look? There are a couple of colour photographs of an original Camel under restoration, before the cockpit area was covered with fabric. Assembly begins naturally enough, with the cockpit area. A full set of instrument decals are provided for the panel, each of which is readable under a magnifying glass. The cockpit side frames are moulded in one piece with the cabane struts. Care will be needed during construction not to knock them, but they will ensure that the top wing will just click accurately into place during final assembly. (The same system was used on their Sopwith Pup model, and having built 2 of them I know that it works a treat). The cockpit is fully fitted out with all the fine detail you could possible want, the only things to add are the bracing wires between the fuselage frames, and the control wires from the stick and rudder pedals. Stretched sprue or rolled fuse wire is ideal for this. The two Vickers guns are fitted in two stages. The main stocks go in during the cockpit assembly, with the barrels to be fitted later on from the outside. This will make painting both them and the cockpit coaming area a much easier job. Who needs resin when you have plastic moulding like this? Another nice feature of Wingnuts thoroughness is that one of the marking options has an extra bit of stitching on the starboard mid fuselage. Rather than supply it as a part to be glued on, Wingnut Wings provide you with 2 complete starboard fuselage halves. One with and one without - a great example of their dedication to doing things right. Lesser companies would have provided 1 fuselage part with the extra stitching on, and instructed the modeller to scrape it off if not required. Note in the photo above, the lower wing is moulded as a single piece including the dihedral, contributing to what should be fool proof assembly and line up of the biplane wings. The wings themselves feature nicely moulded inspection panels, with the lines and pulleys inside. These have clear panels to attach once the details are painted. Also on the clear sprue is a choice of three different windscreens used by the different marking options. The upper wing is a three piece assembly, as per the real aircraft, with beautiful rib and stitching detail, and fine trailing edges. Two different centre sections are on sprue B, with only the small cut out version being applicable in this release.The completed wing should lock into position on those pre set cabane struts, and line up easily with the interplane struts. The etched fret provides details for the gunsights, even including William Barkers little ‘red devil’ in fine detail. Two types of undercarriage are available, the early aerofoil steel tube version and the later round steel tube with wooden fairings. The wheels themselves are from one of the two complete sets provided. More evidence of attention to detail by Wingnut Wings, as I bet few of us would know that different wheels were used on Camels. Final items are the Cooper bombs on their beautifully moulded rack, and the Clerget engine. Different crankcase/pushrod mouldings are supplied to enable either the 9B or 9Bf version to be modelled, all but marking option F using the 9B. Wingnut Wings engines are always a highlight of their kits for me, and I often start my builds with them because they are such fun to build. This little rotary is comparatively simple but no less detailed than some of the bigger in-line engines. Assembled and painted it should look gorgeous. And to help you, there is a colour photo of the real thing on the restored Camel B5663. I know we should be wary of taking information from restorations, but TVAL (Wingnut Wings sister company) do such meticulous work, that there is definitely value in seeing it. Where else are you going to get detailed colour photographs of a Sopwith Camel? The engine is covered by one of four cowlings on sprue A, the other three not being applicable to this version. Finally one of two propellers completes the construction phase. A detailed rigging diagram shows where everything goes. There are a couple of double wires, but on the whole this is a fairly straight forward rig. Not the simplest, but certainly not very complicated either. Interestingly the instructions point out that the Camel was not rigged with turnbuckles, so that is one less thing to have to do. Marking Options. Rather than Wingnut Wings standard five different finishing options, here we get six! It is always a difficult but pleasurable decision as to which one to choose. I’m afraid that it is almost impossible here as they are all absolutely stunning. Many modellers are going to be unable to resist obtaining more than one copy of this particular kit, in order to satisfy that urge. The decals are perfectly printed, with sharp edges and accurate colours. Dozens of fine details are provided, from ‘Sopwith’ logos for the struts to markings for the little Cooper bombs. The big sheet is by Cartograf, your assurance of top quality. A -Sopwith F.1 Camel B3834 “Wonga Bonga”, RH Daly (7 victories) & AF Brandon (1 victory), Manston War Flight RNAS, July-August 1917. B - Sopwith F.1 Camel B3889 “B 1”, CF Collett (11 victories), B Flight 70 Sqn RFC, August 1917. C - Sopwith F.1 Camel B3893, AR Brown (10 victories), 9(N) Sqn RNAS, September-October 1917. D - Sopwith F.1 Camel B6289, HL Nelson (1 victory), WM Alexander (23 victories), A Flight 10(N) Sqn RNAS, January 1918. E - Sopwith F.1 Camel B6313, WG Barker (50 victories), 139 Sqn RAF, late July 1918. F - Sopwith F.1 Camel B7406, HG Watson (14 victories), C Flight 4 Sqn AFC, March 1918. Conclusion. Every Wingnut Wings kit I have seen has been special, but this is something else. It has all the things we have come to love about their kits: the way they present them, the quality of the moulding, the instruction manual, the marking options, etc. Open the box and you will happily spend an hour or two going through the contents, admiring the mouldings, reading the booklet, mentally building it, and best of all, trying to shortlist which option to build. Since last year Wingnut Wings have changed the way they supply their kits. No longer do you order directly from them in New Zealand, and await the arrival of your kits with a Customs and VAT charge. You can now purchase from their partner Weta Workshop, or numerous smaller (often fairly local) retailers, some of which are members on Britmodeller. It seems that all six of the Camel boxings are proving to be very popular and selling like hot cakes. There has been an ongoing thread here on Britmodeller, showing how popular it has been and also how one of our member/traders, Duncan, has been winning praise for his service! See here You don’t even have to start actually building it to get your money’s worth. A good mug of tea (or a decent single malt if it is later in the day), your favourite armchair, and a spare hour with one of Wingnut Wings new Camels will wash away all the cares of the world, and put a huge smile on your face. I know, and I’ve already dipped my hand in my pocket and bought three more! Very highly reccomended. Review sample courtesy of
