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  1. Pocketbond

    Takom news | 29.7.15

    Ask your model shop or dealer for these two great new model kits just in from TAKOM!
  2. Junkers Ju-87G-2 Stuka Trumpeter 1:32 History Even before the Battle of Stalingrad, German concern about the large quantity of Soviet mobile armour on the Eastern Front during 1942 resulted in the formation of an experimental air-to-ground anti-tank unit. Tests showed that arming the Junkers Ju87 Stuka with a 37mm cannon under each wing promised the optimal tank-busting weapon. This Ju87 variant was designated the Junkers Ju87G Kanonenvogel (cannon-bird). The Ju87G-2 was developed from the long-wing Ju87D-5 Stuka dive bomber. It was a rugged design powered by a single Junkers Jumo 211J-1 twelve-cylinder liquid-cooled engine. The type displayed outstanding qualities as a tool for precision ground attack. However, in the air the Ju87G-2 was both cumbersome and slow. Defensive armament was limited to 7.9 mm Mauser MG 81Z twin-mounted machine guns at the rear of the large glasshouse canopy. A total of 174 G-2s were built before production of all Ju 87 variants ceased in October 1944. The Ju87G began its career in February 1943 in the battles for the Kuban peninsula in Southern Russia. It was at this time that Oberstleutnant Hans-Ulrich Rudel began tank-busting operations, having recently become the first Luftwaffe pilot to fly 1000 operational missions. Later, in July 1943, Rudel took part in the epic tank battle for the Kursk salient. More than 350 Ju87's participated in these operations, including a handful of production Ju87Gs. Rudel went on to fly no fewer than 2,530 sorties and notched up a total of 2,000 targets destroyed; including 800 vehicles, 519 tanks, 150 artillery pieces, a destroyer, 2 cruisers, the Soviet battleship Marat, 70 landing craft, 4 armoured trains, several bridges and 9 aircraft. Given the shortcomings of the Ju87G in terms of its speed, agility and defensive capability this speaks volumes for the piloting skills of Rudel himself and the marksmanship of his rear gunners. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was the most decorated serviceman of all the fighting arms of the German forces. He was the only recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds. Unswervingly dedicated to waging war against the enemies of the Third Reich, Rudel continued in active service following injuries sustained in February 1945 that resulted in a leg amputation. Such was his prowess and notoriety, that the Soviets placed a significant bounty on his head. Wisely deciding to evade capture at Russian hands, in a final act Rudel led three Ju87s and four Focke-Wulf FW 190s westward from Bohemia. He surrendered to U.S. forces, on 8 May 1945. The Model This is probably my favourite variant of the Stuka, what with the rakish lines of the canopy and the huge cannon in their winged pods, it just looks the business. So, it was with great news on hearing that Trumpeter where going to release one. The kit comes in one of Trumpeters standard top opening boxes with a very attractive piece of artwork on the front showing the aircraft in action over the Eastern Front. Inside there are fourteen sprues of medium grey styrene, two of clear, two small sheets of etched brass, three rubber tyres and the decal sheet. All the parts are well moulded with no sign of flash or other imperfections and only a few moulding pips, so cleaning up should be nice and easy once the parts are removed from the sprues. The kit comes with lots of lovely detail along with options for various weapons loads to be fitted in addition to the cannon pods. Construction begins with the assembly of the Junkers Jumo engine. This consists of the three piece engine block to which the sump, crankcase, propshaft, rocker covers, oil tank, exhaust and intake manifolds, coolant tank and the four part fuel unit. The rear of the engine is fitted with the auxiliary pack with ancillaries such as the generators, pulleys, fuel pump and turbo intake. Once the exhaust plates have been added the two engine bearers can be fitted. The completed engine is then attached to the firewall, along with four other fittings before the two halves of the cowling are fitted around the engine with the large radiator sandwiched between them. Since there are no loose panels you will see very little, if anything of the completed engine unless the modeller carries out a bit of surgery, which is a bit of a shame as it looks very nice. The front fuselage is completed with the addition of the radiator grille, exhausts and propeller, which is made up of the backplate, three separate blades, hub and spinner. This section can now be places to one side as construction moves to the cockpit. The nicely detailed cockpit consists of a single piece floor to which the pilots seat, (made up of three parts, six if you include the headrest and armour), gunners seat, (made up of three base supports and the seat itself), are fitted. The radio sets are fitted to the mid mounted dwarf bulkhead and fitted just forward of the gunners seat. Beneath the bulkhead mounted radios another set, made up from two parts is glued to the floor. Additional parts, such as the rudder bar, joystick, two oxygen regulators and the rear gun mount, with its two ammunition tanks, are also fitted. The cockpit sidewalls are fitted out with various control boxes, throttle quadrant and trim wheels before being glued to the cockpit floor, producing a nice sturdy tub. The completed cockpit is then sandwiched between the two fuselage halves, followed by the fitting of the rear cockpit panel, complete with clear circular cover and the pilots coaming, with added instrument panel and crash bar. At this point the horizontal tailplanes are fitted, along with the elevators, associated control horns and the end caps, followed by the rudder with separate tail light. The construction of the wings begins with the assembly of the centre section. The centre panel is fitted with the lower viewing tunnel with clear parts at each end, followed by the front and rear spars, and completed with the two upper panels. Each outer wing panel is fitted with a machine gun bay. Each bay consists of four parts into which the three part machine gun, complete with ammunition feed, is mounted and covered with the optionally posed door. Before gluing the upper and lower wing halves together, ensure you have opened the correct holes for the weapons option you have chosen. With the wings closed up they are finished off with the separate wing tips and navigation lights. At this point, the instructions call for the fitting of the cockpit windscreen and canopies. There is a choice of windscreen and pilots canopy depending on the model being built, along with a couple of panels that can be posed open or closed on the sliding section. The windscreen, no matter which type is fitted with two grab handles, a clinometer and aiming bar. The rearmost canopy is fitted with the twin machine gun mount, which comes with separate barrels and a two part hanger mechanism. The wing centre section is then glued to the fuselage, before being fitted with the two outer wing panels, followed by the front fuselage/engine section. On the undersides of the wings the prominent flaps are fitted to the trailing along with the actuator rods. There is no option to display them in drooped, unless surgery is carried out. Whilst the model is upside down the two radiators are glued into position along with their covers. The main undercarriage is also attached, each made up of a two part wheel, two part oleo all sandwiched between the two halves of the spats. The tailwheel comes as a four part sub-assembly, including the two part wheel, the oleo and yoke half. Now it’s on to the weaponry build. The main 37mm cannon are used in all options and consist of six part mount, including separate crutches, to which the cannon fairing is attached, followed by the barrel. Each of the two “wings” are made up from folded PE, which are then glued to the fairing sides. Each wing has two blocks of shells slid into them, although since you won’t be able to see much of them you could just display them separately. The completed cannon are then glued into position just outboard of the wheel spats. The other weapons included in the kit are the centre mounted 500kg bomb, made up form two halves with two parts to complete the fins, plus the separate fin cross members and the bomb cradle/swing arm. The mountings are the same for the twin 50kg bombs, (each bomb comes as four parts and can be fitted with optional fuse extenders), drop tanks, Each from two halves, four mounting bolts and a PE strap), or what I can only describe as a six barrelled machine gun pod, (with four parts to each pod, plus three twin barrels. There is also the option of mounting two sets of five smaller bombs all mounted on a single cradle, making up what could be construed as a cluster bomb. I wish Trumpeter would label what things were. With the various weapons loaded the build is complete. Decals The single decal sheet provides options for two aircraft, and comes complete with stencils for one. The decals are very nicely printed, with good colour density, in register and with very little in the way of carrier film, and what there is, is very thin. The Balkenkreuz do appear to have a bit of mottling on them as if they had stuck slightly to something. I would have thought that once on and covered in gloss/matt varnish this will disappear. The swastikas are each cut in half at the centre, and should cause too many problems when positioning them. The two aircraft options are:- Junkers Ju-87G-2, Stab/SG 2 <-+-, W.Nr. 484110 Junkers Ju-87G-2, Stab/SG 2 <-+-, W.Nr. 494193 Conclusion As I said above, this has to be my favourite version of the Ju-87, with perhaps the slightly odd looking Ju-87A being a close second. The kit does come with quite a lot of detail, and should build nicely straight out of the box, but there is quite a bit of room, particularly in the cockpit to add more, so it should appeal to those who like to take to the next level. It’s a bit of shame to have a well detailed engine covered up and not even have the option to show it off, but I’m sure the aftermarket companies will be all over this soon. