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Colonial Viper Mk.II & Mk.VII Updates (for Moebius/Revell) 1:32 GreenStrawberry It’s quite a while since the revitalised and re-imagined Battlestar Galactica (BSG) hit our screens, running from 2004 to 2009 through five series and a spin-off covering some of the exploits of the Pegasus, as well as a short-lived prequel series about the events leading up to the Cylons’ devastating attack on the colonies. Galactica’s flee from the Cylon onslaught was covered by the mighty Viper fighters and their brave pilots, initially the Mk.II was drawn out of retirement through necessity, but later joined by a small quantity of Mk.VIIs that had been separated from the communications network that had been their downfall during the fall of the 12 Colonies. With the network gone, the Cylons couldn’t easily infiltrate and disable them, so they could be used again. These new sets from GreenStrawberry are designed with the Moebius kits in mind, their own reboxings as well as their reboxing by Revell some years later. They’re nice kits, but will benefit from upgrades either from the existing GreenStrawberry sets, or some of these new ones that add a little diorama possibility into the mix, by adding standing crew and some hangar details that could embellish a hangar scenario. You can pick and choose from those available to suit your needs, and all but the Photo-Etch (PE) gear bay set arrive in small boxes, with the resin and PE components in heat-sealed bags, the PE in Ziploc bags, and folded instructions adding extra protection to the parts. Colonial Pilot (132009-1/32) This set turns up in a small box, with ten parts in grey resin, and another two in clear resin. The figure is moulded with legs, torso, arms and head as separate parts, and offers choices for the pilot’s head and helmet. You can use the bare head and have the empty helmet in his hands, or you can substitute the helmeted head, although you’ll need to be careful when painting the face through the visor aperture. There are two clear resin visors included, and you should be able to polish them to a clear gloss if you don't mess up the face painting. Additional parts include the pilot’s pistol on his hip, two larger pouches on his belt at his back and another smaller one at the front. The final resin part is a circular base with deck plating and grating moulded in so that you can pose him separately without creating a full diorama base. The spare heads might also come in handy if your boxing has a resin figure with a solid visor, which is a nice bonus if you’re not afraid of a little light decapitation at your workbench. You’ll need to check your references for painting your model, as the instructions deal solely with the construction of the figure. It’s a good excuse to re-watch the show though, which is nice. Colonial Viper Mk.VII Seat (10020-1/32 for Moebius) The set arrives in a small box like the pilot’s, and contains a complete replacement for the kit’s horribly simple seat in resin, having very naturalistic cloth effect for the cushions that look like they’ve seen some butts. The seat is a single resin part, and is accompanied by a good-sized PE sheet, which contains a seat-base with inserts to represent the bolts holding it down. It also includes a full set of well-detailed five-point seatbelts that have highly realistic furniture, and even have extra parts that represent the attachment points of the belts on the base of the seat. With sympathetic painting and some care, they should look very realistic. Colonial Hangar Equipment Vol.1 (11820-1/32 for Moebius) This set arrives in a larger box, and is a boon to anyone wishing to depict their Viper or Raptor models from Moebius/Revell, which are all scaled to 1:32. The set is mixed resin and PE, and contains seven resin parts, plus two sheets of PE. From these you can make up a step-platform, an access ladder, and you also have two drums to dot around the hangar. The platform is made entirely from PE, which folds up to create a three-step platform that would be useful for a maintenance situation. The access ladder consists of a resin base, into which the two tubular frames slot, after having the moulding flash removed between the tubing. Then a number of tread-plated steps are made up and attached across the small diagonal rungs running up the frames, with a larger standing platform at the top, plus another small step. Finally, a stiffening strip is attached under the top step, with a tube surrounding it thanks to a slot in one side, and a choice of widths to allow a better fit. The two drums are each single parts, and just need their casting blocks removed, then any clean-up that may be required before painting them a suitable colour. Colonial Viper Mk.II Wheel Bay (10720-1/32 for Moebius) The Mk. II is a product of an earlier level of technology in the BSG universe, resembling the original series’ Vipers very closely. They were about to be part of the museum that Galactica was to become when the Cylons attacked, so they were brought back to fighting condition for the next five series of combat. This set suffers from an initial misnomer, as none of the Vipers have wheels, but ignoring that there’s detail in abundance on show with this set. It arrives in the dark-themed flat-pack we’ve come to know and love, and contains two sheets of brass PE, one large, the other slightly smaller. The first task is to remove a lower portion of the rear-upper fuselage to make space for the bays, plus another bay cut out of the underside of the fuselage, centring on the cut-out beneath the nose gear aperture that is laid over it later. The nose gear leg itself is relieved of its tab, then the nose bay is folded up from a single part that has extra layers added behind to give it some depth. Once this is glued within the bay, the cut-out you made earlier can be checked and adjusted if necessary. The nose gear leg has its base extended by a box of PE that is detailed with side panels to obtain the correct height of the new bay. The main bays on the kit are merely holes in the underside of the fuselage, into which the gear legs are glued. All this is remedied by firstly adding detail skins around the base of the legs that are just inside the aperture with a set of parts to hide the bland plastic, then a single double-width bay roof is folded up from the large parts on the smaller fret. There are a lot of small folds required, so make sure you have your PE pliers handy, as the results will be impressive and worth the effort. The bay is inserted into the lower fuselage, and two bulkheads are attached at the ends after being detailed with extra parts, using a folded lip to give the structure more strength. New bay doors are then laminated up and have separate hinges added before they are glued into position to each side of the three bays. Conclusion The BSG ships are still pretty iconic and good-looking ships that have only been kitted in styrene by Moebius in 1:32 and 1:72, and while they’re great in outline, their interiors and bays are lacking by modern standards. This range of sets from those good people from GreenStrawberry gives the modeller a serious choice of excellent detail upgrades. Choose from any of these sets, or the ones we’ve reviewed previously, such as the nozzles for the Viper Mk.II, FruitPACK detail set for the Viper Mk.VII, and for the other Moebius kit of the Raptor, all of which are a huge boost to the details. So say we all. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of