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  1. Blohm & Voss BV 155V-1 "Karawanken" 1:72 Special Hobby The Blohm & Voss BV-155 was a high-altitude interceptor, not dissimilar in concept to the Westland Welkin. The aircraft started life on the drawing board at Messerschmitt's headquarters at Augsberg as a navalised adaptation of the Me 109, before morphing into a high-altitude interceptor. The work was eventually handed over to Blohm & Voss in 1943 as Messerschmitt were simply too overworked to complete the design. Blohm & Voss made a number of key changes, including replacing the wing with a laminar flow design and fitting a new tail unit. The prominent wing-mounted radiators were also re-designed and the cockpit was moved forward in order to restore the proper centre of gravity. This delayed the aircraft's first flight until February 1945. Although the type was engaged in a full flight test programme, it failed to progress beyond this stage before the end of the war. The aircraft was named "Karawanken" after the Karawanken alps that form the border between Austria and Slovenia. If you think this is a re-release of the original Special Hobby kit from 2003, then think again. This is an all-new kit which could be described as mixed-media, although curiously the only resin parts are inserts for the main landing gear bays. Tke kit comprises well over 60 parts, although several are marked as unused for this particular edition, spread across four frames of grey plastic, as well as a single clear part and the aforementioned resin bits. The moulded detail is fine and crisp, although the overall impression is of a kit that is more limited run in nature than Special Hobby's recent P-40 or Vampire kits. The cockpit comprises a floor and rear bulkhead, seat, sidewalls, rudder pedals, control column and throttle. The sidewalls and throttle have to be fitted directly to the inside of the fuselage rather than to the cockpit tub itself. A plan view of this arrangement is included in the instructions, which suggests one should take care with the placement of these parts. before the fuselage halves can be joined, the tail wheel and large oil cooler assembly must be assembled and sandwiched between the two halves. Typically for a low-wing monoplane, the lower wing (at least the central part) is moulded in a single span, with seperate upper surfaces. None of the control surfaces are moulded separately. The huge underwing radiators are each comprised four parts that fit neatly behind the main landing gear bays. Once the wing has been assembled, it can be joined to the fuselage. The main landing gear is nicely detailed and the wheels are split vertically. An additional diagram showing the exact angle of the landing gear leg and the camber of the wheel is provided. There are a couple of air intakes to fit to the forward fuselage, as well as a small DF loop which locates behind the cockpit. The canopy isn't quite as crisp as I would like, but it's definitely usable. The instructions show the arrangement for fitting the canopy in the open position, but keen-eyed modellers will have noticed that judicious application of the razor saw will be required if this option is desired. The propellor is moulded in two pieces which fit one over the other. This is a slightly unusual arrangement and a little extra care will be required to ensure that all four blades are sitting true before fitting the spinner. The decal sheet provides marking for a single prototype BV 155-V1, based at Finkerwalde in December 1944. Colour references are provided for the original RLM and Gunze codes. I believe a 'what if' version is in the offing if you prefer to finish your model in a theoretical in-service configuration. Conclusion From time-to-time I review a kit that really appeals to me, regardless of the subject. This is a really nice little model. Despite its simplicity relative to some modern Special Hobby kits, it is well detailed and nicely executed. I can't see how it would take longer than a week to build and it will certainly stand out on your model shelf. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  2. MPM SH32049 boxart: http://www.modelforum.cz/viewtopic.php?f=97&t=71717&start=0&st=0&sk=t&sd=a translation: Main parts from short run and small details from metal mould.
  3. Resin Upgrade Sets for Special Hobby P-40/Kittyhawk Kit 1:72 CMK We've just taken delivery of the first examples of Special Hobby's new P-40/Kittyhawk kits, and rather good they are too. Special Hobby seem to have taken a leaf out of another great Czech manufacturer's book by releasing a veritable feast of resin goodies to go with the new kit. Pretty much everything you could think of is represented here. Without further ado, let's take a look and see what's what. P-40E Engine Set The first set contains a complete Allison V-1710 V12 engine for the P-40E. The set comprises the engine itself, as well as the prominent chin-mounted radiator, the firewall, engine subframe and replacement parts for the kit's plastic engine covers, which have to be cut away in order to fit the engine. All of the cutting follows panel lines, so it should be within the abilities of most modellers to be able to use this nicely detailed part. P-40 Undercarriage Set This set includes a choice of two different main landing gear bay inserts for the Special Hobby kit, as well as the fabric cover for the tail wheel assembly. The resin has a clean, crisp quality which will add a little extra zip to the finished kit. P-40E/K/M/N Armament Set This set includes six .50 cal machine guns, as well as the structural detail for the gun bays and replacement covers for the wings. As is the case with the engine set, the modeller is required to remove panels above and below the wing in order to expose the additional detail provided with this set. All of the cuts are along panel lines, which should be within the capabilities of most modellers. P-40 Control Surfaces This set provides replacement landing flap and ailerons for the main wings, as well as complete replacement horizontal tail planes with separately case elevators. While the latter are a straight swap for the kit parts, the former will require the removal of more plastic from the wing. Get a fresh scalpel blade and a ruler and whatever you do, make sure you don't slip! P-40 Cockpit Sidewalls and Control Column This set does not require the removal of any plastic from the kit. Instead, the parts are a straightforward (and more detailed) swap for the kit parts. Just drop them in an enjoy! P-40 Wheels - Diamond and Hole Tread These wheels are another straight swap for the kit parts. Naturally they are much more detailed than their plastic counterparts, with a lovely crispness to the tyre tread. Flat spots can be filed where the wheels are removed from the casting blocks. P-40/Kittyhawk Seats There are four replacement seats available, for theP-40 E, K, M and N-1; P-40N-5 to N-40; Kittyhawk I, Ia, II, IIa and III; and the Kittyhawk IV. Most, but not all, have harnesses cast in place. Conclusion CMK can be relied upon to turn out some good quality resin, a fact to which these sets testify. Detail is top-notch, casting is flawless and I have no doubt that the fit will be equally good. If you have the new kit, or are planning on acquiring it, then it's good to know that these sets are out there and that you can pick and choose which to pick up. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  4. DH.100 Vampire Mk.3 1:72 Special Hobby The distinctive de Havilland DH.100 Vampire was designed to fulfil a wartime requirement for a small, lightweight jet fighter for the Royal Air Force. Although the prototype aircraft first flew in September 1943, the production aircraft arrived too late to see service in the Second World War. In spite of this, well over 3,000 were eventually produced and the aircraft enjoyed a relatively long service life by the standards of the day. Powered by a single De Havilland Goblin turbojet, the Vampire was capable of a maximum speed of 548 mph and had a service ceiling of over 40,000 ft. In common with many other RAF fighters of the day, armament was comprised of four 20mm cannon. 