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  3. KRAZ-6322 Heavy Utility Truck Takom 1:35 History The KrAZ-6322 heavy utility truck was developed by the Ukrainian AvtoKrAZ. This military truck evolved from the previous KrAZ-255 and 260 models, but has been upgraded to meet today's standards. It is a reliable and proven design. Vehicle is produced since 1999. It is in service with Ukraine, Angola, Egypt, India, Indonesia and Yemen. A large number of these military trucks were ordered by the US Government for the new Iraqi Army. It is also in service with Iran and possibly some other countries. The KrAZ-6322 has a payload capacity of over 10 t. Vehicle can tow a trailer with a maximum weight of up to 30 t on hard surface roads. It can also tow aircraft with a maximum weight of up to 75 t on the airfields. This heavy-duty military truck is intended for different loads and troop transportation. Basic design can accept a wide variety of body types. The standard body is fitted with drop sides and a removable tarpaulin with bows. Wooden bench seats may be fitted for troop transportation. Vehicle can carry up to 24 troops. A three-person cab is standard across the range. It is very similar to that of the earlier KrAZ-260. The KrAZ-6322 is powered by Russian YaMZ-238D (EURO 0) turbocharged diesel engine, developing 330 hp. This engine is fitted as standard, however this truck is also offered with improved YaMZ-238DE2 (EURO II) diesel engine. Other engine options are available, including Cummins, Deutz, Volvo or others, to suit customer requirements. This military truck has considerable cross-country mobility. Centralized tyre inflation system and 12 t capacity self-recovery winch are optional. The KrAZ-6322 is proposed in a number of variants, including KrAZ-6135V6 long wheelbase version, repair and recovery vehicle, BM-21U multiple launch rocket system, fitted with Grad launcher, KrAZ-6446 tractor truck and other specialized vehicles. Another interesting variant is a KrAZ-6322 Raptor truck, fitted with local armour protection and armoured cargo module. This variant was jointly developed by Ukrainian AvtoKrAZ and Canadian Streit Armoured Group. It was revealed in 2007. Vehicle can carry 20 fully equipped troops and provides protection against 7.62-mm rounds, landmines and IEDs. Troops use a number of vision blocks and firing ports. Raptor has a payload capacity of 6 tonne. If necessary, the armoured cargo module can be removed. The Model The kit comes in a sturdy top opening box with a artistic impression of the vehicle in use in a battlefield environment. Opening the box reveals eight sprues of green styrene, two sprues of clear styrene, two small photo etched brass sheets, seven vinyl tyres and a small decal sheet. The mouldings for all the parts are superb, with no sign of flash imperfections and very few moulding pips. As with most truck kits there are a lot of parts that will probably never be seen, particularly the very detailed chassis, suspension and engine, but in my view it’s better to have them than not. The build begins with the assembly of the gearbox, which is provided in two halves, and then finished off with a sump plate; this is followed by the two part engine block to which the gearbox is attached. Since the truck is powered by a V8 diesel there are two cylinder heads to assemble, again each of two halves, to which the injector rails and coils are attached. These are then fitted to the engine block, followed by the alternator, water pump pulley and fuel filter. The exhaust manifolds are next, followed by the CDR valve and oil filter. The turbocharger is assembled from three parts, the turbine housing, compressor housing and attachment plate; the assembly is then fitted with the outlet pipes. The completed sub-assembly is then fitted to the engine with each outlet pipe being attached to the intake manifolds and the turbo intake to the exhaust manifold. The oil cooler is then fitted to the engine block, along with the fan, accessory belt pulley and the exhaust pipe, to which a two part silencer section is fitted to the end, is attached to the turbo. To enhance the engine further the modeller could/should add the ignition/electrical harness and the auxiliary drive belts. The next part of the build is the assembly of the chassis. This consists of the two long chassis rails, to which the engine assembly is fitted at the front along with the radiator, whilst two thirds to the rear a cross member is attached. The front differential gear housing is assembled from two halves, to which a two part gear cover and universal joint are attached. Each wheel hub is made up of an inner and outer steering ball joint, hub backing plate, inner axle, and brake drum. These are then fitted to the ends of the differential along with the brake accumulators and steering rack. The two leaf spring parts are then fitted via four U bolts and clamps, much like the real parts. The front axle is then fitted to the chassis, as are the shock absorbers, front crossbeam, made up of four parts including the front towing eye, radiator fans housing and grille. There is a cable drum affixed between two crossbeams and fitted with a motor and control lever, this is then fitted to the rear of the chassis along with a curved crossbeam further forward. The transfer box is assembled and fitted just aft of the front axle and connected to the engine and front differential with two drive shafts. The rear suspension is now assembled from two suspension plates, two leaf springs, four U bolts and clamps. To this the two part rear differentials, which are 90o opposed when compared with the front, are fitted, along with their associated gear housings each made up of four parts, drive shafts, with separate universal joints, and suspension bump stops. The rear wheel hubs are much simpler affairs, made up of only an inner and outer brake drum and an internal axle. Once these are fitted to the differentials the completed rear suspension is attached to the rear chassis. The next stage includes the building of a number of sub-assemblies; these include the twelve part spare wheel cage which is attached to the six part generator housing, two seven part accumulator bottles and racks, two five part fuel tanks, six part oil tank and its rack, plus the three part cab foot step and six part tool box. These are then attached to their respective positions on the chassis along with the rear towing hook and end plate, reflectors and their outriggers and the rear lower crossbeam. With the chassis and suspension complete the build moves onto the truck bed. This is made up from the main bed, back panel and two side panels and rear panel. On the underside there are seven structural braces fitted, whilst on the back and sides there are twenty four tilt ties. Also on the underside the four mudflaps are attached, two forward of the rear wheels and two aft each with their support rods. The front mudguards are styrene whilst the rears are PE bent to shape. The completed bed is then fitted to the top of the chassis and the spare wheel, made up of a vinyl tyre plus inner and out hubs is slid into its cage on the right hand side. The last major assembly, the cab and bonnet begins with the windscreen frame/front bulkhead is fitted with the two windscreens, and wipers. On the inside of the bulkhead the inner panel/instrument binnacle is attached and fitted with the steering column, steering wheel, and pedal plate. The doors are then assembled from the door frame, “glass” and separate door card, whilst the rear bulkhead is fitted with the rear screen. The front and rear bulkheads plus the doors are then joined together before the roof, with its associated light fittings is attached. The interior floor is then fitted out with the bench like passenger seat, made up of separate squab and back which is then fitted to the base via the seat frame. The drivers seat which consists of the frame, squab, back and adjustment lever is fitted to the floor via a five piece spring like framework. The interior is completed with the fitting of the gearstick and the whole assembly is glued to the to the cab assembly, which is finished off with the addition of the two wing mirrors and their mounting supports. The bonnet wings are glued to the grille and fitted with the separate front bumper which includes the light clusters pre-moulded,, but requires the fitting of the three footplates, light lenses and front ID plate holder. The completed assembly is then fitted to the front of the vehicle and finished off with the fitting of the bonnet. If you wish to have the bonnet raised to show off the engine you will have to scratchbuild your own hinges and gas struts. The finishing touches are the assembly of the six wheels, each with a vinyl tyre, inner and outer hubs, which are then fitted to the axles. Each of the vinyl tyres is very well moulded and look realistically chunky, but they do have a cross shaped section that needs to be cut away before the hubs can be fitted, but it shouldn’t take too much to clean them up, especially as the hub rims will cover the areas concerned. Decals The small decal sheet provides decals for five different colour schemes. Whilst there aren’t any external placards other than the number plates, the instrument faces are provided. The decal sheet is beautifully printed, with the colours appearing ultra vibrant and yet in register with excellent colour density and little visible carrier film. The camouflage choices are:- Ukraine National Guard in a three colour scheme of green, grey and black Ukrainian Army, (ATO), in green overall and white identification stripes on the doors, bonnet creating a cross on the roof. Ukrainian Army, (ATO), in dark green, light green, and black, with one thick and two thin white stripes over the bonnet, cab roof and rear turck bed panels. Georgian Army, in dark green, yellow grey, and grey. Donetsk Peoples Republic, (DNR) in overall dark green. Conclusion This is great looking kit, and with the choice of several different colours schemes it will certainly be an interesting addition to a collection. It could also be used in a variety of diorama situations. The truck bed is crying out for a load to be added, perhaps with a tarpaulin or camouflage net included. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  4. Soviet 52-K 85mm Air Defence Gun Trumpeter 1:35 History The 85 mm air defence gun M1939 (52-K) was an 85-mm Soviet air defence gun, developed under guidance of leading Soviet designers M. N. Loginov and G. D. Dorokhin. This gun was successfully used throughout the German-Soviet War against level bombers and other high and medium altitude targets. In emergencies they were utilized as powerful anti-tank weapons. The barrel of the 52-K was the basis for the family of 85-mm Soviet tank guns. Crews of 85-mm AD guns shot down 4,047 Axis aircraft. The mean quantity of 85-mm ammunition required to shoot down one enemy plane was 598 rounds. After the war some 52-Ks were refitted for peaceful purposes as anti-avalanche guns in mountainous terrain. Virtually every country behind the Iron Curtain received this gun after World War II for their air defence. In the Soviet Union itself, these guns were largely superseded by the 100 and 130 mm guns. The Model The kit comes in Trumpeters standard style top opening box, and although quite small it has very good artistic representation of the gun in action. Inside there are eight standard sprues, plus six tiny sprues of beige coloured styrene, almost the colour of a Caramac candy bar, a small sprue of clear styrene. There are also a set of four rubber tyres, the main base frame, and a small sheet of etched brass. The parts are really well moulded with no flash and only a few moulding pips needing removal. As with other kits of this type the rubber tyres are nicely done with finely moulded details on both the tread and the sidewalls. The build starts with the construction of the long barrel, which comes in four parts, left and right halves of the barrel and the left and right halves of the fluted muzzle brake. Whilst with care this can look pretty good, I would have preferred a single slide moulded barrel, and hopefully one of the aftermarket companies will provide a nice metal one. The right and left sides of the trunnions, complete with top mounted recuperator, are joined together with the barrel in the middle and fitted with the half round elevation cog. The single piece breech is fitted with the three piece breech block and end cover. This assembly is then attached to the rear of the barrel and finished off with the breech block