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Showing topics in Aircraft Reviews, Kits, Aftermarket (updates/conversions), Decals & Masks, Reference material, Armoured Fighting Vehicle Reviews, Kits, Aftermarket, Diorama & Accessory, Reference Material, Kits, Aftermarket, Reference Material, Vehicle Reviews, Sci-fi & Real Space Reviews, Figure Reviews, Locos, Trains & Layout Reviews and Tools & Paint Reviews posted in for the last 365 days.

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  1. Yesterday
  2. Ooh, just the thing for my upcoming build!
  3. AH-1Z Interior (49957 for Kitty Hawk) 1:48 Eduard The latest variant of the aged Bell Cobra was given the name Cobra, and we reviewed the kit when it was released around four years ago here. I haven't got a clue why this set is being released now, but as it's here, let's have a look. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Inside is a single fret of nickel-plated and printed PE, which is mostly used in the improvement of the instrument panels that are laid out in front of both crew of the aircraft. The moulded-in details must be removed first, and then the new parts can go in, replicating the screens and oceans of knobs and dials that sit in front of the crew. Even the smaller banks of switches on the tops of the panels under the coaming are supplied, and the crew's control sticks are also decked out with small detailed button layouts. The rest of the parts are riveted skins for the cockpit footwells, pre-painted seatbelts for both crew members, and four grab-handles within the fixed top section of the canopy, plus a few small instruments missing from the kit. Review sample courtesy of
  4. That's the weirdest thing I've seen today, even after looking in the mirror. Cool plane and definitely weird!
  5. Heinkel He.111H-16 Upgrade & Mask Sets (for ICM) 1:48 Eduard ICM are rattling through most of the major variants of the Heinkel He.111, and we reviewed the H-16 here late last year. Eduard's new range of sets are here to improve on the kit detail in the usual modular manner. Get what you want for the areas you want to be more of a focal point. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Nose Interior (49962) Two frets are included, one nickel plated and pre-painted, the other in bare brass. A complete set of new layered instrument panels and side consoles that will be prominent within the greenhouse are the primary parts on the painted sheet, with new rudder pedals; seat details; canopy internal structure; additional instruments; gun sights and extra details, plus bulkhead details. Zoom! Set (FE962) This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above. Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements. Radio Compartment (49963) Two frets are included, one small nickel plated and pre-painted, the other larger one in bare brass. It involves a heavy upgrade to the level of detail within the compartment, adding racks for ammo; stowage boxes; racking; partial bulkheads; a huge range of radio boxes and other equipment; gun sights and ammo embellishments; a framework with instruments around the top gun hatch, and a cut-out for the nearby antenna, which requires a 12mm hole to be cut in the top insert. Exterior (48985) This set is provided as two frets, one large, one small, and creates a new internal skin for the box-shaped main gear bays, with additional structural details added throughout. It extends and details the firewall behind the engine that is seen from within the bay, adds some small parts to the landing gear legs, as well as brake hoses, bomb fin braces, towel-rail antennae under the fuselage and radiator cores. Seatbelts STEEL (FE963) These belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting. Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE. As well as the pilot's four-point crew belts, you also get two sets of lap belts for the other crew, detailed seats for which are included in the Radio Room set (49963). Masks (EX640) Supplied on two sheets of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the pane-fully faceted canopy (see what I did there?) and other glazed parts, with compound curved such as the nose gun handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape. In addition you get a set of hub/tyre masks for the main and tail wheels, allowing you to cut the demarcation perfectly with little effort, plus a landing light mask. Review sample courtesy of
  6. Stalker6Recon

