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  1. Zoukei Mura is developing a series of 1/32nd Focke-Wulf Fw.190A & Fw.190D kits. Source: https://www.facebook.com/cybermodeller?hc_location=timeline V.P.
  2. Source: https://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/sentiment/oyajiblog_134.html Zoukei-Mura 1/32nd projects for the coming years. Guess the types. P-51A/B Mustang or A-36 Apache and T-28 Trojan? V.P.
  3. Zoukei-Mura is to release a 1/32nd Kawasaki Ki-100-I Otsu Type 5 kit - ref. Sources: https://twitter.com/volks_hobbydept/status/1507608459570991105 https://www.facebook.com/groups/215551215532252/posts/1442858899468138/ https://twitter.com/volks_hobbydept/status/1507608459570991105?fbclid=IwAR1jz8Q_ps8hS-FIPZQ1U5p2M2TcozieHicUYWnL5a5KM-ICYc60dQbsH7U V.P.
  4. #2/2018 Zoukei-Mura kit, painted with Gunze and Tamiya acrylics My dad thought it would be a shame to hide all the nice detail, so he decided to keep it naked and show a fictious not yet finished prototype. Besides that, the fit of the panels isn´t so good. Gonna do a clothed one with the old Dragon kit in the nearer future. Build thread here DSC_0001 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0002 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0003 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0004 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0005 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0006 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0007 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0008 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0009 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0010 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0011 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0012 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0013 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0014 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0015 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0016 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0017 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0018 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0019 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0021 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr
  5. Figured I might as well start a thread to commit to a start of a build. What am I going to build...good question. Might as well throw my musings here instead of cluttering up the chat thread...and give you all a place to ridicule me. I've definitely got too many options...and the base kit for the HAF AUP conversion showed up today as well (still waiting for release of the conversion kit, so that one is out of the running). Leading pack...4 schemes, 3 types, 3 kits, 3 manufacturers, and 3 countries. Lots of diversity. And yes, I would love to build them all.....but sadly I will not even remotely come close to having time to build them all. I've got a few days before I have to have my decision finalized, as I want to get the F-16s & F-100 off the bench first. I'll probably end up making sure I get any paints I need ordered this weekend so I'll be in a position to jump on any of these. Anyways, onto the contenders..... Option #1: JASDF F-EJ Kai - Oceanic Camo (8 Sqn) - Zoukei Mura Pros: Lovely scheme, and very unique. Modern kit. Excellent detail out of the box. Good chance it needs nothing...even the seats are pretty nice, A/A weapons. Decent size box, free up stash space for the E that arrived today. Cons: Stencils...lots of them. No A/G ordinance (though not a huge concern as this is planned to be built as a CAP bird for an anti-ship equipped F-2). Option #2: USN F-4J - Experimental Scheme (VF-194) - Eduard/Academy Pros: Cool, unique scheme (cross between Norm81 & Ferris). Modern kit. Very good detail out of the box. Eduard boxing comes w/ resin cans, seats & wheels (kit cans are pretty nice, would save to update another kit). Huge box, would free up the most stash space. Good mix of A/A & basic A/G weapons. No stencils! Cons: Detail not quite to Z-M level. A/G weapons are only plain jane Mk.82. Option #3: USN F-4J - Vandy-1 (VX-1) Pros: Classic scheme. Modern kit. Very good detail out of the box. Resin cans, seats & wheels. Huge box to free up maximum stash space. Minimal stencils. Single color, less time in paint. Cons: Detail not quite Z-M level (especially in the wheel wells). Need to do a bit more research on this scheme. If it has white stencils, I will need to track them down. Stencils (or new sheet w/ markings & stencils) needed. Despite single color finish, probably going to be the most difficult to have an "interesting" finish. Option #4: Luftwaffe F-4F (???) Pros: Cool scheme. Who doesn't love European F-4s? Nostalgia factor. Minimal stencils. Cons: Ok detail, would probably be looking at seats & cans...maybe Eduard/Quinta cockpit panels? Need to research if more stencils are needed, will need to acquire if so (box decals are old, so may be sound to source new stencils anyways). Largest number of exterior colors required (5). Raised panel lines on horizontal stabs & pylons (minimal rescribing). Sounds like there would be no reason to go with this kit, right? But nostalgia weighs in heavily, and even if I were to purchase cans & seats, with what I picked this kit up for at a show a couple years ago, it's still half the cost of the modern releases. Feel free to pitch in your likes and opinions...I'll make sure to take none of them into account.
  6. Source: http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/sentiment/oyajiblog_088.html The already announced as "in development" 1/32nd Fw.190A and 190D? http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234965337-132-focke-wulf-fw190a-345678-d-9-by-zoukei-mura-in-development Wait and see. Update 05/11/2016: The first of the new 1/32nd models to be announced at Telford SMW 2016 is a Henschel HS 129 see herebelow The second one is a 1/32nd Kawasaki Ki-45 Toryu "Nick" see thread: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235011594-132-kawasaki-ki-45-toryu-nick-by-zoukei-mura-release-in-2017/ V.P.
  7. …and we’re off and running for the NY….gosh where did the last one go! So to start the modelling year off with a real bang the newest and most gorgeous addition to the stash, the Zoukei-Mura F-4E Phantom. An RAAF F-4E has always been on the build list but this new ZM model made it a no brainer and a must build. I’ve been so looking forward to building this model (and its release), some much so I have another 5 of the long nose Phantoms on the must buy list. The RAAF had 24 F-4E Phantoms that were introduced into survive due to delays in the F-111C production. We had them for only around 3 years, these aircraft were fresh off the production line and most were converted to F-4G Wild Weasel aircraft on their return to the USAF, unfortunately one was lost in RAAF service. So this is the beast, ZM's early model F-4E….. ………. and she’s still in her plastic untouched by human/ape hands! Sprue shots will follow. For the scheme, being an Ex-6 Sqn person, it had to be a 6 Sqn aircraft, but marking wish you can’t tell the 2 squadrons (1 & 6) apart. The decals are from an Australian firm Hawkeye Models and are really nice. ..and that’s it for AM bits, so for the moment it’s an OOB…….. gosh how will I survive!!
