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  1. AMP is to release 1/48th Supermarine S.6/6A/6B kits: - ref. 48024 - Supermarine S.6B - released - ref. 48025 - Supermarine S.6 - ref. 48026 - Supermarine S.6A - released Source: https://www.facebook.com/mikro.mir.dnepr/posts/5078202038924158 3D renders V.P.
  2. In August 2020, Eduard is to release in August 2020 - just in time for the 80th Anniversary of the BoB - a new tool 1/48th Supermarine Spitfire Mk.I limited kit - ref. Source: https://www.eduard.com/out/media/InfoEduard/archive/2020/info-eduard-2020-01.pdf V.P.
  3. Spitfire Mk.Vc Trop ‘Over Yugoslavia’ (KPM0418) 1:72 Kovozávody Prostějov The Spitfire was the champion of the Battle of Britain alongside the Hurricane and a few other less well-known players, and it’s an aircraft with an amazing reputation that started as a bit of a damp squib in the shape of the Supermarine Type 224. This gull-winged oddity was the grandfather of the Spitfire, and despite losing out to the biplane Gloster Gladiator, designer R J Mitchell was spurred on to go back to the drawing board and create a more modern, technologically advanced and therefore risky design. This was the Type 300, and it was an all-metal construction with an incredibly thin elliptical wing that became legendary, although it didn’t leave much space for fuel, a situation that was further worsened by the Air Ministry’s insistence that four .303 machine guns were to be installed in each wing, rather than the three originally envisaged. It was a very well-sorted aircraft from the outset, so quickly entered service with the RAF in 1938 in small numbers. With the clouds of war building, the Ministry issued more orders and it became a battle to manufacture enough to fulfil demand in time for the outbreak and early days of war from September 1939 onwards. By then, the restrictive straight sided canopy had been replaced by a “blown” hood to give the pilot more visibility, although a few with the old canopy lingered on for a while. The title Mk.Ia was given retrospectively to differentiate between the cannon-winged Mk.Ib that was instigated after the .303s were found somewhat lacking compared to the 20mm cannon armament of their main opposition at the time, the Bf.109. As is usual in wartime, the designers could never rest on their laurels with an airframe like the Spitfire, as it had significant potential for development, a process that lasted throughout the whole of WWII, and included many changes to the Merlin engine, then the installation of the more powerful Griffon engine, as well as the removal of the spine of the fuselage and creation of a bubble canopy to improve the pilot’s situational awareness. Its immediate successor was the Mk.II that had a better Merlin engine and higher octane fuel to give it a healthy boost in performance. The IIa was armed identically to the Mk.Ia with four .303s in each wing, while the IIb carried the two 20mm cannons of the Ib and two .303s in each of the wings. The Mk.II was followed by the Mk.V that had yet another more powerful Merlin fitted, which returned the fright of the earlier marks’ first encounters with Fw.190s by a similar increase in performance from an outwardly almost identical Spitfire. The C-wing was also known as the Universal Wing, and could carry different armament types without modification, cutting down on manufacturing time, whilst offering easy armament changes depending on the task at hand. The Kit This variant of the beloved Spitfire is a reboxing with additional parts of the 2016 tooling, and arrives in a small end-opening box with a painting of the subject on the front and the decal options on the rear. Inside are three sprues in grey styrene, a tiny clear sprue, two decal sheets and the instruction booklet, which is specific to the Mk.Vc. Looking inside, the sprues are very nicely detailed with two sets of wings that have different gun fairings as separate parts for the topsides, so care will need to be taken when snipping them from the sprues. The interior is similarly well detailed, with raised and engraved detail on the sidewalls and instrument panel, plus the typical ladder of strengthening ribbing on the roof of the gear bays, which is moulded into the underside of the upper wings. Construction begins with the cockpit, with a decal provided to apply over the black panel to enhance the details, the control column, red-brown Bakelite seat, the seat frame with an armoured panel between the seat and its frame. This is attached to the floor section, then the stick and seat join them along with the instrument panel where the rudder pedals pass through the footwell cut-out. The completed cockpit is glued into the starboard fuselage half, and the two exhaust slots are backed by some styrene sheet from your own stock, with a drawing of a template given to assist you with this. If you have some 3.5mm wide strip to hand, you’re half way there already. The fuselage is then closed after adding the twin bottles in the port side, and the clear gunsight is fitted to the top of the panel, ideally after you’ve finished with the fuselage seams. The lower wing is full-width as you’d imagine, and this more modern tooling is detailed with the oil cooler and radiator fairing that has textured front and rear radiator surfaces, plus a pair of teardrop shaped blisters outboard of the gear bays, which also has the narrow tunnel that accommodates the gear strut when retracted. The upper wing halves are glued over the lower, and once dry it is joined to the fuselage, has the gun barrels installed in the leading edges, the elevators and rudder fixed to the tail, and the chin insert added to the front, followed by the two-part chin intake, exhausts, and tail-wheel with moulded-in strut. The landing gear is simple and made from a single strut, captive bay door and single part wheel on each side. The prop is moulded as a single three-blade part that is trapped between the front and rear spinner, the latter having an axle moulded to the rear that is inserted into the front of the fuselage. The canopy is a single-part, and has a rear-view mirror fitted to the top of the windscreen, and an antenna just behind the cockpit. The back page of the instructions shows the location of the aerials and all the stencils, including the flare-port decal on the side of the canopy. Markings There are three options on the main decal sheet, while the separate sheet contains all the stencils, which is good to see at this scale. From the box you can build one of the following: The decals are printed using a digital process and have good registration, sharpness, and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut loosely around the printed areas. This means that the carrier film on their decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier film free, making the completed decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the carrier film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view, and saves a good quantity of precious modelling time into the bargain. Conclusion A well-detailed replica of Britain’s favourite fighter from WWII as it flew with Yugoslavian pilots, and in the Yugoslavian Air Force after WWII ended and before the Iron Curtain came down. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  4. Spitfire Mk.Vc Trop ‘Mediterranean Theatre’ (KPM0417) 1:72 Kovozávody Prostějov The Spitfire was the champion of the Battle of Britain alongside the Hurricane and a few other less well-known players, and it’s an aircraft with an amazing reputation that started as a bit of a damp squib in the shape of the Supermarine Type 224. This gull-winged oddity was the grandfather of the Spitfire, and despite losing out to the biplane Gloster Gladiator, designer R J Mitchell was spurred on to go back to the drawing board and create a more modern, technologically advanced and therefore risky design. This was the Type 300, and it was an all-metal construction with an incredibly thin elliptical wing that became legendary, although it didn’t leave much space for fuel, a situation that was further worsened by the Air Ministry’s insistence that four .303 machine guns were to be installed in each wing, rather than the three originally envisaged. It was a very well-sorted aircraft from the outset, so quickly entered service with the RAF in 1938 in small numbers. With the clouds of war building, the Ministry issued more orders and it became a battle to manufacture enough to fulfil demand in time for the outbreak and early days of war from September 1939 onwards. By then, the restrictive straight sided canopy had been replaced by a “blown” hood to give the pilot more visibility, although a few with the old canopy lingered on for a while. The title Mk.Ia was given retrospectively to differentiate between the cannon-winged Mk.Ib that was instigated after the .303s were found somewhat lacking compared to the 20mm cannon armament of their main opposition at the time, the Bf.109. As is usual in wartime, the designers could never rest on their laurels with an airframe like the Spitfire, as it had significant potential for development, a process that lasted throughout the whole of WWII, and included many changes to the Merlin engine, then the installation of the more powerful Griffon engine, as well as the removal of the spine of the fuselage and creation of a bubble canopy to improve the pilot’s situational awareness. Its immediate successor was the Mk.II that had a better Merlin engine and higher octane fuel to give it a healthy boost in performance. The IIa was armed identically to the Mk.Ia with four .303s in each wing, while the IIb carried the two 20mm cannons of the Ib and two .303s in each of the wings. The Mk.II was followed by the Mk.V that had yet another more powerful Merlin fitted, which returned the fright of the earlier marks’ first encounters with Fw.190s by a similar increase in performance from an outwardly almost identical Spitfire. The C-wing was also known as the Universal Wing, and could carry different armament types without modification, cutting down on manufacturing time, whilst offering easy armament changes depending on the task at hand. The Kit This variant of the beloved Spitfire is a reboxing with additional parts of the 2016 tooling, and arrives in a small end-opening box with a painting of the subject on the front and the decal options on the rear. Inside are three sprues in grey styrene, a tiny clear sprue, two decal sheets and the instruction booklet, which is specific to the Mk.Vc. Looking inside, the sprues are very nicely detailed with two sets of wings that have different gun fairings as separate parts for the topsides, so care will need to be taken when snipping them from the sprues. The interior is similarly well detailed, with raised and engraved detail on the sidewalls and instrument panel, plus the typical strengthening ribbing on the roof of the gear bays, which is moulded into the underside of the