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Shar2

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Shar2 last won the day on October 13 2013

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About Shar2

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    Wibble!
  • Birthday 08/27/1965

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    Sunbury, Middx
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    Maritime and AFV modelling.
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  1. Shar2

    1/350 British Nuclear submarines

    Sergey has told me he would gladly do British nuke subs, but there aren't any readily available plans, so he can't.
  2. Ukraine State Aviation Museum Zhulyany Airport, Kiev As some of you know, at least, those who have read my report on MiniArt Models, HERE, back in 2017 I visited Kiev for the very first time. Just south of Kiev city is Zhulyany Airport, the north west section of which is a large open fenced off area, housing the Zhulyany Aircraft Museum, also known as the Oleg Antonov State Aircraft Museum and Ukraine State Aviation Museum. The museum contains more than 80 airframes, both fixed and rotary wing, plus a selection of drones, weapons and a great selection of Russian aircraft engines. Not all the aircraft are on display as there are some in storage and/or being restored. The museum was officially established in 2003 with 30 odd airframes and has been growing ever since into the wonderful museum it is today. If you are in Kiev and plan to make a visit to the museum then you can either take a taxi, which cost around 300 to 400 Hryvnia, (UAH) which equates to £9 to £12 depending where in Kiev you are staying. Once you arrive at what looks like an old industrial estate and bus parking area you will need to get your tickets at the small office in the middle of some iron fence work with three large signs, and next to the main gate. Entrance to the museum will cost you 50uah, (£1.50), and another 20uah, (60p), to take photographs. There are several aircraft that are open to the public but you will have to get your tickets from the office before you enter the museum, these are:- TU-154 – 5uah, (15p) TU-134UBI – 10uah, (30p) TU-134 Presidential – 10uah, (30p) IL-62 – 10UAH, (30p) Mi-26 Helicopter – 5uah, (15p) Mi-8 Helicopter – 5uah, (15p) The engine exhibition is also extra at 10uah, (30p), but is very interesting, with a whole range of soviet era engines, some of which have been cutaway to show their interiors, although the lighting in the large “shed” is, shall we say, a bit dim, so if you want to take photos you will need a flash or set up your camera accordingly, even though flash is said to be forbidden, I wasn’t thrown out or even spoken to by the lady at the door. Talking of ladies, most of the museum seems to be run by women of a certain age, and probably best not to be messed with. They are very helpful though and even with little English they can guide you to the various parts of the museum with great efficiency, they also look after most of the aircraft in which you can gain entrance with your additional tickets. In addition to all the airframes, there is a small, but well stocked gift shop offering everything from a fridge magnets to locally produced model kits such as those from Modelsvit and AModel at reasonable prices, and a second small shop nearby selling drinks and snacks. There is also a large earth mound about 50 yards from the shop, opposite the Bear and Backfires, which is a real boon for the avid plane spotter, as it overlooks the fence to Zhulyany Airport itself. It’s more of a regional airport rather than truly international with mainly Boeing 737’s and the like, but also gets the odd business jet and old Tupolev airliner. But you can get some good photographs of the aircraft landing, taking off and particularly taxing, as the taxiway is right next to the museum fence and main aircraft gate, through which many of the exhibits were brought into the museum. It is near the large gate to the airport that several trucks are parked, these include a large KRAZ fire fighting vehicle and airfield ice clearance vehicle complete with a Klimov VK-1 jet engine, better known by us Brits as a Rolls Royce Nene. Around the south side of the museum there are a number of workshops and a sort of aircraft graveyard. These aren’t open to the public, but there are a number of aircraft on the museum side of the fence being worked on and being restored. The restorers are very nice, once they understand you are interested in their work and if you’re lucky, will show you around their aircraft. Whilst already restored, some of the exhibits are still being worked on to keep them at least alive, if not flight worthy, particularly the IL-86 and IL-76 when I last visited. There is so much to see that you could easily spend the whole day there and take hundreds, if not thousands of photos, in my case over 3000 at the last count, in two visits. Doh! Most of which you will be able to see in the walkround section on Britmodeller. Conclusion This is a superb collection and museum, with lots of aircraft very few in the west have actually seen. While most airframes are in great to good condition, there are a number that look like they will need a good clean or paint-job soon, mostly the Mig and Sukhoi fighters in the centre of the museum grounds. For the price of entrance it is exceptional value for money, (just hope the museum doesn’t read this and put the prices up), but then the Ukraine is pretty cheap for westerners to visit in general. If you’re in Kiev, it is a must on your to-do list. I do hope that this article has given you a flavour of what this museum is like and you enjoy your visit, do remember though that the weather can be rather temperamental in Ukraine, much like here I guess, but it's more extreme, so plan your trip carefully, I have been lucky and visited their both in April and August with bright sunny days on both occasions, but August was particularly hot, around 30'C, so take plenty of water. Prices and currency conversion were correct at time of my last visit.
