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  1. The Hawker Hurricane – Airframe & Miniature #16 ISBN: 9781912932122 Valiant Wings Publishing The Hurricane was the lesser-known stablemate of the Supermarine Spitfire, the plainer (in some people’s opinion) sister that didn’t get the limelight like its slightly younger, slightly faster and slightly sleeker colleague in the battle against the marauding hordes of Luftwaffe bombers that were intent on the destruction of our cities, airfields and infrastructure before, during and after the famous Battle of Britain. Often, the Spits kept the faster and more agile escorts such as the Bf.109s and later the Fw.190s busy, while the Hurricanes went after the slower bombers where their slight speed deficit wasn’t such an issue against the lumbering heavies. The Hurricane was also a sturdy aircraft thanks to its stronger, more traditional airframe construction and its fabric aft fuselage that was easier to repair than the all-metal Spitfire. It didn't get the love that the Spitfire gets from the public and press, but anyone that knows the full story knows that Britain would have been equally stuffed without either of them. The Book The book is perfect-bound with 272 pages on glossy paper, tons of photographs, diagrams and profiles, the modern pictures being in colour, while the contemporary content is black and white due to that being the dominant film format of the day. It is of course written by Richard A Franks, with profiles by Richard J Caruana, isometric drawings by Juraj Jankkovic and models by Libor Jekl and Steve A Evans. If you're familiar with the series, you'll know that the tome is broken down into the Airframe section that deals with the 1:1 real thing, and the miniature section that covers the scale models and has a number of builds, plus a host of photographic detail that will be of great help to the modeller. Airframe Chapters 1. Evolution – Prototype & Mk.I 2. Evolution – Mk.II to Mk.V 3. Sea Hurricane & Canadian Production 3. Reconnaissance (PR & TacR), Prototypes & Projects 4. Camouflage & Markings and Colour Profiles Miniature Chapters 5. Hurricane Kits 6. Building a Selection 7. Building a Collection 8. In Detail: The Hawker Hurricane Engine, Cowlings & Propeller Cockpit & Canopy Mid & Aft Fuselage Tail Wings & Control Surfaces Undercarriage & Arrestor Hook Armament Radio, Radar, Cameras & Misc. Electrical Access Panels & Miscellaneous Appendices I. Kit List II. Accessories & Mask List III. Decals IV. Bibliography A concertina sheets of 1:48 Scale plans captive in the rear cover (equivalent to 8 pages printed on both sides) The scale plans are nicely thought out, and fold out sideways with the left-hand edge captive to the inside cover, and the isometric drawings by Juraj Jankovic that pick out the differences between variants and sub-variants are a dream for anyone like me that struggles to remember the details that separate the marks. As usual with the photographs in these titles, they're excellent for the most part, and as good as they can be for the occasional slightly grainy one that is all that remains of this or that variant. Afterall, there's only so much that modern photo editing software can do. The builds by Libor Jekl and Steve A. Evans are all first-rate too, with two in 1:72, one Arma one Airfix, two other completed Arma kits in summary, one Hasegawa kit in 1:48, and one Sea Hurricane by Fly Models in 1:32, all of which wouldn't look out of place on competition tables at the highest level. Conclusion This book is brimming with interest and information, with something for everyone – the modeller, the aviation enthusiast or history buff. My personal favourite parts are the variant isometrics as previously mentioned, but there is so much to enjoy and it’s all good. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  2. Pre-War Hurricanes (48001) 1:48 Iliad Design Decals When Hurricanes were new, and equipping squadrons before that fateful day in 1939, they looked more sleek and simple because they hadn't yet be tried by combat and used until they fell apart or were shot down. This is the subject of the new decal sheet from Iliad Designs, giving you the option of five Hurris that were in service during 1938/9. All options are wearing the familiar Dark Earth/Dark Green camo on their topsides, with variations on the lower surface of either silver of the half-and-half black/white recognition scheme, the latter seen on early WWII aircraft. The sheet arrives in a ziplok bag, with the instructions folded in half doubling as the header card. The sheet itself is behind with the interesting side facing out so that you can see what you are buying. The instructions are printed in full colour, with profiles of the subjects on one side, interspersed with lots of useful titbits of information that will allow you to make your model more accurate, expanding on the visual information already provided, some of which might not immediately pop out at you if you're like me. On the rear are opposing side views, top views and bottom views as appropriate where the aircraft schemes vary. More information is supplied in captions, which are arrowed where necessary. The decal sheet is printed on a pale blue paper, with each subject separated by a broken line and sufficient roundels to allow the modeller to build all of the airframes without borrowing from other sheets. I'm not sure who prints Iliad's decals but they're in good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a very thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The edges of the carrier film a very petite too, so shouldn't require much in the way of hiding, other than a couple of coats of clear gloss and some gentle sanding. Conclusion A nice spread of schemes from the early days of the Hurricane, before it played second fiddle to the Spitfire. Superb quality decals with the research that has gone into them evident from the captions. Review sample courtesy of
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