lever, breech block locking leer and travel lock. The trunnion mounts are then assembled, each side being fitted out with the two piece recoil springs, gear box and centrally mounted elevation cog, beneath which is the traversing block. With the trunnion mounts fitted to the trunnions/barrel the seven piece firing solutions computer is assembled and fitted to the right mount whilst the five piece sighting unit is fitted to the port mount, which is also fitted with the clinometers, complete with the PE pointers. The ends of the recuperator and recoil slide are fitted with caps. A second firing solutions computer is assembled and fitted to the left hand mount along with the five piece elevation gearbox. The gunners seats and foot rests are then attached, along with the elevation and traversing hand wheels. The main mounting frame is fitted with its separate base, followed by two slit spades which can either be mounted in the trail position or pushed through the holes at the ends of the folding trails arms to make it a steadier gun platform. The two curved gunners platforms are each fitted with a small storage box on the underside before being attached to the base frame. There is another storage box sited on the front right of the frame, whilst end of the frame is fitted with a gearbox for lowering the front and rear steadying pads. Each axle is made up of no less than fifteen parts, and once assembled are fitted to each side at the ends of the frame, followed by the four wheels, the fronts with a two piece hub whilst the rear hubs are made up of three pieces. The folding trails are made up of upper and lower sections which, when joined together, sandwich the pivots on the base frame. The towing eye is attached to the end of the towing bean, which, in turn, is slotted into the pivot point on the frame. At the other end there is an optional barrel clamp and frame which can be posed either up in travel mode or folded down for firing. The model is finished off with the addition of two more steadying pads, at each end of the folding trails, and the gun assembly which slots onto the top of the coned mounting point on the frame. The small sprues mentioned at the beginning of this review each contain two shells for a total of twelve69, which is nice. If only it hand some crew to handle them. Conclusion This gun does have a passing resemblance to the mighty German 88mm and could be considered a contemporary. It is certainly an interesting weapon and would look great in a diorama, although since no crew are included you will have to source or scratchbuild them yourselves. Alternatively, you might be like me and just have a collection of artillery pieces into which this will fit very nicely. It’s got quite a few small parts, but should cause too many problems in the build, just be aware of them and read the instructions carefully. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  5. Russian Navy Battleship Tsesarevich 1904 Trumpeter 1:350 History Tsesarevich was a pre-dreadnought battleship of the Imperial Russian Navy, built in France at the end of the 19th century. The ship's design formed the basis of the Russian-built Borodino-class battleships. She was based at Port Arthur, Manchuria after entering service and fought in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904–05. Tsesarevich was the flagship of Admiral Wilgelm Vitgeft in the Battle of the Yellow Sea and was interned in Tsingtau after the battle. At the end of the Russo-Japanese war, the ship was transferred to the Baltic in early 1906 and helped to suppress the Sveaborg Rebellion later that year. Around 1906, her fighting top was removed and her superstructure was cut down. The 75 mm guns in the superstructure were apparently removed as well. Tsesarevich made regular winter cruises to the Mediterranean before World War I and aided survivors of the Messina earthquake in December 1908. In 1909–10 the ship's machinery was overhauled and her amidships casemated 75 mm guns were removed and plated over four years later. Tsesarevich was not very active during the early part of World War I and she reportedly received two 37 mm anti-aircraft guns during the war. Because of her inactivity her bored sailors joined the general mutiny of the Baltic Fleet in early 1917. She was renamed Grazhdanin on 13 April 1917 after the February Revolution. The ship took part in the Battle of Moon Sound in October 1917. During the climatic part of the battle, Grazhdanin engaged the German minesweepers on 17 October with little effect while Slava engaged the German dreadnoughts König and Kronprinz. The latter fired at Grazhdanin and hit her twice, killing one and wounding four crewmen, although neither hit caused significant damage. The German dreadnoughts outranged Grazhdanin and she was forced to retreat and abandon Moon Sound in the face of German pressure. By December the ship was in Kronstadt where she came under the control of the Bolsheviks and she was hulked there in May 1918. Grazhdanin was scrapped beginning in 1924, although she was not officially stricken from the Navy List until 21 November 1925 The ship was ordered as part of the "Programme for the Needs of the Far East", authorised by Tsar Nicholas II in 1898 to defend Russia's newly acquired ice-free port of Port Arthur in Manchuria. Russian shipyards were already at full capacity so the Naval Ministry decided to order ships from abroad. Specifications were issued on 14 June 1898 and a few days later the chief designer of the French shipyard Forges et Chantiers de la Méditerranée proposed a design based on that of the French battleship Jauréguiberry. The Naval Technical Committee approved the design with a few changes to which the French readily agreed. The General Admiral, Grand Duke Alexei Alexandrovich selected the French design over a competing proposal from the Baltic Works. A contract was signed on 20 July 1898 at a cost of 30.28 million francs (11.355 million rubles) for delivery in 42 months. Tsesarevich 's most obvious design feature was her tumblehome hull. This had several advantages because it allowed greater freeboard since the narrow upper decks reduced the structural weight of the vessel's hull, it increased the field of fire of guns mounted on the sides, and it reduced the ship's roll in heavy seas. Its great disadvantage was that it reduced buoyancy and stability which contributed to excessive heel during turns. During the Battle of the Yellow Sea in August 1904, Imperial Japanese Navy observers thought the Tsesarevich was going to capsize when she suddenly turned out of the battleline. Tsesarevich was 118.5 metres (388 ft 9 in) long overall, had a beam of 23.2 metres (76 ft 1 in) and a draught of 7.92 metres (26 ft 0 in). The ship displaced 13,105 tonnes (12,898 long tons). Her crew consisted of 28–29 officers and 750 enlisted men. The Model Having released the Tsesarevich in her 1917 guise last year, Trumpeter have now released a kit of her as she was when first completed. The kit comes a top opening box with a very nice artists impression of the ship, anchored at the head of the battle line. On opening, the modeller is confronted with the two hull halves, whose bow and stern sections are given extra foam protection, eight sprues of medium grey styrene, three sub-sprues, five sheets of etched brass, a length of brass chain and a small decal sheet. The sprues are clear of flash and other imperfections and there are fewer moulding pips than normally found on Trumpeters ship kits. The moulded on detail is very nicely done and it appears that the unusual tumblehome shape of the hull has been moulded with all the right curves, although as I don’t have any plans I can’t tell if it’s totally correct, but it certainly looks the part. With the amount of etch contained in the kit it really can be made straight out of the box without the need of any additional aftermarket sets, although this probably won’t deter the aftermarket companies from releasing them. Before construction proper can begin, the modeller needs to open up quite a few holes, both on the hull sides and the main decks. These are clearly marked in the instructions and on the parts themselves where the holes have been flashed over. The build begins with the construction of several sub-assemblies. These include the six secondary turrets, each made up of the two barrels which are slid unglued onto the trunnion which in turn is glued to the trunnion pivots which are glued to the turret base. The turret itself is then slid over the barrels and glued to the base before being finished off with the addition of a PE rail on the turret roof. The two main turrets are constructed in a similar fashion, but without a roof rail. Next up are the eleven maxim machine guns, made from two styrene parts, (the gun and shield), along with the PE base folded to shape. The six single 75mm guns are all styrene, and consist of the barrel, shield, swivel mount and base, whilst the twelve 47mm cannon come as a single piece barrel/mount requiring only the shield to be fitted. The modeller then has to assemble four cable reels, each with PE stands, PE drum ends and styrene drum, along with six two piece deck mounted bitts. There are another twelve 75mm guns in casemates along the hull and these are glued to three internal bases per side and slid through their firing ports from the inside. With these fitted the hull halves are joined together with the rudder sandwiched between the halves, along with two sturdy bulkheads. The side mounts for the twin 6” secondary turrets are fitted, one per side, near the top of the hull sides. The quarterdeck and bilge keels are also glued into their respective positions. The main deck is the attached along with the quarterdeck/main deck bulkhead, followed by the upper side pieces and lower bridge wings. The large windlass, made up of eight styrene and four PE parts is assembled and positioned at the rear of the foredeck. From the bow, the foredeck is then fitted out with the jack staff, cleats, bitts, ventilators and the splinter shields for the port and starboard 6” turrets. Moving admidships there are three deckhouses fitted, the front one being the base of the bridge. Before attaching the next level of the bridge structure, six supports and the base of the foremast need to be glued into position. With these in place the bridge piece, which has been fitted with the armoured control tower to the underside, can be slid over the mast section and glued into position, followed by the two 6” turrets and two capstains. The bridge is slowly built up with the upper section of the tower, the bridge itself and a further deck with additional deckhouses and deck supports. Four of the 75mm guns are fitted two per side, just aft of the bridge. One deck up an there is a complicated bit of bending required to fit the railing, which you will need to be careful not to knock off as you fit the six 47mm guns, binnacle and rangefinder to the deck. Moving aft the fore-funnel is assembled from two halves and fitted with two PE blocks to the rear, a PE vertical ladder for each side, plus a PE funnel cap, the completed funnel is then fitted to its position just aft of the bridge structure along with a pair of PE inclined ladders. Meanwhile back to the foredeck, and the fitting of the four anchors, plus a pair of booms, one port and one starboard between each pair of anchors. The foretop is then assembled with the main styrene part being fitted with PE