  8. Due to complications with my move I will be stuck in my current location for the winter so looks like i'll be back at it for the meantime. My next kit will be this ridiculously detailed kit from Zoukei-Mura, their 1/48 scale Focke Wulf Ta 152. I have been modelling for about 13 years and amazingly I had never heard of these guys until recently and now I eagerly await what else they will make in 48 scale in the future. If you've ever built any Zoukei-Mura aircraft please feel free to share your experiences.
  9. Source: http://scalemodels.r...Phantom-II.html Zoukeï-Mura is working on a new 1/48th (and not 1/32nd) McDD F-4C Phantom II kit (Academy too...). More info at Telford? Source http://www.zoukeimur...tml#Ipms1211Lst And have a look on the desk. A 1/32nd low back Griffon Spitfire? V.P.
  10. Hi all, I'm now able to show you the Zoukei-Mura 1/32 Ki-45 Toryu I recently built completely out-of-the-box for AMW magazine. It was painted in Tamiya acrylics and Mr Color lacquers were used for the freehanded reticulated camo pattern. First, a few walk around shots... ...followed by a few flyaround shots from the magazine article, some showing the cowlings removed... ...and a few in-progress shots showing the internal detail which in most cases is now hidden away forever... Cheers, Dean
  11. Now that my 1:48 Hasegawa is well underway and approaching the final paint stage (primer is on, preparing the front cowling and spinner to have their colors), and I enjoyed this kit so much, I decided to add a larger scale Pony to my collection: the 1:32 Zoukei-Mura P51-D . An awesome kit with full interior. It really screams to be build. Ordered extra wheels, barrels and seatbelts. There are other sets available, but these together will more than double the kit price, so I will mak do with what is in the box and the 3 add ons. I hope I can finish it before the group build ends... Oh well, I'll see.
  12. After the success of its 1/32nd and 1/48th kits, Zoukei-Mura is working on a 1/72nd Horten Ho.229 kit - ref. 72-01 Release is expected in late 2017. Source: http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/sentiment/oyajiblog_093.html V.P.
  13. Hallo again This will be my fourth Phantom in 1/48 scale. The S version. My first one of the US Navy and even my last one. The next will be a RF-4E from the IAF. This a/c will be from VF-151. It will be in grey (4 different tones). To achieve a good effect, I will use a basic black paint, with lightning the panel center. In addition, to get repair panels in different pre-shades. The externals I reduce to the centerline tank only, to show this interesting wing! Here I use (not correct) the left over brasin seat from the USAF. I hope to get it that way that the differences will not be shown. The oxygen gauge at the seat cushion I will cover with the harness. In the kit, the floor is very difficult designed for the uniform plastic ejection seat (the same at all versions!). This understructure I had to remove for the brasin seat. I wanted to use etched parts, but I lose all the 3D effect. Not at all! I will paint it. Well, so let us see, what it will look like. Until next time. Happy modelling
  14. 1/32nd Dornier Do.335 Pfeil by ZM in Super Wing Series - ref. SWS09. Box art was on display at SMW2013. Source: http://forum.largescaleplanes.com/index.php?showtopic=46530&page=15 Don't forget there's another 1/32nd Pfeil kit coming from HK: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234945466-132nd-dornier-do335a-0-pfeil-by-hk-models-release-1q-2014 ZM old man blog. Scroll down "Research at the Smithsonian" http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/sentiment/oyajiblog_046.html V.P.
  15. HI, Finally getting caught up with my to do list and wanted to get the completed build posted here. The kit was sent to me by ZM prior to the US NATS for a build and it is a fantastic kit. Alll but a couple of the F-4S mods were added to the J kit to make the new Phantom mark. The big change is an entirely new wing that is set up for not only the slats, but includes the belly strap and strengthening plates that the "S" carried. The even got the outer slat shape correct where as others have simply used the USAF profile slat. The other detail they got right is the inner slat lip that extends past the bottom of the wing when retracted. A neat feature is that the slats come in the extended position and ZM included parts to position the elevator and extend the nose gear to make a carrier launch scene if desired. For those wanting retracted slats that are the std position for resting aircraft, you simply remove the linkages from the appropriate parts, attache the inner slat, to the wing, and position the outer slats accordingly. I used the some photo etch parts and did some scratch building. F-4S VF-301 MIG Killer in Ferris Colors Accessories Used: Eduard PE Sets Master Models Metal Pitot tubes and AOA Sensor HWG Seat Belts Scratch Built items are: Main Gear retraction rods and small door linkages Slatted Elevator space opened up Scratch built Canopy sills, Breaker bar, and details Cockpit Side Sills modeling the Canopy Locking linkages Pilot Landing gear position lever and Tail Hook Lever Seat Ejection Pull Loops Detailed Exhaust Nozzles Sparrow Missile guidance sensor added to right nose under AC Intake Vents under rear fuselage opened and Drain added Here is the build link to see what was done: Now for the pics: Thx,
  16. HI everyone, I am please to post my completed F-4S build. This is the new Zoukei-Mura kit and it is outstanding. I did a build thread here on ARC for those who want to see how it goes together. This is the 4th ZM Phantom I have built. Here is the link to the build thread: Thanks for looking.