  11. US Mk-82 Bombs 1:32 Brassin Whilst some of the big 1:32 scale kits provide a decent selection of weaponry in the box, they aren’t always up to the standard we seem to have come to expect when attaching them to our masterpieces. This is where Eduard and their Brassin range come in and the ever expanding catalogue of resin bombs come into play. Arriving in the pretty standard cardboard box, the set has parts for six complete bombs. The casting is up to the usual standard, with some very fine details, such as the bomb lugs moulded onto the bomb casing, although one had managed to be broken in the box. Assembly is nice and simple, as once the fins and bodies are removed from the casting blocks and cleaned up it’s just a matter of joining them together, then deciding what fuse type you’re going to fit. There are two types of nose fuse, one short and one on a fuse extender, there is also the option of just having a plain nose cap for an un-armed weapon. Then it’s just a matter of painting, (any colour as long as it’s olive drab it seems), adding the supplied decals, and weathering as required. Conclusion As is becoming the norm for Brassin these bombs are really well manufactured. Great moulding, good attention to detail and an excellent addition to any modellers armoury. Review samples courtesy of
  12. Douglas Skyraider 20mm Cannon and Pitot Probes 1:32 Master Models The latest batch of items from Master Models included these two sets for 1:32 Skyraiders. As usual, they are beautifully turned and finished and are so much more realistic than the kit parts. Though easy to assemble and fit, one set is a little more fiddly than the other. [AM-32-093] – This set is for any 1:32 Douglas Skyraider. The set includes turned brass barrels without flash hiders and aluminium pitot tube. The set contains two versions of cannon muzzles. [AM-32-094] – Has also been designed for any 1:32 Douglas Skyraider and contains turned brass 20mm gun barrels with flash hiders and a turned aluminium pitot tube. Conclusion Here we have another pair of really useful and well produced items. Both sets are well up to standard we have come to expect from Master Models. All you have to do is a bit of research on what the particular aircraft you are modelling was fitted with and choose the correct set. Review sample courtesy of Piotr at
  13. US Mk-82 Bombs with Retarding Tail 1:32 Brassin Whilst some of the big 1:32 scale kits provide a decent selection of weaponry in the box, they aren’t always up to the standard we seem to have come to expect when attaching them to our masterpieces. This is where Eduard and their Brassin range come in and the ever expanding catalogue of resin bombs come into play. Arriving in the pretty standard cardboard box, the set has parts for six complete bombs. The casting is up to the usual standard, with some very fine details, such as the bomb lugs moulded onto the bomb casing, although several had managed to be broken in the box, along with one of the retard tail fins. I think Eduard need to rethink their packaging, at least separate the bombs from the tails. Assembly is nice and simple, as once the fins and bodies are removed from the casting blocks and cleaned up it’s just a matter of joining them together, then deciding what fuse type you’re going to fit. There are two types of nose fuse, one short and one on a fuse extender, there is also the option of just having a plain nose cap for an un-armed weapon. Then it’s just a matter of adding the etched brass tail ring, painting, (any colour as long as it’s olive drab it seems), adding the supplied decals, and weathering as required. Conclusion As is becoming the norm for Brassin these bombs are really well manufactured. Great moulding, good attention to detail and an excellent addition to any modellers armoury. Review samples courtesy of
  14. Special Hobby

    Yakovlev Yak-3 Special Hobby 1:32 Lighter and smaller than Yak-9 but powered by the same engine, the Yak-3 was a forgiving, easy-to-handle aircraft loved by both novice and experienced pilots and ground crew as well. It was robust, easy to maintain, and a highly successful dog-fighter. It was used mostly as a tactical fighter, flying low over battlefields and engaging in dogfights below 4 km (13,000 ft). The new aircraft began to reach front line units during summer 1944. Yak-3 service tests were conducted by 91st IAP of the 2nd Air Army, commanded by Lt Colonel Kovalyov, in June–July 1944. The regiment had the task of gaining air superiority. During 431 missions, 20 Luftwaffe fighters and three Ju 87s were shot down while Soviet losses amounted to two Yak-3s shot down. A large dogfight developed on 16 June 1944, when 18 Yak-3s clashed with 24 German aircraft. Soviet Yak-3 fighters shot down 15 German aircraft for the loss of one Yak destroyed and one damaged. The following day, Luftwaffe activity over that section of the front had virtually ceased. On 17 July 1944, eight Yaks attacked a formation of 60 German aircraft, including escorting fighters. In the ensuing dogfight, the Luftwaffe lost three Junkers Ju 87s and four Bf 109Gs, for no losses to the Yaks. Consequently, the Luftwaffe issued an order to "avoid combat below five thousand metres with Yakovlev fighters lacking an oil cooler intake beneath the nose!" Luftwaffe fighters in combat with the Yak-3 tried to use surprise tactics, attacking from above. Unresolved wartime problems with the Yak-3 included the plywood surfaces coming unstuck when the aircraft pulled out of a high-speed dive. Other drawbacks of the aircraft were short range and poor engine reliability. The pneumatic system for actuating landing gear, flaps and brakes, typical for all Yakovlev fighters of the time, was problematic. Though less reliable than hydraulic or electrical alternatives, the pneumatic system was preferred owing to significant weight savings. In 1944, the Normandie-Niemen Group re-equipped with the Yak-3, scoring with it the last 99 of their 273 air victories against the Luftwaffe. The Model It was quite a surprise when Special Hobby announced a new 1:32 Yak 3 earlier in 2016, but here it is, re-released in Hi-Tech form. The colourful boxart, with a representation of two Yaks