upper wings. Construction begins with the cockpit, with a decal provided to apply over the black panel to enhance the details, the control column, red-brown Bakelite seat, the seat frame with an armoured panel between the seat and its frame. This is attached to the floor section, then the stick and seat join them along with the instrument panel where the rudder pedals pass through the footwell cut-out. The completed cockpit is glued into the starboard fuselage half, and the two exhaust slots are backed by some styrene sheet from your own stock, with a drawing of a template given to assist you with this. If you have some 3.5mm wide strip to hand, you’re half way there already. The fuselage is then closed after adding the twin bottles in the port side, and the clear gunsight is fitted to the top of the panel, ideally after you’ve finished with the fuselage seams. The lower wing is full-width as you’d imagine, and this more modern tooling is detailed with the oil cooler and radiator fairing that has textured front and rear radiator surfaces, plus a pair of teardrop shaped blisters outboard of the gear bays, which also has the narrow tunnel that accommodates the gear strut when retracted. The upper wing halves are glued over the lower, and once dry it is joined to the fuselage, has the gun barrels installed in the leading edges, the elevators and rudder fixed to the tail, and the chin insert added to the front, followed by the two-part chin intake, exhausts, and tail-wheel with moulded-in strut. The landing gear is simple and made from a single strut, captive bay door and single part wheel on each side. The prop is moulded as a single three-blade part that is trapped between the front and rear spinner, the latter having an axle moulded to the rear that is inserted into the front of the fuselage. The canopy is a single-part, and has a rear-view mirror fitted to the top of the windscreen, and an antenna just behind the cockpit. The back page of the instructions shows the location of the aerials and all the stencils, including the flare-port decal on the side of the canopy. Markings There are three options on the main decal sheet, while the separate sheet contains all the stencils, which is good to see at this scale. From the box you can build one of the following: The decals are printed using a digital process and have good registration, sharpness, and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut loosely around the printed areas. This means that the carrier film on their decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier film free, making the completed decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the carrier film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view, and saves a good quantity of precious modelling time into the bargain. Conclusion A well-detailed replica of Britain’s favourite fighter from WWII as it flew in the sunny Mediterranean in the hands of British, South African and French pilots. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  5. Thanks Jeffrey ! This is one of my dreams... A new tool 1/48th (?) Supermarine Scimitar F.1 plastic injected kit. But is this really for a model kit ? To follow. Source: https://www.facebook.com/solentskymuseum/posts/10157882457477131 Scimitar F.1 - XD332/194 preserved at Timsbury https://www.thunder-and-lightnings.co.uk/scimitar/survivor.php?id=26 V.P.
  6. Hi everyone! Let me present my new model. This time it’s Supermarine Spitfire, one of my favourites. There’s no need to specify the facts about the prototype because everyone knows this plane inside out and it’s one of the most frequently assembled models. However, I should point out that I wanted to show the qualities which were specific for early Spitfires. Those were the fighting machines whose creators had no idea about real combat conditions. They were equipped by a streamlined flat canopy that didn’t provide 360-deg vision or have any armoured windscreen panel (when you come to think of it, the plane had no armoured protection neither for life-critical units nor for a pilot). Moreover, the early models were built up with an old-school two-bladed rotor and some throwbacks such as an antispin parachute, and there wasn’t any weapon heating. It rendered the fighter useless on apparent combat heights of German bombers because frozen machine-guns didn’t work there. In other words, the early Spitfires were like Englishmen with enormous potential but poorly aware of what was waiting for them in the heat of the coming major war. I’ve chosen Airfix A02010 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.I/Mk.IIa set for assembling. The set makes a good impression, the details are well-fitted, but still there are certain drawbacks in canopy-fuselage attaching and wing-fuselage blending. The model is quite accurate, so it hasn’t raised a lot of my criticism. The only thing is that the upper part of cowl panel has square-flat shape closer to the Mk.V rather than Mk.I. The panel lining is pretty true-to-fact although a bit simplified and needs improvement. The model features the 9th manufactured prototype of Spitfire K9795 from the 19th Royal Air Force squadron in Duxford as in October of 1938. Thanks for looking!
  7. AMP has 1/48th and 1/72nd Supermarine S.6B kits in project. Source: https://www.facebook.com/mikro.mir.dnepr/photos/a.1416729748404757.1073741828.1416295571781508/1868468463230881/?type=3&theater V.P.
  8. "I've just been to Supermarines. I've seen a small Amphibian. It looks handy, tough, and versatile... something the Navy needs. I want you to put its service trials. Off you go..." Rear Admiral Maitland W.S Boucher, D.S.O. Royal Navy So while waiting for paint to finish my other build how about I see what I can do with SMER's 1/48 Supermarine Walrus. Airfix it ain't , but it does appear ( I know appearances can be deceiving)to be much better than a Tauro debacle I waded through on another GB. So far, aside A LOT of flash, it looks doable. and hopefully enough room I can trick this out with some extra detail inside, naturally it will be hidden once all buttoned up. So lets see what I have to work with shall we? I know I'll be scratch building and printing parts and so forth so this SHOULD prove interesting. So on orders from the Admiral.... Off I go!
  9. Just announced on the DBMK Facebook page that a 1/72 Supermarine Scimitar will be released immediately after the 1/48 version - very wise choice I think!
  10. Source: https://www.facebook.com/freightdogmodels/photos/a.238637406163951.82458.119466081414418/1928612257166449/?type=3&theater V.P.
  11. After the Seafire 5 kits set (link) Sword Models is to release in late October 2020 a 1/72nd Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XIVc/e 3 kits set - ref. SW72133 Sources: https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/SW72133 https://www.aviationmegastore.com/spitfire-mkxiv---3-in-1--expected-october-2020-sw72133-sword-8596444721332-aircraft-scale-modelling/product/?action=prodinfo&art=173345 V.P.
  12. Spitfire Mk.Vb Updates (for Eduard Weekend) 1:48 Eduard We’ve just reviewed the new Weekend boxing of the Spitfire Mk.Vb Mid from Eduard here, and for those of you that have changed your mind about the level of detail you want to include in your model, here are a couple of sets that can help you out quickly and easily. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Spitfire Mk.Vb Weekend Upgrade Set (FE1322) This includes a single fret of nickel-plated and pre-painted brass to increase the detail of the Weekend kit, if you’ve changed your mind about wanting a quick easy build with no PE already. A complete set of new three-layered instrument panels; added levers for the cockpit; seat armour and head armour; link hose between the two tanks in the rear; flare rack for the front of the seat; replacement throttle quadrant; rudder pedal straps; firing lever for the control column; compass insert; a full set of pre-painted four-point seatbelts; additional internals to the cockpit sidewalls; grilles for the intakes and oil cooler; surface meshes for both sides of the radiator baths under the wings; supports under the radiator flaps; closure mechanism for the pilot’s door; bases under two underwing outlets; rear-view mirror and closure mechanism for the canopy, and pop-up undercarriage indicator stalks on the upper wings that require a small hole to be drilled in the wing, as located by the red dot in the diagrams. Masks Tface (EX914) Supplied on a two sheets of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with everything you would expect for the exterior glazing, but also give you another set of canopy masks tailored to fit the interior of the glazing so that you can paint the insides of the canopy and give your model that extra bit of realism. From experience, it’s best to put the outer set of masks on first, then line up the smaller inner sections with those for nice neat frames on both sides. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Spitfire Mk.Vb Mid Weekend Edition (84186) 1:48 Eduard The Spitfire was the champion of the Battle of Britain along with the Hurricane and a few other less well-known players, and it’s an aircraft with an amazing reputation that started as a bit of a damp squib in the shape of the Supermarine Type 224. This gull-winged oddity was the grandfather of the Spitfire, and despite losing out to the biplane Gloster Gladiator, designer R J Mitchell was spurred on to go back to the drawing board and create a more modern, technologically advanced and therefore risky design. This was the Type 300, and it was an all-metal construction with an incredibly thin elliptical wing that became legendary, although it didn’t leave much space for fuel, a situation that was further worsened by the Air Ministry’s insistence that four .303 machine guns were to be installed in each wing, rather than the three originally envisaged. It was a very well-sorted aircraft from the outset, so quickly entered service with the RAF in 1938 in small numbers. With the clouds of war building, the Ministry issued more orders and it became a battle to manufacture enough to fulfil demand in time for the outbreak and early days of war from September 1939 onwards. By then, the restrictive straight sided canopy had been replaced by a “blown” hood to give the pilot more visibility, although a few with the old canopy still lingered for a while. The title Mk.Ia was given retrospectively to differentiate between the cannon-winged Mk.Ib that was instigated after the .303s were found somewhat lacking compared to the 20mm cannon armament of their main opposition at the time, the Bf.109. As is usual in wartime, the designers could never rest on their laurels with an airframe like the Spitfire, as it had significant potential for development, a process that lasted throughout the whole of WWII, and included many changes to the Merlin engine, then the installation of the more powerful Griffon engine, as well