  17. Hi, Just finished this F-4B in VF-51 Screaming Eagles CAG Colors. This jet Killed one MIG and displayed the 4 MIG kills the squadron scored on its last Vietnam cruise. The kit is the new Zoukei-Mura F-4J kit with the following additions: Accessories used: Eduard Brassin F-4B wheels Master Metal Pitot tubes and AOA Sensor Eduard Brassin Seats w/ PE Furball Decals - They Fit Perfect! Scratch Built items are: Chin Pod Fin Cap Thin wing including the wheel well and speed brakes Non-Slatted Plain Elevator F-4B WSO left side panel F-4B WSO Upper and Mid forward Instrument Panel Scratch built Canopy sills, Breaker bar Short Exhaust Nozzle, Trim, Exhaust tube, and burner assembly Intake fans. (The Kit supplied full engines were not used)
  18. North American P-51D/K/Mk.IV Zoukei-Mura 1/32 History Whilst the earlier versions of the Mustang are well known, it is the P-51D/K with its bubble-top canopy was perhaps the most recognised and most well known version of the P-51 family. It was also the most widely used variant of the Mustang, with a grand total of 8102 machines of this type being produced. One of the problems encountered with the Merlin-powered P-51B/C was the poor view from the cockpit, particular towards the rear. The "Malcolm hood" fitted to the P-51B/C was an early attempt to correct this deficiency. However, a more lasting solution was sought. In January of 1943, Col Mark Bradley had been sent to England, and while there he saw how the newly-invented "bubble" or "teardrop" canopy had given Spitfire and Typhoon pilots unobstructed 360-degree vision. He returned to Wright Field in June, and immediately began exploring the possibility of putting bubble canopies on USAAF fighters. Republic Aviation put a bubble canopy on the P-47D Thunderbolt in record time, and Bradley flew it to Inglewood to show it to James H. Kindelberger, the President and General Manager of North American Aviation. Following discussions with the British and after examination of the clear-blown "teardrop" canopies of later Spitfires and Typhoons, North American Aviation secured an agreement with the Army to test a similar canopy on a Mustang in order to improve the pilot's view from the cockpit. A P-51B was selected to be modified as the test aircraft for the new all-round bubble canopy. The aircraft was redesignated XP-51D. The new bubble-shaped hood gave almost completely unobstructed vision around 360 degrees with virtually no distortion. The large rear section did not reach its point of maximum height until a point well aft of the pilot's head was reached, since wind tunnel testing showed that this shape was found to offer the best combination of viewing angles and minimum aerodynamic drag. The Plexiglas of the hood was mounted in rubber in a metal frame, the sill around the bottom being very deep. This was needed to provide the strength and rigidity required to avoid distortion and to prevent the binding or jamming of the canopy in the fuselage rails while it was being opened and closed. There were three rails, one along each side of the cockpit and one along the upper centreline of the rear fuselage. The canopy was manually opened and closed by a handle crank operated by the pilot. In order to accommodate the new all-round vision hood, the rear fuselage of the Mustang had to be extensively cut down. However, the amount of retooling needed to accomplish this was not extensive, and very little re-stressing of the fuselage structure was necessary. The newly-modified XP-51D took off on its first flight at Inglewood on November 17, 1943, test pilot Bob Chilton at the controls. One of the shortcomings of the P-51B was its limited firepower of only four machine guns. In addition, the guns in each wing were tilted over at quite sharp angles, requiring a sharp kink in the ammunition belt feeds and resulting in frequent gun jams. NAA took the opportunity afforded by the introduction of the new Mustang to correct this problem. The gun installation was completely redesigned, and the result was the installation of three MG53-2 0.50-inch machine guns in each wing, all of them mounted upright and all fed by ammunition belts. The inboard guns each had 400 rpg, and the others each had 270 rpg. However, Mustang users had the options of removing two of the guns and having just four, with 400 rounds each, and some pilots did actually select this option. Another visible change introduced by the P-51D was in the increase of the wing root chord. The main landing gear was strengthened in order to accommodate the additional weight, but the wheels maintained the same diameter of 27 inches. However, the wheel bays and doors were modified and the "kink" in the wing leading edge, barely seen in earlier marks, was made much more pronounced. Four P-51D-1-NA Mustangs had been completed with the original B-type canopy before the first P-51D-5-NA model (company designation NA-109) rolled off the production line. There were previously known problems with the installation of the 85-gallon tank in the rear fuselage of the P-51B and its adverse effects on the directional stability. With the P-51D these problems were exacerbated, due to the fact that the cutting down of the top line of the rear fuselage caused a lot of keel area to be lost. In order to provide for better directional stability, a dorsal fin was added ahead of the rudder during the production run of the P-51D Block 10. Some of the earlier P-51Ds (plus a few P-51Bs) were retrofitted with this dorsal fin. The extra weight and drag caused by this fin was quite small, but it helped a lot in improving the directional stability, especially when the rear fuselage fuel tank was full. The P-51D/K introduced the K-14 computing gyro gunsight, based on a British (Ferranti) design. When it first appeared, it was considered almost miraculous. The pilot needed only to dial in the wingspan of the enemy aircraft he was chasing and then feed in the target range by turning a handgrip on the throttle lever. Once the data had been selected an analogue computer worked. All that the pilot had to do then was to get the wingtips of his target lined up on the bright ring projected on the gunsight, and press the trigger. The K-14 was fitted almost from the start of P-51D production, the P-51K receiving this sight from mid-1944. This sight played a major role in the P-51D's impressive score of aerial victories. The P-51D began to arrive in Europe in quantity in March of 1944. The 55th Fighter Group was the first to get the P-51D, trading in its P-38s for the new bubble-topped fighters. The change from the torqueless twin-engined P-38 to the single-engined P-51 did cause some initial problems, and the lack of directional stability caused by the presence of a full fuselage tank took a lot of getting used to. However, once their pilots became fully adjusted to their new mounts, they found that the P-51D possessed a marked edge in both speed and manoeuvrability over all Luftwaffe piston-engined fighters at altitudes above 20,000 feet. However, Luftwaffe pilots considered the Mustang to be rather vulnerable to cannon fire, particularly the liquid-cooled Merlin engine which could be put out of action by just one hit. The Mustang was the only Allied fighter with sufficient range to accompany bombers on their "shuttle" missions in which landings were made in Russia after deep-penetration targets had been attacked from English bases. The Mustangs also participated in low-altitude strikes on Luftwaffe airfields, a rather dangerous undertaking as these fields were very heavily defended by flak. The Model This is the second P-51D Mustang released by Zoukei-Mura, but only the first this reviewer has actually got his hands on, although having several other ZM releases I am quite familiar with the Super Wing Series concept. The sturdy medium sized, yet deep, top opening box, with a lovely rendition of a British P-51K on the front, is jam packed with