    Photo Etch Parts Bender - Master Tools/Trumpeter

    Let me start by saying that I have not built a model in more than thirty years. Back then, photo etch was relatively new and rare. Today, it seems that PE comes with every kit (in military kits at least) and there are an abundance of aftermarket PE to spice up your models. So, when I realized that conditions were proper for me to build again, I got excited about the prospect and bought a Hasegawa F-18F in 48. I used another site when looking for reviews and it showed all the aftermarket accessories available. Like an idiot, I ordered straight away for some interior details, including to NACES ejection seats in PE. Oh the shock and horror when they arrived, unpainted and flat as a pancake! So I took a really close look at the seats, as the color left my face and my legs went numb, there was NO WAY I would be able to fold those seats with just my finger nails, they are as complicated as your favorite origami! Then I started looking around at how people handle these intricate details and saw my first bending tool. In fact, I realized that it was the strange looking tool that I had seen before online and hadn't the faintest idea what it was, then the lights came on. Basically, if you plan to use eduard to spruce up your sprues (pun intended, is that a pun?), then you are definitely going to want to buy one of these, or similar. By and large, this is the least expensive version of a PE bender that I have seen, and if you don't unjoy blooded fingers and lots of cursing while you hurl expensive PE into the bin because you thought you could get away with bending it via finger tips, then buy this tool. Took me a while to get to this point in life, where you finally understand that using the right tool for the job, is a whole lot easier and saves money in the long run. As a tip to those of you who are new at PE, remember this IMPORTANT tip. When folding PRE-PAINTED PE, put a piece of tape on the part you are going to bend, and use that as a lever to lift the edge so your razor blade does not damage the finish that is on the part. Having said that, I have yet to damage any PE with print on it, but better to be safe than sorry. Regular magic tape will do just fine, but a scrap of masking tape works just as well, just use something that won't leave a residue behind. Happy modeling! Anthony
  7. Savoia-Marchetti S.55 (72015) 1:72 Dora Wings The S.55 was a double hulled flying boat designed and built by Savoia-Marchetti in Italy in the early 1920s. Unusually the designed accommodated the passengers and cargo in the twin hulls and the pilots in the wing centre section. The engines were also unusual in that they were a pair of inline engines mounted above the wing in tandem canted sharply up. The drove contra rotating propellers. The aircraft would become famous for a series of trans Atlantic flights in the late 20s and then the Italian Air Force taking a flight of 24 aircraft to the 1933 Chicago Centaury of Progress Exposition. The Aircraft would be used in a civil capacity in Italy, Russia and the US. Military users would be Italy, Brazil, Spain, and Romania. Only one aircraft survives today being located in Brazil, where bizarrely it was traded for Coffee Beans after its transatlantic fight there! The Kit Dora Wings are becoming know for kitting unusual aircraft and the S.55 certainly fits the bill there. The kit arrives on 11 sprues of grey plastic, one clear film, 2 sheets of PE and two resin engines. Construction begins with the resin engines having their exhaust stubs added. The front fairing/radiator? is also made up at this time, as are the pair of pilot seat. All are put to one side for later. Next up the two hulls need to be made up. These are a main stepped hull bottom with two sides and front/rear decks. Internal structures need to be made up and added before they can be put together. The insides have a lot of detail consistent with a boat structure, while nice most wont be visible. The framework for the engine mounts are then built up and the engines added. Next up the cockpit is built up in the wing centre section. The floor is added with control wheels, throttles and the previously built up seats. The wing centre section can then be closed up. The main outer wings are then assembled from lowers and uppers with a single part control surface. Next up the large tail is built up and attached to its booms. To finish off the wing centre section is added to the twin hulls. Then the outer wings, tail section and engines are added. Markings The decals are from Decograf and look good with no registration issues, there are three decal options provided; S.55 Santa Maria, Reg No. 10015. Atlantic flight 16/02/1927. S.55 Santa Maria II, Reg No. 10016. Atlantic flight 08/05/1927. S.55 JAHU, Reg I-BAUQ ex I-SSAV, Atlantic flight 28/04/1927 (box art aircraft) Conclusion This is certainly an unusual aircraft which should appeal to those who like them, or Italian aircraft, or indeed the modellers of Flying Boats. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  8. Last week
