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Mike

Sukhoi Su-30MKK Flanker-G 1:48

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Mike    10,468

Sukhoi Su-30MKK Flanker-G

1:48 Hobby Boss via Creative Models

 

boxtop.jpg

 

What do you get it you cross an Su-30 with an Su-35?  The Su-30MKK could be one answer, as it incorporates some of the avionics advances of the Su-35 and applies it to the basic Su-30 airframe with two seats, and gets the new NATO moniker Flanker-G to differentiate from the Su-30 Flanker-C.  The initial customer was China, with an agreement signed at the turn of the millennium and the first of a small order arriving with the People's Liberation Army Naval Air Force soon after in 2001.  The aircraft is capable of flying all the muntions and pods that the Su-35 can carry, but has different software due to the mission capability requirements of the PLANAF, with carbon fibre and lighter aluminium alloys used to keep weight in check, and additional fuel stored in the twin tail fins to help give it the long range that was required.  Fuel capacity elsewhere is also increased, and the increase in nose weight led to the addition of another nose wheel in tandem with the original.

 

Further upgrades have led to the MK2 and MK3 variants that are being sold in small numbers to Vietnam, Indonesia amongst others.

 

 

The Kit

The Chinese juggernaut that comprises Hobby Boss and Trumpeter are on a big Russian/Soviet kick at the moment both in the aviation and AFV scenes, with Hobby Boss releasing some super stuff with wings in 1:48.  We've been reviewing them as and when we can, and along comes the Su-30MKK, which is doubtless a subject close to Chinese hearts, as they have a shade under a hundred of them in service thanks to the aforementioned deal with Sukhoi and Russia.  Pretty soon they will have filled all the gaps with new toolings of these impressive F-15 equivalents popping out every couple of months with different variants.  The kit arrives in quite a large box, and inside is a divider to keep the small sprues rattling about, as well as a tray to which the fuselage/wing halves are attached via a bunch of plastic coated wires that are twisted into place.  Both ends of the two parts are wrapped in foam sheet that is taped into place to avoid damage, and this method of protection is seen again in different parts of the package.  In the box are seventeen sprues of grey styrene of variable size plus the two fuselage halves, three sprues of clear parts, four rubbery tyres, a small nickel-plated Photo-Etch (PE) sheet , two decal sheets, instruction booklet and two sheets of glossy paper for the markings and weapons stencils, both printed in colour.

 

fuselage1.jpg

 

fuselage2.jpg

 

detail-fuselage.jpg

 

sprue1.jpg

 

sprue2.jpg

 

sprue3.jpg

 

sprue4.jpg

 

sprue5.jpg

 

wheels.jpg

 

detail-cockpit.jpg

 

detail-instruments.jpg

 

This is a BIG airframe, and you are greeted with this fact on opening the box, with the majority of the airframe complete in just two parts due to the blended-wing design of the original.  Surface detail is good, with restrained engraved panel lines and rows of rivets, plus a number of delicate louvered vents on the fuselage.  The weapons provided are also generous, taking up six of the sprues, with plenty to choose from.   Construction begins with the two cockpits, which are well-appointed with rudder pedals and control sticks, detailed ejection seats, instrument panels and coamings, plus bulkheads and ejection seat ramps at the rear of each compartment.  Decals are supplied for the instrument panels and side consoles, although they aren't mentioned in the instructions until you get to the painting and markings section.  The nose gear bay is built at this point too, as is the nose gear leg and wheel, because the leg is trapped against the fuselage by the bay before the fuselage is closed up.  The aft portion of the engine, afterburner ring and the initial section of exhaust trunking are also placed within the lower fuselage before the halves are joined, with a small bay for the refuelling probe also added, which if you forget could probably be snuck inside before the nose cone is added later.  Flaps and slats are added to the near-complete wings, and the elevators are attached to the rear fuselages, complete with their outriggers that allow them to sit next to the exhaust petals.  Speaking of which, there is a choice of either constricted or relaxed variants of the exhausts, which coupled with the separate rudders on the big fins, give you the capability for a bit of variation at the rear end.