styrene. Each of the twelve grey and two clear sprues are individually wrapped in poly bags, with the clear sprues also having foam wrapping around the parts for extra protection. There are three large decal sheets which are supplied in another protective poly bag along with the instruction booklets. It is pretty obvious that the main instruction book is from the first P-51D release as this kit builds up in the same way, but if you are building a P-51K then you will need to refer to the supplementary booklet which is associated to the extra sprue specific to this mark. The medium grey styrene is beautifully moulded, with no sign of flash as is expected these days, but there are a lot of moulding pips, probably due to the nature of the parts design, which does mean there is a little extra cleaning up to do. The details on the parts are very well moulded with restrained panel lines, rivets fasteners on the outer skin, whilst the interior, which is what makes these kits rather special, is quite mind boggling, not just with the finesse of design but with the amount of interior parts provided. That said, there are a couple of noticeable problems, the first is that the wings have definite panel lines which I believe were actually filled to help with the laminar flow of the wing, but an easy fix. The second is the machine gun barrels, which, although quite well protected on the sprue, three or four have a pronounced warp on the review example as the barrel muzzles aren’t connected to the sprue. Of course this is easily overcome with the purchase of the metal barrel set that ZM have also released, but this shouldn’t occur with the sort of technology available these days. The instruction book is beautifully laid out, clear and easy to read, with a preface of aircraft specifications and assembly information, followed by paint colours required and the usual safety information ref tools etc. After the preface pages each major assembly has its own build section. The first page of which provides photos of the completed sub-assemblies, a written guide to what these sub-assemblies are called and in the top right hand corner of each the number of parts used in each assembly. The photos/diagrams all show the colours used to paint each part and how it should look when complete, not accounting for weathering of course. The build itself begins with the engine and what could be termed over the top in relation to the amount of detail provided that will never be seen. Each cylinder block is moulded in two halves with each of the individual cylinders moulded into one half. The completed blocks are then attached to the three piece crank case, followed by the intake manifold and cam covers. To the front of the engine the front and rear portions of the gearbox are joined, with the propeller shaft sitting between and the dual drive unit at front and the whole assembly attached to the engine block. The two piece coolant header tank is then fitted above the gearbox and the four piece ignition harness attached to the top of the engine. The two magnetos, coolant pump and cam shaft drive unit ate assembled and fitted to the rear of the engine, followed by the supercharger unit, which is made up of the two piece supercharger housing for each of the first and second stages, boost control unit, drain valve and aftercooler. The aftercooler pump and ignition harness are fitted to the port side, whilst on the starboard side the ignition harness and oil relief valves are attached. The individual exhaust stacks are then attached along with their respective fairings ensuring that the stack angles are correct. The final stage of the engine assembly is the building up of the firewall, onto which the two piece oil tank is attached, along with the oil line on the front and a couple of black boxes on the rear. The engine bearers are then fitted to each side of the engine then attached to their respective points on the firewall. Lastly the oil line is fitted between the bottom of the oil tank to the pump on the underside of the engine. The next stage concerns the assembly of the cockpit and begins with the fitting of the filler pipe and gauge to the fuselage fuel tank which is then fitted to a support base, then the fuselage floor frame along with a small rear bulkhead. There is a choice of seats, one with seatbelts moulded into it, the other without, depending on whether the modeller intends to add a pilot figure, one of which is available separately. The seat is attached to the rear armoured bulkhead via two supports, whilst the aerial relay box is attached to the rear of the headrest. The radio set and battery are attached to the support framework, to the front of which the heater and ventilation pipes are attached. This assembly is then fitted to the rear of the armoured bulkhead and assembled to the cockpit floor with the battery/radio frame sitting on the fuel tank. There is a choice of instrument panel; one with very nicely detail moulded instruments, which with careful painting should look great, the other is plane as is meant for use with the provided decal. To the underside of the panel the rudder pedal unit and switch box are attached. The side panels are then fitted to the cockpit along with the instrument panel assembly and instrument pipework to the rear of the panel. Moving onto the fuselage interior, the engine assembly is attached to the cockpit assembly. The oil cooler is assembled and fitted to the supporting frame and put to one side. The coolant radiator is then assembled out of the radiator front matrix, rear matrix and sides. The oil cooler, coolant radiator and rear radiator exhaust duct are attached to the underside of the cockpit assembly. The long coolant/oil pipes are then attached to their respective radiators and the inlet/outlet fittings on the engine. The three part carburetor air induction duct is then assembled and fitted beneath the engine attaching to the supercharger intake and the front of the engine. A small oil pipe is then fitted to the starboard side of the oil cooler assembly. It’s only now that the fuselage itself is assembled. Unlike standard kits where the fuselage is split into port and starboard halves, in this kit it is made of up of individual panels and sections. First of all the sides are added, not forgetting to fit the two oxygen bottle to the inside of the starboard side panel. These are followed by the upper fairing and the lower panel which surrounds the radiator/oil cooler duct. The engine cowling is next and the modeller is given a choice of having them fitted or not, and since there is so much detail in the engine it would seem a shame to have it covered up. There doesn’t appear to be an option to have them removable, unlike the Tamiya kit and their magnetic answer. If the cowling is to be fixed permanently closed then there is no need to add the panel supporting framework around the engine, if the engine is to be exposed then these will need to be attached. Also take note to fit the correct intake filter panel for use on the Mk.IV as specified in the supplementary instruction sheet. The separate tail cone, made up of two halves into which the tail wheel bay is assembled from the two sides, roof and forward bulkhead, is now assembled, using either the standard or supplementary parts are necessary. This also goes for the vertical tail unit as the modeller has the choice one with a filet and one without depending on the model being made. Before fitting the fin and rudder the horizontal tailplanes are assembled from upper and lower full span halves and separate elevators. This is then fitted to the top of the tail cone and the fin/rudder unit on top of that. Either of the N-9 or K-14 gunsights are then assembled and fitted to the coaming which has been attached forward of the cockpit. The windscreen is then fitted along with the completed tailcone assembly thus completing the fuselage. Moving onto the wings and