shooting down a Bf.109 also shows, in wording in the left hand bottom corner, that this is a Hi-Tech kit. This means that in addition to the seven sprues of bluish grey styrene, two sprues of clear styrene, (not sure if there should be two as they appear identical), there are also a sheet of etched brass, paint masks, and a blister pack of resin parts. All the parts are well moulded with no sign of imperfections or flash, just beautiful, yet quite restrained panel lines, rivets and other detail, where it should be. The fuselage and outer wing panels are smooth of these, as they are plywood. Whilst looking quite a simple build, there is a lot of detail included, particularly in the cockpit with a mixture of styrene, resin and etched brass parts. The rest of the kit looks to be quite straight forward, with no hidden problems. The fact that the instruction booklet is one of the clearest and easiest to read, (are you listening Dragon?), helps. The build itself begins with the assembly of the cockpit, strangely enough, and the fitting of the side consoles with their additional details to the tubular framework of what would constitute the side walls. The moulded rudder pedals are replaced with resin and PE, whilst the eight piece instrument panel, (including the smaller levers etc.), is assembled and detailed with decals for the instruments, a drop of Kleer or aqua gloss will help them stay in position and give them a glassy look. The two piece rear shelf is fitted with a resin radio set, the front bulkhead, with the cannon breech, whilst the joystick is fitted with a PE trigger to replace the moulded part. All the sub-assemblies are then brought together, in addition to another section of tubular frame to build up the cockpit “tub” if you like. The fuselage halves are joined together once the resin exhaust stubs have been fitted and four piece tail wheel assembly, including resin wheel and PE scissor link, has been built up and fitted to the shelf that is attached to one half of the fuselage. The radiator chute is then fitted through the bottom of the fuselage. The tail surfaces are then assembled, each from upper and lower sections and the two piece rudder. The upper wing section is then fitted out with the fuel filler caps which unusually contain decals for what I presume fill levels, I know someone will come to my on these. The lower wing section is fitted with the radiator. The two wing sections are then glued together and the cockpit assembly glued to the centre section of the top wing, then fitted out with the seat, back rest, seatbelts etc. The wing/cockpit assembly is the slid into the fuselage assembly, followed by the forward cowl deck and resin machine gun muzzles. The instrument panel is further detailed with the gunsight and its associated support rail, the coaming and cocking levers for the machine guns. This is then slide into the cockpit aperture, along with two extra side panels. Each main undercarriage is made from a main leg, resin wheel, PE details, shock strut and actuator, scissor link and two outer gear bay doors, before they are fitted to their respective five piece bays, which in turn are slid into the apertures in the lower wing section. The inner bay doors and their associated retraction actuators are then attached, along with the tail wheel bay doors and up lock fittings. The kit being finished off with the fitting of the four piece propeller, headrest, three piece, or optional single piece, canopy, and finally the pitot probe. Decals The two decal sheets provide markings for five different aircraft, although they are all in the same camouflage. The decals are well printed, by Eduard, and look to be in register with good density, important for the white markings and on quite thin carrier film. The markings included are for the following aircraft:- Yak-3, White “6”, of 1 Sqn, Normandie-Niemen regiment, Autumn 1944, Sterkl, Lithuania. Yak-3, White “Double Zero”, East Prussia, 1944 to 45 Yak-3, White “24” Roland De Poype, Hero of the Soviet Union, Eastern Prussia, Autumn 1944. Yak-3, White “22” Asp Pierre Douarre, Le Bourget, France, June 1945 Yak-3, White “4” Lt Roger, (Robert), Marchi, Lithuania, Summer 1944 Conclusion This is really a lovely little kit, and looks like it will be a joy to build, although not without its quirks, such as the main undercarriage bays being completely assembled, with the legs and wheels before being fitted to the wing. It might be best to fit the bays to the wing first and do any filling and sanding they may require, before fitting the undercarriage. Other than that, another nice release from Special Hobby. Review sample courtesy of
  15. Yakovlev Yak 3 detail Sets Eduard 1:32 The Special Hobby Yak-3, reviewed HERE is a great kit in its own right, but there is always room for improvement, and Eduard always seems to find that room. They have now released three individual sets to adorn the kit with extra and improved detail. As with most sets of this type some of the kit details will need to be removed before the etched parts can be added. Detail Set (32891) Contained on two sheets of relief etched brass, both about the same size as each other, one is unpainted whilst one comes pre-painted. The unpainted sheet contains items The pre-painted sheet provides the modeller with a variety of coloured knobs, levers and trim wheels complete with separate chains, new auxiliary instrument panels, plus replacement dials for the side panels. The main instrument panels are also pre-painted complete with the instrument faces on the back plate. A little dab of aqua clear will give them the appearance of glass fronts. Also on this sheet are a couple of foot plates, cable from the joystick and additional sidewall detail. The unpainted sheet contains brake hoses of the main undercarriage legs, along with a new bracket and gland, new panels for the main gear door interiors, new cabling for the main gear bays. The tail wheel doors are replaced with etched items, although you will need to provide a small length of plastic rod for each door. The radiator outlet door is replaced, the etched part being fitted with two brackets and also requires two plastic rods from the modellers supplies. The two large grilles are fitted to the front and rear bulkheads of the radiator bath to represent the radiator itself. Seatbelts (32892) This small fret of brass comes pre-painted and only contains three parts, the shoulder straps which are joined at the top and the tow separate lap straps. Being made of very thin etched steel, they are easily manipulated to shape and require no further assembly, just fit them to the seat and away you go. Flap Set (32394) This single sheet set is to be used to completely replace the kits flaps and the flap bays. You will need to carry out a fair bit of surgery in the kits flap bay area to remove all the detail and thin the skin down. The bays include the roof and forward bulkheads, all the ribs, and flanges as well as the multiple flap tracks. The flaps themselves are also detailed with ribs which need to be carefully folded into position, along with the outer skin panel. The end plates are then attached and the flaps fitted into position. Conclusion This is certainly a fairly comprehensive array of details for what is already a very nice kit. With plenty of care and patience they will make a great kit into super kit. The advantage of have separate sets is that the modeller can pick and choose how much, or how little detail they wish to add. Review sample courtesy of