 

detail-exhausts.jpg

 

The air intakes are separate from the main fuselage parts, and are constructed separately before being added.  The roof of the intakes are separate, and the drop-down FOD guard is depicted in the mount of the intake, removing any need for trunking, despite there being an engine face part included that won't be seen unless you retract them using whatever modelling skills you possess.   These two and the strakes that sit below the elevators are added underneath, the former having a ledge in the fuselage to ensure good fit of the rounded joint, the latter fitting using the slot and tab method.  The main gear are each made from a tow-part leg, two-part hub and of course the rubbery tyre that I dislike so much but couldn't really tell you why.  Perhaps it’s a hangover from the old days where these things would melt over the years and ruin your kits?  I've no experience of the modern type doing this, but I'm loathed to find out.  I'll be quiet about them now.  Gear bay doors with moulded-in hinges and separate actuators are fitted next with a PE AoA probe under the nose, with the large nose cone moulded as a single part fitted to the front with no talk of nose weight to prevent a tail-sitter.  Use your judgement there, but at this late stage of construction, you should be able to test its centre of balance by perching it (carefully) on the edge of a rule on your desk and playing seesaw.  The small and delicate pitot probe should probably be fitted later, and won't make that much difference to your calculations, but remember there will be weapons and the canopy to install before you're done.

 

clear.jpg

 

The canopy is two-part, and with modern blown canopies that give the pilots better situational awareness, there is the necessary seamline down the outside of each part, which can be sanded away and polished back to clear with some micromesh or similar.  The windscreen has a separate IRST sensor part in clear, and the main canopy has internal structure, opener, and a set of four rear-view mirrors in PE.  Behind the canopy is the airbrake, which has a two-part skin, and a large actuator, with it shown deployed and nothing mentioned about its retracted position if you were aiming for a "clean" airframe.  It shouldn't be too difficult to achieve with test-fitting and a little filler if required.  More sensors are fitted to the sides of the fuselage along with the refuelling probe, which is also shown deployed.

 

The Su-30MKK is capable of carrying a significant quantity of munitions, as evidenced by the four pylons under each wing, with another four on the underside of the fuselage.  These are fitted in readiness for the weapons, with options for the tip pylons to be replaced by a sensor pod, and the centre station on the wing underside has an alternative pylon style.  The weapons capable of being carried are included, and there are quite a few, as follows:

 

2 x KH-31P Krypton passive seeker air to surface missile

2 x KH-29L Kedge-A semi-active laser guided air to surface missile

2 x KH-29T Kedge-B TV guided air to surface missile

4 x R-27R Alamo-B semi-active radar homing missiles

4 x R-27ER Alamo-C semi-active radar homing missiles with extended range

4 x R-73 Archer A2A missiles

4 x R-77 Adder active radar A2A homing missile

 

The final step shows the pylons that each weapon is fitted to, but you may wish to check your references to see the typical load-outs carried in the real world.

 

 

Markings

Despite the large total size of the two sheets, only two options are included in the box, but with the additional serials that are on the sheet, other airframes could be modelled by consulting your references.  From the box you can build one of the following:

 

  • PLAAF Blue 59
  • PLANAF Blue 18

 

decals.jpg

 

profiles.jpg

 

With typical reticence, they tell you little else about the subjects, even down to difference in colour used by the two operators.  The decals are printed in-house, and overall are in good register, with adequate colour density and sharpness, but with the red Chinese tail markings, there appears to have been an issue with the red on the review sample.  It seems to have come very close to clumping whilst drying, and coupled with a slight registration issue between the yellow and red, makes the decals a little bit low quality for such a prominent placement.

 

 

Conclusion

Another appealing big Russian/Chinese fighter that has been slightly let down by the slightly suspect national markings on the decal sheet.

 

bin.jpg

 

Review sample courtesy of

logo.gif

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Antoine    1,209

Thanks Mike, once again.

No pics of the weapons sprues?

Compared to other kits, there's not that much in term of missiles & bombs.

I hope that HB/Trumpeter will give us some Chinese A/G weapons in the future.

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DaveJL    2,793
1 hour ago, mungo1974 said:

Nice kit,Still holding my breath waiting for a Su-30SM/MKI/MKM/MKA

 

Ditto! We can but hope!

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Muzz    1,403

I have this kit and it is a nice kit but I can't help but feel I should have done a bit more research and held off. Was disappointed to find only the two fairly boring Chinese schemes and there is little AM Decals available that appeal to me or are suitable.

 

Muzz

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Dudikoff    18
On 7/30/2017 at 9:59 PM, Muzz said:

I have this kit and it is a nice kit but I can't help but feel I should have done a bit more research and held off. Was disappointed to find only the two fairly boring Chinese schemes and there is little AM Decals available that appeal to me or are suitable.

 

Yeah, the lesser dual-seat Flanker family (MKK and derivatives). It was sold to China, Vietnam, Venezuela, Indonesia, Uganda and some unsold airframes were inducted into RuAF service as M2, so there are some alternative options.

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armored76    4
13 hours ago, Dudikoff said:

Yeah, the lesser dual-seat Flanker family (MKK and derivatives). It was sold to China, Vietnam, Venezuela, Indonesia, Uganda and some unsold airframes were inducted into RuAF service as M2, so there are some alternative options.