once again, like the fuselage, it’s like building the real thing, albeit somewhat simplified. The single piece spar and rib unit is fitted out with the six machine guns, each with their separate ammunition belts, three per side in their gun bays. The two part main fuel tanks are then assembled and fitted inboard of the gun bays before the whole sub-assembly is attached to the single piece lower wing skin part. The three clear identification lights are then fitted to the starboard underside wing tip coloured, probably best, from the inside. The undercarriage bay front bulkhead is attached to the wing by two outer spars and a central longitudinal bulkhead. The hydraulic actuators are then attached, two per side, whilst the retractable landing light is fitted to the port bay. The upper outer wing panels are then fitted, along with the separate leading edge panels inboard of the gun bays, the port leading edge having had the camera gun fitted beforehand. The flaps can be posed either retracted or extended depending on the modellers choice of display. Before the wing can be fitted to the fuselage, the joystick and associated control linkage is attached to the top of the wing and the wing fillets fitted to the mid-lower fuselage. With these in place the wing can be attached. With the kit looking more like a model aircraft the build moves on to the addition of ancillary parts, such as the radiator duct air intake, which comes in three parts and is also fitted with an additional length of pipework before fitting to the fuselage. The oil cooler and radiator outlet doors, which are then attached to the rear of the under fuselage, the radiator door is also fitted with an actuator jack and strengthening bar. The main undercarriage units are each made up of a single piece oleo, separate brake pipe and scissor link. The wheels consist of the brake unit, inner and outer hubs and two halves of each tyre. When assembled they should look rather good, although I would prefer the tyres moulded as a single piece. The completed units are then slid into position and twisted to fit the trunnions into their correct position. The inner doors and actuators are then fitted with the required droop, depending on how long the aircraft has been shut down, whilst the outer doors are fitted to the main oleos. The tail wheel assembly is a simpler affair with the main leg being moulded in a single piece, with the single piece wheel/tyre being fitted to the axle. Once fitted into the tail wheel bay the two bay doors can be attached. Whilst the aircraft could carry a variety of stores and equipment the kit comes with just a pair of drop tanks. Each is split horizontally and when assembled are fitted with the air and fuel pipes and attached to the pylons via two crutch plates. The completed assemblies can then be fitted to their respective hardpoints just outboard of the main undercarriage legs. Final outfitting means more choice for the modeller, dependent on which version or mark they are building. ZM have included three different canopies, (M-1 Inglewood built, K-1 Inglewood built and K-13 Dallas built), each with a separate internal frame and one with an external rear view mirror. There is also an option on which propeller to use as both the cuffed Hamilton Standard and un-cuffed Aeroproducts props are provided, with their respective backplates and spinners. There is also an option to have the radar warning antenna fitted to either side of the vertical fin, so check your references to see if the aircraft you are modelling was fitted with them and open up the holes in the fin halves before gluing them together. The last thing to be fitted are the gun bay doors, either open or closed, the navigation lights, tail light, pitot probe and aerial mast. Decals There are three large decal sheets included with this kit. Each very nicely printed with very little carrier film visible, with the exception of the Southern Cross decals and Star and Bar surrounds which will be covered up anyway. They appear to be in register and nicely opaque which is particularly useful if using the identification stripes on a couple of the paint options. There are stencils for one aircraft and include some cockpit placards and instruction placards for the gun bays. If you include the original kit schemes which are included in this one then the modeller can make one of seven different aircraft. These include:- P-51D-5-NA Ser.No. 44-13837 of the 343rd FS, 55th FG Miss Marilyn II, flown by Capt. Robert Welch P-51D-10-NA, Ser.No. 44-14450, of the 363rd FS, 357th FG, Old Crow, flown by Capt “Bud” Anderson P-51D-25-NA Ser.No. 44-73108, of the 334th FS, 4th FG Red Dog XII flown by Maj. Louis Norley Mustang IVa, Ser.No. KH774, 112Sqn, Royal Air Force Mustang Iva, Ser.No. KH716, 3Sqn, Royal Australian Air Force P-51K-10-NT, Ser.No. 44-12073, of the 348th FS, Sunshine VII P-51D-5NA Ser.No. 44-13410 of the 361st FG, Lou IV There is also a small sheet of masks to aid the painting of the canopy and windscreen. Conclusion If you’ve never come across a Zoukei-Mura Super Wings Kit before then have a look. They can appear to be pretty intimidating until you look at the clever and well thought out break down of parts. I don’t purport that they will be an easy build as there is a lot to do, both in preparation, painting and fitting, but the end result is well worth it. Whilst some don’t see the point of having all the internal structure, and yes it isn’t an exact replica of the real thing, but it gives options for some well detailed dioramas as well as looking interesting if left exposed. I think this kit is one of the most accessible ZM have released as it’s not overly complex and should be ok for the intermediate modeller and above. As with everything, take your time and the results will speak for themselves. With this kit you also get to build a 1:32 Mustang in British or Australian colours which has got to be good. If you want to really go to town on the model then ZM have also released a raft full of aftermarket items from the likes of Eduard and Master Models to enhance the build, although I would have liked to have seen at least an interior etched set or seatbelts included in the standard kit. Oh! And you will need to change the machine gun barrels, particularly if you’re leaving the gun bay doors open. Extremely highly recommended Review sample courtesy of
  19. After it's 1/32nd Ho-229 (http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234946931-zoukei-mura-next-kit/?hl=horten#entry1411325), Zoukei Mura is now working on the 1/48th kit from the Horten flying wing. Source: http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/sentiment/oyajiblog_060.html V.P.
  20. Good evening all I have finally completed this years Christmas build, so I present to you the Zoukei-Mura 1/32nd scale A-1J Skyraider. I decided to finish it as the 602nd SOS boss bird as I thought it looks better with a black underside finish (also, another reason was I didn't have any 36622 grey paint, but don't tell anyone). The WIP can be found here. http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234993609-christmas-build-2015-zoukei-mura-a-1j-skyraider/ Not much extra has been done, in fact all I did was replace the gun barrels with brass tube as the originals were broken early in the build. The build wasn't a challenging build, but as is the way with Z-M there are a lot of details that can no longer be seen. Onto the pics. Comments of any sort are welcome, especially constructive criticism. Thanks for looking. Ted
  21. After the 1/48th and 1/32nd Ta.152H-1 kits ( http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/products/sws02_ta152.html& http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/products/sws48_02_ta152.html ), Zoukei-Mura's next 1/32nd Focke-Wulf will be the Ta.152H-0 (new variant and new mold) - ref. SWS.11 Source: http://www.zoukeimura.co.jp/en/sentiment/oyajiblog_065.html V.P.