1,202 Mk 3 were produced for the RAF and 20 for Norway. The Kit the top opening box are two sprues of grey plastic and a clear one. There are no resin or photo etched parts in the box though Special Hobby do offer s a PE set through their CMK line. It should be noted that not all of the parts need to be used to build the variants catered for in this edition. The kit looks excellent on the sprue, with lots of crisp, moulded detail and surface structures made up of fine, recessed lines and fasteners (although some of the detail on the underside of the fuselage looks a little heavy). The overall impression is closer to a modern, high pressure injection moulded kit than the older MPM/Special Hobby kits in my collection. Construction starts with the well-detailed cockpit. This area is made up of the floor, rear bulkhead and head rest, the pilot's seat, the control column and the instrument panel. The instrument panel features recessed detail and a decal is provided for the instrument dials themselves, while the gun sight is moulded from clear plastic. The inside of the fuselage halves benefit from some separately moulded sidewall details. Taken together, the overall impression is of a well detailed and suitably busy cockpit. Other internal detail includes the front and rear faces of the De Havilland Ghost turbojet engine. Special Hobby have elected for a bit of a smoke and mirrors effect here, splitting the front face of the engine into two parts so each can be seen through the intake trunking (part of which is cleverly moulded to the lower half of the fuselage pod. There is no separate tail pipe for the jet exhaust, with the pipe and protruding lip being moulded as part of the upper and lower fuselage halves. The nose cone is moulded separately to the rest of the fuselage, and it follows a panel line which should reduce the need to clean up the joint when finished. It will also enable you to fit the nose weight after the main structure of the model has been completed. Once the two halves of the fuselage pod have been joined together, attention turns to the wings and the horizontal stabiliser. The wings are simply moulded in upper and lower halves, with control surfaces moulded in place. Surface details are very nicely represented, although the trailing edges are a little on the thick side (nothing that can't be sorted relatively easily though). The shallow main landing gear bays are moulded as part of the lower wing but are pretty well detailed. The engine air intakes are separately moulded, complete with vanes. Nice as they are, they look quite inaccurate as the openings are too small. The plastic looks too thin to correct the flaw, so hopefully one of the aftermarket manufacturers will have a go an producing some resin replacements. The tail booms look pretty good and, as with the wings and horizontal stabiliser, the control surfaces are moulded in place. There are a couple of nice balance weights for the underside of the horizontal stabiliser though. With the airframe together, attention turns to the undercarriage. The undercarriage itself is quite nicely moulded without being overly complex. A choice of hubs are provided for the main landing gear wheels, so you'll need to choose the right pair for the version you want to build. Ordnance is catered for by the inclusion of a pair of drop tanks.The canopy is nicely moulded and is split into two parts, so it can be finished in the open position if desired. Decals The sheet brings 5 options all in High Speed Silver finish though the instructions call this Aluminium dope & NMF? Options are; VT793 from No.601 (City Of London) Sqn, Royal Aux Air Force, Malta 1952 VV196 from No.32 Sqn RAF Middle East Air Force, Cyprus 1950 VV194 from No.604 (County Of Middlesex) Sqn, Royal Aux Air Force, Malta 1951 VT809 from No.73 Sqn RAF Middle East Air Force, Malta 1949 VG703 from RAF Vampre Trials Unit 1948/49 Tropial Trials & Demo tour Conclusion Despite one of two flaws, this looks like a really appealing kit. The level of detail is very good indeed, and provided there are no surprises in terms of fit and finish, it should build up into a nice model, My only real gripe is the undersized engine air intakes, but hopefully these can be sorted with aftermarket parts. Overall though, this is a nice kit which I am looking forward to building. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  5. Hi all Here is my recently completed Special Hobby 1/72 Meteor T.7.5 I usually model in 48th but having modellers block I decided to do something a bit different and was attracted to this colour scheme, there is something about a military aircraft in civi clothing that I like took my around 5 days to complete and I'm reasonably happy with it so thought id share it with you all. Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Meteor T 7.5 by Scott Clayton, on Flickr Be Gentle ScottC
  6. Blackburn Skua Mk. II Special Hobby 1:48 In 1934, the Air Ministry issued Specification O.27/34 calling for a carrier borne multi-purpose aircraft which should be capable of operating in both fighter and dive bomber roles. In those days, the concept of a carrier fighter aircraft as seen by the British military had to have a crew of two facilitating long flights over the sea and suited to fighting enemy’s patrol planes. In no way, any kind of fighting against opposing bomber planes or even fighters had ever been considered. As the best of all proposed projects was chosen the B.24 designed by Blackburn’s chief designer G.E.Petty. The aircraft was a low-wing type with folding wings and retractable undercarriage. Under the fuselage, it also had an arrestor hook and a recess for one bomb of weight up to 226kg. The first prototype aircraft, later to be named the Skua Mk.I, was taken aloft for the first time on 9 February 1937. Following a successful set of test flights, the mass production was launched instantly. The production machines were powered by a Bristol Perseus XII and were known as the Skua Mk.II. They saw service with front line squadrons no. 800, 801, 803 and 806 and were also issued to training units or to target tow units. Despite all the rush while being put to production, the machines really lacked abilities to serve as figher planes and were deemed to be quite obsolete. But when the war broke out, the Skua found wery quickly its way to operations both over the land and from the carriers. During their first ever bombing raid against a German sub, which occured on 14 September, two of the flight of three were lost to their own poor-quality bombs. On 26 September, two machines of No 803 Sqn managed to shot down a German Dornier Do 18 flying boat, achieving the very first confirmed victory of a British aircrew in the war. The Skua, however, had several more primacies under its belt. On 10 April 1940, during the Norwegian campaign, a group of 16 Skuas sank German cruiser Königsberg. Aircraft of No 800 Sqn led by Capt. R.T.Partridge and of No 803 Sqn under the command of Lt.W.P.Lucy took off from their base at Hatson on the Orkneys and performed what was the first successful aerial attack against a war ship of the Second World War. Skuas also took part in fighting over Dunkirk and machines from HMS Royal Ark fought in the Med, where, on 3 July 1940, they got famous for being the first British warplanes involved in action against the former British ally, the French. It also has to be mentioned that these Skuas were the first ones to be lost in that undeclared war. The last Skuas were withdrawn from Ark Royal in April 1941 and since then went on serving with non-combat units only. Their war career was rather short, and despite their low performance in the fighter role, several pilots managed to achieve ace (ie gaining more than five confirmed victories) flying