  9. Thank you for the info. I'll look into that site also. I've made MHU-85/M trailers in 1/32nd scale because I cast wheel ans tire assembles from an old Monogram 2 1/2 ton army truck kit. Thanks again Ron VanDerwarker
  10. Ron, Check out Video Aviation they are your best bet for ground equipment. http://www.videoaviation.com/ground-support/ Julien
  11. Albacore Bomb Racks (48981 for Trumpeter) 1:48 Eduard Trumpeter's hit & miss reputation struck with their recent Albacore kit, but if you have taken a punt on it there are already a bunch of update sets available from Eduard, which we reviewed here. Following along tail-end-charlie style is this set of underwing bomb racks, which will probably fit just as well on the more aged Special Hobby kit with a bit of luck and a prevailing wind, not to mention some cutting of holes. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. The set is on a single fret of bare brass, and builds up into three single and one four-bomb semi-recessed rack for each lower wing, which require their shapes to be cut from the wing undersides before you proceed. The instructions first show how to add the spinner to the torpedo and detail the bombs with front and rear spinners, after which you fold up four short racks that fit into the recessed box that is also folded up from parts, then you make up the three longer racks and their boxes, replicating your work on the other wing in mirror image. Review sample courtesy of
  12. Tochka (SS-21 Scarab) Update Sets (for Hobby Boss) 1:35 Eduard Shortly after the release by Hobby Boss of this new kit (review), here come the updates from Eduard, split between interior and exterior sets so you can choose either or both to suit your needs or budget. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Interior (36404) Arriving on two sheets of PE, one of which is nickel-plated and colour printed, it contains a complete set of instruments for the driver and operator of the complex equipment needed to launch the missile; with a skin for the floor; pedal box with heel cup and other controls; equipment boxes; windscreen sun visors; fire extinguisher racks; individual knobs, switches and grab-handles on the equipment; a complete re-surfacing of the main missile control panels, and other small parts that transform the interior into a much busier, more detailed affair. Exterior (36405) Consisting of a single large fret, it has a set of six detailed wheel well inner skins with ribbed surface; crew step rings for the front tyres; light cages at the front and extended hoods at the rear; a complete reworking of the pioneer tools with new clasps and brackets; windscreen wipers and small parts on the front; brackets, hatches and grilles on the sides; a replacement rear platform, grab handles and so forth on the rest of the hull. Some small areas will need to be removed on the sides, and you will need a few lengths of 0.3mm, 0.6mm and 1mm rod to complete the job properly, so ensure you have some in stock before you begin. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Quite a nice kit and well reviewed. We have much in for an earlier C-4 nightfighter like the early engines without the bulge for the C-6 ( A-4, D-1.. ), clear parts and the early gun mount in the ventral C stand, rudder and the thinner metal blade propellers but the kit lacks the armored windscreen seen on many later C-6 nightfighter it lacks also the armored single gun mount for the B stand and the fitting aft canopy. May this configuration fits the depicted aircrafts.
  14. I did purchase both sets with the different tail series and am setting them off to the side for a nuclear load training diorama using an F-4D Phantom. In my 22 years with the USAF I've loaded the B-28's and B-61'a on B-52D's, B-43's, B-57's and B-61's on F-4D, and finally AGM-69's, B-61's, B-57's on the F/FB-111's. So I'm happy these weapons are starting to be reproduced for modelling. My other wish is for companies to reproduce all the munition handling trailers that were or are still in use. Ron VanDerwarker
  15. YK GOH