angled supports on the underside, whilst on the topside four 47mm guns are fitted, along with PE window frames fore and after and finished off with the roof. This assembly is then attached to the top of the lower foremast section. Between the funnels there are two boat cradle decks, each made up of both styrene and PE parts and glued into their respective positions, one aft of the fore-funnel and one foreward of the aft funnel. On the foretop roof there is a small gun station fitted out with three maxim machine guns with another section of foremast glued to the centre. Just aft of the rear funnel there is another winch unit, this one made up of seven parts. The front main 12” turret can now be fitted along with the two side mounted 6” turrets, whilst the foremast is fitted off with anotehr platform on which another section of mast is fitted along with a searchlight. The previously attached boat decks are fitted with PE cradles onto which the four large cutters are mounted, each cutter also having a two piece whale boat cradled on their thwarts. The aft boat deck is for the steam launches, with each of the four launches, two large and two smaller are each made up of the hull, deck, funnel, gun mount, gun, searchlight, ventilators and propeller, with the smaller ones also having a rear mounted maxim and a torpedo. With the boats fitted the rear funnel can be assembled, this consists of two funnel halves, PE vertical ladders, PE blocks, PE funnel cap and a PE derrick complete with hook. The completed funnel is then glued into position. At the centre of the foreward boat deck there is a searchlight tower made from a PE tower structure, PE railings, PE ladder and styrene searchlight. The aft superstructure supports are attached, along with the aft pair of 6” turrets, the aft mounted main 12” turret along with two decklights, inclined ladders, aft mounted anchor, spare anchor just aft of the rear boat deck, a pair of derricks each side, the boat booms, bitts, cleats and ensign staff. The after superstructure deck is fitted with a deckhouse and angled supports glued to the underside, before being fitted onto the previously attached supports between the two aft 6” turrets. The four piece steam launch derrick is assembled and fitted to the rear of the aft superstructure deck along with another deckhouse and further deck supports, onto which another deck is fitted. This upper deck is fitted with six 47mm guns and another complex railing which will require careful bending to shape. Both the foremast and mainmast are finished off with the addition of the mast tops and various length yards and platforms along with each having a pair of searchlights fitted. The foreward boat deck is then fitted with a pair of large davits complete with PE downfalls, whilst the two convoluted, (to cope with the weird tumblehome shape of the hull), PE accommodation ladders are assembled and glued one per side aft of the steam launch deck. Another pair of whale boats are attached to the derricks previously fitted to the ships sides. To finish the kit of it’s only a matter of fitting the two propeller shafts, propellers and assembling the stand supplied, complete with a nice plaque with the ships name on. Decals The small decal sheet contains two sizes of ships crest, the Russian and Ensign, in both flat and wavey form. For what it is, it is very nicely printed, although the blue cross on the wavey ensign appears to be quite a bit out of register. Conclusion I just love the look of these ships in which you can clearly see the French influences. They look so wrong that they’re right, if you know what I mean. This is a very interesting kit and will make a nice, different addition to any maritime collection. Without any plans I cannot say definitively how accurate it is, but it looks pretty good when compared with the published photographs, although the kit seems to be a little undergunned in the tertiary department as the details show that she actually was armed with a few more 47mm and additional 37mm cannon. Otherwise it is a very nice kit and can recommend it quite highly. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  6. Chinese PLA Type 59 130mm Towed Field Gun Trumpeter 1:35 History The PLA Type 59 is a licensed built copy of the Soviet M-46 gun which was developed from the M-36 130 mm naval gun used on ships and for coast defence. It is a true gun, being unable to fire much above 45° and having a long barrel and a single propelling charge. It has a 52 calibre barrel with a tied jaw horizontal sliding block breach and ‘pepperpot’ muzzle brake. The latter is not notably efficient, but subjective reports suggest that it is quite effective in reducing muzzle flash. The hydro-pneumatic recoil system comprises a buffer below the barrel and a recuperator above the barrel. The long barrel enables a substantial propelling charge by providing more length in which to achieve ‘all-burnt’ and hence projectile acceleration space and thus achieve its 930 m/s muzzle velocity. The barrel is mounted on a split-trail carriage, with deep box section trails and foam filled road wheels on the ground when firing and 50° of top traverse. The small shield protects little more than the sights, possible including from the effects of muzzle blast, and some protection from machine gun fire in anti-tank engagements. The gun has long and robust trails to provide stability when firing, a large detachable spade is fitted to the end of each when the gun is brought into action. Non-reciprocating sights are standard Soviet pattern, designed for one-man laying. Included are a direct fire anti-tank telescope, a panoramic periscopic indirect-fire sight (a dial sight) in a reciprocating mounting, an angle of sight scale, and a range drum engraved with the range (distance) scale, coupled to a mounted elevation levelling bubble. The range drum enables the standard Soviet technique of semi-direct fire when the piece is laid visually on the target and the range set on the range drum. An APN-3 was later provided for direct fire at night in place of the day telescope. For travel, the gun is towed via a two-wheeled limber fitted to the end of the closed trails, with the spades removed and carried on each trail. Simple jacks on the trails just behind the main wheels are used to lift and support the closed trails so that the limber can be connected. The barrel and recuperator are pulled back between the closed trails and locked in a travelling position. There is a large bicycle chain arrangement on the right trail for this, and a compressed air cylinder, charged by the gun firing, is used to bring the barrel forward when the gun is brought back into action. It takes about four minutes to bring the gun into action; the normal detachment is eight strong. Propelling charges are in metal cartridge cases and loaded separately from the projectile. Projectiles originally included HE fragmentation, Armour Piercing solid shot, and smoke, illuminating and chemical. HE shells weigh some 33 kg. Illuminating shells have a substantially lower muzzle velocity. APHE and extended range shells were introduced later. Maximum rate of fire is probably 6-7 rounds/minute, and about 70 rounds/hour. The Model The kit comes in Trumpeters standard top opening, and quite attractive box, with an artistic representation of the gun in action. Inside there are eight sprues of beige coloured styrene, almost the colour of a Caramac candy bar. There are also a set of two rubber tyres, two separate trail legs, a small etch sheet and a small decal sheet. The parts are really well moulded with no flash and only a few moulding pips needing removal. Although not to everyones taste, the rubber tyres are nicely done with finely moulded details on both the tread and the sidewalls. The build begins with the heart of the mount, the central casting, onto which the two axles, base, ancillary hydraulic unit, various hooks, handles, and other fittings attached to it. On the underside the turntable is attached to the casting by a large pivot and a couple of connecting arms with the turntable also being fitted with a couple of handles. This assembly is put to one side whilst the gun is put together. The rear of the barrel is assembled from upper and lower halves and fitted with the elevating ratchet mechanism, to this the three piece breech block is assembled and slid into the breech part, which is then completed with the addition of three outer plates before being attached to the rear barrel section. The recuperator mounts are then fitted to the front of the breech and the rear of the barrel. Each of the two recuperators are then attached to their mounts, followed by the breech handle and protective plate. Next up is the complex sight, which is made up of no less than thirteen parts. This is then attached to the left side of the breech/rear barrel assembly along with the recuperators protective top cover and left hand breech panel. The barrel, which seems disproportionally long, is also provided in upper and lower halves, to which the two part muzzle brake is attached before the barrel is fitted to the breech assembly. Turning the barrel assembly upside down the two elevation springs are attached, before turning the barrel right side up and fitting the trunnion with moulded on sprocket, and trunnion mounts which are in turn attached to the central casting and fitted out with numerous unidentifiable fixtures and fittings. The two, two piece trails are fitted out with barrel cleaning rods, pioneer tools, clamps, hooks, handles and the five piece jockey wheels and, on the right hand trail the towing eye. The trails are then fitted with their top plate so that the two parts slide over the top and bottom pivots on the central casting. The two spades that fit to the rear of the trails are fitted with a selection of handles and attachments with the option of positioning them in the traveling position. The wheels are then assembled from the rubber tyres plus inner and outer hubs, (the inner hubs are fitted with a brake accumulators, pipework and linkages), before being fitted to the axles. Before fitting the two splinter shields, of which there are optional styles to choose from, they need to be fitted with the binocular and map boxes, support arms, sighting/viewing port doors and three PE handles, before being attached to he front of the gun mount.Finally the elevation wheel is attached, along with a couple of locking handles at the end of the trails, completing the build. If you wish to build this kit as part of a diorama Trumpeter have included a small fret which contains a wooden shell box with separate lid and PE corner protectors, plus a separate shell and charge case The small decal sheet provides just two decals, one showing the elevation/range chart is positioned on the left hand side of the breech, whilst the other appears to show the gun arrangement and is positioned near the top of the right hand splinter shield. Conclusion I really like these field guns from Trumpeter and this one is just great. There is plenty of detail and from the quick bit of research it looks pretty accurate. Whether it’s used in firing or travel mode this will look great in a diorama although it will need a suitable tractor to go with it. The only disappointment is that the gun crew aren’t included, although I’m sure Trumpeter will release a separate set of troops at some point. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  7. Pocketbond