these aircraft. The Skua could have been far more successful, mainly in the bomber role if it had just been used in a proper way by Admiralty, obviously to the detriment of the Royal Navy. The Model With a pair of Skuas flying over what looks like Norway on the box top you might begin thinking that you’ve seen this scene before, well you probably have as the same box art was used on the original release in 2007. Upon opening the kit is well wrapped in a poly bag with the decals and instructions loose. The model is produced on four sprues of grey styrene, one of clear, quite a few resin parts, a small sheet of etched brass, a small acetate sheet and the decal sheet. All the parts are nicely moulded with no visible imperfections but definitely short run style. The panel lines are finely done and seem to represent the aircraft structure well. The plastic is quite shiny and hard, which could indicate that it will be quite brittle. Construction starts with the cockpit, which is made up of the pilots and rear gunners floors, mid bulkhead, seats, joystick, rudder pedals, instrument panel, compass, pilots headrest, gunners backrest, fire extinguisher and PE seatbelts. The instrument panel is made up of three PE sections with acetate backing for the instruments, which will need to have a dab of Clearfix or similar for the instrument faces. The pair of fuel tanks that sit between the pilot and gunner are made up from three parts each. The cockpit assembly is then fitted to one side of the fuselage. The rear mounted machine gun trough is then fitted, as is the two part machine gun mount. With the addition of the tailwheel, the fuselage can be closed up. The wing centre section is then fitted to the underside of the fuselage and the three piece horizontal tailplane assembled. The resin engine assembly comes next with the nine separate cylinders are glued to the crankcase and the eighteen pipes that lead from the cylinders to the collector ring are attached along with the ring itself. There is a triangular frame that is glued t the front of the engine, to which pair of intake trumpets are fitted. The cowling sides are then attached and the whole assembly glued to the front fuselage. To the rear of the fuselage the horizontal tailplane assembly is attached, along with the upper and lower wing sections, which include resin main undercarriage bays. Although the upper wing sections are separated at the fold join the lower sections don’t appear to be and there are no internals, so, unfortunately, the wings cannot be posed folded without a fair bit of scratch building. On the upper front fuselage a pair of scoops are added, as are the clear lenses for the wing leading edge landing lights, whilst to the rear the three piece resin and plastic Lewis gun is fitted to its mount. On the underside the arrestor hook and its fairing are glued into position, as are the oil cooler intake, engine exhaust, and two piece main bomb swing. The main undercarriage assemblies are each made up from the main leg, two piece wheels/tyres, main retraction actuator, secondary actuator and two bay doors. The assemblies are then glued into place, along with the large pitot probe on the starboard wing tip and the four canopy sections, of which the gunners and pilot sections can be posed open if required. The model is completed with the fitting of the main aerial, single piece propeller and two piece boss. Decals The decal sheet contains markings and codes for three machines as well as some stencils. The decals are well printed by AVIPRINT, and are in good register and nicely opaque, although the red centres on the side and upper wing roundels do appear to be ever so slightly off centre. Blackburn Skua Mk.II, L2963, of 803 Sqn. FAA, embarked on HMS Ark Royal. The aircraft was shot down attacking the German battlecruiser Scharnhorst on 13th July 1940. Blackburn Skua Mk.II, L2940/A6A, of 800 Sqn. FAA, embarked on HMS Ark Royal. This aircraft shot down a Heinkel He.111 on 27th April 1940, but was lost on 13th July 1940 on the attack against the Scharnhorst. Blackburn Skua Mk.II, L2991/Q, of 803 Sqn. FAA, also embarked on HMS Ark Royal. This aircraft was also lost on the raid against the Scharnhorst on 13th July 1940 Conclusion Whilst he short run nature of this kit may put some modellers off, but with a bit of patience and lots of dry fitting a nice model can be produced. It’s certainly great to see it back in production and whilst not produced in great numbers, a very interesting and quite an important airframe in the history of the Fleet Air Arm, a time when they weren’t exactly endowed with the best aircraft types. Review sample courtesy of
  7. Hawker Typhoon Ranger Roundel & Code letter masks - For Eduard Kit 1:48 MH Masks via Special Hobby Set X48029 bring you the Roundels and tail markings, and Set X48030 brings you the fuselage codes and serial numbers. Both are for the latest Ranger Hawker Typhoon model from Eduard, though the roundels could be used on other models. The masks are of the vynial type. Conclusion Painted on markings will always look better than decals if the right masks are used. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of MH Models via
  8. Canopy Masks for MPM Douglas Havoc Turbinlite (X72014) 1:72 MH Masks via Special Hobby This is a set of the masks for the MPM (now Special Hobby) 1/72 Douglas Havoc Mk.II Turbanlite kit. The kit has extensive glazing which will be difficult to mask in 1.72. These masks from MH Models should help. They are of the vinyl type. Conclusion Sometimes kits can benefit from masks, and this is one. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  9. Nakajima Ki-43-III Ko Hayabusa "Ultimate Oscar" 1:72 Special Hobby The Nakajima Ki-43 Otsu Hayabusa, known to the Allies as the 'Oscar' was a single-seat, single-engined fighter which equipped the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force from 1941 until the end of the War. The design utilised the same 14-cylinder Nakajima Sakae radial engine as the infamous Mitsubishi Zero, and in fact in the heat of battle, the two aircraft were often confused by Allied aviators. Just like the Zero, the Hayabusa was light, nimble and exceptionally manoeuvrable, and just like the Zero, its Achilles heel was a lack of armour and self-sealing fuel tanks. The Ki-43-III introduced a more powerful Nakajima Army Type 1 Ha-115-II engine, as well as the features of the Ki-43-II, such as the strengthened wings with hardpoints for fuel tanks or bombs, armour for the pilot and basic self-sealing fuel tanks. In service the Hayabusa at first enjoyed enormous success thanks to its phenomenal rate of turn. This was soon countered by more advanced Allied fighters with heavier armour and armament, which removed much of the Ki-43's competitive advantage. It's eight years or so since Special Hobby first released their Oscar, although it has been released a couple of times since then with different decals. This version appears to be a straightforward re-release of the Ki-43-III kit first released in 2010. The kit is fairly simple, being comprised of around sixty plastic parts, although a small number of these are not actually needed to build the variant depicted on the decal sheet. The parts are spread across three sprues of grey plastic and a single clear sprue. The mouldings look fairly crisp, and feature reasonably fine sprue attachment points and refined, engraved surface detail. Construction begins with the cockpit. This sub-assembly comprises a floor with two-part seat and separate rudder pedals and control column. The instrument panel features raised detail and a separate gun sight. The internal faces of the fuselage halves also feature some moulded detail, so although the part count for this area isn't particularly high, the end result is more than acceptable. The only think I would really want to add is some harnesses for the seat, either from spare photo etch (or Special Hobby's own dedicated photo etch