  3. Shar2

    Gold Bar

    Hi Malcom. Thank you for the donation, your gold membership has been added. Cheers Dave
  4. @Simon CornesIf you send me your drawing, I'll see what I can do ref drawing it up on Solidworks. I look after my faculties 3D printers and can use our projet 3600 to print it out. Can't promise a timescale as it'll be when I haven't got any teaching or project work.
  5. Have you tried Accurate Armour? Just looked and that would be a no. Sorry. But Resucast seem to http://www.resicast.com/products/kits/slideshow-34/index.html
  6. South Pacific Air War Vol.2 The Struggle For Moresby Avonmore Publications Written by Michael Claringbould and Peter Inhman and published by Avonmore publications, this book tells the story of the battle for Port Moresby in a day to day, blow by blow account of the air forces of Australia and the US against the Japanese air force and naval air arm. While the first volume, which we never received dealt with the air battles over Rabaul, This second volume, over two hundred and twenty nine pages, chronicles the aerial warfare in the South Pacific for the two crucial months of March and April 1942 when a deadly struggle for Port Moresby played out. It can be read alone or as part of a trilogy that culminates in the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942. The period begins with the stunning 10 March US Navy carrier strike against Lae and Salamaua, which caused the Japanese to pause their advance until their own carriers were available. Instead, they tried to grind the Allied forces at Port Moresby into submission through an unrelenting air assault by their Betty bombers and Zero fighters. After a long wait, Allied land-based fighters finally arrived in the form of Royal Australian Air Force No. 75 Squadron Kittyhawks. These were backed up by a growing collection of United States Army Air Force bombers, including A-24 Banshees, B-17 Flying Fortresses, B-25 Mitchells and B-26 Marauders (the latter two types making their worldwide combat debut over the skies of New Guinea). But it’s not just about the aircraft as the crew members and fighter pilots are also described and in some cases photographed next to their aircraft or in more relaxed surroundings that brings the human story to the fore. Together, this motley force took the fight to the Japanese, resulting in a complex aerial campaign that saw units from both sides reach exhaustion. The book is filled with the details of almost every encounter between the two protagonists, the identities of the pilots and even the ships that were involved. At the end of the book there are tables covering each aircraft lost and what happened to them, not only for the Allies but for the Japanese forces too. To accompany the text there are numerous period photographs as well as computer generated renders of combat between the various aircraft. The final thirty one pages are filled with either three views or side views of the aircraft involved, with descriptions of the unit, where they were based and occasionally their sad demise. Conclusion I’ve not come across this series of books before and will certainly be getting hold of the first volume as this one was compelling reading about a battle I knew very little about. While not aimed at the modeller Per Se, it has a wealth of information about aircraft markings, units and where they were based which, along with the side views allows the modeller to build a true replica of the aircraft involved. There are also some great photographs from which a vignette or diorama can be built should you wish. Highly recommended Review sample courtesy of
  7. Soviet BT-2 Light tank Hobbyboss 1:35 History The KhPZ design bureau headed by Morozov barely changed any features of the original BT-1 chassis and Christie design, concentrating instead on the engine, transmission, turret and weaponry. The turret was of the simple “barrel type”, a cylinder made of several layers of steel, 5-6 mm (0.2-0.24 in) in all, which was designed to house a 37 mm (1.46 in) long barrel, high velocity AT gun. It was not ready for production at the time and was later in chronically short supply. Because of this, many BT-2s were delivered with a mixed armament of DP-DT machines guns only or a 37 mm (1.46 in) gun with or without a single coaxial DT machine-gun. The standard configuration included the gun and a coaxial DT machine-gun mounted in an oblique fixed position, in the Japanese style. Its traverse depended on the turret. The “full machine gun” version consisted of a single coaxial DT machine-gun and a twin DP-28 (Degtyaryov model 1928) light machine gun mount replacing the gun. The other important point was the engine. The Soviets imported a licence for the American Liberty L12, a water-cooled 45° V-12 aircraft engine capable of 400 hp (300 kW), built as the M5-400. This first model, although powerful and light, was also found difficult to maintain and unpredictable. The power-to-weight ratio meant excellent performance, although less impressive than the original Christie M1931, mostly because of the added weight of the turret and all the military equipment. The first run and trials of the BT-2 were successful and showcased a road speed of 100 km/h (62 mph), with an off-road speed of 60-70 km/h (37-43.5 mph) depending of the terrain. They were largely showcased for propaganda purposes and featured in movies throughout the thirties. In 1933, it was a completely new and unrivalled concept in the world, allowing “true” cavalry tactics built on speed, mostly for breakthrough exploitation and advanced reconnaissance missions. This emphasis on speed over protection also reflected the confidence in the naval “battlecruiser” concept, traduced in land warfare. The speed acted like an active protection on its own, since a target moving so fast was more difficult to hit. The M5 engine gave a 39 hp/t power-to-weight ratio and a 400 litre tank allowed a 300 km (186 mi) range at cruising road