  16. Republic P-47 Thunderbolt detail Set Eduard 1:32 Eduard have recently released their big 1:32 P-47 Thunderbolt, and rather unusually, have also released an etched detail set for it. I would have thought they would have included it in the kit, especially seeing as the kit is so expensive, but there you go. Detail set (32396) Contained on a single large sheet of relief etched brass the set contains parts for both internal and external areas of the model, but mainly external. The only items for the cockpit are for the four piece seat raising and lowering mechanism, for which you’ll have to provide a length of styrene or brass rod, and the foot plates for the rudder pedals. Other internal parts include the internal trunking for the exhausts, the hinge mechanisms for the cooling gills, rocker cover plates and the interior faces of the undercarriage doors. Externally there are new fin boxes for the bombs, along with nose and tail arming vanes, interior pylon fitting, and crutches. The wing drop takes receive the same interior pylon fixture and crutches, whilst the centreline tank is fitted with new a similar fixture, but with attachment hook and crutch plates. The rear fuselage mounted intakes are completely replaced, both internally and externally with brass parts that will need some careful folding and rolling to achieve the correct shape. The rudder trim tab control rod cover and attachment is fitted and a similar arrangement is fitted to the port elevator. The scissor links on the main undercarriage legs are replaced as is the lower outer door along with their respective hinges. Lastly the interior of the flap bays are fitted with a new liner. Conclusion This is very nice set, which although not the most complex will give the kit some useful additional detail. It’s just rather strange that it wasn’t included in the kit. Review sample courtesy of
  17. Steel Seatbelt Sets French WWI, IJAAF WWII, Mig-21, F-4. 1:32 Eduard Continuing with their releases of steel seatbelts, Eduard have sent four more to BM Towers for us to look at. As with the previous releases, these are also pre-painted and appear to be remarkably flexible, and even with quite rough handling the paint adheres to the metal really well.They are still made from 0.1mm sheet with the resulting etch is thin at around 0.06mm and have the same details printed on them, such as the webbing, stitching, and shadowing. Unlike some sets, all the buckles and clasps are etched as part of the strapping, so there is no fiddly work required to assemble each belt. [32889 – French WWI] – There are five sets of belts included on the single sheet. There are five pairs of lap belts covering the different styles used throughout the war. These are very well painted and very colourful. [32890 – IJAAF WWII] – In this set there are twelve lap belts, four for Nakajima aircraft in leather, and four in cloth, plus four for Kawasaki aircraft also looking like leather. Each buckle, on the left hand belt section also has a protective pad fitted beneath it. [32895 – Mig-21] – Naturally this set only contains one complete seat set of belts. It includes the back fixture, shoulder straps, leg straps and a very nice ejection handle.The straps do have some very nicely done shading on the parts. [32896– F-4 Phantom] – This twin seat set contains all manner of straps for you big Phantom seats. They include straps for the headrest, and backrest. Then there are the shoulder and lap straps, and finally the leg restraints. You will have to check your references when using this set as I don’t know if all F-4 seats were the same. F-4 Seatbelts Grey (32898) - As above but in grey. Conclusion Those who build in the larger scales generally try to add greater levels of detail into their models, showing much skill and technique. Now, those of us who aren’t endowed with super skills can at least have some nice looking seatbelts fitted to our models, with very little skill needed, other than a bit of bending and gluing. Of course the belts can still be weathered more if required. Review sample courtesy of
  18. US CBU-105 Bombs 1:32 Brassin (632-095) - If you’ve fancied some more interesting ordinance on your finished models than dumb or laser guided bombs, then we have just the thing for you here. The CBU-105 sensor fused weapon, although banned now, was used to great effect in the second Gulf War, where the M-108 Skeets proved to be devastating against both tanks and soft skin vehicles. Arriving in the pretty standard cardboard box used for more fragile items the set has parts for six complete bombs. The casting is up to the usual standard, with some very fine details, such as the bomb lugs moulded onto the bomb casing. Unfortunately, even in the packaging they come in, some of the lugs on the review samples have broken. So be aware and open the ziplock bag carefully as they can be glued back on if required. Assembly is nice and simple, as once the fins and bodies are removed from the casting blocks and cleaned up it’s just a matter of joining them together painting, (any colour as long as it’s olive drab or test white it seems), adding the supplied decals, and weathering as required. Conclusion As is becoming the norm for Brassin these bombs are really well manufactured. Great moulding, good attention to detail and an excellent addition to any modellers armoury. Review sample courtesy of