set for this kit) or tape. Once the fuselage halves have been joined, the tail planes and wing can be fixed in place. The elevators and ailerons are all moulded in place, and like many kits of low-winged aircraft, the lower wing section is moulded in one span, with separate port and starboard upper surfaces. The engine is moulded as a single, solid part but looks pretty good nonetheless. The cowling is moulded in three parts, which makes it a little more fiddly to assemble but makes for an accurate overall shape. The propeller is moulded as one piece, so you won't have to worry about aligning individual blades. The landing gear itself looks reasonably good, with the landing gear legs and the main gear wheels each made up of one part. Drop tanks are also provided, but you'll need to take care over their positioning as there are no holes or marks as to where they should go. The injection moulded canopy is moulded in two parts, which means it can be posed in the open position if so desired. The decal sheet provides for three options: ⦁ Ki-43-III Ko, 64th Sentai, Burma, Autumn 1944; ⦁ Ki-43-III Ko, 48th Sentai, Nanking, China, August 1945; and ⦁ Ki-43-III Ko, 65th Sentai, Metabaru Airbase, Kayushu, Japan, August 1945. All of the aicraft are finished in olive green over IJA grey; Conclusion Although this kit is marginally less sophisticated than the very latest offerings from Special Hobby, that is more a reflection of the recent advances made by that manufacturer rather than any lack of quality with this particular kit. As always with kits of this nature, a little care and attention may be required, but I think this kit should build into a pleasing replica of an attractive aircraft with relatively little effort. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  10. Mirage F.1 EQ/ED (72386) 1:72 Special Hobby The Dassault Mirage F.1 has been a successful point defence fighter for over thirty years, and was developed initially as a private venture by Dassault as a replacement to their ageing Mirage III fighters. It is a single-engined, single-seat fighter aircraft with a high-mounted delta wing and capability of reaching mach 2.2 in short order. Power was provided by a single SNECMA Atar turbojet providing about 7 tonnes-force (69 kN; 15,000 lbf) of thrust. Dassault soon found an eager customer in the shape of the French Armée de l'air, who bought various versions over the years starting on 1974. The French retired the Mirage F.1 in 2014. The ED is the export version for Qatar, and the EQ the version for Iraq. Its worth noting that private military contractors in the US are buying large surplus stocks of Mirage F.1s to use in the adversary role. The Kit This is a reworking of the superb new tool kit from Special Hobby. This boxing has extra plastic parts for this version being the tail and large centre line tank. There is also some small resin parts for the "lumps & bums", and a resin Exocet Missile for the Iraqi version. The parts are crisp with engraved panel lines deep enough not to disappear under a coat of paint, but not trench like. From the parts break down on the sprues it is evident more versions are on there way. Construction starts conventionally enough in the cockpit area. The instrument panel and coaming is built up and attached to the front of the cockpit, the rear bulkhead is attached, and the control stick added in. For some strange reason step 3 in the instructions has you placing the cockpit inside the fuselage and closing it up; and step 4 has you adding the front wheel well and exhaust into the fuselage. I would safely say that it's best to reverse these. On the subject of the exhaust, it is a three part affair and the quality of the kit parts is very good. Once the exhaust, front wheel bay, and cockpit are in the main fuselage can indeed be closed up. Once the main fuselage is together the correct nose can be added for your chose decal option. Various nose antenna are added along with the front airbrakes which are moulded in the closed position. The engine intakes are also added at this stage. Next the main wings are added which are of conventional upper/lower construction. Once these are on the rudder, tail planes, and ventral strakes are all added as well. Once the main aircraft is built it is time to switch to the landing gear. All three units are built up and added along with their respective doors. The undercarriage is quite detailed but has been moulded to be in as few parts as possible. The main legs along with their retraction struts are one part, with only a single small section needed for each of the mains. The wheels are one part each and have nice relief for painting. It is then a quick re-visit to the cockpit to build the ejection seat. For the scale this is quite detailed with 4 parts making up the seat. There is a choice of seat back/cushion however no indication of which to use for which option. It is suspected these options are time frame based, and the modeller should check their references. The penultimate step is to add the pylons. A single centre line pylon is added along with wing pylons, &chaff dispensers. Thankfully this time the instructions show which should be added for each decal option. The instructions show only fuel tanks to be attached, although the sprues do contain a nice selection of French weapons to be deployed as the modeller sees fit,. Lastly the canopy and front screen are attached. Markings There are four decal options on a sheet from Cartograf so there will be no issues there. 1. F.1EQ No.79 Sqn Iraqi Air Force (Sand / Grey scheme). 2. F.1EQ-5 No.81 Sqn Iraqi Air Force (Dark Sea Grey Scheme) - Fitted for Exocet. 3. F.1EQ-6 No.102 Sqn Republic Of Iran Air Force (Grey / Blue Scheme). 4. F.1ED Libyan Peoples Air Force (Aircraft which defected to Malta) Conclusion It is great to see more versions of this new tool from Special Hobby becoming available. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  11. B-17G Upgrade sets 1:72 CMK From Special Hobby The newly tool B-17 kits from Airfix are vastly improved over what came before. For those modellers who want more then there are plenty of aftermarket sets available including these four from Special Hobby under there CMK brand. Each comes in a plastic blister pack with a car back which also hols in the instructions. Bomb Aimer's Station (7383) This provides for the bomb aimer's station in the nose forward of the cockpit. You get a new bulkhead to separate the two spaces, the bomb aimer's seat, ammunition boxes for the nose guns, and a norden bomb sight. Bomb Bay Set (7382) This is a complete resin bomb bay to fit into the kit. With a curved roof, sides, front & rear bulkheads,interior bomb racks, and bomb bay doors. Engines Port & Starboard (7384 & 7385) These are complete resin engines and cowls with PE. The engines build up from a central hub with the individual cylinders being added along with other parts, rods and the wiring harness. The Two sets only differ by the appropriate cowls for Port & Starboard. Port Stbd Review samples courtesy of