speed, with a tactical range of just 100 km (62 mi). This was impressive for the time, giving that it was at an average off-road 60 km/h (37 mph). The Kharkov Komintern Locomotive Plant delivered 620 BT-2 until 1935. Most were equipped with the 37 mm (1.46 in) model 30 gun, provisioned with 96 rounds. Some also received a radio “horseshoe” antenna fixed on the turret. The latter had only two side small vision slits. The gun mantlet also varied slightly in shape during the production run. Another external modification included the front mudguards, not mounted on the earliest model, and headlights. The Model The kit comes in a fairly small top opening box with an artists representation of the tank in the field. Inside there are five sprues and two separate parts in the standard tan styrene, two sprues of grey styrene, a small clear sprue, a very small sheet of etched brass and a decal sheet. This si one of those models that you just know is going to be a nice, quick build, until you get to the tracks. The thinness of the instruction sheet tells you that it is a fairly simple kit. The mouldings though are up to the usual standard with some fine detail, including the prominent rivets. There is no sign of flash or other imperfections, but a fair few moulding pips. Construction begins with the drilling out of various holes before the upper hull section is glued to the lower hull, along with the rear mounted drive covers, towing hooks, drive shaft cover and suspension bump stops, three per side. The five external beams either side are then glued into position, followed by the drivers hatch, suspension units and the eight piece front steering arms. The side plates are the attached, covering all the suspension detail, and the front wheels are attached along with their hub caps. On the hull roof there are six PE grab handles that will need to be carefully folded to shape before fitting. The two piece idler, and road wheels are joined together and glued to the their respective axle, as are the rear mounted drive sprockets. Now comes the fun bit, the tracks. The 48 individual links per side are quite small with the hinge parts moulded into them, these are glued together making up the track run, there’s not a lot of surface to glue so be careful, and they look to be particularly fiddly to drape over the wheels. Fortunately there was very little sag on the tracks of these vehicles so it may be best to make the top and bottom runs to length, glued them onto the wheels, then add the sections that go round the idler wheels and drive sprockets separately so that they can be curved to shape before the glue sets. The track guards are then attached, as is a large aerial looking item. These are followed by the exhaust silencer, engine hatch and engine grille. Finally the single main turret part is fitted with the lower turret ring, commander’s hatch and four piece gun/mantle. The turret is then fitted to the hull completing the build Decals The small decal sheet is sparse to say the least. What there are, are nicely printed and if previous experience has taught me, quite thin. All the sheet includes are two sets of numbers from 0 to 9 so you can choose whichever tank ID you like. There two colour schemes on the paint guide, Russian green overall or a mixture of red brown and flat black over flat white. Conclusion There is something about these inter-war tanks. It was a time of great experimentation throughout the world and while this was a quick tank it wasn’t a great success, but still is an interesting subject for your collection. There can’t be too many more Soviet inter-war tanks left to kit now. Review sample courtesy of
  8. Shar2

    BM-8-24. 1:35

    BM-8-24 1:35 MiniArt The T-60 was the result of the ongoing development of light tanks that had started well before WWII. This particular tank started development in 1938 as an attempt to replace the T-26, T-40, the failed T-46 project and the T-50. Whilst such a large number were produced, it was hated by all who had to deal with it – all except the Germans, who found it to be a substandard and underwhelming opponent, and a rather nice ammunition carrier or gun towing tractor, once captured. As a result of its poor armour, substandard armament and sluggish performance, it was more dangerous to its crews than anybody else, earning it the title Bratskaya Mogila Na Dovoikh, literally: “a brother’s grave for two.” The basic design was completed in a mere fifteen days, and Astrov, seconded by Lieutenant Colonel V.P. Okunev, wrote to Stalin contrasting the advantages of the mass-producible T-60 with the more complicated T-50, which had already received the go-ahead. An inspection from a senior minister resulted in two decisions: firstly, the 12.7 mm (0.5 in) machine gun was to be replaced with a 20 mm (0.79 in) ShVAK, although it was still inadequate against the Panzer IIIs and IVs that the T-60 would almost certainly engage whilst there was a shortage of T-34s. Secondly, the Main Defence Committee (GKO), headed by Stalin, ordered 10,000 T-60s to be produced immediately. Some sources have claimed that Stalin’s interest in the vehicle is because he attended the vehicle’s final trials in person. The Katyusha multiple rocket launcher is a type of rocket artillery first built and fielded by the Soviet Union in World War II. Multiple rocket launchers such as these deliver explosives to a target area more quickly than conventional artillery, but with lower accuracy and requiring a longer time to reload. They are fragile compared to artillery guns, but are inexpensive, easy to produce, and usable on any chassis. The Katyusha of World War II, the first self-propelled artillery mass-produced by the Soviet Union, were usually mounted on ordinary trucks. This mobility gave the Katyusha, and other self-propelled artillery, another advantage: being able to deliver a large blow all at once, and then move before being located and attacked with counter-battery fire. With