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Found 167 results

  1. With the remonstrations of a certain Martian - as well the stern-but-fair General M - ringing in my shell-likes, I thought it prudent to put down a mark of intent, less a prolonged silence give rise to dark mutterings of bad-faith and fair-weathering modelling around the mess. So: without further ceremony let me introduce the next offering: Fairey's big-shouldered beast of burden, the new Barracuda from Special Hobby: On first inspection this kit looks highly disappointing as there appears nothing for me to cut off, scribe, or stuff full of filler to be a pleasant change from the company I usually keep. I haven't yet checked it against photos to any degree, but the moulding looks sharp and nicely incised, whilst the plastic itself feels just 'right' to the touch: Even the bit for poking holes in ships has an well-realized set of screws: The box-art I find delightfully-bizarre: a pen-and-watercolour job of the kind you usually find adorning the cover of The People's Friend, or B. Wooster's column in Milady's Boudoir: I'd originally intended to use the Barracuda canopy from the excellent Falcon FAA set, but putting it up against the Special Hobby one that came with the kit, I'm genuinely not sure it's necessary. What do you think? The SH one is the bottom of the two: Being the first time I've ever done an SH kit I was surprised at the quality and detail of the instructions as well - are they always this concise and well-done graphically? I'm not at all sure about those Eduard decals however: Do you see that rather unsightly patina across the surface of the roundels? I wonder will that dissolve-off in the water or do they come pre-weathered for that mucky maritime look.... The kit comes with two sets of badges, one for a Barra from Victorious, the other from Furious, both from the Spring of 1944. Despite the provision of a torpedo in the kit, SH note that both these aircraft were involved in bombing strikes on Tirpitz, so it's a straight choice of whether you want to tool up as a dive-bomber for these raids, or go 'fishing' on other missions. From what I know of the Barra, it was more often used in the bombing role than as a fish-flinger - I still haven't decided yet which route to take. There's a rather handsome Stanley Lewis painting of Barracudas attacking Tirptiz in the FAA museum. (The baldy-heed in the reflection is mine!): That's the opening salvo gentleman. I've still a lot of research to do on the various structures - though as there's not a massive amount published in this baby I'm currently relying on Pilot's Notes and the Warpaint volume, plus whatever images are floating around the interwebs. Any shots of the cockpit pilot/navigator/TAG spaces would be most welcomed. I shall certainly be ducking-in to see how the Yeovilton lads are getting on with their superb restoration work and peering over their shoulders from time-to-time: Yeovilton Barracuda Project I managed to have squint in the windows at the restoration work there back in July: There's even a (relatively) local Barracuda connection I only discovered recently : I love the bit about ' The three British airmen were accomodated a second night locally, this time in a hotel in Rosslare town.' Oh look- there's an emoticon for 'accomodated' - Sorry for the rambling tone of this; new model and all that, tends to make a chap a bit giddy.... Enjoy the rest of your weekends. Tony
  2. Supermarine Spitfire F Mk. 22 "Hi-Tech" 1:72 Special Hobby When the prototype Spitfire took to the air for the first time on 5 March 1936, few involved in the design could have foreseen where the development of the type would lead. One of the ultimate incarnations was the F Mk.22. Although the relatively compact dimensions of the Spitfire were largely retained throughout its development (the wingspan of the Mk.22 was almost identical to the Mk.I, although it was 3 feet longer in the fuselage) the Mk.22 was a massive 60% heavier than the first of the mark. The sparkling performance was retained though, thanks to the 2000hp+ Rolls Royce Griffon engine. With more than double the power of the Merlin engine fitted to the Mk.I, the Mk.22 was capable of a maximum speed of 454mph. It had an enlarged tail and a laminar flow wing that was nearly 50% stiffer compared to early Spitfires. The comparatively light armament of the first generation of Spitfires was also upgraded a number times, culminating with the massive hitting power of four 20mm cannon. The Mk.22 flew for the first time in March 1945. 278 examples were built, although only one front-line squadron (73 Sqn) was equipped with the type, the rest going to RAuxAF units. Although the Spitfire has always been a popular choice for model kit manufacturers, there were so many unique variants that some have inevitably been kitted more often than others. Late model Spitfires have fared relatively well in recent years, particularly since Airfix released their 1:72 scale Mk. 22/24 a few years ago. Special Hobby of the Czech Republic has been filling in some of gaps with a range of late mark Spitfires and Seafires such as the Mk. 21 and Mk. 46. Now they have released a Mk. 22 of their own, complete with photo etched and resin parts to help it stand out from the crowd. This tooling is related to the Xtrakit Mk. 22, but as the layout of parts is completely different, it's probably best to think of the two kits as cousins rather than brothers. The kit looks pretty good on the frame, with plenty of detail and surface structures made up of fine, recessed lines and fasteners. The moulds are starting to show their age now though, and some clean up of parts will be required. Construction starts with a reasonably well detailed cockpit, made up of a floor, control column, individual rudder pedals, seat, seat armour and rear bulkhead. The instrument panel features raised