  12. CASA C-212-100 "Portuguese Tail Arts" (72376) 1:72 Special Hobby The CASA 212 is a medium cargo aircraft with a short field capability designed by Construcciones Aeronáuticas SA or CASA of Spain. The aircraft is a boxy fuselage with a high mounted wing and twin turbo prop engines. The cabin is not pressurised. In the 1960's the Spanish Air Force was looking to modernise as at the time it was still relying on a mix of C-47s and Ju-52s for its transport requirements. The SASA 212 was a proposed 18 seat transport aircraft which could fill a few different roles. The aircraft first flew in 1971 and the Spanish Air Force would acquire them from there. 477 Aircraft were built over 42 years, with the last being built in 2012 when Airbus Military decided to discontinue production. Production continues though under license in Indonesia. The aircraft has been used by many military and civil users all over the world The Kit This is a new toolkit from Special Hobby. The plastic is the same as the original boxing we reviewed here. The kit arrives on five sprues of plastic and a clear spure. From the look of the unused parts on the sprue a maritime/patrol version is planned at some point. Construction starts with adding the instrument panel in at the front. Instruments are supplied as decals. The windows are put into the main fuselage halves from the inside at this point, as well as the side cockpit glazing. The main fuselage doors and inserts at the front are then added. The rest of the cockpit is then built up, this can then be added and thee main fuselage closed up. Its worth noting there in no interior for the main cargo cabin and the ramp is moulded closed. Next up the undercarridge is made up and the main sponsons added. The nose is added along with the main cockpit glazing. The tailplanes are made up with seperate control surfaces. The instructions advise to add nose weight but ommit how much is needed. The tailplanes ad rudder are now added to the main fuselage, along with the tailplane fairings. The wings are made up next. There is a single part upper and left/right lowers. 4 flap actuator fairings are added to each side. The two engine nacelles are made up and added along with the fronts and propellor assemblies. These can then be added to the wings. Two trim tabs on the wing need to be removed.The wing is now fitted to the fuselage along with various antennas and sundary parts. Markings There are are two special tail art schemes as used by the Portuguese Air Force on this boxing; 16507 - 50th anniversary of 502 Sqn, Sintra AB 2005 16517 - 160,00 Flight hours and 35 Years of Service, 502 Sqn, Montijo AB, 2009 Both Aircraft wear the standard two green and tan over grey paint scheme. Conclusion It is great to see more boxings of this new tool from Special Hobby. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Tempest V Upgrade Sets (for Special Hobby) 1:32 CMK & Special Hobby The Special Hobby 1:32 Tempest range of kits has been with us for a while now, and the Tempest V is in the middle of the current three, with a number of upgrades already available, and some figures too. This latest batch complement the other sets by adding cowlings that can be shown stripped off the resin engine, a set of styrene moulded RP-3 rockets, and a handy mechanic figure in the appropriate garb and pose. RP-3 60lb Rockets SAP/HE (SH32075) Unusually for aftermarket, this set is injection moulded, and comes in a figure-style box with a single sprue of grey styrene inside that holds parts for eight rockets and their launch rails, plus decals and a short instruction sheet. The rocket bodies are moulded as a single part with half of the warhead, to which you add the other half to avoid sink-marks by moulding them as single piece. The fins are individual parts that wedge into recesses in the tail to ensure that they are held at 90 o to each other. The completed rockets are then glued to their launch rails and can be installed under the wings of your model once painted and decaled according to the accompanying diagrams that use the Gunze codes for colour call-outs. All you need to add yourself are the ignition wires that link the rear of the exhausts to the airframe. Typhoon Resin Engine Cover Panels (5111) The cowlings are often forgotten about with resin engines, and having more detailed, accurate ones really completes the picture for the modeller that is going for the highest fidelity they can. This set contains ten resin parts of varying sizes, one of which is an almost complete monolithic casting of the chin cowling, complete with masses of internal details that begged a detail picture, which you can see below. The side cowlings around the exhausts are present, as is the curved top cowling, plus the two small access hatches on the cheeks and the adjustable lower door in the chin scoop. The detail is excellent throughout, and the casting blocks have been put in sensible places to reduce clean-up work. The main chin part has been attached along the intake lip, so care needs to be taken here so that the shape of the lip isn't obliterated by careless removal, but the mould-gates have been spaced apart with just a thin film between them, easing your task. Pic from Special Hobby's website to show the complete painted set with the kit. British WWII Tempest Mechanic (F32340) Another lovely sculpt to add detail and drama to your finished model, and this one will be particularly appropriate if you treat yourself to the cowling set above. He arrives in a clear blister pack, with the resin parts safely cocooned inside, and the instructions sandwiched between the front and header card. There are four parts in grey resin on two casting blocks, with the main body and legs forming just one part that has wafer-thin flash between his legs. The head and arms are three parts, with small quantities of flash under his chin and in the cups of his hands to ensure correct filling of the moulds and to minimise the risk of bubbles getting caught there. At 1:32 the features are readily visible and I'm happy to report that he has a full set of them, although on my example, the flare of his tie seems to have departed, possibly due to mould damage - It's nothing that can't be fixed with a little diamond of foil or thin styrene though. When complete his pose is one of someone standing waiting to be photographed, with one arm reaching up to stabilise a big piece of cowling and the other by his size. Parts 5, 6 or 7 from the above set would do the trick. You can of course change this pose by adjusting his arm to be resting against the airframe elsewhere, but that's at your whim. Review sample courtesy of
  14. Delta 1D/ E US Transport plane (72329) 1:72 Special Hobby The Delta was designed by Jack Northrop alongside the the Gamma in 1932 when the Northrop Corporation was set up with as a joint venture with The Douglas Aircraft Company. The Gamma was to be a mail plane where the Delta was to be a passenger transporter. It was a low wing monoplane with a fixed undercarriage. The wings were common to both aircraft with the Delta having a wider fuselage for the passengers with the pilot being seated upfront behind the engine fighter plane style. Space behind was for 8 passengers. The Delta flew in 1933 but suffered from a change in the regulations in the USA which prohibited single engined aircraft from carrying passengers at night, or over rough terrain. Only three aircraft were made before this regulation came into place with the first being used by TWA, the second by Pan-Am's Mexican subsidiary and the third to AB Aerotransport of Sweden. A single example was built for the US Coastguard and 7 more were built as executive transports. Of these three were purchased by the Spanish Republicans for use in the civil war there. Two of these were captured by the Republicans and used by them. The third was later used by the Republican Airline LAPE until the end of the war when it was also handed over to the Air Force. In addition to the US Built examples the Delta was built under license by Canadian Vickers where it was used as a photographic survey aircraft by the RCAF. The first example was supplied to Vickers by Northrop part assembled, and 19 examples were then built by them. This would be the first all metal stressed skin aircraft to be built in Canada. These aircraft were capable of being used with wheels, skis and floats although the latter was not a success due to corrosion issues. Delta were used for anti-submarine patrols in early WWII, but were withdrawn to training roles by 1941. The Kit The kit was first released in 2017 under the Azur FFROM label. The kit has 4 main sprues of injected plastic , and a clear sprue. The plastic is more limited run than main stream, the parts are well moulded with restrained panel lines, however there are a lot of ejector pins to clean up, all though on unseen surfaces. Construction starts