the T-60 being cancelled with the introduction of the T-70 in late 1942, the T-60’s were put to other tasks, one of these being converted to be Katyusha carriers with the launchers fitted in place of the turret. The Model The kit comes in the fairly standard, yet sturdy and colourful top opening box MiniArt use, with an artists impression of the vehicle on the front. Inside there are fifty two sprues of varying sizes, mostly small, in a medium to dark grey styrene, along with one sprue of clear styrene, a small sheet of etched brass and a smallish decal sheet. The mouldings are superb with no imperfections and very few moulding pips. Some of the smaller parts, and there are a lot of them, do have a fair number of sprue gates, but fortunately they are relatively small and shouldn’t cause too many problems. The sheer number of parts is explained by the fact that this kit is equipped with a full, and I mean full interior, which for a model/vehicle this size will mean you will need a magnifying glass/Optivisor when building. The build starts with the lower hull floor, to which the drivers position is attached, complete with detailed gearbox, levers and brake drums. Then there is the comprehensively detailed engine, which is a model in itself, and has more parts than some whole kits, around 22 in total. The two batteries and battery tray are then added to the left hand side of the hull adjacent to the drivers position, followed by the right side panel which is fitted with a fire extinguisher and four support brackets. The rear bulkhead is fitted out with several parts on the outside, before being attached to the lower hull, as is the lower glacis plate. The engine assembly is then glued into position and connected to the gearbox via a couple of drive shafts. The interior is slowly built up with bulkheads, ammunition racks with spare ammunition drums and boxes and another fire extinguisher. The left hull panel is then attached, along with the outer drive covers, idler axles, internal longitudinal bulkhead and several pipes. The upper hull plate is fitted with several panels before being glued into place. The drivers hatch is made up from five parts, while the drivers vision block is made up from six parts. Both assemblies are then glued to the driver position, and can be posed either open of closed. Depending on which colour scheme the modeller has chosen there are two options for the style of headlights to be used. The suspension arms are then glued to the hull, followed by the road wheels, return rollers, drive sprockets and idler wheels. The engine cover is next made up of three plastic and two etched grille pieces. This is then glued into position on the top deck, along with the drivers access and viewing plate. The tracks are each built up from eighty five individual links, which, unfortunately are not click able, but have to be glued, making it a little more awkward to get the sag and fitted around the idlers/drive sprockets. But with plenty of patience and care they can be made to look the business. The track guards are fitted with many PE brackets, as well as storage boxes, pioneer tools and a nicely detailed jack. These are then fitted to the hull and the build moves on to the turret. There is a large PE grille fitted to the rear engine deck along with a PE surround. There are two covers that go over this if winterising the vehicle; each plate is fixed with four to six PE wing nuts, with the fitting of more PE brackets around the hull and the engine exhaust glued into position. With the tank assembly completed it’s on to the rocket launcher. The base unit is made up from fourteen parts with the option of the launcher to be in assembled in two different elevations with the fitting of option actuators and put to one side. Meanwhile, the tubular framework on which the rocket rails sit is made up from five parts. The rocket rails, all twelve of them are slid onto two rods, which fortunately have well marked placement points, before the framework is attached and the retaining clamps fitted. Each of the 24 rockets are assembled from three parts and there is detailed painting instructions for the different types of rocket used. The completed rockets are then fitted above and below the rails which already have the firing lead moulding onto them. There are an extra eight rockets included in the kit and these are to be able to be displayed in their transport boxes which are made up form eight parts, if you include the lid. The launcher base is fitted onto the tank followed by the launcher and some ancillary pipework and other fittings including a three piece sighting unit, completing the build . Decals The small decal sheet contains markings for four different vehicles, but these decals are the least of the modellers problems as there are three sets of markings for each of the 32 rockets and to say they are small would be an understatement, there are also identifying markings for the transport boxes. The vehicle options include:- BM-8-24, No 13 or No 11 of the Red Army, South-Western Front, May to July 1942 in Russian Green overall. BM-8-24, of the Red Army on the Don Front, December 1942, in overall Russian green with whitewash covering most of the vehicle. BM-8-24, No. 43/2 of the Red Army, Southern Front, during the Summer 1943 painted in a sand colour. BM-8-24, of an unidentified unit of the Red Army 1942 to 1944 Conclusion This is another amazing kit from MiniArt and brings yet another lesser known military vehicle to the mainstream modelling community. With the numerous parts count and the large number of very small parts, this kit is really aimed at the more experienced modeller, but looks like it should build up into a superb model, absolutely full of detail, so much so that there shouldn’t be any need for aftermarket parts. The additional rockets will be useful if you wish to add this to a diorama. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  9. At last a 78ft Higgins. Yay!