as the removal of the spine of the fuselage and creation of a bubble canopy to improve the pilot’s situational awareness. Its immediate successor was the Mk.II that had a better Merlin engine and higher octane fuel to give it a healthy boost in performance. The IIa was armed identically to the Mk.Ia with four .303s in each wing, while the IIb carried the two 20mm cannons of the Ib and two .303s in each of the wings. It was followed by the Mk.V that had yet another more powerful Merlin fitted, which returned the fright of the earlier marks’ first encounters with Fw.190s by a similar increase in performance from an outwardly almost identical Spitfire. The Kit This is a reboxing of a recent ProfiPACK tool from Eduard, following on from their other later marks of the Spit in their usual manner, providing us modellers with a wide selection of types and sub-variants as they proceed through their launch schedule. This Weekend boxing depicts the Mid production Mk.Vb, the letter B referring to the type of wing fitted to the airframe that was engineered to accommodate a pair of 20mm cannons within the area previously occupied by four .303 machine guns in earlier versions. This is a thoroughly modern tooling with immense detail squeezed into every part, and for the inveterate upgraders, the kits are moulded with that in mind, to be augmented by a raft of super-detailed resin and brass sets from Eduard themselves, which benefit from concurrent launch and excellent fit. The outer skin has been fully riveted with fine lines of rivets everywhere, plus different widths of engraved panel lines, fasteners on cowling panels, and even some lapped panels such as the fuel tank in front of the canopy. It arrives in Eduard’s blue-themed Weekend box, with five sprues in their grey/blue styrene, a clear sprue, a decal sheet with separate stencil sheet, and the glossy instruction booklet with painting guide at the rear in full colour. It is nearly identical in terms of sprues to the earlier boxing that we reviewed, and the differences between the versions are fairly small, but you use alternative parts on the sprues for the cannons and for some decal options, plus the decals themselves. Construction begins with the cockpit, which will probably be familiar to most, although there is a huge amount of detail when it’s done the Eduard way. It is built up on the starboard sidewall insert, with equipment, controls and a seat-carrying fuselage frame. The seat is next, having the optional flare rack at the front added, as well as some decal seatbelts and styrene rear armour. The control column is also made up and flight control box (more of a tangle, really) are joined to the seat and inserted in the next two fuselage frames forward. The next frame forward holds the instrument panel, which is made from an engraved styrene part with decals, which then glues to the frame, with the gunsight with a choice of square or circular glazing at the top of the panel, and the compass just below with its own decal, then the rudder pedals are put just inside the footwell below the panel. Forward of that frame is a blanking plate that is glued in place along with the spinner back during the fuselage closure procedure. The socket for the tail wheel and the leading edge of the wing fairing are also glued in, with a 1mm hole drilled in the port side. The canopy will require small parts of the sidewalls removing to accommodate the appropriate glazing, so make sure you cut those parts off too. They slip in a mention of a panel line on the very front of the nose that you need to fill in, so don’t forget that one, as it’s called out with a line and the word “fill” during the attachment to the wings later that is easy to miss, but you might want to deal with that while sorting the fuselage seams. The lower wing is a single part that stretches as far as the clipped wingtip would be, and there are two pairs of small holes that need drilling out on both undersides before you go any further. A long wing spar bridges the gap between the wheel bay cut-outs, then the rest of the bay walls are made from short sections and just the two outer wing-gun barrels per side are dropped into their slots ready for closing, then placing the fuselage into the gap and gluing it home. The empennage is next, with separate elevator fins and flying surfaces, plus the rudder and its control link. Back to the wings, and the elliptical tips or clipped alternatives (depending on your decal choice) are slid into place along with the ailerons, the latter you can pose deflected if you wish. Staying with the wing, the model is flipped over, and the radiator, oil cooler and chin intake with fairing are all added in, the radiator and oil cooler both having mesh moulded-in, L-shaped feeder pipes at the rear, and a flap with actuators for open and closed positions. The narrow track landing gear has a peg removed that is marked in red, and these then have the captive doors attached to the rear, and wheels made up from a tyre and two hub parts, with a split yoke and wheel for the tail, which slots into the socket buried within the fuselage earlier. The 20mm cannon parts simply slide into their sockets in the leading edge of the wings, with nice muzzle detail moulded-in. The canopy has a choice of parts used for the different decal options, and a choice of open or closed canopies is possible by using different parts. The fixed rear glazing is fitted first for the open option, but is moulded into the closed canopy for better fit on a closed cockpit. The cockpit door can be mounted open or closed, then the aerial is glued to the rear of the canopy on a base just in front of a clear lens. The exhaust stacks have been moulded carefully to give hollow tips, and the prop is a single part, covered front and back by the two-part pointed spinner, with the peg on the rear sliding into the front of the fuselage. The final steps show two aerial wires from the fuselage sides to the elevators, which you will need to provide from your own toolbox. Markings The Weekend editions historically only had one and later two decal options, but this one expands that to four options, which is nice to see. From the box you can build one of the following: BM211 F/Lt. John D Mitchner, No.402 Sqn. RCAF, RAF Merston, UK, Sept-Nov 1943 BL594 W/Cdr. Alexsandr K Gabszewicz, No.2 Polish Wing, RAF Northolt, UK, Feb-May 1943 BL384 F/Lt. John A A Gibson, No.457 Sqn., RAAF, RAF Andreas, UK, December 1941 BM309 2/Lt. Robert A Boock, 335th FS, 4th FG, Debden, UK, February 1943 The decals are printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The stencils are on a separate sheet, and are marked on a page of the booklet, separate from the rest of the markings to avoid confusion from trying to read overly busy diagrams. Don’t forget that as of 2021, the carrier film from Eduard decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier-free, making the decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view. If you got one of these and decided you want to add a little more detail after all, check out our review of the PE and Tface mask update sets here. Conclusion The Weekend editions have always been good value, and with four interesting schemes on offer, this one is no exception. If you change your mind about not wanting aftermarket later, there’s plenty to go at, or just build it and enjoy it. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  14. Spitfire Mk.XII Upgrade Sets (for Airfix) 1:48 Eduard Airfix have re-released their recent Mk.XII Spitfire in 1:48 with new decals as A05117A, and Eduard have created some new detail sets for modellers to improve on the level of detail that is available from injection moulding alone. Get what you want for the areas you want to be more of a focal point. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE), 3D Printed decal SPACE, and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. SPACE 3D Printed Cockpit Decals (3DL48086) The Eduard SPACE sets use new 3D printing techniques that lay down successive layers of different colour resin, creating highly realistic almost full complete panels that are supplied on a decal sheet. They can depict metallic shades, plus glossy, satin and matt colours too, which really ups the detail on everything they print. In addition, a small sheet of nickel-plated and pre-painted PE is included for the aspects of the set that lend themselves better to this medium, such as seatbelts and rudder pedals. The 3D sheet includes a completely new instrument panel in two layers, requiring the removal of the kit detail, the compass, which is applied to a slice of 2.6mm styrene rod, which drops into a PE bracket that is folded up and glued in place. Additional small instrument decals with PE levers and brackets are added around the panel, then both sidewalls are heavily updated with decals and PE parts after removing the raised sections marked in red from the inside of the fuselage. The rudder pedals are also replaced by PE frames with top straps, the trapezoid head armour is removed from the seat frame, then is replaced by a new PE panel with extra detail that has a recess for you to insert a piece of 3.3mm styrene rod to simulate the headrest, and a bracket fits across the seatbelt slot, which is then filled by the pre-painted PE belts that are supplied as four sections, two parts each for the shoulder belts and lap belts. Seatbelts STEEL (FE1303) These belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting. Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE. As well as the set of crew belts, you also get a small triangular toggle on a lanyard that attaches to the right shoulder belt. Masks Tface (EX898) Supplied on a large sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with everything you would expect for the exterior glazing, plus wheel masks for good measure, but also give you another set of canopy masks tailored to fit the interior of the glazing so that you can paint the insides of the canopy and give your model that extra bit of realism. Review sample courtesy of