without any surprises with the cockpit. The single cockpit for the pilot sits in the middle of the fuselage slightly higher than the main cabin floor. The rudder pedals are moulded to the cockpit floor, the side consoles are added along with the pilots seat. The instrument panel is then added along with the control column. Next up the 8 passenger seats are added to the main cabin floor. The cockpit and main cabin floor can then be added into the main fuselage along with the rear cabin bulkhead. Lastly before closing up the main fuselage the cabin windows need to be added. Once the main fuselage is together the engine is added to the front of the fuselage. The wings can now be added. These have a main full span lower wing with left & right uppers. Once the main wing is on the tail planes can also be added. The Spats and enclosed wheels are then built up and added to the main wing. To finish up the exhausts, tail wheel, aerial, pitot tube and propeller are added. Markings Decals are printed by Aviprint and look in register with good colour density. There are are three markings in the kit 1. Aircraft purchased for use in Elsworth's Antarctic flight of 1936, then bought by the Australian Govt for war use. Earth & Foliage Green Camo. 2. Ex US Coast Guard Aircraft used by the US Corps of Engineers in Eritrea 1942. Dark Earth & Olive Drab camo 3. The previous aircraft as a US Coast Guard machine. Conclusion It is great to see more boxings of this esoteric aircraft being released. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  15. 1/72 WWII US bomber pilot and two gunners 1:72 CMK Here we have pilot and two gunners/crew representing what looks the USAAF in WWII Conclusion These will enhance any diorama or scene. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  16. Fouga CM.170 Magister "German, Finnish & Austrian" (72373) 1:72 Special Hobby The Magister is probably Fouga's most well know design even though they had been producing aircraft since 1936. Post war the company was working on sailplanes and the heritage from this can be seen in the Magister design. In 1948 the French Air Force were looking for a jet powered aircraft to replace the then piston engine trainers. Fouga's original design the CM130 was under-powered with two Turbomeca Palas engines. Fouga then re-designed their aircraft to incorporate the more powerful Marbore engines, et voilà the CM170 Magister. The distinctive V tail, and slender wings bear testament to Fouga's sailplane designs. The prototype Magister flew in 1952 with an order for the first 10 being placed in 1953. The Magister was the worlds purpose designed/built jet powered trainer. It is also worthy to note the Magister made it into carrier aviation. With a few changes to the structure and undercarriage, the addition of an arrestor hook, and sliding canopies the CM175 Zephyr was born. Interestingly carrier trials took place on HMS Bulwark and HMS Eagle. The French aircraft industry in parallel with the UK went through many mergers with the aircraft being known as the Fouga Magister, Potez Magister, Sud Aviation Magister; and finally The Aerospatile Magister; though always actually being called The "Fouga" Magister. Development of the aircraft continued right up until the French selected its replacement, the Alpha Jet. Overseas sales proved popular were made to primarily to Germany, Belgium, Finland, and Israel; with Germany, Finland & Israel building them under licence. Of a total of 929 aircraft built, 286 were built under license. The basic jet was very affordable to operate for smaller Air Forces. Other users would include, Algeria, Austria, Bangladesh, Biafra, Brazil, Cambodia, Cameroon, El Salvador, Gabon, Katanga, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Nicaragua, Rwanda, Senegal, and Uganda. Many counties including Austria, Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Ireland, Finland; and Israel would use the aircraft for their National Aerobatic display teams. Even though primarily a trainer many of these smaller nations would use the aircraft for its light strike capacity as well. Israel would use them in combat during the 6 day war, El Salvador saw them used during its civil war, and aircraft used by The Katangese Air Force were used against the UN during the Congo crisis in 1961. The Kit The kit arrives on four sprues of grey plastic, and a clear sprue. The plastic parts are of excellent quality, the panel lines are engraved and deep enough to be seen after painting without being trenches. Care will be needed to take some of the smaller parts of the sprue, and it might have been the case that these would have been better in photo-etch? The clear parts are crisp, clear and thin. Construction starts in the cockpit area. The front and rear instrument panels are fitted (instrument faces are provided as decals), along with the seat supports for the front cockpit. The seats are added along with the engine and flight controls. Once complete the cockpit can be set aside. Attention then moves to the engine pods on each side of the fuselage. Engine fan faces and exhaust need to be placed inside and then the inner side of the engine trunking can be added. At the rear of each side the final exhaust section is added. Once the engines are complete then cockpit can be placed inside the main fuselage, and this then closed up. The radio equipment area to the rear of the cockpit is also added at this time. Various antenna behind the cockpits then need to be added and/or removed depending upon the version being modelled. Once the main fuselage is together work needs doing on both ends. At the rear the tail cone is added along with ventral strake. The 'V' tails are then added, care being taken with the small hinges for these. At the front the first part to me made up is the underside of the nose where the nose gear mounts. This attached inside the nose cone and the appropriate gun/no gun insert is attached to the top of the nose. The prominent nose mounted VOR antenna loops are added and the nose attached to the main fuselage. Construction then moves to the wings. These are of conventional upper & lower construction. The wheel wells are mounted into the wings before they are closed up, along with the wing mounted air-brakes. These can be modelled in with the deployed or retracted positions. The wing end mounted fuel tanks are in two halves, with the bottom being moulded to the upper wing, and then a lower fuel tank part is added. The clear noses can then be added to the front of the fuel tanks. The landing gear is then added to the model. The front single nose wheel is two parts and this is added to the main leg, this is then mounted to the nose of the aircraft. The single front gear door is added. The main wheels though larger than the nose wheel are single parts. These are fitted to the main legs, the legs along with their retraction struts are added into the main gear bays. The three part main gear doors are added. If needed armament can now be added to the model. Bombs and rocket pods are included to be used as wished by the modeller. To finish off the model the canopies can be added in the raised or lowered positions. Markings There are 3 marking options on a sheet printed by Cartograf which guarantees there will be no issues with it. Finnish Air Force - Aircraft licence built in Finland 1968 German Navy 1968 Austrian Air Force Silver Birds Aerobatic Display Team 1966-1968 Conclusion It is great to see more versions of this new tool from Special Hobby becoming available. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  17. Dornier Do 27 "German, Spanish and Belgian Service" (72327) 1:72 Special Hobby The Dornier 27 was a classic high winged Short Take off/Landing aircraft fitted with fixed landing gear. Surprisingly enough this aircraft was actually designed in Spain by the Dornier operation there to a Spanish Air Force requirement for a light untility aircraft. The Do 25 though was not selected for production. The Do 27 design would later be manufactured in Spain by CASA as the CASA-127. The excellent STOL performance ensured a lot of interest and order from many armed forces. The aircraft also has its place in history as the first mass produced aircraft in Germany post WWII. The new Luftwaffe & Heer ordered a total of 428 aircraft. The Kit This is a new tool from special Hobby, Looking at the sprues and parts not used it looks like a later Do 27Q-5 will be boxed at some point as well. Construction starts with the main cabin. The modeller will have to slect the version they are doing early as the cabin layout varies. The rear seats and bulkhead are added to the cabin floor along with the front seats, instrument panel and flying controls. The instruments being provided as a decal. Once the main floor is done it can be added into the main fuselage halves. Next up the engine cowling and engine front are built up for the front of the airframe. This can then be added to the complete fuselage. The tail wheel appropriate to the version being modelled can then be added. Next up the main wing is completed, this is of traditional upper/lower style. The main wing, tailplanes and rudder can then be added to the main fuselage. Next up the fixed landing gear is made up and added to the fuselage along with the engine exhaust. Last up the main cabin doors and cabin glazing along with various antenna are added. The antenna vary between the versions being modelled so care will be needed to study the instructions. Markings There are are three marking options in the kit, decals are y Cartograft so that all but guarantees there will be no problems with them Do 27A-1, 55+84 Luftwaffe, Penzig AB, 1977 Do 27J-1, OL-D11 Belgian Army Light Aviation, 1970s CASA C-127, 408-1, Spanish Air Force, Spanish Sahara 197- Conclusion It is great this new tool from Special Hobby of an important aircraft for Dornier used all over the world. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  18. P-40 Mainwheels 1:72 CMK for Special Hobby Kit Here there are three different types of main wheel provided, Block tread, Cross tread & Diamond tread; These are just a drop in replacement for the kit wheels. The resin allows much greater detail including the tread. Conclusion These will enhance the already great little model from Special Hobby. Recommended. Block Tread Diamond Tread Cross Tread Review sample courtesy of
  19. L-39ZA Albatros "Attack & Trainer" (48167) 1:48 Special Hobby The L-39 is a fast jet trainer that was designed and manufactured in Czechoslovakia (as was) as a direct replacement for the earlier L-29 Delfin. It has been a success in its roles, and has received a number of upgrades that have resulted in new designations, and since the dismantling of the Soviet Union, some have found their way into private hands throughout the west, and they are often seen at airshows. It first flew in 1971, and was hoped to become the standard trainer across the Union, and the in 1977 the ZA variant was flying, fitted with a cannon and four hard-points for mounting various weapons in the Light Attack role. With the Soviet Union gone, the orders began to dry up, and an updated L-159 was produced in partnership with Rockwell, using more up-to-date avionics. More recently, an L-39NG has begun development to begin deliveries of a thoroughly modern "Next Generation" of Albatros. The Kit This isn't a new tooling from Special Hobby, and was originally release before the new millennium under the MPM brand name. It has plastic parts, resin and Photo-Etch (PE) brass parts, so any shortcomings of the original moulds are replaced by these new parts. In the box you'll find just three sprues of mid-grey styrene, a separately bagged clear sprue, a bag of resin parts, and another bag containing two sheets of decals, a sheet of pre-printed clear acetate and a substantial sheet of PE. It's quite a complete package, and as someone that's wanted an L-39 for a while, it's a pleasing prospect to see it re-released. First impressions draw comparisons with the old Classic Airframes style of moulding, with quite highly polished flat areas, fine recessed panel lines and basic cockpit details in styrene, which as mentioned earlier are supplanted by some more up-to-date and handsome PE and resin parts. Construction begins with opening the instruction booklet that I forgot to mention, which is printed on glossy paper in A4 portrait form. The cockpit is first on the menu, with seats augmented by PE belts and ejection handles before being attached to the cockpit floor and hemmed in at the sides by side consoles, with rudder pedals and control columns in the usual places. The Instrument Panels can be built up as styrene only, or with the addition of a layered PE and acetate lamination, bringing more realism to the completed assembly, with the completed sections cemented to the cockpit sill part that encompasses the whole crew area. With the addition of the resin exhaust tube and pen-nib fairing to the rear (with engine detail at the end) the cockpit with separate rear bulkhead are then secured between the fuselage halves, and optionally for one of the decal options, you need to cut off the tip of the tail fin to the panel line marked on the accompanying scrap diagram, to be replaced by a new tip later on. The sill and instrument assembly is then dropped into the top of the cockpit aperture to complete that section. The lower wing is full-span, while the upper wings are separate, and have alternative actuator fairings for a number of the decal options, which are provided in resin to be fitted after removing the standard moulded-in ones. All the gear bay doors are depicted closed as if on the ground, with only small inserts visible for attaching the gear later, which would make an in-flight model very easy to achieve. The wings are mated to the fuselage at the same time as the two-part engine intakes, which terminate at the blank wall of the fuselage, but with some careful painting you can fool the eye that you're looking down a gradually darkening tunnel. The elevators fit with a tab and slot method, and a scrap diagram shows them perpendicular to the tail, so tape or blutak them in place while the glue is still wet. The clear parts include a pair of lights for the end of the integrated tip-tanks, and the canopy is supplied as a four-part arrangement for posing the canopy open, with some small PE parts added to increase realism. The windscreen and blast-shield between the seats are fixed, while the openers can be glued open or closed at your whim, or depending on how proud of the job you've made of the cockpit. A number of PE and styrene parts are added around the airframe, and the landing gear, which are built from styrene parts with attractive resin wheels are then installed in their sockets, with a captive door on the strut, which has made me scratch my head a bit, as it looks like the door etched into the wing. However after a little research, it seems the split door is to keep FOD out of the bay and folds inward when the captive door takes its place as it retracts. Two tiny PE doors are added to the nose gear wheel, which is built up in the same manner as the mains. A few optional PE and resin parts are then fitted depending on which decal option you have chosen, with captions assisting in your choice. Weapons always make a model look good, and with the Albatros it's no exception. The inner pylons have no pre-drilled holes in the wing, so you have to measure your own according to the instructions, and use the recesses for the outer pylons as a guide. The single barrelled SSh-23 cannon is supplied as a two-part fairing that installs behind the nose gear leg, and has some rather nice detail moulded-in, and you have a choice of some rather nice resin rocket pods and styrene fuel tanks to hang off the pylons. Markings There are seven decal options from the box, and three stencil layouts that are subject to their own pages in the booklet, so