  22. My very first 1/32 and I'm going to build straight from the box... Cockpit, primer TAMIYA FINE and Gunze H416 (RLM66)... Engine Junkers Jumo213E, real beauty... Of course, work in progres on cockpit and engine...
  23. I am trying to get out of my modeling funk here lately as I have stalled on a few builds, Mosquito, Mustang, Harrier (sheesh the list is getting long) and others. So to try to get back in the swing of things I stepped out of my box and built a couple of Revell 1/144 tiger meet jets. I normally only do WWII aircraft (yeah, I know the list above had a Harrier, contradictions are my nature), so this helped. However, I was pleasantly surprised when the Zoukei-Mura 1/32 J2M3 Raiden arrived at my office. I had pre-ordered it who knows when (got to stop late night internet shopping when I’m bored), but it had been so long ago, I had forgot I had ordered it. First impressions out of the box were “Can’t believe the level of detail and the amount of parts!” With the kit, apparently, I had ordered the photo-etch interior set and the metal gun barrels; who knew? By the time I had perused the manual (I can’t be the only one out there that must open the box, look and feel some of the plastic, gaze at the decals, and then go through the entire manual even if I have no intention of building the darn thing for years. Just have to do it when I first get a kit.), I was hooked and had to start on it right away. Now, I have purchased every one of ZMs 1/32 models to date with the exception of the Mustang. (And they are all sitting in the stash to do.) Why this one made me want to immediately start, can’t tell you. So, it was break out the Japanese paints, (where is the aotake?), nippers, glue, filing sticks and start. Now, there is a difference between the first perusal of the instructions and actually getting them out to begin building. By the way, the instruction manual so far is great. Very detailed, very informative and gives you finished examples of what you should end up with which helps me actually end up with a fair resemblance to what it should be. Anyway, I am going build this as per the manual, mainly out of the box and then see how much of the effort actually pays off as being able to be seen once built. I figure a lot of what is done will only be seen in the photos I take as it is being built. Once built, I hope a large percent still is visible, but I have my doubts. So, here goes. And, if I put too much detail and too many pictures, let me know. Going to do this step by step as per the instructions. If I should start skipping steps and just show the finished product, let me know. The first step is the engines not the cockpit. Since I am assembling with the view everything will be visible, my first step of putting the cylinders together was very disappointing. There are gaps at every end of every cylinder. Now maybe this is my fault with construction, but I doubt it since both cylinders have the gaps. So out with the filler and fun and games begin. If this is typical of the fit, then this will be a frustrating build. All the gaps are filled and now the cylinders and different engine parts are ready for painting. here are the first stages of paint laid down prior to weathering. Put the cylinders together and gave them a dark wash, Added the push rods, housing and propeller shaft. All the parts since putting the cylinders together have fit perfectly and have meshed quite well. The detail is still amazing. But, I can start to see much of the build will not be seen when completed. An example is the engine pistons and connecting rods. But, I am determined to paint and finish all that there is even though it may never see the light of day. The exhaust pipes get a base metallic coat to begin their finish. As the paint on the exhausts dry, I finished weathering the cylinders/housing/propeller shaft assembly. Next after weathering the exhausts, I attached them to the engine. I then attached the engine mount cover, various bits and pieces behind it, engine mount and carburetor vent and intake. Now is where I become a bit anal. I really want this to be a good build (I would like it to be great, but I know my limitations, good is a maybe achievable goal.) On the cowl flap assembly, there are lightening holes represented. Thought it would be a good idea to actually drill them out. It was great fun. What I am most proud of is I didn’t break the part as I was drilling it. Anyway, the left part has the drilled holes; the right part is the kit representation. Once it is put together, it probably won’t make a lick of difference. Now on to drilling out the other side. Here is the back of the engine with the last of the bits and pieces added. And the engine is finished. So far, it looks like drilling the holes has helped. Will have to see how much is visible after final assembly. Next update will be the start of the cockpit.
  24. Horten Ho.229 Accessories 1:32 Zoukei-Mura Zoukei-Mura's new wünderkit of the Horten Ho.229 has now reached us in quantity, and a batch of the aftermarket that ZM themselves have created is available from the Volks website to improve on the already superb detail, as well as add extras to assist in creating a diorama, or add a little human interest. Each set arrives in a clear acetate box with the instructions folded around three sides to create the cover. The instructions are predominantly in Japanese, but you can download an English version from their website by following the link at the bottom of the sheets. Each item is bagged within, sometimes double-bagged to give extra protection during shipping and storage. Pilot Figure (SWS08-F01) The pilot figure is a three part casting and is depicted wearing an advanced pressure-suit type garb, which includes a glazed helmet and chest-piece. The helmet is cast in resin, with raised framework, so you will need to paint it a shiny chrome colour, and his arms are poseable, the left one joining at the elbow to allow it to be placed accurately on the controls. Fit of the parts in the socket is superb, with a friction-like precision. The legs have mould seams along their lengths where they have been cut to remove the figure, but these should be relatively easy to sand flush. A photo of a finished figure is included in the instructions to guide you whilst painting. Ground Crew Set (SWS08-F02) This consists of three members of the ground crew, each of who is kneeling in different poses, whilst pulling or inserting a chock under each wheel of the 229. Each crew member has separate arms, and two have separate heads to allow you to pose them individually. One chap also sports a handgun holster on his waistband. The separate heads have a 5mm long tube attached to the ends of their chins, which is a moulding aid to ensure no bubbles in the vulnerable chin area. Just cut them off, and sand back the resulting wart! Casting is first rate in a matt finished grey resin, with very small casting lugs that will need minimal clean-up. The figures are each allocated a number, which is engraved on each pouring stub, so keep them together after you have removed them. Metal Struts (SWS08-M01) These white metal replacement gear legs will give your Horten a little extra strength, which may come in handy if you are loading it up with extras, or taking it from show to show. The nose gear leg is a single part, and you just tweak the yoke and then close it back up around the wheel, while the main gear legs have separate metal oleo scissor-links. You will need to clean up the parts with files and sanding sticks to remove the moulding seams, plus the little tags that are left overs from the moulding process, but as the metal is relatively soft, this can be accomplished by using a pair of small nippers, or even the blade of a scalpel. You will of course need to use super-glue (CA) or two-part epoxy to secure the parts together, and testing fit and alignment