  15. Spitfire F Mk.XVIII Upgrade Sets (for Airfix) 1:48 Eduard We reviewed this new boxing of the Spitfire in May here, which featured the cut down fuselage, bubble canopy and powerful Griffon engine that allowed to continue in service long after its heyday during the Battle of Britain. Eduard's new range of sets are here to improve on the kit detail in the usual modular manner. Get what you want for the areas you want to be more of a focal point. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Interior (491296) Two frets are included, one nickel-plated and pre-painted, the other in bare brass. A complete set of new layered instrument panel sections with the typical raised centre section a separate part, plus a small section on the right side, which is applied after removing the kit details. The bundle of cables down the left side of the footwell frame are removed and replaced by PE parts, with a perforated carrier for the compass supplied to receive a 2.6mm slice of rod with a painted PE top to finish it off. The rudder pedals are also replaced by a pair of detailed parts including the straps on top and a raised lever in front. The control column is given a PE firing button, and behind the pilot’s head a triangular head armour plate is attached to the front of the seat frame, with brackets to support a length of 0.4mm rod or wire in the centre. The cockpit sidewalls are decorated with a large number of upgrade parts on both sides, making it a much more realistic affair. The gunsight is replaced with a PE part that has its glass replicated by a piece of acetate cut from the small printed sheet that is also included in the set. The crew access door can be cut out of the side of the fuselage along it panel lines then replaced by a two-layer PE door that has a crowbar and locking mechanism added, glued to the fuselage by a narrow folded hinge. Just don’t you dare paint that crowbar red, or the purists will have you. The canopy has a closure fitted above the pilot’s head, and an oval eye through which a small kit part protrudes in the deck behind him. Externally, the twin radiator fairings under the wings are stripped of most of the rear cooling flap, with a new folded PE part glued inside the remainder, bracing struts and an actuator rod allowing it to be fitted into the back of the fairing along with a pair of skins for the radiator surfaces, depicting the intricate mesh that allows the heat exchange to take place. The chin intake has a flap and mesh insert added, the rudder actuator is removed and replaced with a PE strip, as are the trim tab actuators on the elevators. Inside the main gear bays a couple of small panels are fixed to the curved surfaces, then the legs are overhauled with new oleo-scissors and tie-down lugs, together with a brake hose and two-layer captive bay door. Under the wing trailing edge, a pair of hooks in surrounds are glued into place, and the tail wheel bay received a single part that folds into three to depict the bay and two doors, with an actuator strut between them attached to the retractable leg. Zoom! Set (FE1296) This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above. Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements. SPACE 3D Printed Cockpit Decals (3DL48082) The Eduard SPACE sets use new 3D printing techniques that lay down successive layers of different colour resin, creating highly realistic almost full complete panels that are supplied on a decal sheet. They can depict metallic shades, plus glossy, satin and matt colours too, which really ups the detail on everything they print. In addition, a small sheet of nickel-plated and pre-painted PE is included for the aspects of the set that lend themselves better to this medium, such as seatbelts and rudder pedals. This set has a two-layer decal instrument panel glued over the recently stripped back kit panel, with a small angled sub-panel in the bottom right consisting of a PE backing that holds two decals. The rudder pedals are replaced by detailed PE parts with foot straps at the top, and a perforated frame is made up to contain a compass made from a slice of 2.6mm rod from your own stocks, and a circular decal with the compass face on it. Behind the pilot’s head a triangular head armour part is attached to the front of the seat frame, with brackets to support a length of 0.4mm rod from your own stock in the centre. The twin shoulder belts on the PE sheet slot through the head armour while the two lap belts are slung over the sides, making sure that you apply the beautifully printed pencil quilted back cushion first, replacing the kit detail and looking very much like leather. The cockpit side walls are upgraded with a serious number of decals and PE parts to give the interior a much more realistic and cluttered impression with little in the way of removal of kit details. Seatbelts STEEL (FE1297) These belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting. Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE. As well as a sets of four-point crew belts, you also get a representation of the “towel rail” that supported the shoulder straps away from the sharp edges of the head armour through which it passed. Masks (EX885) Supplied on a sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the canopy, with compound curved handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape. In addition, you get a set of hub/tyre masks for all the wheels, allowing you to cut the demarcation perfectly with little effort, wingtip lights and landing light for good measure. Masks Tface (EX886) Supplied on a larger sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with everything above, but also give you another set of canopy masks tailored to fit the interior of the glazing so that you can paint the interior and give your model that extra bit of realism. Review sample courtesy of
  16. Spitfire Mk.IXc Club Line Kit (CLK0006) Pilot Sqn. Leader Johnny Plagis 1:72 Kovozávody Prostějov The Supermarine Spitfire was the mainstay of British Fighter Command for the majority of WWII, in conjunction with the Hurricane during the Battle of Britain, with the Mk.IX being the most popular (with many) throughout the war, seeing extended periods of production with only minor alterations for the role that it was intended for that differentiated between the sub-variants. Originally requested to counter the superiority of the then-new Fw.190, a two-stage supercharged Merlin designated type 61 provided performance in spades, and the fitting of twin wing-mounted cannons in wing blisters gave it enough punch to take down its diminutive Butcher-Bird prey. The suffix following the mark number relates to the wings fitted to the aircraft, as they could vary. The C wing was also known as the Universal Wing, and saw extensive use because it mounted two 20mm cannon in each wing, the outer barrel usually covered by a rubber plug. The main gear was adjusted in an effort to give it more stable landing characteristics, and bowed gear bays removed the need for blisters on the upper wing surface, helping aerodynamics. The gun mounts were redesigned to need smaller blisters in the wing tops to accommodate the feeder motors, and there was even more room for fuel than earlier wings. Lastly, the wings were able to have longer or clipped tips fitted, the resulting shorter wingspan giving the aircraft a faster roll-rate, which would be useful in low-altitude combat especially. The Kit The original tooling of this kit debuted in 2012, so is still a relatively modern tooling. This reboxing with a special decal sheet under the Club Line branding arrives in a small end-opening box with a painting of the subject just completing a victory over a fiery Fw.190, and on the rear there are four profile views of the decal option, as well as some words about the pilot, Sqn. Leader Johnny Plagis. Inside are two sprues in grey styrene, a single canopy part in clear styrene, two sheets of decals and the instruction sheet that is also intended for E-wing Spits, so take care to follow the appropriate instructions when building your model. Detail is crisp, and the outer skin of the model has a polished surface that shows off the engraved panel lines and restrained rivets. Construction begins with the cockpit that a lot of modellers will find instantly familiar. There is a decal for the instrument panel, and the Mk.IXc uses an unaltered armour panel behind the seat. The control column, mass of greeblies in the footwell and the Bakelite resin seat with pencil quilted cushion in the rear are all added during the painting process, with plenty of additional detail moulded into the interior face of the fuselage, although possibly a little soft by today’s standards. The cramped cockpit and scale means that this probably won’t notice however. The fuselage is closed up around the cockpit and exhaust stacks that are inserted from inside, and a gunsight is applied to the top of the instrument panel. The wings are full span out to the tips on the underside, and have narrow boxes glued over the tunnel where the struts rest in flight, before the upper wings are dropped over the top and glued down. For the C-wing, the tips, gun barrels and shallow blister fairings are all fitted into their respective spots, taking extra care to get the blisters aligned with the airflow and each other, as there are no pegs or outlines to follow. It might be wise to glue them on before the fuselage is between them, making alignment easier. Under the wings are two big box fairings for the radiators, which have front and rear faces fitted within, their location shown by cross-hatching in the shallow bay in which the parts sit. An offset T-shaped pitot probe is inserted into the port side of the wing, then the landing gear with separate oleo-scissors and captive bay doors are made up along with the chin scoops of long and short variety. The fuselage is inserted into the space between the wing uppers, a choice of elevators are slotted into the tail, with another choice of two styles of rudders plus the tail wheel underneath. By this time the Spit’s extra power was being delivered by a four-bladed prop, which is a single part clamped in place between the spinner cap and back plate, joined by the longer chin scoop on the C-wing variant. A choice of two tyre types are fitted to the axles at the end of the main gear legs, the other end of which is inserted into a hole in the inner edge of the bays. A scrap diagram shows the correct angle of the revised undercarriage from the front. Markings The stencils for this kit are shown on the back of the instruction sheet using quite small diagrams, but a lot of us could probably put them in the correct place blindfolded, but if you’re not one of those, just make sure your glasses or magnifier are to hand. There is just one decal option in this boxing, but that’s the whole point of the Club Line. From the box you can build the following: The decals are well-printed in good register, with a thin glossy carrier film close to the printed edges for the most part, but with a few that are a little larger. This shouldn’t cause too much of an issue however, as the film is thin and has a relatively soft edge. There are seatbelts and an instrument decal on the sheet, which should add a little realism to your finished cockpit. Conclusion A Spitfire model is a pretty easy sell to most modellers, and this one no different, having the additional interest of being the mount of a well-known Rhodesian pilot that fought against the Nazis during WWII, with 16 confirmed kills, many of which were over Malta. It’s also keenly priced. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  17. AZmodel is to re-release (link) it's 1/72nd Supermarine Seafang F.Mk.32 kit - ref. AZ7585 Source: http://www.azmodel.cz/produkt/supermarine-seafang-f-mk-32/ Original boxing ref. AZ.7272 & AZ7300 V.P.