take care to use the right stencils. Decals are by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt/gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The colourful decals are found on the smaller sheet, while the larger one is filled with black stencils and other markings. From the box you can build one of the following: L-39ZA 2436 (232436) Czechoslovak Air Force 2 Squadron, 5 Fighter Regiment, 1980s L-39ZA 2436 (232436) Czechoslovak Air Force 222 Training Squadron, 22 Air Force Base, 2008-2013 L-39ZA 5107/NL-37 École Supérieure de L'air, Algerian Air Force, 1991-1995 L-39ZA 5107/NL-37 Algerian Air Force being repaired In the Czech Republic, April 1996 L-39ZA 5107/NL-37 École Supérieure de L'air, Algerian Air Force, 1996 L-39ZA 5119/208 Aero Factory Airfield, Czechoslovakia being test flown by Israeli pilots 1990 L-29ZA/ART Royal Thai Air Force (365504) in delivery livery 1994 There isn't as much choice of air forces as there first looks, but plenty of interesting colours, and of course the minty green of the ART scheme to tickle your fancy. Conclusion I for one am glad to see this kit on re-release. It's not a brand-new moulding, so take care during construction and exercise your modelling skills to produce an attractive model of the type. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  20. Messerschmitt Me 209 Mainwheels 1:72 CMK for Special Hobby Kit These are just a drop in replacement for the kit wheels. The resin allows much greater detail including the tread. Conclusion These will enhance the already great little model from Special Hobby. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  21. Messerschmitt Me 209V1 1:72 Special Hobby Like many aircraft manufacturers Messerschmitt created aircraft designed solely for record breaking attempts, and publicity. The Me 209 was one such aircraft. The 209 tag was designed to help associate it with the already successful Me 109. It would also be confusingly used later on in WWII for the successor to the 109. The only thing the original 209 share with the 109 was its engine. The rest of the aircraft being designed purely for speed. The cockpit was placed far back in the fuselage near to the tail giving the aircraft a unique cross section back there. Unlike the 109 the aircraft had a wide track inwardly retracting undercarriage. The aircraft would go onto in 1930 break the world speed record with a recorded speed of 469 mph. Though like many examples of the type the design was not much good for anything else. The company did try and turn the aircraft into a fighter, however the extra weight caused the aircraft to be slower than the 109. The Kit This is a new tool kit from Special Hobby which arrives on two small sprues of grey plastic, with an injection clear canopy and a small decal sheet. Construction starts with attaching the exhaust stubs into the fuselage halves. Following this work can start in the cockpit. The instrument panel has its decals added then is attached along with the rudder pedals, seat, floor, control column and other controls. Once these are all in the fuselage can be closed up. Work then moves to the wing. This is a one part lower and two part upper construction. The main centre section of the wheel bays needs to be attached prior to putting the wings on. Once the wings are on the main undercarriage units are made up. The main leg has its scissor mechanism attached along with a retraction struct and a single part main wheel. The gear doors can be then attached. If doing the BMF aircraft then this did not carry the outer doors. The appropriate tail then needs to be added as both options had a different tail unit. To finish off the prop and its housing together with the spinner are attached to the front. The decal sheet provides for two options: WR 1185 with the original tail fin and in NMF. WR 1185 with it's later tail fin and overall dark blue colour scheme. Conclusion Special Hobby's Me 209 is not a big kit with a massive parts count but these Speed Record Aircraft will always look good as a model. Highly Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  22. The Thunderbolt has always, just, been my favourite of the US piston engined fighters, though it faced tough competition from the Corsair. I used to drool over the colour profiles in Bill Gunston's Aircraft of WW2, and wonder how it was that the biggest and heaviest could also have been the fastest. But there are no P-47s in my display case, and it's about time that oversight was rectified. I shouldn't really be building this. I promised myself that I'd finish off some of the half-built models first, and there's a bottleneck of models awaiting paint (I can only airbrush at weekends, and only if we have no household guests, since the spare bedroom is the designated spraying area. But after a two week modelling hiatus (thanks, Aussie 'flu!), I really wanted to start something new. I have only one P-47 model in the stash, and it's the Special Hobby reboxing (with added bits) of the Academy 1/72 P-47 bubbletop. The SH parts are intended to soup the base plastic up into a P-47M, with improved engine parts and airscrew, resin wheels and tanks, and a couple of PE parts. In the box it all looks rather neat: I've not photographed the Academy plastic - that's the SH sprue, resin, and decal sheet. All the P-47Ms served with the 56th Fighter Group, so the five decal options cover the three, wildly varied and unusual, schemes sported by the three constituent squadrons. My preference is for the blue/light blue markings of the 63rd FS, and Cpt Flagg's Darling Dottie, UN-F. The belly and leading edges are natural metal, which will be a first for me. Captain Flagg went on to serve in Korea, and then worked with NASA on the Gemini missions (and apparently also the early work on the Shuttle). I found some gun camera footage on Youtube that is apparently from Darling Dottie: Hopefully this won't be a taxing build, though I do need to double check my paint stocks. Thanks for looking in!
  23. Hi all, Here's my just finished 1/48 Special Hobby Fairey Firefly Mk.IV, done as a Dutch Naval Air Service one, based at Biak in New Guinea in around 1960. Not my best ever build, but at least I managed to finish a Special Hobby kit this time. Previous ones always ended up on the shelf of doom for some reason. It was painted with Humbrol and ModelMaster, decals from the kit and a gun sight from Quickboost. Thanks for looking, I hope you like it. Pete
  24. WildeSau75

    great support from Special Hobby

    Hi guys, Just wanted to say that Special Hobby really positively surprised me with their customer service. I bought their 1/72 Vampire FB52 - a nice little kit - and managed to break one of the small parts. I did inform them about it and just about 10 days later, I got a little carton box with the whole sprue on which that one part was on. No bill no nothing, just a quick reaction to a request for help and over-delivering on expectations. Really a pleasant experience. And some weeks before I was asking about their further plans with the Vampire series. Being Swiss, I am mainly interested in the Mk.1 and the Mk.6 with the Pinocchio nose. I got very quickly a reply, telling me that the Vampire Mk.1 - with Swiss markings - is in the pipeline and that a Swiss Mk.6 is something they seriously think about. And maybe we even gone see a 1/72 Venom from them. I am aware of this being a coincidence that what I asked for is being thought over anyway by them, but the quick replies from them, their listening to their customers and a pleasant communication with them are just another example of their great customer service. No, I neither work for Special Hobby, nor own shares of them - I am just a happy customer :-). Cheers, Michael
  25. Special Hobby is to release a 1/32nd Fokker D.II kit - ref. SH32065 Sources: http://www.specialhobby.net/2017/03/sh32065-fokker-dii-132-pripravujeme.html https://www.facebook.com/specialhobby/posts/1351213861640141 V.P.