detail and a separate gunsight, while the insides of the fuselage feature some nice sidewall detail. The overall impression is of a well detailed and suitably busy cockpit. Curiously, although a fret of photo etched parts has been supplied with the kit – and contains parts such as a replacement seat, harnesses and instrument panel – it isn't shown in the instructions other than the diagram showing the contents of the box. Most of the parts should be fairly obvious in terms of their application though. The lower wing is moulded in a single span, with separate port and starboard upper wing surfaces. The ailerons and flaps are all moulded in place, but surface details are nicely represented. Each of the main landing gear bays is made up of four separate lengths of plastic which effectively box in the wheel wells. Engineering the landing gear bays in this way makes construction more complex, but yields a fairly well-detailed result. The horizontal tails are moulded as solid pieces, but the rudder is a separate part. The prominent underwing radiators feature separate exhaust vents and radiator faces – also replicated with photo etched parts - and the distinctive bulges for the Griffon rocker covers are moulded as separate parts. The landing gear is quite nice and, as this is a 'Hi-Tech' boxing, a pair of resin wheels have been included. The five-bladed airscrew is moulded in seven parts, with each of the blades moulded separately. You will need to assemble these parts carefully in order to make sure everything lines up nicely. The engine exhausts have also been picked out in resin, which is a welcome little bonus. The canopy is moulded in two parts, so you can choose between open or closed position. The cockpit door is also moulded as a separate part. As this is a 'Hi-Tech' edition of the kit, a generous six decal options are provided: Spitfire F Mk.22 PK430/racing number 3, No. 610 Squadron, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, Cooper Air Race, Elmdon, July 1949; Spitfire F Mk.22 PK519, No. 615 Squadron, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, Biggin Hill, 1950; Spitfire F Mk.22 PK550, No. 615 Squadron, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, Biggin Hill, 1949; Spitfire F Mk.22 PK570, No. 603 Squadron, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, Turnhouse, 1949; Spitfire F Mk.22 SR65, No. 1 Squadron, Southern Rhodesia Air Force, Cranbourne, Southern Rhodesia, 1951-52; and Spitfire F Mk.22 681, No. 2 Squadron, Royal Egyptian Air Force, El Arish, Egypt, 1950. The decals themselves look great on the sheet and stencils are provided too. Conclusion Provided there are no surprises in terms of fit and finish, this kit should build up into a pleasing model. I've always found late mark Spitfires, with the socking great Griffon engine pushing the legacy of the design to the limit, so I'm looking forward to building this kit at some point in the future. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  3. Special Hobby is to release late Summer 2016 a 1/48th Junkers Ju-88C-4 kit - ref. SH48177 Variant based on the ICM Ju-88 plastic kit ( Source: V.P.
  4. Evening gang. Been meaning to post up a few photos of this one for a while and finally got some taken in daylight over the holidays. Worked this one up for the Edgar Brooks Tribute Spitfire STGB using the Special Haobby kit and Colourcoats paint along with only a set of Eduard seatbelts added as extras. Other than the seatbelts and a few minor additions such as the throttle cables and flare rack the cockpit was pretty much that found within the kit... I've read horrible stories about how ill-fitting this kit is but can't say I found any major issues that test-fitting and minor adjusting didn't avoid or cure. I've also read that it's inaccurate but other than the wingtips requiring a few minutes reshaping it looks like a Seafire 45 to me. Painted using Colourcoats Enamel range throughout as my first attempt to use this brand of paint and have to say I loved them. Easy to use and forgiving of my clumsy brush and airbrushing techniques. Always wanted to add a Mk.45 to my small but growing Seafire collection and this one has satisfied my desire
  5. Based on the academy kit with dedicated injected parts like a new canopy, Special Hobby is to release in Spring 2017 a 1/72nd Curtiss SB2C-5 Helldiver kit - ref. SH72324 Source: box art V.P.
  6. After the MD-500E (, Special a Hobby is also to rebox in 2017 the ex-Profiline 1/72nd MD-520 NOTAR kit - ref. SH72342 Source: Profiline kit: V.P.
  7. Fiat CR.32 Freccia/Chirri 1:48 Special Hobby The CR.32 was an evolutionary development of an earlier Fiat Biplane fighter, and was thrown into the Spanish Civil War on the side of the Nationalist forces against the i-16s of the Republicans. It was renowned for being nimble, and its aerobatic prowess meant that it stayed in service longer than it perhaps should have, as it could still shoot down more modern monoplanes if handled by an experienced pilot. A product of the early 30s, it was already obsolete by the beginning of WWII, but it remained in service with the Italian Regia Aeronautica until well into the way, although its deployment was away from the leading edge of technology, where it still managed to hold its own. Eventually, the remaining airframes in Italian service were relegated to training duties, replaced by modern al-metal monoplanes such as the Folgore. Spain license produced a number of airframes named Chirri, which were essentially the same aircraft with some minor differences, and these fought alongside the Italian-build Freccis, and the remaining airframes were later converted to two-seat configuration and used as aerobatic trainers until the early 50s. The Kit The origin of this kit lies with Classic Airframes in the 1990s, and is now being released under the Special Hobby banner with revised decals and