  19. Bazooka Launchers for P-47 1:32 Brassin Arriving in the cardboard box that are used for the more fragile sets in the Brassin range, this set consists of two complete launchers, four end plates, and four fixing arms. There is also a smallish etched sheet, containing the straps that go round each three tube launcher and a small resin fixture for the straps. Construction is relatively simple, just cut the moulding blocks off the launchers and launcher end sections, for which the modeller has the option of fitting one pair for armed or the other pair for empty launchers. Each of the upright fixtures is then glued to the top attachment points of the launchers. The tubes are then fitted with six straps which go round all three tubes, and a strengthening strap that is fitted between the aft attachment points to one of the binding straps. Conclusion Although Eduard probably expect this set to be used on their new 1:32 P-47, it can obviously be used on any manufacturers kits in this scale. It’s a great set and makes you realise how big these things were. Review sample courtesy of
  20. Hi, as I'm sure there are many Wessex friends around here, I just wanted to share with you this great HAR.2 build by my friend Akira Watanabe: http://nabe3saviation.web.fc2.com/modelWes.html As I'm no Wessex expert myself I can't comment on the detail however the execution and the work put in and the final finish look stunning. Cheers Jeffrey (just to be clear, this isn't my model, it's Akira-san's, just posting it here)
  21. North American P-51D/K/Mk.IV Zoukei-Mura 1/32 History Whilst the earlier versions of the Mustang are well known, it is the P-51D/K with its bubble-top canopy was perhaps the most recognised and most well known version of the P-51 family. It was also the most widely used variant of the Mustang, with a grand total of 8102 machines of this type being produced. One of the problems encountered with the Merlin-powered P-51B/C was the poor view from the cockpit, particular towards the rear. The "Malcolm hood" fitted to the P-51B/C was an early attempt to correct this deficiency. However, a more lasting solution was sought. In January of 1943, Col Mark Bradley had been sent to England, and while there he saw how the newly-invented "bubble" or "teardrop" canopy had given Spitfire and Typhoon pilots unobstructed 360-degree vision. He returned to Wright Field in June, and immediately began exploring the possibility of putting bubble canopies on USAAF fighters. Republic Aviation put a bubble canopy on the P-47D Thunderbolt in record time, and Bradley flew it to Inglewood to show it to James H. Kindelberger, the President and General Manager of North American Aviation. Following discussions with the British and after examination of the clear-blown "teardrop" canopies of later Spitfires and Typhoons, North American Aviation secured an agreement with the Army to test a similar canopy on a Mustang in order to improve the pilot's view from the cockpit. A P-51B was selected to be modified as the test aircraft for the new all-round bubble canopy. The aircraft was redesignated XP-51D. The new bubble-shaped hood gave almost completely unobstructed vision around 360 degrees with virtually no distortion. The large rear section did not reach its point of maximum height until a point well aft of the pilot's head was reached, since wind tunnel testing showed that this shape was found to offer the best combination of viewing angles and minimum aerodynamic drag. The Plexiglas of the hood was mounted in rubber in a metal frame, the sill around the bottom being very deep. This was needed to provide the strength and rigidity required to avoid distortion and to prevent the binding or jamming of the canopy in the fuselage rails while it was being opened and closed. There were three rails, one along each side of the cockpit and one along the upper centreline of the rear fuselage. The canopy was manually opened and closed by a handle crank operated by the pilot. In order to accommodate the new all-round vision hood, the rear fuselage of the Mustang had to be extensively cut down. However, the amount of retooling needed to accomplish this was not extensive, and very little re-stressing of the fuselage structure was necessary. The newly-modified XP-51D took off on its first flight at Inglewood on November 17, 1943, test pilot Bob Chilton at the controls. One of the shortcomings of the P-51B was its limited firepower of only four machine guns. In addition, the guns in each wing were tilted over at quite sharp angles, requiring a sharp kink in the ammunition belt feeds and resulting in frequent gun jams. NAA took the opportunity afforded by the introduction of the new Mustang to correct this problem. The gun installation was completely redesigned, and the result was the installation of three MG53-2 0.50-inch machine guns in each wing, all of them mounted upright and all fed by ammunition belts. The inboard guns each had 400 rpg, and the others each had 270 rpg. However, Mustang users had the options of removing two of the guns and having just four, with 400 rounds each, and some pilots did actually select this option. Another visible change introduced by the P-51D was in the increase of the wing root chord. The main landing gear was strengthened in order to accommodate the additional weight, but the wheels maintained the same diameter of 27 inches. However, the wheel bays and doors were modified and the "kink" in the wing leading edge, barely seen in earlier marks, was made much more pronounced. Four P-51D-1-NA Mustangs had been completed with the original B-type canopy before the first P-51D-5-NA model (company designation NA-109) rolled off the production line. There were previously known problems with the installation of the 85-gallon tank in the rear fuselage of the P-51B and its adverse effects on the directional stability. With the P-51D these problems were exacerbated, due to the fact that the cutting down of the top line of the rear fuselage caused a lot of keel area to be lost. In order to provide for better directional stability, a dorsal fin was added ahead of the rudder during the production run of the P-51D Block 10. Some of the earlier P-51Ds (plus a few P-51Bs) were retrofitted with this dorsal fin. The extra weight and drag caused by this fin was quite small, but it helped a lot in improving the directional stability, especially when the rear fuselage fuel tank was full. The P-51D/K introduced the K-14 computing gyro gunsight, based on a British (Ferranti) design. When it first appeared, it was considered almost miraculous. The pilot needed only to dial in the wingspan of the enemy aircraft he was chasing and then feed in the target range by turning a handgrip on the throttle lever. Once the data had been selected an analogue computer worked. All that the pilot had to do then was to get the wingtips of his target lined up on the bright ring projected on the gunsight, and press the trigger. The K-14 was fitted almost from the start of P-51D production, the P-51K receiving this sight from mid-1944. This sight played a major