    Trumpeter news | 17.7.15

    Trumpeter new releases are coming thick and fast! In the Russian heavy tank department are the T-10M, and Indian Army T-90S, scale 1/35. The T-10M is a new tool, and includes individual track links + wheels from the JS-4. The parts breakdown reveals two further variants, yet to be announced. Watch this space! The Indian T-90S comes with a new cast turret and new mantlet. Trumpeter's 1/35 scale GAZ-66 is now offered with a tank on the rear. The parts for the tank are all new tooled. The Chinese army is not overlooked, new is the PLZ-83A, which is an updated version of the Type 83 (kit no TM00305) with a new tooled turret and 12.7mm AA gun from the Hobby Boss ZTZ-96. The next A-3 Skywarrior variant is the Electronic Warfare EA-3B. This features a complete new fuselage plus new clear canopy parts, and a mega decal sheet full of serial numbers - very handy for the spares box! For maritime modellers Trumpeter brings you USS Tennessee in 1944 configuration. The lower hull and waterline plate are from Colorado; the fore and aft decks and gun deck are all new. Lastly, in 1/48 scale, two superb P-40s from Easy Model, prebuilt and prepainted. To achieve a consistently high standard of finish Easy Models are mask sprayed, and the markings are pad printed. It can take up to four separate print processes to produce one roundel! As an importer/distributor we sell direct to the trade only. Support your usual model shop or dealer and ask them for Trumpeter and Easy Model. More from Trumpeter next month.
  8. Pocketbond

    Xuntong news | 13.7.15

    New in from Xuntong Model of China. The DB-3F was the most widely used variant of the DB-3 series. The DB-3F was put into production in 1940 and in March 1942 its designation was changed to Il-4, the torpedo version being Il-4T. Order now from your usual stockist or dealer.
  9. Pocketbond