packaging. Inside the box are two sprues of shiny grey styrene, which are showing some signs of age, and could do with a little tidy-up before you commence construction, especially the wings, which seem to have picked up some artefacts over the years. None of this is too taxing however, and the shiny surface shows up any blemishes nicely. Also included is a bag of resin parts that are nicely detailed, although a few had come loose from their casting blocks due to the kicking it probably received in the Christmas post. A couple of the vanes around the nose have been damaged too, but I’m confident that they can be repaired with a little care. A single clear part is provided in its own bag, and the final bag contains the decal sheet, plus two small sheets of Photo-Etch (PE), one of which is nickel-plated and pre-painted. The instruction booklet is A5 on glossy paper and in full colour, with the decaling and painting guide to the rear. First impressions are a little mixed, due to the short-run nature of the Classic Airframe (CA) moulds, and the wing parts being in comparatively poor shape compared to the fuselage, plus the good quality resin parts. That said, this is probably the most mainstream kit of this little fighter now that it is under the Special Hobby name. Construction begins with a choice of tail, with two options requiring the modeller to cut the rudder off the fuselage halves, and both have elevator slots that need opening out before you can proceed. Attention then turns to the cockpit, which is mostly a mixture of resin and PE parts, which should result in great detail when painted sympathetically. As well as the sidewalls being detailed with PE parts, the seat gets a harness, and in the footwell there are a set of PE rudder pedals included. A pre-painted instrument panel lamination is installed at the front of the cockpit tub, which builds into a rounded box that fits between the fuselage halves. The nose is missing from the fuselage halves, and is provided as a single resin part that has excellent detail, especially around the radiator fins and intake. The elevators have their pins to hold them in place, and optional fin-swap is a butt-joint that could benefit from some reinforcement. The lower wings are also butted against their root fairings on the fuselage, so a little judicious pinning would be a sensible option, all of which speaks of the short-run origins of this kit. The windscreen, sighting devices and cabane struts are added to the top of the fuselage, after which the upper wing can be added, with one camo option needing 3.5mm removing from the "nose" at the wing centre. PE actuators for the flying surfaces are supplied all-round, and the small aerofoil-like balances on the ailerons. The wheels, gear legs and spats are all styrene parts, as are the two-bladed prop and spinner, but the under-nose radiator and a pair of small bombs on their carriers under the fuselage are resin, with additional detail possible because of this. Finally, there is no rigging guide included with the kit, but as there is minimal used on this aircraft, a few pictures from different angles should suffice to allow you to plan the process. Markings Four camouflage options are possible from the box, and all of them have some quite complex camouflage, as was often seen on anything Italian during that period. Decals are by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. From the box you can build one of the following: Fiat CR.32 Freccia 163-10/MM 3518, 163 Squadriglia, Rhodes, June 1940. Fiat CR.32 Freccia V-105 (C.No.315) 1/1. "Ijjázs" vadászszázad (1/1. Squadron "The Archer") early 1939. Fiat CR.32 Chirri 3-61 (C.No.111) Capitán Angel Salas Larrazábal, Leader of Escuadrilia 2-E-3 Aviación Nacional (Franco's rebel air force), Zaragoza, August 1937. Fiat CR.32 Quarter Freccia 160-10/MM.4666, pilot capitano Duilio Fanali, 160 Squadriglia, 12° Gruppo 50° Stormo D'assalto, Tobruk T2 base, July 1940. Conclusion It's an old kit, but it still has the potential to become a good representation of this last-gasp of the biplane age that fought in many combat zones, with a number of well-known pilots. Recommended to the more experienced modeller. Review sample courtesy of
  8. Special Hobby is to (re-)release (ex-MPM) a 1/48th Aero L-39C Albatros "NATO Trainer" kit - ref. SH48171 Hope this time with an injected canopy... Source: Box art V.P.
  9. Here I present my attempt at the Special Hobby Bristol Beaufort. It was quite a challenging build, and its a bit rough in places but overall I am pretty happy with it. Brush painted with Tamiya and Italeri Acrylics. Finished as an aircraft from 217 Squadron RAF based at Luqa, Malta 1942. According to the markings information with the kit, this aircraft was shot down by a Ju 88 on June 20th 1942. Thanks to all those who followed the build and gave me support and advice. Build thread can be found here. Thanks for looking. There is a map and lamp in there!
  10. With the long summer break almost upon us down under I thought it was time to have a go at something a little more challenging. I picked this up at the swap'n'sell at the local model expo awhile ago and set it aside for when I had time to do it justice. Oh-oh - resin and etch I intend to build it as a Mk1a, DD959 Q of 217 Squadron in Malta, 1942. The colours sound attractive - extra dark sea grey/dark slate grey camouflage over azure blue. My first task will to read carefully this build by @Navy Bird and this one by @CedB for inspiration and hints (I hope they don't mind a little plagiarism). I am also experimenting with using Flickr as Photobucket is getting so frustrating to use - hopefully the photos work out OK.
  11. Special Hobby is to reissue in January 2017 its 1/72nd Nakajima Ki-115 Tsurugi kit. Source: - ref. 100-SH72198 - Nakajima Ki-115 Tsurugi Source: - ref. 100-SH72199 - Nakajima Ki-115 "Battle of Tokio 1946" Source: V.P.