  18. Spitfire Mk.Vb Late ProfiPACK (82156) 1:48 Eduard The Spitfire was the champion of the Battle of Britain along with the Hurricane and a few other less well-known players, and it’s an aircraft with an amazing reputation that started as a bit of a damp squib in the shape of the Supermarine Type 224. This gull-winged oddity was the grandfather of the Spitfire, and despite losing out to the biplane Gloster Gladiator, designer R J Mitchell was spurred on to go back to the drawing board and create a more modern, technologically advanced and therefore risky design. This was the Type 300, and it was an all-metal construction with an incredibly thin elliptical wing that became legendary, although it didn’t leave much space for fuel, a situation that was further worsened by the Air Ministry’s insistence that four .303 machine guns were to be installed in each wing, rather than the three originally envisaged. It was a very well-sorted aircraft from the outset, so quickly entered service with the RAF in 1938 in small numbers. With the clouds of war building, the Ministry issued more orders and it became a battle to manufacture enough to fulfil demand in time for the outbreak and early days of war from September 1939 onwards. By then, the restrictive straight sided canopy had been replaced by a “blown” hood to give the pilot more visibility, although a few with the old canopy still lingered for a while. The title Mk.Ia was given retrospectively to differentiate between the cannon-winged Mk.Ib that was instigated after the .303s were found somewhat lacking compared to the 20mm cannon armament of their main opposition at the time, the Bf.109. As is usual in wartime, the designers could never rest on their laurels with an airframe like the Spitfire, as it had significant potential for development, a process that lasted throughout the whole of WWII, and included many changes to the Merlin engine, then the installation of the more powerful Griffon engine, as well as the removal of the spine of the fuselage and creation of a bubble canopy to improve the pilot’s situational awareness. Its immediate successor was the Mk.II that had a better Merlin engine and higher octane fuel to give it a healthy boost in performance. The IIa was armed identically to the Mk.Ia with four .303s in each wing, while the IIb carried the two 20mm cannons of the Ib and two .303s in each of the wings. It was followed by the Mk.V that had yet another more powerful Merlin fitted, which returned the fright of the earlier marks’ first encounters with Fw.190s by a similar increase in performance from an outwardly almost identical Spitfire. The Kit This is a reboxing with additional parts of a recent tool from Eduard that has been released earlier, following on from their other later marks of the Spit in their usual manner, providing us modellers with a wide selection of types and sub-variants as they proceed through their launch schedule. This ProfiPACK depicts the late Mk.Vb, the letter B referring to the type of wing fitted to the airframe that was engineered to accommodate a pair of 20mm cannons within the area previously occupied by four .303 machine guns in earlier versions. This is a thoroughly modern tooling with immense detail squeezed into every part, and for the inveterate upgraders, the kits are moulded with that in mind, to be augmented by a raft of super-detailed resin and brass sets from Eduard themselves, which benefit from concurrent launch and excellent fit. The outer skin has been fully riveted with fine lines of rivets everywhere, plus different widths of engraved panel lines, fasteners on cowling panels, and even some lapped panels such as the fuel tank in front of the canopy. It arrives in Eduard’s ProfiPACK box featuring a gold banner, with five sprues in their grey/blue styrene, a clear sprue, a fret of Photo-Etch (PE) that is nickel-plated and pre-painted, a sheet of pre-cut kabuki masking material (not pictured – they’re impossible to photograph well), a large decal sheet with separate stencil sheet, and the glossy instruction booklet with painting guide at the rear in full colour. It is nearly identical in terms of sprues to the earlier boxing that we reviewed, and the differences between the versions are fairly small, but you use alternative parts on the sprues for the cannons and for some decal options, plus the decals themselves. Construction begins with the cockpit, which will probably be familiar to most, although there is a huge amount of detail when it’s done the Eduard way. It is built up on the starboard sidewall insert, with equipment, controls and a choice of seat-carrying fuselage frames depending on which decal option you have chosen. The seat is next, having the flare rack at the front added from PE, as well as some nice painted PE seatbelts and rear armour. The control column is also made up, and has a PE trigger added before it and the flight control box (more of a tangle, really) are joined to the seat and inserted in the next two fuselage frames forward. The next frame forward holds the instrument panel, which can be made from plastic with decals, or the more realistic and detailed lamination of PE parts with those lovely glossy dial faces on a separate backing plate, either of which then glue to the frame, with the gunsight at the top of the panel, and the compass just below, then the rudder pedals are outfitted with PE straps, before being put just inside the footwell below the panel. Forward of that frame is a blanking plate that is glued in place along with the spinner back during the fuselage closure procedure. The socket for the tail wheel and the leading edge of the wing fairing are also glued in, with a 1mm hole drilled in the port side. The canopy will require small parts of the sidewalls removing to accommodate the appropriate glazing, so make sure you cut those parts off too. They slip in a mention of a panel line on the very front of the nose that you need to fill in, so don’t forget that one, as it’s called out with a line and the word “fill” during the attachment to the wings later on that is easy to miss, but you might want to deal with that while sorting the fuselage seams. The lower wing is a single part that stretches as far as the clipped wingtip would be, and there are two pairs of small holes that need drilling out on both undersides before you go any further. A long wing spar bridges the gap between the wheel bay cut-outs, then the rest of the bay walls are made out of short sections and just the two outer wing-gun barrels per side are dropped into their slots ready for closing up, then placing the fuselage into the gap and gluing it home. The empennage is next, with separate elevator fins and flying surfaces, plus the rudder and its control link. Back to the wings, and the elliptical tips or clipped alternatives (depending on your decal choice) are slid into place along with the ailerons, the latter you can pose deflected if you wish. Staying with the wing, the model is flipped over, and the radiator, oil cooler and chin intake with fairing are all added in, the radiator and oil cooler both having PE mesh inserts, L-shaped feeder pipes at the rear, and a flap with two actuators for open and closed positions. The narrow track landing gear has replacement PE details fixed to the leg after removing the plastic representation, and these then have the captive doors attached to the rear, and wheels made up from a tyre and two hub parts, with a split yoke and wheel for the tail, which slots into the socket buried in the fuselage earlier. The 20mm cannon parts simply slide into their sockets in the leading edge of the wings, with nice muzzle detail moulded-in. The canopy has a choice of PE or styrene rear-view mirror on the windscreen, and a choice of open or closed canopies with a PE pull-handle in the top. The fixed rear glazing is fitted first for the open option, but is moulded into the closed canopy for better fit on a closed up cockpit. The locations for the masks are shown in a diagram at the end of the instructions, using liquid mask for highly curved areas of the blown canopy, and it’s worth noting here that the masks cover BOTH sides of the glazing, usually called Tface when sold separately. The cockpit door can be mounted open or closed, then the aerial is glued to the rear of the canopy on a base, two small holes are opened up on the upper wing for the PE landing gear markers, with a fuel filler cap on the cowling in front of the windscreen. The exhaust stacks have been moulded carefully to give hollow tips with a choice of two styles, and the prop is a single part, covered front and back by the two-part stubby or pointed spinner, with the peg on the rear sliding into the front of the fuselage. The final steps show two aerial wires from the fuselage sides to the elevators, which you will need to provide from your own toolbox. Markings There are a generous six marking options from the box, including Ocean Grey and Dark Green camo with various personalisations, plus one in dark blue and grey/green mixture that you must mix yourself from two Gunze shades, the numbers for which are provided. From the box you can build one of the following: EP120 S/Ldr Geoffrey W Northcott, Co of 402 Sqn. RCAF, RAF Merston, Jun-Nov 1943 AB276 F/Lt Václav Hájek, 313 (Czechoslovak) Sqn., RAF Hornchurch, Jan-Jun 1942 AB184 Sgt. Olav Dionne, 332 (Norwegian) Sqn., RAF North Weald, Aug 1942 EN794, S/Ldr Yvan du Monceau de Bergendal, 350 (Belgian) Sqn., RAF Redhill, Jul-Dec 1942 AA853 W/Cdr Stefan Witorzenc, 1 Polish Fighter Wing, RAF Heston, early Jul 1942 EP829 S/Ldr John J Lynch, 249 Sqn., RAF Krendi, Malta, Apr-May 1943 The decals are printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The stencils are on a separate sheet, and are marked on a page of the booklet, separate from the rest of the markings to avoid confusion from trying to read overly busy diagrams. Don’t forget that as of 2021, the carrier film from Eduard decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier-free, making the decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view. Conclusion There are always some moans about "yet another" Spitfire model, but other people’s kits don’t make money for Eduard, and they do it their own unique (and impressive) way. They’ve done a great job of these earlier Merlin-powered marks, and the detail is excellent from the box, with nothing else needed to create a great replica other than paint and glue, a little bit of fine wire or line for the aerials, and some of your own hard work. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  19. This is the old 1975 Revell kit (original edition!), finished just a few weeks ago. Built by my father, pilot sculpted by my brother, painted by all three . A huge kit, and one that still looks very nice today. One of those old kits with plenty of mechanisms everywhere. The original pilot was unable to exit his cockpit! so a new one was sculpted, with flexible compound, so he can squeeze in and out .