role in the P-51D's impressive score of aerial victories. The P-51D began to arrive in Europe in quantity in March of 1944. The 55th Fighter Group was the first to get the P-51D, trading in its P-38s for the new bubble-topped fighters. The change from the torqueless twin-engined P-38 to the single-engined P-51 did cause some initial problems, and the lack of directional stability caused by the presence of a full fuselage tank took a lot of getting used to. However, once their pilots became fully adjusted to their new mounts, they found that the P-51D possessed a marked edge in both speed and manoeuvrability over all Luftwaffe piston-engined fighters at altitudes above 20,000 feet. However, Luftwaffe pilots considered the Mustang to be rather vulnerable to cannon fire, particularly the liquid-cooled Merlin engine which could be put out of action by just one hit. The Mustang was the only Allied fighter with sufficient range to accompany bombers on their "shuttle" missions in which landings were made in Russia after deep-penetration targets had been attacked from English bases. The Mustangs also participated in low-altitude strikes on Luftwaffe airfields, a rather dangerous undertaking as these fields were very heavily defended by flak. The Model This is the second P-51D Mustang released by Zoukei-Mura, but only the first this reviewer has actually got his hands on, although having several other ZM releases I am quite familiar with the Super Wing Series concept. The sturdy medium sized, yet deep, top opening box, with a lovely rendition of a British P-51K on the front, is jam packed with styrene. Each of the twelve grey and two clear sprues are individually wrapped in poly bags, with the clear sprues also having foam wrapping around the parts for extra protection. There are three large decal sheets which are supplied in another protective poly bag along with the instruction booklets. It is pretty obvious that the main instruction book is from the first P-51D release as this kit builds up in the same way, but if you are building a P-51K then you will need to refer to the supplementary booklet which is associated to the extra sprue specific to this mark. The medium grey styrene is beautifully moulded, with no sign of flash as is expected these days, but there are a lot of moulding pips, probably due to the nature of the parts design, which does mean there is a little extra cleaning up to do. The details on the parts are very well moulded with restrained panel lines, rivets fasteners on the outer skin, whilst the interior, which is what makes these kits rather special, is quite mind boggling, not just with the finesse of design but with the amount of interior parts provided. That said, there are a couple of noticeable problems, the first is that the wings have definite panel lines which I believe were actually filled to help with the laminar flow of the wing, but an easy fix. The second is the machine gun barrels, which, although quite well protected on the sprue, three or four have a pronounced warp on the review example as the barrel muzzles aren’t connected to the sprue. Of course this is easily overcome with the purchase of the metal barrel set that ZM have also released, but this shouldn’t occur with the sort of technology available these days. The instruction book is beautifully laid out, clear and easy to read, with a preface of aircraft specifications and assembly information, followed by paint colours required and the usual safety information ref tools etc. After the preface pages each major assembly has its own build section. The first page of which provides photos of the completed sub-assemblies, a written guide to what these sub-assemblies are called and in the top right hand corner of each the number of parts used in each assembly. The photos/diagrams all show the colours used to paint each part and how it should look when complete, not accounting for weathering of course. The build itself begins with the engine and what could be termed over the top in relation to the amount of detail provided that will never be seen. Each cylinder block is moulded in two halves with each of the individual cylinders moulded into one half. The completed blocks are then attached to the three piece crank case, followed by the intake manifold and cam covers. To the front of the engine the front and rear portions of the gearbox are joined, with the propeller shaft sitting between and the dual drive unit at front and the whole assembly attached to the engine block. The two piece coolant header tank is then fitted above the gearbox and the four piece ignition harness attached to the top of the engine. The two magnetos, coolant pump and cam shaft drive unit ate assembled and fitted to the rear of the engine, followed by the supercharger unit, which is made up of the two piece supercharger housing for each of the first and second stages, boost control unit, drain valve and aftercooler. The aftercooler pump and ignition harness are fitted to the port side, whilst on the starboard side the ignition harness and oil relief valves are attached. The individual exhaust stacks are then attached along with their respective fairings ensuring that the stack angles are correct. The final stage of the engine assembly is the building up of the firewall, onto which the two piece oil tank is attached, along with the oil line on the front and a couple of black boxes on the rear. The engine bearers are then fitted to each side of the engine then attached to their respective points on the firewall. Lastly the oil line is fitted between the bottom of the oil tank to the pump on the underside of the engine. The next stage concerns the assembly of the cockpit and begins with the fitting of the filler pipe and gauge to the fuselage fuel tank which is then fitted to a support base, then the fuselage floor frame along with a small rear bulkhead. There is a choice of seats, one with seatbelts moulded into it, the other without, depending on whether the modeller intends to add a pilot figure, one of which is available separately. The seat is attached to the rear armoured bulkhead via two supports, whilst the aerial relay box is attached to the rear of the headrest. The radio set and battery are attached to the support framework, to the front of which the heater and ventilation pipes are attached. This assembly is then fitted to the rear of the armoured bulkhead and assembled to the cockpit floor with the battery/radio frame sitting on the fuel tank. There is a choice of instrument panel; one with very nicely detail moulded instruments, which with careful painting should look great, the other is plane as is meant