  12. Hurricane Mk.I Upgrade Sets (for Airfix) 1:48 CMK/Special Hobby The new Airfix Hurricane has been out for a while now, and very nice it is too! If you are looking for a little extra detail however, you can opt for fiddly Photo-Etch (PE), or go down the resin route, which is how CMK have decided to approach things. They have created a number of sets to improve the kit, allowing the modeller to choose how much they want to spend, and which areas they want to improve on. Two of the sets are from their Quick & Easy line, which are straightforward drop-in replacements to kit parts with more detail than the originals. The sets arrive in clamshell boxes, with the resin parts safely inside, and the instructions sandwiched between the rear header card. Cockpit Set (4352) This set isn't a complete replacement for the kit, but improves on what is already there. In preparation you need to cut off the kit control column, the foot rests and some small instruments on the side frames. There is a new replacement instrument panel with printed acetate instrument dials that just require some white paint on the rear, a set of resin foot rests, rudder pedals, control column, seat and instruments on the side framework, plus a new resin compass. Control Surfaces (4353) All the kit control surfaces are separate parts, so you might wonder if there is a need for these upgrades, but on closer inspection, you notice that the detail on the resin parts is much improved over the kit parts, with subtle fabric sag, and the rib tape visible. Included are rudder, elevators and ailerons, all of which are attached to their pour blocks finely along their leading edges and should be easy to remove and clean up. Port Wing Armament Set (4354) The kit provides a full set of wing bays with .303 machine guns from the box, but they are a little simplified and the breeches are slightly undersized. This set contains resin parts to complete a more realistic gun bay in the port wing that starts with a single part bay, into which you add the four breeches with ammo feeds, ammo boxes and then the cross-braces to complete the bay. It is offered up to the upper wing, and checking clearance would be very wise before assembly. Of course the panels in the upper wing will need removing, and CMK have thoughtfully provided a full set of replacements to save you from using the rather thick kit parts, which are also full of inconveniently placed ejector pin marks. Reserve Fuel Tank Set (4355) This set allows the modeller to depict the fuel tank in front of the cockpit open for maintenance, and requires you to remove that section from the fuselage halves before adding the set. Placed on a flat base, the set includes the tank itself, a bulkhead, another small tank and the very rear of the engine, plus the back of the instrument panel, to which you may wish to add some wires for additional detail. Around the cut-out, you must add a gaggle of tiny D-shaped fastener fixing points, which will be a little tricky, but there are a few spares, so don't worry unduly. The final part is the cowling, which has the captive fasteners sticking out for realism. Main Undercarriage Set (4356) Consisting of twelve resin parts, this replaces the multi-part arrangement that makes up the main gear bays with a single assembly that fits to the bottom of the cockpit floor, and slots neatly into the lower wing recesses once complete. You also get a new in-scale set of gear bay doors to improve the look further. Exhausts - Triple Ejector Type (Q48265) A pair of replacement exhaust stacks for the early Hurricane that has a lot of the subtle construction detail that was missed from the kit parts, as well as shallow exhaust tip. They lack the locating pegs of the kit parts, but fit snugly into the aperture on the sides of the engine cowling. Seat with Harness (Q48266) A straight forward drop-in replacement resin seat for your kit, with moulded in harnesses. Simply cut off the casting block and install on the seat armour instead of the kit part. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Supermarine Seafire Mk.III Special Hobby 1:48 Our friends at Special Hobby have sent us two boxings of their Supermarine Seafire Mk.III Kit. The first is for those used by the Irish Air Corps and The Aéronavale. The second is for The Fleet Air Arm and is boxed for the 70th Anniversary of D-Day. It is believed that the Admiralty first showed an interest in a carrier based Spitfire as early as 1938, when Fairey Aviation proposed such a modification could take place. This idea was rejected and subsequently left the Fleet Air Arm to order other less capable aircraft. The matter was again raised in 1939 and a Spitfire was fitted with an A Frame arrestor hook. After further investigation folding wings were added to the specification. At the time one of the major factors holding back a Sea Spitfire (or Seafire as it was to become) was that production capacity was needed for land Spitfires. Due to this Wildcats were ordered from Grumman for the FAA to be called the Martlet. By the end of 1941 the Admiralty again looked at Spitfire project. 48 Spitfire Mk Vbs were converted by Air Training Services at Hamble to become hooked Spitfires. These would allow the Royal Navy to get experience operating the type, which due to its narrow undercarriage and high nose was not the ideal carrier aircraft. The second major type for the RN was the Seafire Mk II, this used a cropped supercharger to provide greater power at lower levels. The IIc was the first major mark to be deployed in any number. The Seafire Mk III was the real first true carrier Seafire. It was developed from the IIc. It had manually folding wings allowing more aircraft to be carried. The wing would fold using a system of two straight chordwise folds. A break was introduced immediately outboard of the wheel well where the wing would fold upwards and slightly forward, a second fold would be at the wingtip. The Mk III would use the Merlin 55 engine with a 4 bladed prop. The Mk III would be used by the Fleet Air Arm, The Irish Air Corps, and the French Aéronavale. The French would receive 65 Mk IIIs which were deployed to Vietnam on board the carrier Arromanches in 1948. The Irish Air Corps were supplied with 12 Mk III in 1947 which were stripped of their Naval equipment (except the wing fold) by