So... this kit could be used to depict a Venezuelan/Indonesian/Vietnamese MK2 with the right decals? Without any change?

 

Thanks!

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armored76    4

Thanks for the links, March!

 

But... can one build an MK2 from the box or are there changes required?

 

Thanks!

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type40    16
2 hours ago, armored76 said:

Thanks for the links, March!

 

But... can one build an MK2 from the box or are there changes required?

 

Thanks!

I have this kit (and the Caracal sheet - great decals!), and am intending to make it as either an Indonesian or Venezuelan aircraft.  My understanding is that the MKK and MK2 are externally identical... they certainly look the same: flat-topped fins, no canards etc.  

 

Someone like Flankerman needs to chime in!  B)

 

 

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Mike    10,468

That's @Candyman - who I was surprised actually exists! :o You only have to call @Flankerman once to summon Ken, although twice won't hurt :wicked:

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Mike    10,468

It's taking some time to gain traction with the members, but yes - very cool :)

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Flankerman    3,315

You rang ????

 

The short answer is that, externally, the Su-30MK2 is visually identical to the Su-30MKK.

 

I can't speak for the cockpit instrumentation or front panel display - nor the aerial fit - so a close study of available photos is the answer.

 

Happy Flankering :thumbsup:

 

Ken

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type40    16
9 hours ago, armored76 said:

Now that's a cool feature on this forum, I was not aware about! Thanks for pointing that out!

Hehe - I didn't know about that either - great feature.  Thanks!

 

I previously thought @Flankerman simply had some sort of SpiderSense, so whenever the words "Sukhoi" or "Flanker" were mentioned along with a plea for help, he'd channel the ghost of Pavel Sukhoi and magically appear... B)

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whiskey    27

So whether or not I can build a MKI out of this has already been answered above I see yet here is my question. According to the only reference photos I can find of the 1997 Anniversary markings online this kit looks like it would be an accurate representation of the SU-30 at that time would it not? Or would I still just need to wait on a MKI kit to be released? This is the one I am referring to:

 

65ansSU30Hawks3.jpg

 

65ansSU30Hawks1.gif

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Flankerman    3,315

I did it in 1/72 scale - using the Trumpeter Su-27UB kit..........

 

Su-30MKK%20066.JPG

 

The Su-30K was, essentially a standard Su-27UB fitted with an IFR probe as an interim batch offered to India before the canard and TVC equipped full-blown Su-30MKI.

 

I used the Su-27UB kit (for the fins and single-wheel nose gear) - with the upper fuselage from the Su-30MKK kit (to get the IFR probe plus the offset IRST ball and canopy).

 

Decals are from Begemot.

 

Ken

 

PS - They built 18 Su-30K's - and they were offered for sale to Belarus after the IAF got their full complement of Su-30MKI's (but they were never purchased).

 

PPS - I used as reference 'Sukhoi Su-30 Flanker in Indian Service' - you can probably get it cheaper than Amazon,

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whiskey    27
15 hours ago, Flankerman said:

I did it in 1/72 scale - using the Trumpeter Su-27UB kit..........

 

Su-30MKK%20066.JPG

 

The Su-30K was, essentially a standard Su-27UB fitted with an IFR probe as an interim batch offered to India before the canard and TVC equipped full-blown Su-30MKI.

 

I used the Su-27UB kit (for the fins and single-wheel nose gear) - with the upper fuselage from the Su-30MKK kit (to get the IFR probe plus the offset IRST ball and canopy).

 

Decals are from Begemot.

 

Ken

 

PS - They built 18 Su-30K's - and they were offered for sale to Belarus after the IAF got their full complement of Su-30MKI's (but they were never purchased).

 

PPS - I used as reference 'Sukhoi Su-30 Flanker in Indian Service' - you can probably get it cheaper than Amazon,

So I can build it with this MKK kit but if the gear is down I need a single front wheel and the vertical tails are different correct? Was probably going to do it with gear up anyhow and some pilots in the cockpit and those marking just make it look like it wants to fly lol.

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Flankerman    3,315

With the gear up - yes you can use the MKK kit.

 

As for the fins (vertical tails), on the real Su-30MKK they are much taller with a straight tip..... but Trumpeter got theirs wrong and they are too short and need fixing to be correct for an MKK....

 

Su-30MKK%20011.JPG

 

But this is to your advantage as you could probably get away with just cutting off the fin tops to make them raked - like a Su-27UB.

 

The panel lines would then probably be incorrect (the tall Su-30MKK fins have integral fuel tanks) - but if you're not too bothered.....

 

Happy Flankering

 

Ken

 

PS - The instrument panels would also be wrong - but again..............

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