are important due to the slightly flexible nature of white metal. A spot of metal primer would be advisable, after washing the parts to remove any traces of mould-release agent from them. Weighed Tyres (SWS08-M02) These resin tyres are a drop-in replacement for the kit parts, leaving you with no central seam to sand, and a minimum of clean-up on the contact patch to remove the casting stub. The maker's mark and tyre specification are moulded in light relief on the sides, and a subtle weighting of the tyres adds a little extra realism to your model. Turned Metal Machine Gun & Pitot Probe Set (SWS08-M03) Beautifully turned cannon barrels and sintered metal muzzle-brakes have been crafted by partners Master Barrels, along with a fine pitot probe to replace the kit parts. The muzzle-brakes are incredibly light, and have a line of holes down each side to vent the escaping gases from each round, much finer than could be achieved by styrene. These drop-in replacements add extra realism as well as strength to the delicate parts of this model, which are always at risk from careless touches during handling. Conclusion These aftermarket parts are the icing on a very nice cake, with superb resin and metal masters created for them by MDC and Master Barrels, which further indicates the quality of the products. I would have liked to have seen an alternative head for the pilot figure, perhaps with his helmet off, but aside from that wish, it's just a great bunch of sets. There is also a decal set containing a full set of panels in wood-grain that will be released soon, as well as a small Photo-Etched set for the interior and the air-brake area. Finally, the Concept Note book is already available. You should note that these items are very popular, and quite often go out of stock. If you have to wait, make sure you pick them up as soon as they are back in stock to avoid disappointment. Extremely highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  25. Horton Ho.229 1:32 Zoukei-Mura The Horten brothers were a pair of visionary siblings that designed a series of flying wing gliders in pre-WWII during the period when Germany was prohibited from having an air force. Each design improved on the last, and once the Luftwaffe broke cover in the expansionist phase before WWII, development began in earnest. The requirement for a light bomber capable of the 3x1000 by the RLM, which was for an aircraft capable of carrying 1,000kg 1,000km at 1,000kph in 1943 set the wheels in motion that resulted in the Horten.IX, which is better known as the Ho.229, and sometimes referred to as the Go.229 due to the fact that the Gothaer factory had been chosen for production examples. The flying wing had a low drag form, and the addition of two jet engines gave it the potential to fulfil the requirement, although it suffered a little from lateral instability due to its shape. The first prototype flew un-powered and with fixed landing gear in 1944, with results that bore plenty of promise before crashing due to a pilot error. Gotha altered the design in practical ways to ease production and increase longevity, as well as adding an ejector seat that was probably as much of a danger to the pilot as being shot down. Another prototype was lost due to an engine fire, but this did not deter the RLM from striving to reach production, despite the worsening situation for Germany in Europe. The third prototype was enlarged, and it was this that fell into the hands of the advancing US troops, and subsequently the Operation Paperclip boys, who took it back to America with plenty of other advanced designs. It remains there to this day, in the restoration area of the Smithsonian's NASM, and you can see some stunning photos and interesting text on their mini-site here. The Kit By heck, but there's been some hype about this kit, and a lot of people queued patiently at the recent SMW to receive the first batch that was available to the public. Thanks to the patience of one of our review team we have one on hand, and it is an amazing example of injection moulding technology that borders on art! With typical ZM style, the kit arrives in sleek box in the "house style" that fits in nicely with their other offerings such as the He.219 (another beautiful kit!). On the cover is a CGI rendering of a 229 shooting down a Lancaster, and in all honesty, it's not the most realistic or detailed painting, but is perfectly adequate for the job. No effort has been spared on the inside of the box though, which has an inner fold-back lid and a card divider within to help keep everything where it should be. If you've been following the buzz about this kit you'll already know that there is a substantial amount of clear plastic in the box, as the model is designed to be able to built with semi-transparent skin that shows the detail packed in underneath. Of course, you can always paint over that, and many of us will, but the option is there. There are seven sprues in clear styrene, and another twelve in grey styrene. There is another small sprue that was loose in my bag for the landing gear covers, but your box should have this inside. You should also note that ZM have noticed a mistake in the numbering of sprue R, which you can find out about here. All you need to do is re-number the parts on the sprues and everything will be ok. The package is rounded off with a set of canopy masks in a green material, a relatively large decal sheet, and of course the instruction booklet. If you haven't yet had the pleasure of perusing one of ZM's kits, the instruction booklet is a very handsome affair, with 3D drawings of the parts and plenty of accompanying hints, tips and explanations of what you're building. It is broken down into several episodes, and there are pictures of the completed article interspersed with the instructions, so you can compare your work against theirs. Whoever built the example kit did a lovely job of it, so we have a high standard to live up to! You can of course treat yourself to some of the extras that are available from ZM, which includes pilot figures, ground crew, metal landing gear, resin wheels, brass barrels and an additional PE set to improve the detail still more! There is also a forthcoming conversion set that will let you build a two-seater, a set of Vallejo colours specifically formulated for the kit, plus a Concept Note book that should help with the build. Construction begins unusually with the two Jumo 004 engines, which have a full suite of eight compressor blades along the central shaft just like the real thing, which is trapped between the forward engine housing after adding the half-moon static blades within the shell first. Each pair is different, so much be installed in strict order, and care will be absolutely imperative if you hope to install the turbine shaft, as the cut-outs in the static blades match the shape of the hubs. The intake bullet is a two-part assembly with the front compressor face added to the rear, which is then trapped between a pair of cowling parts split vertically, plus another pair split horizontally in front of those, forming the inner intake lip. The exhaust has two final phase rotors attached to a spacer, which is in turn glued to a set of stator blades, and finally the rear bullet is put in place. The engine shell is then completed by adding a ring to the back of the compressor phase, linking the exhaust assembly to the rear of the turbine shaft, and lastly enclosing the shaft and part of the exhaust assembly in more cowling that joins horizontally. The outer casing can then be painted up as per the photo instructions. A lot of ancillary equipment comes with a jet engine, and ZM have not skimped on parts here. There are a heap of parts utilised in completing the engine, and painting call-outs accompany them throughout. The final part of the first act is to add the lower heat shields to the aft portion