Supermarine. The Kit The kit arrives in a fairly sturdy box. Inside are three large and three small sprues of grey plastic, a clear sprue, a sheet of vinyl, a sheet of photo etch; and an instrument panel film. Construction as with most aircraft starts with the cockpit area. The bulkhead forward of the pilot is made up along with the instrument panel. This is added to the engine firewall, the floor area including rudder pedals and control column is added. The seat can then be attached to its backing of armour plate, this along with the headrest is then added to the rear fuselage frame. PE seat belts and harness straps are then added. The next step is to add both of the previous subassemblies onto the main fuselage. Lage side panels with relief details are also added at this stage. The fuselage can then be closed up. The vinyl parts can then be applied to the closed up fuselage. The next stage in construction is the wings. The upper wing halves are attached to the one part lower wing. The internal sections of the wheel wells need to be placed inside the wing sections before they are closed up. The right cannon bulges need to be glued to the upper wing. There is no internal structure under the bulges. Be sure to use the right cannon bulges as there are four different sets on the sprues. The propellor is the next sub assembly to be built up, along with the arrestor hook parts If your build needs them). The next major task is to attach fuselage to the wings. Following this the tail planes, rudder, ailerons; and wing tips are added. Attention then turns to the underside of the aircraft. The radiators, engine under cowling, air intake and tail wheel are added. If your aircraft has an arrestor hook this sub assembly is also added, if not then a plate is added to this area. The undercarriage is also assembled and added at this stage. Finally to wrap up your build the engine exhausts, appropriate cannon barrels, aerial mast, entry door, propellor assembly; and canopies are added to the kit. Photo Etch & Vinyl A small photo etched fret is provided for the seat belts & harness, Instrument panel, rudder pedals, escape crowbar, and fuselage stiffening plates. A self adhesive vinyl sheet provides for raised areas on the fuselage where even PE would be too thick. An acetate film is provided for use between the PE instrument panel parts. Canopy The clear parts are very clear and remarkably thin. Care will need to be taken removing them from the sprue. I am not sure if the main canopy will fit over the rear part as the instructions do not show this. Decals - Aéronavale & Irish Air Corps Decals are provided for two aircraft as used by the The Aéronavale. I.F.12 Flottile 1.F The Aéronavale, Aircraft Carrier Arromanches 1948. FAA Camo, French roundels and a replacement rudder. 54.S.14 (exPR146) Flottile 1.F The Aéronavale, Aircraft Carrier Arromanches 1947. Older airscoops and longer cannon barrels were fitted. This aircraft retained its post war FAA paint scheme and markings. French unit markings were added to the fin. Markings are also supplied to make any one of four Seafires as used by The Irish Air Corps based in Gormanston 1947. Decals - D-Day Fleet Eyes Decals are supplied for two FAA Seafires with Invasion Stripes (The modeller has to paint these) NF541 886 Naval Air Squadron, No3 Air Spotting Wing, RNAS Lee-On-Solent 1944. Full invasion stripes were painted as the aircraft spotted for Naval Gunfire. On 8/6/44 this aircraft flown by Sqn L Chapman shot down a Bf 109. The aircraft was painted in the RAF Daylight Fighter Scheme. The instructions indicate the tail parts were replaced and left in a base green colour (Primer?). This aircraft had clipped wingtips. NF547 885 Naval Air Squadron, No3 Air Spotting Wing, RNAS Lee-On-Solent 1944. Full invasion stripes were painted as the aircraft spotted for Naval Gunfire, in particular HMS Warpite. On 7/6/44 the aircraft was shot down by AA fire and crashed in France. Lt Hugh Land (RNZNVR) managed to destroy the aircraft and evade getting back to Allied lines on 18/6/44. All decals are printed by Aviprint, are in register and colour density looks good. Conclusion From MPM kits I have bought in the past the plastic parts in this kit do seem to have improved. They are well moulded with fine engraved panel lines. There is a tiny amount a flash on some parts but certainly nothing the modeller can not remove. Its good to see this kit available in different boxing with just more than FAA markings. Overall I would highly recommend this kit. "Aéronavale & Irish Air Corps" Boxing "D-Day Fleet Eyes Boxing" Boxing Review sample courtesy of
  14. Hawker Tempest II Hi-Tech 1:32 Special Hobby As one variant of the Typhoon replacement that were both penned by Sidney Camm, the Tempest was split into a number of threads to prevent the project stalling in the event that any of the possible engines ran into difficulties or were cancelled. The Tempest II was designed from the ground-up to sport a radial engine, and ended up using the Centaurus that had originally been destined for the failed Tornado project, which initially caused some teething troubles until the engine mounts were replaced and some other tweaks made. The aircraft was very similar to the well-known V aft of the firewall, but with the huge cylindrical cowling it bears more than a passing resemblance to a Sea Fury. Due to the state of the war as it reached service, the initial orders were successively cut back, even though the aircraft's massive power delivery and more streamlined front section resulted in a faster aircraft. Under 500 airframes were eventually built, some as pure fighters, while the rest were converted to fighter-bombers, as the needs of the war shifted once the Allies dominated the skies. The Kit This is the second Hi-Tech boxing of the basic Tempest moulds, with much of the plastic retained from the Mk.V, and new sprues tooled to replicate the Mk.II's differences. As is usual with Special Hobby, the Hi-Tech boxing includes a wealth of what would normally be considered "Aftermarket" to most modellers, and on opening the box you see a card insert that holds the four (four!) decal sheet plus a set of those marvellous HGW fabric seatbelts, plus a small inner box in yellow that is literally rammed with resin in two separate bags. If you have come to