  20. Spitfire Mk.Vc Resin Update Sets (for Airfix) 1:72 CMK by Special Hobby These new sets from Special Hobby’s CMK line are intended for the Airfix kit to upgrade the details beyond what is possible with injection moulded styrene, giving your model much better detail, and hopefully enhancing the finished product’s realism. Each set arrives in CMK’s usual blister pack, backed by a card header, and with the instructions trapped between. Where Photo-Etch (PE) is included, a clear sheet of acetate separates the resin from the more delicate and easily bent PE, whilst allowing everything to be seen by the casual observer. Each set is separate and available in isolation, so pick and choose what you want to focus on, or what your budget allows. Cockpit Set (7485) This set requires the removal of the cockpit sidewall detail from the kit fuselage, plus the drop-down access door, after which you build up the instrument panel from four layers, two of PE, two of clear acetate with dials printed upon them. This is glued onto the panel’s frame with the footwell below. The seat frame is next, adding the supports, armour and the resin seat, with four-point seatbelts from the PE sheet. The main floor has the seat frame inserted, a pair of PE rudder pedals, resin control column and the instrument panel set in place, bracketed by the detailed cockpit sidewalls. The painted assembly can then be put in place between the fuselage halves, and later on the resin crew door is glued in place. Wing Guns – 2 Cannons (7486) Consisting of ten resin parts, this set includes the two gun bays, cannons and removable access panels for the wing armament. To begin with the upper wing is cut to remove the panels along their lines, while the lower wing has the skin thinned as much as you dare, and the cannon barrels nipped off the leading edges. The resin bays are inserted within the wing halves, the new long cannon barrels are glued into the leading edge of the wing with the kit stubs next to them, and the two panels per wing cast aside by the armourers. The short cannon barrels are for the spares box. Control Surfaces (7487) Containing sixteen resin parts and two PE parts on a small fret (not pictured), this set replaces all the flying surfaces of your Spitfire except for the rudder, and will require a little kit surgery before you can install the flaps and ailerons. The upper wings have their ailerons removed and chamfered to suit the new parts, and the flap bays thinned from the inside, while the lower wing has the small inner flap sections removed. The small resin parts are used to box in the inner flap sections, and the bays are glued into the underside of the upper wing, then once the wings are together the flaps and ailerons can be glued in place with super glue. The elevators are replaced completely with two parts per side, allowing you to deflect them to give your model a more candid look. The final parts are the small PE indicators on the upper wing that are installed perpendicular to the surface. Wing Guns – 4 Cannons (7493) Consisting of ten resin parts, this set ostensibly looks identical to the two gun set, but includes different gun bays with two cannon breeches per bay instead of one, four cannon barrels and removable access panels for the wing armament. To begin with the upper wing is cut to remove the panels along their lines, while the lower wing has the skin thinned as much as you dare, and the kit cannon barrels nipped off the leading edges. The resin bays are inserted within the wing halves, the new long and short cannon barrels are glued into the leading edge of the wing, and the two panels per wing cast aside by the armourers, which of course means you can nibble away at the kit panels, as they will no longer be needed. Conclusion A great group of sets that details up your Spitfire, along with making it heavier. Superb detail, relatively easy assembly that could be accomplished by everyone but the novice modeller. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  21. Spitfire Mk.XVI SPACE Cockpit Set (3DL48041 for Eduard) 1:48 Eduard The Eduard SPACE sets use new 3D printing techniques that lay down successive layers of different colour resin, creating highly realistic almost full complete panels that are supplied on a decal sheet. They can depict metallic shades, plus glossy, satin and matt colours too, which really ups the detail on everything they print. In addition, a small sheet of nickel-plated and pre-painted Photo-Etch (PE) is included for the aspects of the set that lend themselves better to this medium, such as seatbelts and rudder pedals. This set is engineered for their own 1:48 Mk.XVI kit that is still pretty new to the market. The 3D printed sheet contains a full instrument panel in relief, with a separate part in the central section; a new compass face; ribbed cushion for the pilot’s seat; equipment on the cockpit sidewalls, and a prominent run of four red-brown cables running along the right side of the cockpit, coming up from the footwell and disappearing into the throttle box. The PE sheet contains a mount for the compass; head and seat armour for the seat; a full set of harnesses for the pilot; various small parts around the cockpit; door operating mechanism; canopy winder and a pull handle to close or open it manually. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  22. Supermarine Sea Otter Mk.I/ASR Mk.II "Foreign Service" 1:72 Special Hobby (72431) The Se Otter was developed by Supermarine from its famous predecessor the Walrus. As a longer range Sea Plane the main difference is the arrangement of the engine from the pusher as seen on the Walrus to the more conventional puller. The Sea Otter was the last Sea Plane to be designed by Supermarine, and the last biplane to enter service with the RAF & FAA. Despite the prototype flying in 1938 it was not ordered until 1942 with only 292 of the nearly 700 ordered being produced before the end of WWII. Many aircraft were sold and used in civilian use post WWII with conversions to passenger and freight transport for remote locations being done. The Kit This is a re-release of the Azur Ffrom kit originally from 2011. The kit arrives on 4 spures, a clear spurue, A sheet of PE, a bag of resin parts and a cockpit film. Construction starts with the interior. Two seats complete with PE belts are made up these are fitted to the cabin floor along with all of the internal bulkheads. The instrument panel with its POE part and film goes in. The two rear windows go into the fuselage halves from the inside and then the fuselage can be closed up around the cabin interior. Now the tailplanes and rudder are fitted to the completed fuselage before work can start on the wings. Both the upper and lower wings are 3 part. There is a single upper with left & right lowers. The engine pod fits under the top with with the engine, cowl, and exhaust being in resin. The lower wing is attached to the main fuselage and then the upper wing is fixed on with all of the struts. There are shallow locating points for all the struts. Under the lower wing the stabilising floats can be fitted along with a pair of resin & PE bomb racks. At the rear the tail wheel is added and the main wheels are also built up ad added. To finish up PE & wire (not supplied) hand rails are fitted to the front and rear fuselage. These were used in SAR operations. A full rigging diagram is provided if the modeller wishes to rig the finished aircraft. Decals Three options are provided on the decal sheet, these look to have been made in house, they look to be in register with no issues.: Mk.I, 8S-10 8S Sqn, Cat Lai Air Base, French Indo-China 1949. Mk.II ASR - Dutch Navy 1950. Mk.I JM833 Danish Navy, Copenhagen 1947. Conclusion This is a good kit of an overlooked aircraft. The fabric effects are well represented without being overscale and there is a fair amount of detail. With some care this will build up into a good looking model. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  23. Spitfire Mk.IIb ProfiPACK (82154) 1:48 Eduard The Spitfire was the champion of the Battle of Britain along with the Hurricane and a few other less well-known players, and it’s an aircraft with an amazing reputation that started as a bit of a damp squib in the shape of the Supermarine Type 224. This gull-winged oddity was the grandfather of the Spitfire, and despite losing out to the biplane Gloster Gladiator, designer R J Mitchell was spurred on to go back to the drawing board and create a more modern, technologically advanced and therefore risky design. This was the Type 300, and it was an all-metal construction with an incredibly thin elliptical wing that became legendary, although it didn’t leave much space for fuel, a situation that was further worsened by the Air Ministry’s insistence that four .303 machine guns were to be installed in each wing, rather than the three originally envisaged. It was a very well-sorted aircraft from the outset, so quickly entered service with the RAF in 1938 in small numbers. With the clouds of war building, the Ministry issued more orders and it became a battle to manufacture enough to fulfil demand in time for the outbreak and early days of war from September 1939 onwards. By then, the restrictive straight sided canopy had been replaced by a “blown” hood to give the pilot more visibility, although a few with the old canopy still lingered for a while. The title Mk.Ia was given retrospectively to differentiate between the cannon-winged Mk.Ib that was instigated after the .303s were found somewhat lacking compared to the 20mm cannon armament of their main opposition at the time, the Bf.109. As is usual in wartime, the designers could never rest on their laurels with an airframe like the Spitfire, as it had significant potential for development, a process that lasted throughout the whole of WWII, and included many changes to the Merlin engine, then the installation of the more powerful Griffon engine, as well as the removal of the spine of the fuselage and creation of a bubble canopy to improve