  10. Augusta Westland Lynx Mk.8 Revell 1/32 History The initial design, then known as the Westland WG.13, was started in the mid-1960s as a replacement for the Westland Scout and Wasp, and a more advanced alternative to the UH-1 Iroquois. The design was to be powered by a pair of Bristol Siddeley BS.360 turboshaft engines. As part of the Anglo-French helicopter agreement signed in February 1967, French company Sud Aviation (later Aérospatiale) had a 30 per cent share of production work, Westland performing the remainder. It was intended that France would procure the Lynx for its Navy and a heavily modified armed reconnaissance variant for the French Army, with the United Kingdom in return buying Aérospatiale Gazelle and Puma for its armed forces. The initial naval variant of the Lynx, known as the Lynx HAS.2 in British service, or Lynx Mk.2(FN) in French service, differed from the Lynx AH.1 in being equipped with a tricycle undercarriage and a deck restraint system, folding main rotor blades, an emergency flotation system and a nose-mounted radar. An improved Lynx for the Royal Navy, the Lynx HAS.3, had Gem 42-1 Mark 204 engines, an uprated transmission, a new flotation system and an Orange Crop ESM system. The Lynx HAS.3 also received various other updates in service. A similar upgrade to the French Lynx was known as the Lynx Mk.4(FN). In the early 1990s, Westland incorporated some of the technology from the Naval Lynx-3 design into a less-radical Super Lynx. This featured BERP rotor blades, the Westland 30-derived tail rotor, Gem 42 engines, a new under-nose 360-degree radar installation and an optional nose-mounted electro-optical sensor turret. Royal Navy Lynx HAS.3s upgraded to Super Lynx standard were known in service as the Lynx HMA.8, and several export customers ordered new-build or upgraded Super Lynxes. From the 1990s onwards, Westland began offering the Super Lynx 200, which was equipped with LHTEC CTS800 engines, and the Super Lynx 300, which also had a new cockpit and avionics derived from the Agusta Westland EH101. Both of these models have achieved several export sales. In 2002, Flight International reported that more than 40 variants of the Lynx were in service, numbering almost 400 aircraft having been built for various customers The Model The original RN Lynx from Revell was released back in 2013 and it’s then them until the aircraft’s retirement to release the latest and final version. Although this is pretty much a re-box of the original Mk3 it does come with all the upgrades that the Mk8 was known for, namely the ugly nose FLIR on the modified nose panel, and under fuselage radome. It does also come with a different tail boom with separate fin allowing the possibility of posing the fin folded. The box the kit comes in is adorned with a nice painting of a Lynx in flight, unfortunately it is an end opening box, therefore and floppy as ever, so no shoving it in the stash with any more than one other kit on it. Inside there are fourteen sprues of grey styrene, two of clear and a largish decal sheet. The mouldings have stood up well and there is no sign of flash or other imperfections, but quite a few moulding pips. The internal details are very nicely moulded and includes the sound proofing and tie downs on the inside of the cabin, although it could be doing with being a little bit baggier. Construction begins with drilling out the requisite holes in the cabin floor before added the cockpit centre console frame, instrument panel pedestal and panel, which appears to be correct for the type. The rudder pedals, cyclic and collective levers for both pilots are then glued into position, followed by the centre console control panels. Each of the pilots seats are made up from five parts with the seatbelts moulded into the backrest and seat squab. Once assembled the seats are glued into position along with the cabin rear bulkhead, sidewalls and rear bench seat with front support frame. The middle set of six seats might look ok from a distance but they bear little resemblance to the real things as the end frames are solid, whereas you’d see the actual framework on the real items. There is a group of electronic black boxes fitted behind the pilots seat consisting of seven parts and the middle seat assembly is fitted at the same time. The roof soundproofing is fitted with a hand hold before being glued into position. Before the fuselage halves are closed up the sections are fitted either edge of the side doors and more holes are required to be drilled out. The engine exhaust plate is fitted with two, tow piece exhausts while the main rotor gearbox, which is very nicely represented is fitted with a drive pin and cap, so that, should you wish, the rotors can be turned once fitted. The cabin and main rotor gearbox assembly are then sandwiched between the fuselage halves as is the exhaust plate. The roof panel and engine covers are then glued into place, followed by the exhaust shrouds and several access panels. The underside of the fuselage is also attached at this point as are the underside tail panel and what looks like