expect just a set of resin wheels from a luxury boxing, you will be impressed at the 44 parts within, and you will hardly need anything other than paint and glue, even if you are addicted to aftermarket, especially when you spot the Photo-Etch (PE) and masks behind the seatbelts. The main sprues are in two separate bags, split between "Tempest" and "Mk.II" parts, as you would expect. There are seven sprues in the former category, and two in the latter, both in mid-grey styrene, plus a set of clear parts in their own bag, the aforementioned goodies, and of course the instructions in full colour glossy stock. Coupled with the lovely box art, you really do get a luxury package with the Hi-Tech boxing, which is well priced considering the contents. New Sprues The new sprues contain the important engine cowlings, their fairings into the standard fuselage, the huge props and spinner, plus a few mounting parts. Also included are a full set of rockets and rails for the ground-attack role, each of which have separate fins that are fitted with tapering roots that fit into corresponding grooved in the tail of the rocket, which will improve fit and alignment. Construction follows the same path as the original boxing until the fuselage halves are mated around the beautifully detailed cockpit assembly. The new cowling is built up from the main halves, plus a number of ancillary parts top and bottom, as well as resin exhaust stacks on the sides, and a depiction of front of the engine that was actually present in the Mk.V boxing too. The big four-bladed prop is built up on a backing plate with keyed blade roots, with the two-part spinner added after, and a spacer setting it to the correct position within the cowling, so that it can be left to spin freely if you desire. Some of the additional resin in this boxing is used in adding a pair of cannon and their ammo feeds in the port wing, which requires a T-shaped portion of the upper wing to be removed, the resin bays to be constructed and painted in the suggested colours, and inserted from below with PE supports for the edges, and resin panels that can be left nearby to give a more candid appearance to the scene. There is a small addendum to the instruction booklet to correct a mis-step during construction of the wings that advises you to cut off a section on the wing lower corresponding with the removable panels in the upper wing. This is incorrect, and you should not do this. The engine cowling and wing-root intakes are then mated with the completed wings and fuselage, along with the tail feathers. The landing gear is almost identical to the Mk.V, but instead of smooth tread tyres throughout, a choice of smooth or blocked tyres is given, and these have paint masks supplied on the accompanying sheet. The choice of drop-tanks with clear pylon sections or bombs is included in this boxing, with the new option for eight unguided rockets on their rails, which just need a launch wire added at the rear of each rocket to add a bit of extra realism. Markings As already mentioned, there are four decal sheets, containing national markings, aircraft codes, stencils, and finally some additional codes with squadron crests and instrument dials for the cockpit. The decals have been printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, sporting a thin glossy carrier film cut close to the printed areas. From the box you can build one of the following: HF-X/MW774 NO.183 Sqn, RAF Chilbolton, August 1945 – Grey/green camo over medium sea grey. White cowling front and fin stripe. 5R-V/PR533 No.33 Sqn, RAF Kuala Lumpur, Malaya, 1949 – All over aluminium with yellow leading edges and blue spinner. EG-X/PR733 S/L R E Mooney, No.16 Sqn, BAFO Fassberg, West Germany - Grey/green camo over medium sea grey. Sky tail band and white circle on the fin. T/A139 (ex PR809) No.14 Sqn, RPAF 1948 – Earth/Middle Stone over Azure Blue. M/HA557 (ex MW704) RIAF, late 1950s – All over aluminium with black wingtips. Quite a broad spread of options that should suit most modellers, given the variety of the schemes. Conclusion Another stand-out Tempest from our friends at Special Hobby, with a box full of goodies that might usually be options with other manufacturers. The quality is excellent, and there are finished models popping up all over the internet, which is usually a good sign of buildability, popularity and that the manufacturer has hit the sweet-spot with the price. The standard boxing will be along shortly for those that don't want to tackle all that resin, or have a tighter budget. Review sample courtesy of
  15. Hello folks , happy new year to all This is the special hobby kit and my first "spitfire" since I got an airbrush . It is finished as a training school airplane , hence the colourful bands . Cheers
  16. Man, This has been a long time in gestation. I think I started it way back around March, but after spilling black paint over it, then mucking up masking the roundels, it went back in the box It came out briefly when I resolved to fix all the mistakes, the roundels were remarked, I sanded the black paint off that had spilled from my airbrush, not to self, always use the lid!. I then managed to smear glue on the windscreen, in attempting to lift it off, I cracked it. I sent an email to SH, and they very kindly sent me a whole new clear sprue, at no cost, even though I told them it was my stuff up. Fantastic customer service THANKS S.H Anyway, here is the Special Hobby 1/32 Brewster Buffalo MKI . I added the gunsight and armoured glass as they were not included in the kit. All markings are sprayed using Montex masks. I think Im getting better at using these although I mucked up the serials. After all the woes I had with this model. I decided to leave the 8s as they were. The kit itself went together with no real problems, just some filler on the fuselage seam. Paints used are Gunze and tamiya. thanks for looking IMG_1866 by IMG_1865 by Bruce Anders, on Flickr IMG_1859 by , on Flickr IMG_1864 by , on Flickr
  17. Special Hobby is to reissue its 1/72nd Boulton Paul Balliol kit - ref. SH72356 Source: Reported with decals for demonstrator and two Sri Lanka AF a/c. Release in 2017. Box art Original release in 2012 & as - ref. SH72234 - Boulton Paul Balliol T.2 "RAF Trainer" - ref. SH72236 - Boulton Paul Sea Balliol T.21 FAA Trainer V.P.