    Hunting Percival Jet Provost T.4 - 1:72 Airfix

    Love this kit. Hope Airfix will release an export version (eg. South Yemen, Iraq, Kuwait markings) with an additonal sprue for weapons.
  16. TopDrawings 68 – Curtiss P-40B/C/D/E (9788366148185) Kagero Publishing via Casemate UK The P-40 was designed as a low-cost fighter/ground-attack aircraft, which struggled to keep up with the moving goalposts that were set for it in terms of performance. It was eventually accepted into service in 1941 under the name Warhawk, and Tomahawk in British service with the Kittyhawk moniker being coined for the D onwards. It still wasn't the fastest kid on the block, so tended to be used primarily in theatres away from the top-echelon Bf.109s and Fw.190s. Thus it tends to be associated with the Pacific theatre, where despite suffering heavy losses it was useful as close air support as well as a fighter. We have kits in all scales from almost every manufacturer due to the popularity of the type, despite its shortcomings. The TopDrawings series majors on scale plans, which is the main thrust, but also includes a little background information, some pertinent profiles, and often a bonus of decals or masks targeted at the subject matter in hand. With this edition, you get a handsome A4 print of a P-40B battling the Japanese invaders at Pearl Harbour. The book is written in English on the left of the page, with Czech on the right, which translates to top and bottom for the captions to the various drawings within. The book itself is bound in a card cover and has 28 pages, with the rear cover devoted to additional profiles of a couple of Es. The first half of the plans show the variants from the XP-40, Tomahawk Mk.I, P-40B Tomahawk Mk.IIA & B, P-40C and D, after which the colour profiles are printed on four pages in colour, augmented by the two on the rear cover. After this change of pace there is another set of plans on the P-40E and its trainer variant, plus the E-1. The final six pages show side and top profiles with the changes between the variants discussed picked out in grey, and bullet-pointed lists detailing the changes further. Throughout the book, there are numerous smaller diagrams that shows gun packs, bombs, cross-sections of the fuselage, instrument panels, fuel tanks and weaponry. Conclusion These books are essential for the modeller that enjoys comparing their models against scale plans, and wants them to be as accurate as possible, with the print a nice bonus that has drama and poignancy at the same time. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  17. B-43-0 & B-43-1 Nuclear Weapons w/SC43-4/-7 Tail Assembly (648447 & 648448) 1:48 Eduard Brassin The B-43 was an early unguided air-dropped nuclear bomb used from 1961, reducing down from the mid 60s until the final withdrawal in the early 90s. Following the initial design, improvements were made in the -1 and later dash two to allow for different explosive yields to be carried and various fuses and deployment options. It was never used in anger (thankfully), but was carried by numerous US and some NATO airframes during the period. As usual with Eduard's larger resin sets, they arrive in the oblong Brassin box, with the resin parts safely cocooned on dark grey foam inserts, and the instructions wrapped around, providing extra protection. There are twenty resin parts, a sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass and decal sheet, with enough parts to construct two weapons. The construction steps are identical between the sets apart from the shape of the nose cone, which is more pointed for the -1 weapon, and the decal sheets. The body has a shaped depression in the front, which the nose cone slots into, then at the rear a small strip of PE is wrapped around the circumference, then the four tail fins are slotted into their depressions, while the small lugs fore and aft are fitted, taking care to align them correctly as per the scrap diagram. Painting and decaling is covered on one diagram, with the body painted either grey or white and various stencils applied along the sides. Colour codes are called out in their usual choice of Gunze Sangyo paints. B-43-0 Nuclear Weapon w/SC43-4/-7 tail assembly B-43-1 Nuclear Weapon w/SC43-4/-7 tail assembly Review sample courtesy of
  18. 1:144 F4D Skyray NOTSNIK Project Shelf Oddity NOTSNIK was an expendable launch system and anti-satellite rocket system developed by the US Navy's United States Naval Ordnance Test Station (NOTS) in the late 1950s. The NIK part coming from the fact this was not SPUTNIK. Air launches were carried out from a China Lake F4D Skyray at 41000 Ft of the Pilot Rocket system. It was the first attempt at using an air launched system to try and achieve orbital insertion of a payload. The system was considered a failure although there is some evidence of the system achieving orbit on the first test. The project remained classified until the mid 1990s. Shelf Oddity are emerging as a leader in decals and parts for 1.144 scale modelling. This set contains decals for the China Lake F4D and PE Fins for a Pilot Rocket. The instructions show how to scratch build this. As with all Shelf Oddity sets there are extensive instructions available on-line in PDF format. Conclusion Great news for 1:144 scale fans, an interesting and virtually unknown use of the Skyray. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  19. British Tank Destroyer FV215B(183) (35A008) 1:35 Amusing Hobby Post WWII, everything armoured was still suffering from a hangover from Hitler's "bigger is better" mantra, and Heavy Tanks were all the rage. The FV214 Conqueror was one such vehicle, and was intended to be the big-brother of the Centurion, wiping out enemy tanks and clearing the way. It saw service in limited quantities in West Germany in the late 50s to early 60s, and was phased out in favour of the Main Battle Tank. The FV215B was a proposal for a Self-Propelled Gun based on the same chassis, but with the turret housing a 183mm gun fitted to the aft part of the hull to reduce overhang of its limited traverse turret. It never progressed beyond a mock-up, so was essentially a paper project, and ended its days consigned to the waste paper basket when the project was cancelled. The Kit This is a great paper project from Amusing Hobby, with some sprues borrowed from their Conqueror kits as you might expect. There's no harm in getting the most out of the sprues, and we get an interesting developmental dead-end of the Conqueror line into the bargain. FV222 Conqueror ARV next maybe? The kit arrives in a traditional top opening box, and inside are nine sprues and two hull halves in sand-coloured styrene, 226 track links in brown styrene two-per-sprue (113 of them in my kit), eight real-live springs, a length of braided copper wire, a small sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, a decal sheet, and instruction booklet with colour profiles and markings guide on the rear pages. It doesn't share as many of the parts as you'd think with its progenitor, with only the running gear, lower hull, wheels, tracks and side-skirts from the original, all the rest being newly tooled. Detail is the same quality as the Conqueror, although some texturing of the turret armour would have been an improvement, but it's not massively difficult to do yourself with a stipple of Mr Surfacer and a few knocks with a spinning Dremel tool. It's an exterior kit, so other than a few periscopes and small parts near hatches, there is nothing inside. If you're opening hatches, grab some Post WWII tank crew to go with it and you're set. Construction begins with the hull, and the suspension bogies that contain the Horstmann suspension units, which is where the real springs come in. These are contained between two end-caps, which affix to a back-plate, and if you're careful with the glue when you attach the perforated front part, you should end up with working suspension. Two pairs of road wheels and a single pair of return rollers are fixed to the axles, and held in place by hub caps that fit using friction alone, so the wheels should turn too if you don't overdo the paint. This is repeated over the eight bogies, a multi-part drive sprocket with final drive housing is installed at the rear and the adjustable idler wheels are added to the lower glacis, with an element of adjustment possible before you apply glue, which should allow you to take up any additional slack in the tracks before you finish construction. A set of small inner skirts are glued along the length of the road wheel area, with tie-downs/grab-handles at either end, although it may be better to leave these off until after the tracks are fitted, and possibly until after painting. The rear bulkhead fits to the opening in the back of the hull after being decked-out with towing hooks and various small parts, after which the new upper hull is built. Blanking plates are affixed to the lower edges of the sponsons before it is flipped over and the glacis plate is added to the blank front of the upper hull. Light clusters, travel-lock for the barrel and lifting eyes are added, then around the front of the turret ring a group of PE grilles are glued in place with super glue and the engine access hatch is detailed with grab-handles and lifting lugs. A semi-circular hatch is supplied for the driver, with periscope and levers inside, stowage boxes and exhausts are added to the fenders, plus air cleaners and fire extinguishers, then short outer skirts that hang from the edges of the fenders on small lugs. The upper turret is a single moulding to which the internal periscope and latching parts are fitted, while cable bobbin, stowage, shell-ejection hatch and twin smoke grenade launchers are fitted to the slab-like sides. On the roof are the three hatches, sighting gear and a single coaxial(ish) machine gun projecting from a wedge-shaped appendage in front of the commander's cupola, which has a flip-forward hatch and a mushroom vent in the centre of the roof. Either side of the commander's hatch are spare ammo cans for the belt-fed aft-facing machine gun that is fixed to the rear on a Y-shaped mount. The massive 183mm main gun is made from two interlocking tubular parts with hollow centres, which have their join hidden by the fume extractor that fits around them in two parts. The completed barrel then slides through the angular mantlet and locates in the pivoting part, which latches inside the mantlet with a firm push, having moulded-in splines to keep it from drooping, although if you play with it too much it will end up saggy. The completed mantlet and single piece turret floor complete the assembly, leaving just the tracks and final assembly to do. The tracks are very nicely moulded, and are of the click-fit workable variety, which works very well indeed in this instance. The parts are moulded in pairs with a small injection manifold between them, and they are attached by only two sprue gates, with no ejector pins to deal with. Clean-up is super-simple due to the location of the gates, and the click action is quite robust, leaving you with a run of tracks in fairly short order, which is just as well as you need 98 links per side. Having seen a few rather poorly engineered track joining methods from other major manufacturers lately, it's refreshing to see a genuinely good track-making method from Amusing Hobby. With the tracks installed, the hull halves can be joined, the turret twisted into place, and a pair of aft mudguards fitted to the fenders to complete the job. Markings It's a what-if, paper-project or hypothetical AFV if you like, so the schemes have been made up with the assistance of Mig Jiménez's company AMMO, so it's not a surprise to see that the colours are using their codes. Both options have camouflage patterns, which should be easy enough to apply because you have five views so there's no guesswork involved. If you're planning on using an airbrush you can either freehand them with nice tight demarcations, or get some of that clever putty, roll out some snakes and get on with masking it up, leaving it to settle a little into the corners to prevent "the fuzzies". The decal sheet is small and contains a number of which alphanumeric codes to create your own number plates using the black rectangles as a backdrop, some well-known British tank regiment badges, a couple of yellow donuts and circles, and even a British flag with a tiny first aid roundel nearby. Registration, colour density and sharpness are up to the job, and you have plenty of scope to create your own vehicle with a little made-up history if you like. Conclusion I'm quite fond of this era of gigantic tanks when they were still figuring out the best way of doing things in the world of Armoured Fighting Vehicles, so this appeals to me both from a subject point of view as well as a nice kit that will look imposing on the shelf, unless you plonk it down next to a Conqueror or a IS-3, or maybe even an American T-28, or your own 1:35 scratch-build P1000 Ratte! Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  20. Dave Fleming

    Hunting Percival Jet Provost T.4 - 1:72 Airfix

    There might even be a market for corrected tailplanes for a T4, rather than just the little intakes
  21. Steve Coombs

    Hunting Percival Jet Provost T.4 - 1:72 Airfix

    Whatever you do, don't fill in the groove between the tyre halves! It's supposed to be there. Guess who filled it in on his first JP3 kit, then had to restore it? Those Reskit wheels look very nice. Perhaps someone could ask them nicely to provide sets of the assorted air scoops missing from the kit.
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