the pilot’s situational awareness. Its immediate successor was the Mk.II that had a better Merlin engine and higher octane fuel to give it a healthy boost in performance. The IIa was armed identically to the Mk.Ia with four .303s in each wing, while the IIb carried the two 20mm cannons of the Ib and two .303s in each of the wings. It was followed by the Mk.V that had yet another more powerful Merlin fitted, which returned the fright of the earlier marks’ first encounters with Fw.190s by a similar increase in performance from an outwardly almost identical Spitfire. The Kit This is a reboxing with new parts of a new tool from Eduard, following on from their other later marks of the Spit in their usual manner, providing us modellers with a wide selection of types and sub-variants as they proceed through their launch schedule. This is a thoroughly modern tooling with immense detail squeezed into every part, and for the inveterate upgraders, the kits are moulded with that in mind, to be augmented by a raft of super-detailed resin and brass sets from Eduard themselves, which benefit from concurrent launch and excellent fit. The outer skin has been fully riveted with fine lines and rivets everywhere, plus different widths of engraved lines, Dzuz fasteners on cowling panels, and even some lapped panels such as the fuel tank in front of the canopy. It arrives in Eduard’s new ProfiPACK box featuring a gold banner, with five sprues in their grey/blue styrene, a clear sprue, a fret of Photo-Etch (PE) that is nickel-plated and pre-painted, a small sheet of pre-cut kabuki masking material (not pictured), a large decal sheet with separate stencil sheet, and the glossy instruction booklet with painting guide at the rear in full colour. It is nearly identical in terms of sprues to the Mk.IIa that we reviewed recently apart from the new wing sprue, so four sprues and the clear parts in common with its sibling. The differences between the two versions are otherwise small, but you use alternative parts on the sprues for the cannons and for some decal options, plus the decals themselves. Construction begins with the cockpit, which will probably be familiar to most, although there is a huge amount of detail when it’s done the Eduard way. It is built up on the starboard sidewall insert, with equipment, controls and a choice of seat-carrying fuselage frames depending on which decal option you have chosen. The seat is next, having the flare rack at the front added from PE, as well as some nice painted PE seatbelts and rear armour. The control column is also made up, and has a PE trigger added before it and the flight control box (more of a tangle, really) are joined to the seat and inserted in the next two fuselage frames forward. The next frame forward holds the instrument panel, which can be plastic with decals, or the more complex and detailed lamination of PE parts with those lovely glossy dial faces on a separate backing plate, either of which then glue to the frame, with the gunsight at the top of the panel, and the compass just below, then the rudder pedals are outfitted with PE straps and footrests, before being put just inside the footwell below the panel. Forward of that frame is a blanking plate that is glued in place along with the spinner back during the fuselage closure procedure. The socket for the tail wheel and the leading edge of the wing fairing are also glued in, and take care here, as there are two diagrams below the fuselage closure that cover the painting and decaling of the cockpit sidewalls, which must be done before closure, as you’d imagine. The canopy will require small parts of the sidewalls removing to accommodate the appropriate glazing, so make sure you cut those parts off too. They slip in a mention of a panel line on the very front of the nose that you need to fill in, so don’t forget that one, as it’s called out with a line and the word “fill” during the attachment to the wings later on. There is also a hole to be drilled in the port wing root fairing as well. The lower wing is a single part out as far as the clipped wing rib, and there are two pairs of small holes that need drilling out on both undersides before you go any further. A long wing spar bridges the gap between the wheel bay cut-outs, then the rest of the bay walls are made out of short sections and just the two wing-gun barrels per side are dropped into their slots ready for closing up the wing, then placing the fuselage into the gap and gluing it home. The empennage is next, with separate elevator fins and flying surfaces, plus the rudder and its control link, chopping off the short tube on the top of the fin. Back to the wings, and the elliptical tips are slid into place along with the ailerons, which you can pose deflected if you wish. Staying with the wing, the model is flipped over, and the radiator, oil cooler and chin intake with fairing are all added in, the radiator and oil cooler both having PE mesh inserts, L-shaped feeder pipes at the rear, and a scale-thickness PE flap with two actuators for open and closed positions. The narrow track landing gear has replacement PE details fixed to the leg after removing the plastic representation, and these then have the captive doors attached to the rear, and wheels made up from a tyre and two hub parts, with a split yoke and wheel for the tail, which slots into the socket buried in the fuselage. The 20mm cannon parts simply slide into their sockets in the leading edge of the wings, which explains the requirement for the new sprue with the small circular fairings moulded into it. The canopy has a choice of PE or styrene rear-view mirror on the windscreen, and a choice of open or closed canopies with a PE pull-handle in the top. The fixed rear glazing is fitted first for the open option, but is moulded into the closed canopy for better fit. The locations for the masks are shown in a diagram at the end of the instructions, using liquid mask for highly curved areas of the blown canopy. The cockpit door can be mounted open or closed, then the aerial is glued to the rear of the canopy on a base, two small holes are opened up on the upper wing for the PE landing gear markers, with a fuel filler cap on the cowling in front of the windscreen. The exhaust stacks have been moulded carefully to give hollow tips, and the prop is a single part, covered front and back by the two-part pointed spinner, with the peg on the rear sliding into the front of the fuselage. The final steps show two aerial wires from the fuselage sides to the elevators, which you will need to provide from your own toolbox. Markings There are a generous six marking options from the box, including some early war in Dark Earth/Dark Green and later examples with Ocean Grey and Dark Green camo. From the box you can build one of the following: P/O Frederick A O Gaze, No.610 (County of Chester) Sqn., RAF Westhampnett, West Sussex, 1941 P8519 No.306 (Polish) Sqn., RAF Northolt, July 1941 P8646, No.616 (South Yorkshire) Sqn., RAF Kirton in Lindsey, Lincolnshire, Oct/Nov, 1941 P8505 Sgt. Eric S Dicks-Sherwood, No.266 (Rhodesia) Sqn., RAF Wittering, Cambs., Sept 1941 P8533 S/Ldr. Percival S Turner, CO of 145 Sqn., RAF Catterick, North Yorks., Oct 1941 P8348 No.52 OTU, RAF Debden, Essex, Summer 1943 The decals are printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The stencils are on a separate sheet, and are marked on a page of the booklet, separate from the rest of the markings to avoid confusion from trying to read overly busy diagrams. Conclusion There are always some moans about "yet another" Spitfire model, but other people’s kits don’t make money for Eduard, and they do it their own unique way. They’ve done a great job of these early marks, and the detail is excellent from the box, with nothing else needed to create a great replica other than paint and glue, a little bit of fine wire for the aerials, and some of your hard work. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  24. Spitfire Mk.Ia ProfiPACK (82151) 1:48 Eduard The Spitfire was the champion of the Battle of Britain along with the Hurricane and a few other less well-known players, and it’s an aircraft with an amazing reputation that started from a bit of a damp squib in the shape of the Supermarine Type 224. The gull-winged oddity was the grandfather of the Spitfire, and despite losing out to the biplane Gloster Gladiator, designer R J Mitchell was spurred on to go back to the drawing board and create a more modern, technologically advanced and therefore risky design. This was the Type 300, and it was an all-metal construction with an incredibly thin elliptical wing that became legendary, although it didn’t leave much space for fuel, a situation that was further worsened by the Air Ministry’s insistence that four .303 machine guns were to be installed in each wing, rather than the three originally envisaged. It was a very well-sorted aircraft from the outset, so quickly entered service with the RAF in 1938 in small numbers. With the clouds of war accumulating, the Ministry issued more orders and it became a battle to create enough to fulfil demand in time for the outbreak and early days of war from September 1939 onwards. By then, the restrictive straight sided canopy had been replaced by a “blown” hood to give the pilot more visibility, although a few with the old canopy still lingered. The title Mk.Ia was given retrospectively to differentiate between the cannon-winged Mk.Ib that was instigated after the .303s were found somewhat lacking compared to the 20mm cannon armament of their main opposition at the time, the Bf.109. As is usual in wartime, the designers could never rest on their laurels with an airframe like the Spitfire, as it had significant potential for development, a process that lasted throughout the whole of WWII, and included many changes to the Merlin engine, then the installation of the more powerful Griffon engine, as well as the removal of the spine of the fuselage and creation of a bubble canopy to improve the pilot’s situational awareness. Its