    AFV Club news | 13.7.15

    We present the new 1/35 scale M60A1 from AFV Club. This brand new model is bristling with detail. Also new is Schwere Panzerpaehwagen SdKFZ 233 with 7.5cm gun and the Russian T-34/85 with transparent turret and detailed interior. Hobby Fan's detail up resin figures sets for the AEC Matador and M60A1 have come in, and we have a small quantity of the premium "Ding-Hao" Churchill carpet layer type B. Xuntong of China has delivered their new Illyushin IL-4 (DB-3) in 1/48 scale, and this is now available too. Ask your usual stockist or dealer for these new releases. Visit our website http://www.pocketbond.co.uk for more details.
  10. German Panzertriebwagen No.16 Trumpeter 1:35 History Panzertriebwagen No. 16 (PO PzTrWg 16 or PT 16) - German heavy armoured motor car , powered by a diesel engine with an output of 550 HP driven by a Voith hydraulic transmission, was produced by the German company Berliner Maschinenbau-Gesellschaft Actien vormals L. Schwartzkopff in 1942. It is based on type WR 550 D14 armoured locomotive, then fully encased in armour and equipped with two additional crew members for the armoured artillery positions on the two ends of the unit. They were initially armed with two 20mm anti-aircraft gun - 2 cm Flakvierling 38 - but were modified by the crew members. The armament was replaced with Russian 76.2 mm FK 295/1 artillery cannon (as found on type BP42 armoured trains). The thickness of the armour of Panzertriebwagen No. 16 ranged from 31mm to 84mm. This vehicle was the heaviest single-rail armoured vehicle. Only one copy was built, which fought on the Eastern Front. In 1943, PzTrWg 16 was a reserve weapon, which was used to patrol areas threatened by the guerrillas. In the spring and summer of 1944 it was deployed to Army Group Centre. It saw action in the battles of Rawa Ruska and Lublin, then withdrawn to Radomafter, moving the front to the west. From August to September 1944, it ran the stretch of Kielce, patrolling the railway lines between Krakow, Skarzysko and Radom. In April 1945 PzTrWg 16 took part in the battles of Neuruppin. On 1-2 May 1945, it was captured intact in Neustadt (Dosse). The Model The first thing you’ll notice with this kit is the size of the box, it is big. A lot bigger than I had expected, and not only is it big, but when you open it is full to the brim with medium grey styrene. The most notable part is the single piece centre section, which houses the diesel locomotive. It must be one heck of a mould to produce this 340mm x 100mm x 100mm part, complete with openings and some very nicely moulded detail. In fact the moulding of this kit is excellent throughout. With no sign of flash or imperfections other than a few moulding pips and the occasion flow lines. There is nothing that should worry the sort of modeller that would buy this kit. The good news is that this vehicle is still extant so there are quite a few photographs on the interweb that will help with researching for this build. If you include the rail sections, there are eleven quite large sprues, along with fourteen separate parts, one sprue of clear styrene and three sheets of photo-etched brass. There is quite a lot of detail included in the kit, particularly for the engine running gear that unfortunately will not be seen that easily, but YOU will know it's there. The build begins with the construction of the track bed consisting of two long sections, four short sections and the two end pieces, one of which needs to be cut down to fir, which is clearly shown in the instructions. The sleepers are then fitted from beneath the track bed, and again a section at one end needs to be cut down to fit. Turning the bed over you can then slide the tracks through the moulded ties cutting the last two lengths to suit. Each track join is provided with a pair of fishplates included in the kit. Now whilst the track structure can look pretty good out of the box, it may be worthwhile sourcing some scenic ballast, metal tracks, (1 Gauge), and fishplates to improve the realism. To do this it may require the moulded ballast to be sanded/ground off, otherwise it could look like there is too much. All the gear required to do this can be sourced from HERE Construction then moves onto the gun trucks. Each truck is made up of eight wheeled bogies and each bogie is made up from two sides, to which the suspension springs are added. Each of the four axles is fitted with two wheels and capped off with poly caps and the three piece axle ends. Each axle end is then slotted into their appropriate position on each side plate, which is also fitted with eight brake shoes. The end plate is then attached and fitted with an seven piece mounting beam. The lower hull of each turret mount is then fitted out with eight brake actuators and sixteen axle end plates before the axle unit is fitted to the lower hull, ensuring the brake lever fit into the slot in each actuator. Nest, it’s on with the assembly of the buffers and associated coupling fittings. Each buffer is made up of three parts, upper and lower halves and the buffer itself. You need to assemble to buffers with globe ends and four with flat ends and fit one of each to each end of the vehicle trucks once fitted with their mounting plates and three part step which fits to an L shaped beam on the outside of each buffer. For more realism you can buy aftermarket buffers of the correct style, complete with springs, from RB models. The coupling links are then assembled from seven parts which look really good, but again you could possibly replace them with 1 Gauge gear if that is your want. The ends of the turret trucks are complete with the addition of more L shaped angle iron, hose connections, additional clamps, and two six part lamps. To the rear of each truck hull, three more access steps are added. The decahedron style turrets have five fixed plates moulded to the roof and five separate plates which need to be carefully glued into position. The turret is fitted out with the mantlet, pistol port hatch, roof hatch, two additional plates and twelve PE rivets. The rather simple gun barrel is made up of left and right halves with a separate muzzle with an appropriately hollowed out end. Beneath the gun barrel is the prominent recuperator, which is also in left and right halves, and fitted with a PE frame. With the recuperator fitted to the barrel the gun is then glued to the turret base, which is then fitted to the turret. The styrene canvas cover then fits over the gun and glued to the previously fitted PE frame and the turret. With the turrets complete they can be put to one side whilst he modeller gets on with assembling the upper hulls of the turrets trucks. The single piece hulls are fitted out with hand and foot plates, hand rail, rearming and access hatch, which is protected by two protective plates. Although there is no interior the hatch can be posed open and held upright by two clamps on the protective plate ends. The upper and lower truck hulls are then joined together and finished off with the addition of the turret. Once again these assemblies can be put to one side whilst the construction of the engine section is carried out. As with the fore and aft turret trucks the engine construction begins with the assembly of the running gear side plates. Each plate is fitted with the axle mounting plates, suspension fittings, and suspension springs along with the three piece brake accumulator. The plates are joined together via the rear mounted cab plate, and the two cross beams with the axles sandwiched between, unglued. The eight wheels, each with separate balancing weights, are then attached to the axles followed by the two, two piece connecting rod end bearing mounts. The brake mounting frame is then slid between the wheels and fitted with the separate two part brake pads. Each of the connecting rods are made up of four separate rods and connected to each other by bearing joints, after which the rods are fitted to the wheels and end bearing mount. The completed wheel assembly is then fitted to the engine floor which has a separate centrally mounted disc. At this point the large engine casing ends are fitted out with front and rear access doors, hand holds, and viewing ports. On the roof there is another large access hatch fitted both at the front and the rear complete with PE eye bolts, along with two command cupolas, each made up of twelve parts and fitted with six PE parts, mounted fore and aft The large central roof opening is filled with a grill section and fitted with the exhaust cover. The moulded on hatches on the roof of the engine are fitted out with numerous PE brackets and two hand rails. The engine floor with running gear is slide into the body of the engine which is finished off by the fitting of the hinged side plates at the base of the main body. The two turret trucks are then put on the rails and joined together by the engine, thus completing the build. There is only one paint scheme shown on the colour printed sheet, and that is of the train in overall Panzer Grey. Conclusion Whilst this kit is not really that difficult to build even though there are quite a few parts, the result will be a really impressive and unusual model to have in your collection. As mentioned above there are plenty of opportunities to add further detail it should look great out of the box with the addition of weathering to both the tracks and the train. As with all of Trumpeters rail kits the tracks can be joined together form each kit to make a long and more complex train or diorama. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  11. Mike