  18. I hope I am not causing problems by deviating from the norm of one build per thread. This is a sample of my output this year. The problem with having a number of themes is that there are plenty of gaps that require filling. I have had the Special Hobby Boulton Paul Balliol in the intray for some time but was prompted to deal with it having seen the excellent build of the Sea Balliol on here. Here is the result. Overall the kit was not too bad with the exception being the fit of the canopy which left something to be desired. Another 1950's trainer is the lovely Airfix Jet provost. The only issue I had with this kit was with the decals, which are on the thick side to allow the dayglo pink to register properly. This means that they do not like curves and are prone to splintering. This means that at the moment the dayglo on the wing tanks and the leading edges is missing. Incidentally does anyone know of a suitable paint? Another Special Hobby kit to finally see the light of day fully assembled is the CAC Boomerang. This went together very well and I am particularly pleased with the result. Continuing with the trainer theme I have been picking up a number of Eastern Express boxings of Frog kits this year - one in particular being the Miles Master. The weakness of these Eastern Express releases tends to be the canopy glazing which can be very hit and miss. Fortunately Falcon make several sets of replacement canopy moldings and a set I bought for a Spitfire MkXIV cockpit had a replacement Master cockpit canopy. Sorted! I have had a lot of fun tracking down and building old Matchbox kits and there are three in this selection. The first is a twin tub Meteor which I have wanted for a while. This needed a bit of work to achieve the desired result but I am reasonably happy with it. The second took quite a while to get hold of - another trainer: the North American Buckeye. Quite a basic kit but it goes together well and whilst there is a more detailed kit now available this one serves my purposes. The third Matchbox kit was an addition to the early jets theme, the Douglas F3d Skyknight. Again a basic kit that does the job. One of my areas of interest is Eastern Bloc aviation and I have been able to add three subjects to the collection. The first is a very old kit, but an absolute cracker. It is a Czech kit - not sure of the vintage - under the Kovozavody Prostejov brand of the Aero L29 Delfin. This kit had zero issues and partners my L39 Albatross The second is a Polish kit that has to be made from the heaviest plastic I have come across. That being said it is reasonably well detailed and adds a PZL TS11 Iskra to the hangar. The third is something I have wanted for some time, a representative of the Sukhoi Su15 family, in this case the Su23 2wo seater. The kit is a Pioneer kit from Turkey, and whilst basic is an absolute cracker. Two more of my themes have been added to. The first is to have representation of each of the major Mks of Spitfire. Here is the MkVII from Italeri: The second is my prototypes collection and the Airfix new tooling of the Gladiator enabled me to produce this. K5200. The Glad prototype did not have the enclosed cockpit and was based on the Gauntlet. This involved reshaping the fuselage and cutting the cockpit glazing too suit. I am slightly disappointed in the finish as the paint I used has too much of a fleck to it. But here it is. Saving the best until last. This has to be one of the best kits I have ever got my hands on and adds to the early jets/FAA/De Havilland themes - the Sea Venom from Cyber Hobby. I managed to get hold of one for a reasonable price in the HLJ new year sale. I readily admit to being in the "if it looks like a duck" fraternity and resort to artistic licence on a regular basis!
  19. I got this a couple of weeks ago and although I've lots of things on the stocks, a few KUTAs, a Wessex, a Fulmar to photograph and my 'Find the Bismark' Maryland. I couldn't resist starting it. I've also got another but a double start is probably too much. There are a lot of well moulded parts, no resin or etch, and markings for two Operation Tungsten birds, one form 829 squadron and one from 830. More later on but I do like the box top illustration with Furious and Victorious in the background. Mind you torpedoes weren't used against the Tripitz.
  20. Special Hobby is to reissue in 2017 the AZUR/FRROM 1/32nd IAR-81C kit - ref. SH32068 Source: AZUR/FRROM IAR-81C kit review: SH box art is in design V.P.
  21. Special a Hobby is to rebox in January 2017 the ex-Profiline 1/72nd LET L-13 Blaník kit - ref. SH72342 Source: Profiline kit SH Box art V.P.
  22. This Mike (from Two Mikes Resin - & ) talk too much... But doesn't say enough. Sources: http://www.britmodel...38 http://s362974870.on...96&qpid=2114224 Wait and see. V.P.