for use with the provided decal. To the underside of the panel the rudder pedal unit and switch box are attached. The side panels are then fitted to the cockpit along with the instrument panel assembly and instrument pipework to the rear of the panel. Moving onto the fuselage interior, the engine assembly is attached to the cockpit assembly. The oil cooler is assembled and fitted to the supporting frame and put to one side. The coolant radiator is then assembled out of the radiator front matrix, rear matrix and sides. The oil cooler, coolant radiator and rear radiator exhaust duct are attached to the underside of the cockpit assembly. The long coolant/oil pipes are then attached to their respective radiators and the inlet/outlet fittings on the engine. The three part carburetor air induction duct is then assembled and fitted beneath the engine attaching to the supercharger intake and the front of the engine. A small oil pipe is then fitted to the starboard side of the oil cooler assembly. It’s only now that the fuselage itself is assembled. Unlike standard kits where the fuselage is split into port and starboard halves, in this kit it is made of up of individual panels and sections. First of all the sides are added, not forgetting to fit the two oxygen bottle to the inside of the starboard side panel. These are followed by the upper fairing and the lower panel which surrounds the radiator/oil cooler duct. The engine cowling is next and the modeller is given a choice of having them fitted or not, and since there is so much detail in the engine it would seem a shame to have it covered up. There doesn’t appear to be an option to have them removable, unlike the Tamiya kit and their magnetic answer. If the cowling is to be fixed permanently closed then there is no need to add the panel supporting framework around the engine, if the engine is to be exposed then these will need to be attached. Also take note to fit the correct intake filter panel for use on the Mk.IV as specified in the supplementary instruction sheet. The separate tail cone, made up of two halves into which the tail wheel bay is assembled from the two sides, roof and forward bulkhead, is now assembled, using either the standard or supplementary parts are necessary. This also goes for the vertical tail unit as the modeller has the choice one with a filet and one without depending on the model being made. Before fitting the fin and rudder the horizontal tailplanes are assembled from upper and lower full span halves and separate elevators. This is then fitted to the top of the tail cone and the fin/rudder unit on top of that. Either of the N-9 or K-14 gunsights are then assembled and fitted to the coaming which has been attached forward of the cockpit. The windscreen is then fitted along with the completed tailcone assembly thus completing the fuselage. Moving onto the wings and once again, like the fuselage, it’s like building the real thing, albeit somewhat simplified. The single piece spar and rib unit is fitted out with the six machine guns, each with their separate ammunition belts, three per side in their gun bays. The two part main fuel tanks are then assembled and fitted inboard of the gun bays before the whole sub-assembly is attached to the single piece lower wing skin part. The three clear identification lights are then fitted to the starboard underside wing tip coloured, probably best, from the inside. The undercarriage bay front bulkhead is attached to the wing by two outer spars and a central longitudinal bulkhead. The hydraulic actuators are then attached, two per side, whilst the retractable landing light is fitted to the port bay. The upper outer wing panels are then fitted, along with the separate leading edge panels inboard of the gun bays, the port leading edge having had the camera gun fitted beforehand. The flaps can be posed either retracted or extended depending on the modellers choice of display. Before the wing can be fitted to the fuselage, the joystick and associated control linkage is attached to the top of the wing and the wing fillets fitted to the mid-lower fuselage. With these in place the wing can be attached. With the kit looking more like a model aircraft the build moves on to the addition of ancillary parts, such as the radiator duct air intake, which comes in three parts and is also fitted with an additional length of pipework before fitting to the fuselage. The oil cooler and radiator outlet doors, which are then attached to the rear of the under fuselage, the radiator door is also fitted with an actuator jack and strengthening bar. The main undercarriage units are each made up of a single piece oleo, separate brake pipe and scissor link. The wheels consist of the brake unit, inner and outer hubs and two halves of each tyre. When assembled they should look rather good, although I would prefer the tyres moulded as a single piece. The completed units are then slid into position and twisted to fit the trunnions into their correct position. The inner doors and actuators are then fitted with the required droop, depending on how long the aircraft has been shut down, whilst the outer doors are fitted to the main oleos. The tail wheel assembly is a simpler affair with the main leg being moulded in a single piece, with the single piece wheel/tyre being fitted to the axle. Once fitted into the tail wheel bay the two bay doors can be attached. Whilst the aircraft could carry a variety of stores and equipment the kit comes with just a pair of drop tanks. Each is split horizontally and when assembled are fitted with the air and fuel pipes and attached to the pylons via two crutch plates. The completed assemblies can then be fitted to their respective hardpoints just outboard of the main undercarriage legs. Final outfitting means more choice for the modeller, dependent on which version or mark they are building. ZM have included three different canopies, (M-1 Inglewood built, K-1 Inglewood built and K-13 Dallas built), each with a separate internal frame and one with an external rear view mirror. There is also an option on which propeller to use as both the cuffed Hamilton Standard and un-cuffed Aeroproducts props are provided, with their respective backplates and spinners. There is also an option to have the radar warning antenna fitted to either side of the vertical fin, so check your references to see if the aircraft you are modelling was fitted with them and open up the holes in the fin halves before gluing them together. The last thing to be fitted are the gun bay doors, either open or closed, the navigation lights, tail light, pitot probe and aerial mast. Decals There are three large