    F-106B Delta Dart 1:48

    F-106B Delta Dart 1:48 Trumpeter The F-106 Delta Dart was a development of the troubled F-102 Delta Dagger, which never reached potential until its design was changed sufficiently to warrant a new name and number. The Six was America's last dedicated Interceptor and had a long life from the 60s through to the 80s when it was gradually drawn down and consigned to history. The problems of the F-102 were solved by changing the shape of the fuselage to comply with the "area rule" for supersonic jets, adding variable intake ramps, plus other substantial changes to the wings, tail and the avionics system. With that brief list it is easy to see the need for a new name which recognised the differences and distanced it from the stigma attaching to the old name. The improvements were so successful that the airframes remained almost unchanged throughout service, despite some proposed changes that didn't reach fruition. The B model was the combat capable trainer version, the changes for which actually improved the aerodynamics of the aircraft at supersonic speeds. It also reduced the apparent sharpness of the cockpit and nose, which some would say improved its look somewhat. During drawdown many single seated airframes were converted to drones to be blown apart in high speed missile tests. The Kit The initial release of the F-106A was greeted with initial suspicion from fans of the 'Six, but it was given a clean bill of health after inspection, and pronounced fit for the duty of taking the mantle from the old Monogram kit in this scale. Now we have the two-seater, and high hopes for another good model. The box is standard Trumpeter fare, with a painting of a 106 with deployed braking 'chute on the top, and inside is plenty of plastic. There are nine sprues in mid grey styrene, two in clear styrene, a small fret of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, large decal sheet, instruction booklet and separate colour painting guide. Detail appears good, and there is little in the way of riveting on the surface, but the panel lines are engraved into the surface, with a constant depth and width throughout. We start the build with the cockpit, which houses two ejection seats. The seats provided are the final seats fitted to the 'Six, which were Weber zero-zero ROCAT seats, that superseded the original Weber Interim and Convair B-seats in 1963. The seats are quite well detailed and have a set of PE screw belts that are perhaps a little skinny and simplified for the task. They fit into a one-piece cockpit tub, which has moulded-in rudder pedals and side consoles, the latter also having panel decals on the main sheet. The instrument panels are fitted next, and detail is again good. They also have instrument decals, which also include the panel colour around some of the dials to simplify painting. Control columns and throttle quadrants are added to complete the cockpit, other than the modeller having to paint the simple sidewall details that are moulded into the fuselage. The nose gear bay forms the base for the cockpit, so must be built up from individual surfaces that trap the twin-wheel nose gear leg inside, after which the exhaust trunking tube is glued together and encased in a larger surround. A simplified representation of the rear of the engine is moulded into the end cap, and set of exhaust petals are added to the rear of the inner section, surrounded by the flared outer nozzle. This, the cockpit, nose gear bay and a four-part main weapons bay are then closed up in the fuselage, after which the two part engine intakes are added to the sides, with the trunking extending around 5cm, as far back as the ends of the intake inserts. There are ejector pin marks inside the outer part of each intake, and you will need to do something to the intakes to prevent possible light leakage from any gaps within the fuselage. A blanking plate and a faded black semi-circle would be my favourite option to fool the eye into thinking there is a full intake trunk in there. The lower wing is full width with a large and well-detailed gear bay added to the insides, which is then glued to the fuselage and the upper wing halves are added along with their inner and outer flaperons, which can be off-set to add some interest. An insert is added to the spine behind the cockpit, and the two-part tail fin with separate rudder is installed on the flat space at the rear, using two tabs and slots to hold it in place. At the base of the tail are a pair of clamshell air-brakes that can be posed open or closed by adding or leaving off the extension jacks during construction. The canopy is a substantial moulding and is beautifully clear, with a five-piece assembly fitted between the cockpit to accept the jack that raises it for entry and egress. A rear bulkhead and three PE rear-view mirrors are added before it is attached in either the open or closed position by adding an extra part or not. The angled windscreen fits closely over the coaming on a well-defined ledge, so should fair in well. The nose cone and separate pitot probe are added to the bulkhead at the front, with the latter best left of until later to protect it from damage, as are the tiny PE angle of attack probes on each side of the nose. The main landing gear are substantial struts with two ancillary struts forward and aft of them, plus two large retraction jacks, and another two bay door jacks on the centreline bulkhead. The bay doors are equally large, with one captive to the gear leg, and the others hinged along the centreline. A pair of clear landing lights are installed to the outboard doors before installation, the rears of which should be painted silver and the lenses masked off to give them a realistic looking reflector. Trumpeter have thoughtfully included an APU forward of the main bays, which has a little RAT to power the aircraft in the event of an engine stall. The 106 was capable of carrying its weapon load internally to keep a smooth aerodynamic profile in pursuit of speed in the days before Stealth. The bay is well detailed, and you have the option of covering this up with a single piece door, or displaying the contents with a pair of open doors with large struts that open and close them. The doors have a cut-out to allow the release of the centrally mounted AIR-2 Genie air-to-air (A2A) nuclear missile (what were they thinking???). The inner bay door folds in as the outer door folds out, leaving the bay totally clear when fully open. This allows the four AIM-4 Falcon A2A missiles to swing out from the bay on their double-trapeze mounts, pushed into the airflow by a long ram at the rear. The missiles are provided in three parts plus clear seeker head, an adaptor rail, and the two trapeze mounts, which are stowed either side of a large avionics box at the front of the bay. A pair of streamlined additional fuel tanks are slung under each wing to give the aircraft extra range, which are made up of two halves split vertically with a separate pylon that mounts just outboard of the main gear bays. Markings There are two decal options available on the sheet, and it's any colour you like as long as it's ADC (although the profiles look like natural metal finish). From the box you can build one of the following: US Air Force 125th Fighter Wing, Florida Air National Guard, 57-2533/02 – all over ADC Grey with blue tail stripe containing white lightning bolt. US Air Force 119th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron, 177th Tactical Fighter Wing "Jersey Devils", New Jersey Air National Guard 57-2514 – All over ADC Grey with red chevron on the tail and New Jersey in red. The decal sheet is well printed and generally in good register, although the blue seems to be the tiniest fraction out in the vertical, but it doesn't show up anywhere other than a few small decals under close scrutiny. There are a couple of misspelled stencils too, but you have to be looking hard to spot them, so it's hardly worth doing anything about them. The instrument panel decals are nicely done with some sections surrounded by black panels, and various lines on the side consoles to differentiate between sections of the panel. Conclusion What looks to be another winner from Trumpeter, and a surprisingly large model when completed. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  12. Pocketbond

    Trumpeter Ju 87G-2 | 1.7.15

    New Ju 87G-2 Stuka in scale 1/35 is on sale now. Ask for kit reference TM03218 at your model shop.
  13. Pocketbond

    Trumpeter F-106B | 1.7.15

    USAF F-106B Delta Dart two-seater, scale 1/48, is on sale now. Ask for kit reference TM02892 at your model shop.
  14. German Armoured Train PzTrWg 16, scale 1/35, is on sale now. Ask for kit reference TM00223 at your model shop. New tooled armoured diesel locomotive type WR550 with two armoured artillery positions fore and aft. Section of trackbed and rails for display included.
  15. Skoda 42cm Heavy Siege Howitzer Takom 1:35 History The 42 cm L/15 Küstenhaubitze M. 14 (42 cm, 15 calibre, Coastal Howitzer Model 14) was a super heavy siege howitzer used by Austria-Hungary during World War I and by Nazi Germany during World War II. It was designed to penetrate the weakly armoured decks of modern dreadnoughts in accord with the prevailing coastal defence doctrine that held it was better to attack the weakest point with high-angle indirect fire than to attempt to challenge their strongly armoured sides with exceedingly expensive guns that had to be equally as well armoured to withstand return fire from the battleship. Howitzers were significantly cheaper and could be hidden behind hills to avoid the expense of armouring them. The known problem of hitting a moving target with indirect fire was to be alleviated by massed fire from multiple weapons all firing with the same data. At any rate, two howitzers were bought to defend the main Austro-Hungarian naval base at Pola on the Adriatic. They were to be installed on a turntable carriage with an armoured dome able to traverse a full 360° for all-around defence. The turntable rested on a ball-race ring, set in a concrete foundation. However, with Pola unthreatened after the outbreak of the war, it was decided that they might be better used in support of the Army. The first howitzer was already fixed in place, but the second wasn't yet installed and Skoda was able to adapt it for mobile use by January 1915. On the 14th of that month, Howitzer No. 2, assigned to Küstenhaubitze Batterie (Coastal Howitzer Battery) no. 1 fired its first shot at the railway station in Tarnow, Austrian Poland. Eight M. 14s were eventually ordered (along with a spare barrel and cradle), although one was retained by Skoda. Barrel production was very slow, so slow that barrels originally ordered for coastal mounts were put into service as part of the 42 cm Autohaubitze (Motorized Howitzer) M. 16. One surviving gun was used in 1940 by Nazi Germany to shell the Ouvrage Schoenenbourg from a position near Oberotterbach; the 60- and 80-cm guns later used by the Third Reich (for example at Sevastopol) were not ready in time for the French campaign, so World War I vintage heavy pieces like this Skoda and also a surviving Gamma-Gerät tube had to be used. The Skoda, apparently the sole M17 model, entered German possession following the annexation of Czechoslovakia in 1938/39, and was renamed from 42 cm houfnice vz. 17 to 42 cm Haubitze(t); it also served at Leningrad and Sevastopol, even though its barrel life was rated to only 1,000 rounds. The Model As with the SKODA 30.5cm reviewed HERE this kit depicts a M.1917 as it was used in the siege of Sevastopol in 1942, and according to history it was the only one. Contained in the top opening box, with a stylised photograph of the weapon with Eric Von Manstein standing to one end, whilst another weapon is seen firing on Sevastopol in the background, are three sprues of dark grey styrene. All the parts are free of flash, but there are quite a few flow marks and a few ejector pin marks on visible faces of the larger parts, but look to be fairly easy to clean up as there isn’t too much detail around them that could be lost. As per the previous kit Takom have used slide mould technology very effectively in the production of the barrel parts allowing for a pretty seamless build, although there is less in this kit so there will be some cleaning up of the barrel required. The small landscape A5 booklet of instructions is very clearly printed and easy to use. Construction begins with the assembly of the of the centre section of the gun which includes the trunnions, the breech, and breech block, which are all made up of two parts. Two collars are fitted to the front of the centre section, followed by the outer barrel. The assembled breech and breech block are then attached to the rear of the trunnion section, after which the three piece inner barrel is slid in from the front. The single piece end section of the inner barrel has a nice representation of the rifling, although if you look really closely they are straight and not curved which is a limitation of the moulding process. On the underside of the gun a rounded base plate is affixed along with a shaft fitted on the centreline, between the recuperator ends. At this point the central circular base section is assembled form the two halves provide and fitted with four tabs, which will slot into the outer base when complete. The traversing gearbox is fitted with etched lengths of bolts before being attached to the left hand trunnion mount and finished off with the attachment of the traversing wheel, which is assembled from three parts, the wheel, shaft and handle. The elevation wheel is fitted with its handle, whilst the two footplates are attached to the left hand mount, which is then fitted to the base. The elevating shaft is fitted with two cogs and attached to the inner face of the left mount. Do not glue this shaft if you wish to have the gun barrel movable. The shaft is covered by a large plate fitted to the front of the mount, after which the right mount is fitted to the base, ensuring the elevation shaft is fitted correctly, followed by a curved plate fitted to the upper rear of the mounts. The traversing lock/brake handle and clutch unit is fitted to the four piece housing and the whole assembly is attached to the base, just next to the left mount. To the rear of the mounting there is another gearbox, with a double winding handle attached. This is then fitted with a double wheeled contraption which hauls the shells up to the breech. This is quite a complex assembly so a bit of care will be required. The build is completed by the assembly of the outer base halves to which the circular base is then slotted into position. The kit also includes one figure, that of Eric Von Manstein who commanded the 11th Army in the Crimea during the bloody siege of Sevastopol in which this howitzer was used. Strangely the paint chart shows two different schemes, one of green over grey when used by the 787th artillery division at Sevastopol and the other in grey overall, also at Sevastopol. Since there was only on gun of this type available it does seem a bit odd to have two schemes, but there you go. Conclusion As with the 30.5cm siege howitzer this is one pretty obscure weapon. Whilst there are not too many parts, they are all very well moulded and when complete this will look most impressive on the shelf, or as part of a diorama. Unfortunately, as with the earlier kit, no crew are provided, and in this case no ammunition either, so some scratchbuilding will be required if you go down that route. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  16. Pocketbond