  23. Brewster Buffalo Mk.1 Royal Air Force 1:32 Special Hobby The Buffalo was designed by the Brewster Aeronautical Corporation in 1935 a US Navy requirement for a carrier based fighter to replace the Grumman F3F Biplane. As such it was one of the first US monoplane fighters. The prototype first flew in 1937 with deliveries commencing in 1939. Brewster had production difficulties and only 11 of the early F2A-1 aircraft were delivered to the USN with the remainder of the order being diverted to the Finnish Air Force. The US Navy and Marine Corps would order and receive the later F2A-2 and F2A-3 models although it was realised by this time that the Buffalo was no match for more modern fighters. It had been suggested that the later orders were just to keep the Brewster factories running, in fact they would later go on to produce Corsairs and other aircraft for the USN. Overseas Finland ordered the aircraft in 1939, the aircraft being assembled by SAAB in Sweden. The Finnish after initial doubts liked the aircraft. The cooler weather in Finland solved overheating problems with the engine, and the aircraft went on to become a success with 477 Soviet aircraft being destroyed for only 19 Buffalos. Belgium had ordered the aircraft but only one was delivered before the country fell to the advancing Germans. Their order was subsequently transferred to the British. The British facing a shortage of combat aircraft purchased the Buffalo. The original assessment by the RAF was not brilliant. The aircraft lacked pilot armour, was under gunned, had poor altitude performance and there were issues with overheating, maintenance and controls. The UK still ordered 170 aircraft which were sent to Australia, New Zealand and the RAF. The aircraft were initially sent out to the Far East. The aircraft were plagued with reliability problems in the hot climate, performance was poor, and the pilots did not have adequate training on the aircraft. Given all these problems and the superior numbers of Japanese aircraft the Buffalos did not fair that well. Some did escape to the Dutch East Indies where they would join those operated by the Netherlands East Indian Army. Overall while the aircraft was an advancement over the biplanes it replaced by the time it came into service the aircraft was already outclassed by the newer generation of fighters. In US Service it was replaced fairly quickly by Wildcats, Hellcats and Corsairs. The Kit Even in 1.32 scale this is not an overly large kit. It arrives on 8 sprues of grey plastic, a clear sprue, a sheet of photo-etch, an instrument panel film, and a bag containing 25 resin parts on 6 casting blocks. Even though this is re-release and the original was first released in 2008 there seems to be no mould wear. The kit features finely engraved panel lines, the parts look to be well moulded with no obvious defects All of the resin parts look cleanly cast, with only a little flash to clean up on a couple of parts. The instructions are of an older type and not as good as the new kits SH are doing today. Construction starts in the cockpit, the instrument panel is made up by sandwiching the film between a plastic back and the front PE part. These are attached to a front part from which the rudder pedal assembly hangs. A centre instrument panel, along with two side ones are made up in the same way as the main one. Next up is the pilots seat. The seat itself is only one part but the photo etch seat belts need to be added to this. The shoulder straps and lap belts are each two parts. The seat base can then be assembled which contains the primary flight controls, a floor mounted compass and other controls. PE parts are used here as well. Once complete the seat is attached to its armour plate, and then to the base. The control rod for the seat passes under the pilots seat. Next up for construction is the forward bulkhead of the cockpit to which the instrument panel will be mounted. A lower box/tank structure is made up and the foot ways for the rudder pedal attached to the top, the completed instrument panel assembly is then added to the top. The rear cockpit bulkhead is also constructed at this time. Construction then moves to the inside of the main fuselage. Various controls, radio boxes, the fire extinguisher, throttle controls etc are made up and added to this area. Once all these parts are in then construction moves back to the area in front of the cockpit, and the forward side of the cockpit bulkhead. The structure to hold the machine guns and their ammunition boxes is added, along with struts and fixings for the main landing gear which occupy the area under the guns & ammo. Lastly onto the front of all this the mounts and bulkhead for the engine are added. Now that all of the internal sub assemblies are complete they can all be placed inside the main fuselage, and it can be closed up. Following this the engine can be made up. This consists of some detailed parts as it will be visible through the cowling. The cowling is then constructed around the engine, and the whole thing can be installed onto the front of the main fuselage. The tail planes, tail cone, and decking behind the cockpit are then installed at this stage. Next up for construction are the main wings. These are of conventional upper/lower construction. However before they go together the bays for the main gear arms must be made up. There is a rear bulkhead to be installed along with four ribs. In addition the barrels for the wing mounted guns are fitted at this time. Clear lights are also mounted in the underside of the wings at this point. The completed wings can then be added to the main fuselage. It is now time for the main landing gear to be built up. Each main wheel is in two parts which are joined together, The main landing gear leg is then added along with the gear door. the gear door arms are attached into the wing and the retraction struts into the area inside the main fuselage. The tail wheel is also built up at this point and attached. To finish up the model the pilots head armour and rear canopy bracing struts are added. The cockpit transparencies are added along with the underside one. The propeller is made up and attached. Aerials are added along with the pitot tube, and a ring & bead gun sight added to the engine cowl. Clear parts There is a lot of glazing on the Buffalo and the clear parts are exceptional. They are thin and distortion free with enough relief to make masking an easier job. Markings Markings for 4 aircraft are provided. The decals are by Aviprint, look to be in register and colour dense. AN172 - 21 Sqn RAAF Sungei Patani 1941. Pilot Flt Lt Kinnimont scored 4 kills while flying Buffalos. Leter to command 77Sqn RAAF in Korea flying Meteor F.8s. AN213 - 243 Sqn RAAF Sembawang 1941. Polit Sqn Ldr Harper a Battle of Britain Veteran. W8138 - 488 Sqn RNZAF Kailang 1941. Scored 3 kills on Buffalos, later KAI over Java in 1942. W8209 - 453 Sqn RAAF Sembawang 1941. Scored 3 1/2 Kills on Buffalos. Later KIA when he deliberately rammed a Ki-43 after running out of ammunition. Conclusion Even in 1.32 scale this will not build up into a massive model. The parts are detailed enough for the larger scale and this should build up into an impressive model. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  24. Special Hobby is not only working on a 1/72nd Dassault Super Mystère SMB2 kit (ère-b2-smb2-by-special-hobby-azur-fromm-cads-release-in-2017/) but also on a 1/48th one! Yesss The subsidiary question is when as the SH kits development delays are often really slow. Source: V.P.
  25. Despite the recent release of the Italeri's Sunderland Mk.I (review:, the Special Hobby Short Sunderland Mk.V project seems going on. Some CAD drawings are proposed in ModelForum: Future kit reference is SH72262. Wait and see. V.P.