decal sheets included with this kit. Each very nicely printed with very little carrier film visible, with the exception of the Southern Cross decals and Star and Bar surrounds which will be covered up anyway. They appear to be in register and nicely opaque which is particularly useful if using the identification stripes on a couple of the paint options. There are stencils for one aircraft and include some cockpit placards and instruction placards for the gun bays. If you include the original kit schemes which are included in this one then the modeller can make one of seven different aircraft. These include:- P-51D-5-NA Ser.No. 44-13837 of the 343rd FS, 55th FG Miss Marilyn II, flown by Capt. Robert Welch P-51D-10-NA, Ser.No. 44-14450, of the 363rd FS, 357th FG, Old Crow, flown by Capt “Bud” Anderson P-51D-25-NA Ser.No. 44-73108, of the 334th FS, 4th FG Red Dog XII flown by Maj. Louis Norley Mustang IVa, Ser.No. KH774, 112Sqn, Royal Air Force Mustang Iva, Ser.No. KH716, 3Sqn, Royal Australian Air Force P-51K-10-NT, Ser.No. 44-12073, of the 348th FS, Sunshine VII P-51D-5NA Ser.No. 44-13410 of the 361st FG, Lou IV There is also a small sheet of masks to aid the painting of the canopy and windscreen. Conclusion If you’ve never come across a Zoukei-Mura Super Wings Kit before then have a look. They can appear to be pretty intimidating until you look at the clever and well thought out break down of parts. I don’t purport that they will be an easy build as there is a lot to do, both in preparation, painting and fitting, but the end result is well worth it. Whilst some don’t see the point of having all the internal structure, and yes it isn’t an exact replica of the real thing, but it gives options for some well detailed dioramas as well as looking interesting if left exposed. I think this kit is one of the most accessible ZM have released as it’s not overly complex and should be ok for the intermediate modeller and above. As with everything, take your time and the results will speak for themselves. With this kit you also get to build a 1:32 Mustang in British or Australian colours which has got to be good. If you want to really go to town on the model then ZM have also released a raft full of aftermarket items from the likes of Eduard and Master Models to enhance the build, although I would have liked to have seen at least an interior etched set or seatbelts included in the standard kit. Oh! And you will need to change the machine gun barrels, particularly if you’re leaving the gun bay doors open. Extremely highly recommended Review sample courtesy of
  22. Fokker D.VII (Alb) 1:32 Wingnut Wings. The Fokker D.VII was the most succesful German single seat fighter of the Great war. Such was the demand for it that not only was it built by Fokker, but also Ostdeutsche Albatros Werke and Albatros, hence the suffix (Fok), (OAW) and (Alb) often used to denote the manufacturer of a particular airframe. In fact Albatros produced more D.VII's tha Fokker themselves, and to a better standard of quality. One of the things I like about aviation modelling is not just the aircrfat themselves, but also the people who maintained and flew them. The Great War is full of personalities, and Carl Degelow is a shining example. He was a 30 victory ace, and the last winner of the 'Pour le Merit', commonly known as the Blue Max. By all accounts he was a chivalrous 'knight of the air', and served with honour and distinction. I can thoroughly reccommend the book 'Black Fokker leader' written by Degelow and translated/edited by Peter Kilduff. Degelow survived the war, and was later jailed for a few days for refusing to give the Nazi salute! He served in the Luftwaffe in World War 2, and died in Hamburg in 1970. The Wingnut Wings kit is superb, I have now built all 3 (the Fokker, OAW, & Albatros versions), and throughly enjoyed all of them. Original review of all 3 here Hers is the latest, Carl Degelows 'White Stag' ; With cowling panels fitted; Cowling panels detached; Read the book, build the model! [edit for a late addition] All 3 Wingnut Wings together. Left to Right, Willi Gabriels (Fok), 'Sieben Schwaben' (OAW), and Carl Degelow (Alb). Not easy to photograph together![/edit] Thanks for looking, John
  23. This is my first ever 1:32 build, and my first post on here, bar my introduction (in which I stated I don't build 1:32). I usually only do 1:48, as I find the large surfaces a bit intimidating in terms of painting / finish, but this was a gift. That said - I do love interiors - so this was a real treat. As I am sure many people will notice - there are a few screw-ups. I tend to rush, and got some bits on backwards or upside-down (see landing gear). Frustrating and embarrassing, but I will learn. Also - I am afraid to say I am not a big researcher - I just love the look of aircraft and love building models - so some of the markings and colourings are likely well off... All of that said - I was happy with this. I don't have an airbrush - so this is all done with brushes or rattle cans (Molotow, Tamiya or Citadel). With some very basic whole panel pre shading with primer, and a load of spot washes, pin washes and afters with pigments and so on. As ever - I struggled not to go overboard with weathering - as I really enjoy that part of every build. Think I might have kept it just about bearable. All markings painted with rattle cans using Montex masks. Thanks for looking. Any notes most welcome.
  24. Hi folks, Firstly - I'm aware of the great build threads (with fix observations) that have been posted here on BM - the some excellent thoughts and input - you there Bill? What I'd like to get together here is a definitive list of errors - with dimensional/photographic proof. So - looking out for theories/physical measurements/photographic evidence... Reason - I *really* love the Lightning and I doubt we'll ever get another in 1:32. And IMHO there is a lot that's good - we've got injection moulded 1:32 Lightnings for one! Sooo - am looking at making up some 'correction' patterns for these kits - possibly... What I have on the list at present is: Fuselage plug (5 mm to fuselage length) - This is something I will be double checking with a real airframe. Nose ring Intake/nose gear bay Replacement fuselage tanks (all versions) Fuselage cable ducts (as required per Mk) Rear fuselage cross section Possible narrow chord on fin (F2A/F6) Canopy - I have a gut feeling looking at a few completed models that the canopy is somehow wrong - gut feeling is far too wide - again - to be confirmed Wheels/Refuelling probe available elsewhere and main gear can be shortened. Anything missing from list? Any further observations? Iain