    Trumpeter News | 29.6.15

    We present the very latest new Trumpeter releases, shipping out to model shops now. Star release is the Panzertriebwagen No 16, a really impressive kit. The armoured diesel loco has a one-piece body shell, and that's a big piece of plastic! Plus you've got the two-seater Delta Dart with totally new fuselage, the T-62 now with mine plough included, and USS Maryland BB-46 in 1945 configuration with new decks and waterline plate. Check out the PLA Type 59 Field Gun which is virtually a whole new tooled kit, not just a reboxing. It's all here http://www.pocketbond.co.uk
  17. Evening all! Now available and shipping to good model shops is the all-new Mosquito in 1/32 scale from HK Models. The kit includes two resin figures, a pilot and a navigator. http://www.pocketbond.co.uk/Product.aspx?ID=4447 Here is a quick reminder of the other great new models released this week.
  18. Greetings all. New in stock from RODEN we have the long awaited 1/144 scale Bristol Britannia in BOAC markings, and in 1/72 scale the NC/AC-123K Provider, codename Black Spot. Order them now from your model shop.
  19. Hello everyone, Our first post here on Britmodeller is to let you know we now have in stock Takom's new FUG fork lift and KrAZ-6322, both in 1/35 scale. Order now from your model shop. Have a good weekend.
  20. Bedford ‘OLB’ tanker 1:24 Emhar The Bedford O type chassis was launched in 1939 before the start of WW2 as a lorry chassis biased on specifications set out by the Ministry of Supply. The O type was available in a long wheel base, or short wheel base 5 ton lorry. A quick note to help with the lettering used for models, O is the chassis range, L is long wheel base, S is short wheelbase, B is 5 ton capacity, A is 3-4 ton, D is shown is a factory drop side body with T being a tipper! Confused.... Well this model is an OLB, O type, ‘L’ong wheel base, ‘B’ 5 ton lorry! The O Type was re-specified for military use during the war, with simplified square bonnets, and differing suspension and wheels. Production of the O Type continued until 1953, many have been preserved including the OB (O type Bus) models. A trip to any vintage show will have one or two examples being shown. There is allot of unused parts on the sprues left over from the previous drop side version so the spares box will benefit. Construction starts with the little Petrol engine, the parts have some nice detail but as always you can add more here including HT leads. Take some time on the engine as you can leave the sides off the bonnet to reveal the detail here. Next comes the ladder chassis, this is made up from 2 long rails and 6 cross members. Having built one of these the parts are a very good fit and the location pins and slots give very positive fits and help keep the chassis straight. The small petrol tank is made up in 4 parts and has a horizontal seam that needs to be filled and sanded. The lorry rides on leaf springs and they come next, the locations are OK, but the rear is a bit loose when I built mine. The front axle is fixed so you can’t pose the wheels turned without some work. The back axle fits positively on the back springs, and on my build I made the 2 part back axle, fixed it to the springs before gluing to the chassis as one unit. This helped with locating the springs and keeping the axle straight. There is a short extension to add to the back of the chassis along with some simple side crash bars and cab steps to complete the chassis. The spare wheel carrier on the rear can be glued in place now you can attach it without the spare wheel in place, it’s not easy and it is a bit of a fiddle but the wheel can be added after painting. You can build, and paint the chassis before gluing the engine in place as on some Bedford lorries this may be a contrasting colour. The wheels are very well detailed including the correct hubs and nice period tyres; ensure you paint the inner parts (B60) on the front wheels black as they can be seen through the holes on the outer parts! The tank body has a couple of options, so you need to check the reference pictures of the lorry you are building. You have the option of a 3 or 4 compartment tank, the tank parts need the correct tank lids and discharge ports cutting out, they are engraved markings inside the top and bottom of the tank, the instruction sheet shows what ports need cutting, so take care as this may become confusing. There is also the option of flat end caps, or domed ends to the tank, so again check your references here. The instructions give no guidance on what parts you need for the 3 examples on the decal sheet. The tank supports are fitted and you need to ensure you don’t mix up parts N6 and N7 as they are slightly different, the same with support parts M7 and N14! Take your time when removing parts from the sprues! Here the option of 3 or 4 tank compartments makes construction different, and also there are differing tank lids and discharge ports to choose. A single tank walkway is included for the top of the tank, and remember no health and safety back then so no hand rails or non-slip mesh, just a simple ladder and wooden board walk way. Hose racks for the lower sides are added, and there are 4 nice hoses, moulded in hard plastic, for the trays. The ribbed detail is very nice and looks realistic. Being picky it would be nice for them to be a soft flexible vinyl so they could be used in a diorama. Now the tank is done it can be painted and decaled before adding to the chassis. The cab is next on the build; the interior can be built, and painted before the complete and painted shell is slid over. As in the 1940’s the cab is simple, seats, steering wheel and some basic dials, there is allot of interior detail shots on line, and in the vehicle walk around area on Britmodeller to help with the paint and details, the bulkhead has the fuse box so you can add some wires and a few more details here. With the interior on the chassis a few piles link to the very nicely detailed radiator and radiator shell. The moulding is exquisite with the thin bars and the complex shape very well captured, the same goes for the bonnet sides, they are thin and scaled well, they can be left off to show off your engine, maybe in a garage having a bit of work done! The cab shell is a single part, and this is a newer version. On the early castings there was a nasty seam on the back of the roof, this isn’t present on the review kit, but a smaller one is present on the front edge, it is not as bad as previous versions though. The shape of the cab looks spot on to me, and the separate doors are a god fit, and can be posed open! There is a single window wiper and mirror to fit, but the optional passenger side wiper and mirror are also in the kit so they can be added if required! A single clear sprue is very well packed, being wrapped in foam and in its own bag. The parts are nice, but the engraved ‘mesh’ on the headlamps looks far too heavy and I wish this had been altered in this newer boxing of the lorry. A nice decal sheet contains 3 different liveries for the lorry, Dominion, Cleveland, or Bradford Dyers including the correct registration plates for the 3 lorries, nice badgering decals and some cracking dials for the dash board that look just like the 1:1 dials on the lorry. Conclusion I love the O type Bedford, and this is a very welcome kit in 1:24. This is the 4th version, a Long wheel base drop side, a short tipper and a short recovery lorry also being available. I hope Emhar give us some more versions in the future, (How about an OB Bus?) If you don’t build civvy Lorries I know KFS are about to issue some military conversions for this in resin and etched metal. Review sample courtesy of