immediate successor was the Mk.II with a new Mk.XII Merlin, followed by the Mk.V that had yet another more powerful Merlin fitted, which returned the fright of the earlier marks’ first encounters with Fw.190s by a similar increase in performance of an outwardly almost identical Spitfire. The Kit This is a new tool from Eduard, following on from their other later marks of the Spit in their usual manner, providing us modellers with a wide selection of types and sub-variants as they proceed through their launch schedule. This is a thoroughly modern tooling with immense detail squeezed into every part, and for the inveterate upgraders, the kits are moulded with that in mind, to be augmented by a raft of super-detailed resin and brass sets from Eduard themselves, which benefit from concurrent launch and excellent fit. The outer skin has been fully riveted with fine lines and rivets everywhere, plus different widths of engraved lines, Dzuz fasteners on cowling panels, and even some lapped panels such as the fuel tank in front of the canopy. It arrives in Eduard’s standard ProfiPACK box, with five sprues in their grey/blue styrene, a circular clear sprue, a fret of Photo-Etch (PE) that is nickel-plated and pre-painted, a small sheet of pre-cut kabuki masking material (not pictured), a large decal sheet with separate stencil sheet, and the glossy instruction booklet with painting guide at the rear in full colour. Construction begins with the cockpit, which will probably be familiar to most, although maybe not in so much detail if you’re not used to the Eduard way. It is built up on the starboard sidewall insert, with equipment, controls and a choice of seat-carrying fuselage frames depending on which decal option you have chosen. The seat is next, having the flare rack at the front removed and replaced by the daintier PE part, as well as some nice PE seatbelts and rear armour. The control column is also made up, and has a PE trigger added before it and the flight control box (more of a tangle, really) are joined to the seat and inserted in the next two fuselage frames forward. The next frame forward holds the instrument panel, which can be plastic with decals, or the more complex and detailed lamination of PE parts with those lovely glossy dial faces on a separate backing plate, either of which then glue to the frame, with the gunsight at the top of the panel, and the compass just below, then the rudder pedals are outfitted with PE straps and footrests, before being put just inside the cut-out below the panel. Forward of that frame is a blanking plate that is glued in place along with the spinner back during the fuselage closure procedure. The socket for the tail wheel and the leading edge of the wing fairing are also glued in, and take care here, as there are two diagrams below the fuselage closure that cover the painting and decaling of the cockpit sidewalls, which must be done before closure, as you’d imagine. The canopy will require small parts of the sidewalls removing to accommodate the appropriate glazing, so make sure you cut those parts off too. They slip in a mention of a panel line on the very front of the nose that you need to fill in, so don’t forget that one, as it’s called out with a line and the word “fill” during the attachment to the wings later on. The lower wing is a single part out as far as the clipped wing rib, and there are two small holes that need drilling out on both undersides before you go any further. A long wing spar bridges the gap between the wheel bay cut-outs, then the rest of the bay walls are made out of short sections and the wing-gun barrels are dropped into their slots ready for closing up the wing, then placing the fuselage into the gap and gluing home. The tail feathers are next, with separate elevator fins and flying surfaces, plus the rudder and its control link. Back to the wings, and the elliptical tips are slid into place along with the ailerons, which you can pose deflected if you wish. Staying with the wing, the model is flipped over, and the radiator, oil cooler and chin intake with fairing are all added in, the radiator and oil cooler both having PE mesh inserts, L-shaped feeder pipes at the rear, and a scale-thickness PE flap with two actuators for open and closed positions. The narrow track landing gear has replacement PE details fixed to the leg after removing the plastic representation, and these then have the captive doors attached to the rear, and wheels made up from a tyre and two hub parts, with a split yoke and wheel for the tail, which slots into the socket buried in the fuselage. The canopy has a choice of fittings on the windscreen, and a choice of open or closed canopies with a PE pull-handle in the top. The fixed rear glazing is fitted first for the open option, but is moulded into the closed canopy for better fit. The locations for the masks are shown in a diagram at the end of the instructions, using liquid mask for highly curved areas of the blown canopy. The cockpit door can be mounted open or closed, then the aerial is glued to the rear of the canopy on a base, two small holes are opened up on the upper wing for the PE landing gear markers, with a fuel filler cap on the cowling in front of the windscreen. The exhaust stacks have been moulded carefully to give hollow tips, and the prop is a single part, covered front and back by the two-part spinner, with the peg on the rear sliding into the front of the fuselage. The final steps show two aerial wire layouts for the different markings, which you will need to provide from your own toolbox. Markings There are a generous seven marking options from the box, including some very early war aircraft with the black and white underwing markings, and the over-sized roundels with yellow outer rings under the wings. From the box you can build one of the following: R6709, flown by P/O Colin Falkland Gray, RNZAF, No. 54 Squadron, RAF Hornchurch, United Kingdom, March 1940 N3250, flown by P/O Allan R. Wright, No. 92 Squadron, RAF Croydon, United Kingdom, late May/early June 1940 R6690, flown by P/O John C. Dundas, No. 609 Squadron, RAF Middle Wallop/RAF Warmwell, United Kingdom, August 13th, 1940 R6835, flown by F/O Brian J. Carbury, No. 603 Squadron, RAF Hornchurch, United Kingdom, late August 1940 P9386, flown by S/Ldr Brian J. Lane, No. 19 Squadron, RAF Fowlmere, United Kingdom, September 1940 X4253, flown by P/O Wilfrid G. Duncan Smith, No. 611 Squadron, RAF Hornchurch, United Kingdom, February 1941 X4828, flown by F/Lt Wojciech Kolaczkowski, No. 303 Squadron, RAF Speke, United Kingdom, September 1941 The decals are printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The stencils are marked on the rear page of the booklet, separate from the rest of the markings to avoid confusion from trying to read overly busy diagrams. Conclusion There are bound to be some moans about another Spitfire model, but other people’s kits don’t make money for Eduard. They’ve done a great job of this early mark, and the detail is second to none from the box, with nothing else needed to create a great replica other than paint and glue, with a sprinkling of talent. Very highly recommended. You can also get an ART poster of the full box art, which really is a nice one. You can see that below: Review sample courtesy of
  25. Supermarine Sea Otter Mk.I "WWII Service" 1:72 Special Hobby (72429) The Se Otter was developed by Supermarine from its famous predecessor the Walrus. As a longer range Sea Plane the main difference is the arrangement of the engine from the pusher as seen on the Walrus to the more conventional puller. The Sea Otter was the last Sea Plane to be designed by Supermarine, and the last biplane to enter service with the RAF & FAA. Despite the prototype flying in 1938 it was not ordered until 1942 with only 292 of the nearly 700 ordered being produced before the end of WWII. Many aircraft were sold and used in civilian use post WWII with conversions to passenger and freight transport for remote locations being done. The Kit This is a re-release of the Azur Ffrom kit originally from 2011. The kit arrives on 4 spures, a clear spurue, A sheet of PE, a bag of resin parts and a cockpit film. Construction starts with the interior. Two seats complete with PE belts are made up these are fitted to the cabin floor along with all of the internal bulkheads. The instrument panel with its POE part and film goes in. The two rear windows go into the fuselage halves from the inside and then the fuselage can be closed up around the cabin interior. Now the tailplanes and rudder are fitted to the completed fuselage before work can start on the wings. Both the upper and lower wings are 3 part. There is a single upper with left & right lowers. The engine pod fits under the top with with the engine, cowl, and exhaust being in resin. The lower wing is attached to the main fuselage and then the upper wing is fixed on with all of the struts. There are shallow locating points for all the struts. Under the lower wing the stabilising floats can be fitted along with a pair of resin & PE bomb racks. At the rear the tail wheel is added and the main wheels are also built up ad added. To finish up PE & wire (not supplied) hand rails are fitted to the front and rear fuselage. These were used in SAR operations. A full rigging diagram is provided if the modeller wishes to rig the finished aircraft. Decals Three options are provided on the decal sheet, these look to have been made in house, they look to be in register with no issues.: JN106 - No. 1701 Sqn FAA, Maryborough Australia 1945 JM744, No.771 Sqn FAA, RNAS Hatson (HMS Sparrowhawk) Orkney Islands, 1944 JM808, No.712 Sqn FAA, RNAS Hatson (HMS Sparrowhawk) Orkney Islands, 1944/45 Conclusion This is a good kit of an overlooked aircraft. The fabric effects are well represented without being overscale and there is a fair amount of detail. With some care this will build up into a good looking model. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
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