a doppler panel, but could be for the radio altimeter and orange crop panels. The intake grilles are unfortunately represented by clear parts, not mesh as per the rear aircraft. Personally, unless an aftermarket company can reproduce them the clear parts could make for good moulds for the modeller to produce their own mesh grilles. The underside is fitted with several more panels and aerials before work begins on the nose section. the nose comprises of five parts before the five piece FLIR unit is attached. The completed assembly is then glued to the fuselage. The thwo piece tail cone is fitted with the end bulkhead which includes the hinge and locking points, as does the two piece tail fin. If you were to pose the fin folded you will need to add some internal detail to both, including the tail rotor transitional gearbox in the fin. The kit does come with the locking handle for the fin as well, so it looks like Revell nearly decided to give the folding fin option in the kit, but decided to do it properly. The completed tail cone/fin is then glued to the fuselage, along with the side doors and the slides, windscreen and pilots doors, as well as smaller items such as the windscreen wipers and various blade aerials. The main undercarriage legs each comprise to halves for each oleo, two parts to the scissor links and two halves for each wheel. The completed undercarriage legs are then sandwiched between two halves of each sponson interior before the two part sponson itself is attached. The nose wheel oleo is also in two halves and fitted with a two piece scissor link, plus two, tow piece wheels. With all the undercarriage assembled they are glued into their respective positions, along with the large anti IR beacon under the front end of the tailcone, a large blade aerial on the port side near the beacon and a number of other items which this reviewer hasn’t a clue what they are. The SACRU hook is then attached, along with four strengthening straps and the hold down harpoon unit. The tail rotor is a single piece moulding to which the inner hub and outer control rods are attached before being fitted to the port side of the fin, while on the starboard side the horizontal stabiliser is fitted. Another large blade aerial is fitted where the sonar hole used to be while just aft and to starboard there is a retractable lamp fitted. The build now concentrates on to the weaponry. The modeller has the option to fit a 50 cal M2 heavy machine gun in the port doorway. This assembly is made up from no less than twenty two parts all told, and really looks the business, with the caveat that the cooling holes over the barrel could be better represented. The other options to add weapons to the Lynx include two Stingray torpedoes each from four parts or two Sea Skua anti shipping missiles, each consisting of eight parts. The launchers are made up from ten parts and if you’re not going to fir the gun you will need two launchers. Aside from the weapons, the kit also includes the rescue hoist consisting of ten parts and is fitted to the starboard side doorway. The HF aerial stays are fitted to the underside of the tail cone and fitted with a length of wire of the modeller’s choice. The last major assembly is the main rotor. The head is made up from thirteen parts, before the rotor blades are attached and the whole assembly fit to the main rotor gearbox finishing the build. Decals The single large decal sheet provides a complete stencil set for one aircraft all the marking specific to each option. The decals are very nicely produced with great colour density, in register and nicely opaque. The markings provided are for the following:- Lynx Mk8, 207 Flight, 815 Naval Air Squadron, HMS Iron Duke, March 2016 Lynx Mk8, 215 Flight, 815 Naval Air Squadron, HMS Monmouth, March 2012 Conclusion It’s very nice to see this kit re-released with the new parts to build the final version of this venerable helicopter, and it’s still a fabulous looking kit. Not being overly complex it shouldn’t take too much to make a good looking model out of it. I have heard there may be fit problems in some areas, but with a bit of care and patience I’m sure they won’t be too bad. It will certainly be an impressive model for any collection. There is certainly plenty of scope for super detailing if that is your wish. If you wish to pose your Lynx with the blades folded there si an aftermarket set that will help you with that. or
  11. Shar2

    Royal Navy Signal Flags. 1:350

    I should have put may have been where the phrase came from, but the actual phrase could be older. It does fit though within Naval parlance. To quote the actual wording from the page I was searching. "While this may be fittingly related to the phrase "to mind one's P's and Q's", it may have happened too late to be its origin; that origin has also been claimed for printing with metal type, as the reversed forms of those letters on the type slugs can be confusing to distinguish, and for the tally of pints and quarts consumed on credit in a British pub, and several other possibilities are also still considered."
  12. Royal Navy Signal Flags Eduard 1:350 Quite a few maritime kits these days provide a selection of flags and pennants that are printed on paper. These can look ok, but generally always have a tired well worn look, like they’ve been left in the sun for a few months. Eduard have now countered this look with the release of this pre-painted steel set, which supersedes the etched brass set previously available. The forty five flags and ten pennants are beautifully painted and will look great either as a coded message from a halyard or two or even on a ship dressed overall, although it would have to be modelled for a calm day as, even though the metal is quite thin I doubt you’d be able to replicate a flapping flag too easily. To use, just cut the chosen flag from the sheet and wrap it around your favourite rigging material. Conclusion This is a very nice and easy to use set which would add a dash, or even a lot of colour depending on how many you use. Please note however these flags are based on the 1937 Royal Navy signaling Handbook so for use on ships from that time up until the new, revised handbook was issued during the war, where the flags for P and Q were swapped over, and is where the phrase “Mind your P’s and Q’s” comes from. So, research is your friend when it comes to modelling. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Löök Resin Instrument Panels & Seatbelts – January 2019 Eduard 1:32 Continuing their line in the LOOK series of instrument panels, Eduard have released two more sets. These are for the 1:32 Eduard/Hasegawa Curtiss P40N-1, and Republic P-47D. As with the previously released sets, the modeller is provided, in these cases with the main instrument panel. Each set also includes a sheet of etched steel for the seat belts. The panels have all the correct markings and placards painted on them and the faces of each instrument is glazed, making them look very realistic, particularly with a bit of weathering to get away from that newly built look. Conclusion This series is a great resource for those of us who are unable to replicate all the markings on a panel, all in one easy package. They are certainly a neat and innovative idea from the masters of aftermarket. Review sample courtesy of
  14. BMR-1 Early Type with KMT-5M MiniArt 1:35 Based on the SU-122-54, which MiniArt have also produced, this kit is of the first version of the armoured mine clearing vehicle. The main gun has been removed and the fittings of the attachment of the KMT-5M mine roller system. Where the top hatches would normally be, there is instead a round cupola fitted with a single heavy machine gun. The forward section of the lower hull was fitted with much thicker armour to prevent penetration in the event a mine exploded under the vehicle. Surprisingly these vehicles were still in use during the Afghanistan during the Soviet invasion in the 1980’s. The Model As with the TOP engineering vehicle this is typically Russian in style, tough, rugged and with the singular purpose of clearing mines. As with most MiniArt kits the box, with an artist’s impression on the front is full to the brim with sprues, a total of seventy one in grey styrene, one in clear, a small sheet of etched brass, two lengths of chain and a small decal sheet. The way the sprues are moulded is how the company gets so many versions of their kits out, as there is a lot of commonality. The mouldings are extremely well executed with no sign of flash or other imperfection, but there are quite a few moulding pips which increases clean up time. Whille the build looks fairly simple there are a lot of parts used to build up the suspension and particularly the mine roller system. Construction begins with the lower hull, which is fitted out with the torsion beam suspension fixtures and you have the option of fitting the whole torsion beam or just the end part. Each suspension beam/axle plate consists of seven parts and there are ten axles to fit. Once the suspension is assembled the lower hull is built up from two side plates a rear plate and the internal firewall for the engine bay, the engine being available separate should you wish to fit one. The suspension bump stops are then attached, as are the drive gearbox covers and idler wheel axles. The large armoured olate is then fitted to the forward underside of the hull. The superstructure is next and is made up from separate plates which require holes to be drilled out before gluing together. In order to help get the plates the correct angles there is a small internal part the helps with this and give the structure strength and rigidity before the roof and mantle are attached. The roof is fitted with two, spades, with their respective clamps and the commander’s cupola is fitted with three vision blocks. The superstructure assembly is then glued to the lower hull, along with the track guards, and three multi-part engine deck covers. The rear of the superstructure has a single large hatch glued into place, as well as other unidentifiable fittings. The commander’s cupola is made up from no less than nineteen parts if you include the searchlight. There is a much simpler second hatch on the right hand side of the super structure. The front and rear mudguards are then assembled and fitted along with the very complex PE engine deck grilles, with separate shutters are built up and fitted. On the sides of the superstructure there are a lot more grab handles and brackets to be attached, while to the rear there is the five piece exhaust outlet fitted to the right track guard. The twin headlights fitted to the left and right sides of the glacis plate are assembled from thirteen parts including the base and all the support beams. On each front track guard there is a visual width pole fitted which are also fitted with reflectors. The turret ring is then fitted to the roof, while on the left side of eh superstructure the canvas roll is fitted with PE straps. The glacis plate is fitted with a selection of brackets, towing hooks and four pairs of spare track links. Two large stowage boxes are assembled and glued to the track guards, one per side. The BTR style conical turret is fitted with the 14.5mm heavy machine gun and a co-axial light machine gun via a separate mantle before being covered with an additional circular turret and fitted wot the turret ring on the roof. There is an aerial mount and aerial fitted to the front left of the superstructure and a further three pairs of track links fitted with their brackets, also on the left hand side. Each of the road wheels are glued into pairs and fitted with a small hub cap, as are the sprockets and idler wheels. Once assembled these are all glued into place, as are the large towing cables. Finally the tracks are assembled and draped over the running gear. With this kit you get the newer link and pin system that MiniArt have started using. This system is so easy to use and you can get a full length of track within minutes, even with 91 links per side. With the vehicle complete it’s on to the raison d'être of the tanks mission, the mine roller system. Now these are quite complex, so take care in reading the instructions carefully as it could easily go wrong. The rollers themselves are of three wheels on a common shaft, these are then fitted with two axle plates and hub covers. The axle plates are also fitted with two beams onto which the thicker of the two chains are attached. The main support arms are each assembled from thirty nine parts and are fitted to the lower glacis plate of the tank. The roller assemblies are then attached to the support arms and fitted with the smaller sized chain and some cable with simulated spring units. Between the rollers there is another length of chain with a smaller roller fitted at the mid point. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller four options, all of which were used in the war against Afghanistan. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The options are:- BMR-1, No.004, Soviet Army, Afghanistan in the early 1980’s BMR-1, No.11, Soviet Army, Afghanistan in the early 1980’s BMR-1, No.165, Soviet Army, Afghanistan in the 1980’s BMR-1, No.059, Soviet Army, Afghanistan in the late 1980’s Conclusion Continuing their march through the various T-55 variants, MiniArt are producing some really interesting vehicles. Although the mine roller system is quite complex to assemble it will look superb once complete. This is another vehicle that’ll make an interesting stand alone model or great in a diorama. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  15. TOP Armoured recovery vehicle MiniArt 1:35 Vi Creative Models Although based on the SU-122-54 assault gun, there is very little else I can find out about this vehicle, the identifying feature of the donor tank is the gap in the wheels between the third and fourth road wheel. The main gun was removed and a large plate welded in the place of the mantlet. Large towing eyes were welded to the rear of the superstructure and rear hull plate and a small cupola fitted with a searchlight for the commander. Only about one hundred were made and mostly stayed within the Moscow military district or seen at the big parades Russia/Soviet Union likes to give. The Model Without the main gun this vehicle does look rather odd, in a typically Russian style. As with most MiniArt kits the box, with an artist’s impression on the front is full to the brim with sprues, there being a total of fifty one, which, considering there is no interior, is still quite a lot, no matter how small they are. The way the sprues are moulded is how the company gets so many versions of their kits out, as there is a lot of commonality. The mouldings are extremely well executed with no sign of flash or other imperfection, but there are quite a few moulding pips which increases clean up time. Even though it looks a fairly simple vehicle take your time to read the instructions carefully as there are a lot of small parts and options. Construction begins with the lower hull, which is fitted out with the torsion bean suspension fixtures and you have the option of fitting the whole torsion beam or just the end part. Each suspension beam/axle plate consists of seven parts and there are ten axles to fit. Once the suspension is assembled the lower hull is built up from two side plates a rear plate and the internal firewall for the engine bay, the engine being available separate should you wish to fit one. The suspension bump stops are then attached, as are the drive gearbox covers and idler wheel axles. The superstructure is next and is made up from separate plates which require holes to be drilled out before gluing together. In order to help get the plates the correct angles there is a small internal part the helps with this and give the structure strength and rigidity before the roof and mantle are attached. The roof is fitted with two, three piece vision scope and the commander’s cupola is fitted with three vision blocks. The roof is also fitted out with grab handles and other fixtures, which this reviewer cannot identify. The glacis plate is fitted out with a variety of hooks, eyes, plates, brackets and a pair of spare track links. The superstructure assembly is then glued to the lower hull, along with the track guards, and three multi-part engine deck covers. The rear of the superstructure has two large hatches glued into place, with, rather oddly, two external seats attached to them, and there are two, large four piece bottle jacks assembled to be fitted to the right hand side of the engine deck. The commander’s cupola is made up from no less than nineteen parts if you include the searchlight. There is a much simpler second hatch on the right hand side of the super structure. The front and rear mudguards are then assembled and fitted along with the very complex PE engine deck grilles, with separate shutters are built up and fitted. On the sides of the superstructure there are a lot more grab handles and brackets to be attached, while to the rear there are three large multi-part stowage bins to be assembled and glued to the track guards. The twin headlights fitted to the left and right sides of the glacis plate are assembled from thirteen parts including the base and all the support beams. On each front track guard there is a visual width pole fitted which are also fitted with reflectors. Each of the road wheels are glued into pairs and fitted with a small hub cap, as are the sprockets and idler wheels. Once assembled these are all glued into place, as are the aerials and large towing cables. Finally the tracks are assembled and draped over the running gear. Unfortunately these are of the glue together type rather than MiniArt’s latest system of pin and link, so you will need some patience, as there are ninety links per side, or go out and buy some aftermarket metal tracks, which in my view gives a better natural sag anyway. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller three options. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The options are:- TOP ARV, USSR, Moscow Military District 1970’s to 1980’s TOP ARV, USSR, Moscow Military parade, November 7th 1990 TOP ARV, USSR, Moscow Military District, presumably early 1990’s Conclusion MiniArt seem to be attempting to produce every variant stemming from the T-55, no matter how odd or obscure they are. This is great for the military modeller who is either into weird vehicles or Russian/Soviet equipment, or as in most cases, both. Once again it’ll make an interesting stand alone model or just as great in a diorama. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
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