of the engine, which prevented the heat from damaging the relatively delicate wooden skin. These are provided in crystal clear styrene, so that your work with the engines can be seen from the gear bays. As an option, you can cut some square sectioned parts from the sprue runners, and build them up into a trestle for one or both engines either to display them away from the aircraft, or to keep them safe while you finish off the build. Quite a clever use of the otherwise wasted plastic of a sprue! Act two sees the building of the fuselage, which comprises a tubular framework that is very well depicted. The lower frame is built up first to act as the base on which the rest of the fuselage is built, and again you should paint this up as you go, due to the complexity of the finished article. The wing root formers are added to the extreme left & right of the fuselage frame, at which point it starts to look a bit like a Ho.229 for the first time. Various linkages and controls are added, reaching the forward fuselage to be integrated with the cockpit, which is built up later. The cannons and their ammunition feeds are added inboard of the wing joint, after which the engines are added into the lower fuselage assembly and held in place by the addition of the upper framework, so again – keep painting as you go along, or you'll regret it. Fitting this part properly is crucial, and takes up two pages of the instructions, showing where it should locate a number of times from different angles. Another page is devoted to showing the finished article in picture form, which should give you the feeling that if you screw it up, you will have trouble fitting the outer skin, so take care, test-fit and do it right the first time. The third act deals with the cockpit, the framework for which is painted RLM66, although the instructions suggest black, while the photos and general RLM practice says otherwise. The side frames are added first, which makes you realise just how close to the pilot the engines are, and how deaf he would probably get. The pilot's instrument panel is supplied as either a one-piece grey styrene, or a clear part, giving you the choice of how to achieve your desired effect. The styrene part is simply painted up and the supplied individual instrument decals added or the full panel decal, with a dot of gloss varnish added after to give the illusion of glass fronts. The clear part needs to be masked to retain the clear instrument faces, painted and then the decals are placed behind the panel with the use of either decal softening solutions as per the instructions, or a small quantity of clear acrylic varnish to improve adhesion of the wrong side of the decals to the clear plastic. Either should do the job, and a coat of white laid over the back of the panel, then a covering coat of grey/black will hide them from view. The panel is attached to the fuselage via a series of tubular frames, after which you install the control column, with the control linkages below the cockpit floor attaching to the bottom of the stick and latching onto pegs in the outer fuselage area. The ejector seat is made up later, and consists of only four parts due to the simplicity of its design, but it looks good nonetheless. You can use alternative seat bucket parts with moulded in belts, or a blank part if you are using aftermarket belts or installing a pilot figure. Other than the forward roll-over bar within the windscreen area and a piece of nose armour, that's all the creature comforts the pilot had, sitting exposed at the front of the flying wing, and deafened by the sound of his own engines. After the fixed landing gear of the first prototype was lost along with the airframe, retractable gear was installed in subsequent prototypes, with a huge balloon tyre at the front, and two more reasonably sized main gear legs toward the rear. These are the subject of section 4, and it begins with the build-up of the main gear legs, which have a one-piece main leg, separate oleo-scissor links, separate hubs, and two part tyres that have manufacturers' details and spec in raised lettering on the sidewalls. They install into sockets in the underside of the fuselage framework, and are joined with two retraction linkages, and brake hoses moulded in styrene, the location of which is noted in two scrap drawings to the side. The big nose gear leg is moulded in two halves, separated vertically, and its yoke surrounds the two-part tyre with separate hubs, with the mudguard and bracing hoop added after the wheel is installed. The substantial top of the leg is inserted into a large receiver in the nose, and a three-part retraction mechanism is added to the rear. This is also well documented with various views in scrap diagrams around the main construction stage. A final page shows everything installed and painted, then shows the correct angles for the assemblies once they are mated together. Measuring those angles yourself might be a bit tricky unless you hold your model up to the drawing and measure by eye. Act 5 sees the fuselage covered in those translucent outer panels that we mentioned earlier. You will need to make a decision of what to do about them around this stage, and choose whether to model it with a "ghost" skin, partially paint it, or go the whole hog and paint it completely. Of course, you could also go insane and depict your 229 unpainted using some of HGW's excellent wood effect decals. I'm finding that last option quite tempting as I write this, but I'm not paying for any therapy you might need if you go down that route! The first part of the fuselage to go in is an armoured panel that protects the pilot from frontal attacks, which sits inside the nose cone. The nose part itself is a work of styrene art, having been slide-moulded as one piece that incorporates the nose, engine intakes, forward cockpit sills and the outer fuselage leading edge. The lower fuselage skin is made up of three main parts, which fit onto attachment points moulded into the bottom of the fuselage framework, so care and careful gluing is the order of the day, especially if you are leaving any of the panels unpainted. The airbrakes and their actuating rams that cause them to slide out into the slipstream are added before the upper fuselage is closed up, and if you plan to depict them closed, you just nip off the jacks and clean up the stub, installing them flush with the outer skin. The upper fuselage is next, and this comprises a single large upper piece and separate crystal clear engine cowlings, to allow you to show off one or both of your engines. The metal jetwash panels are moulded in, and these are painted bare metal whenever you see fit, and would benefit from a bit of heat discolouration along the way. That's it – the fuselage is complete, but now you need wings. Section 6 deals with the wings, and by now you will know that ZM prefer to give you a distinctly engineering-style experience that involves building a simplified replica of the whole internals of the aircraft. As usual with the wings, there is a simplified version of the wooden internal structure in the shape of ribs and stringers that give the wing stiffness and allow the suspension of ancillary equipment within the framework. The main part is a single moulding, to which is added a more detailed inner end-profile. A set of four fuel tanks are added into the mid and leading edge of the inner two-thirds of the wing, and a single piece depicting the actuating mechanism for the outer flying surfaces. At this point you'd be forgiven for thinking that you should add the skin to the wing, but instead you attach the wing to the fuselage using a quartet of pegs for each one, each of which is attached to a small square of outer-skin. A couple of small parts glue directly to the lower wing skin before it is added, and then you fit the top wing, encasing the innards forever. All the control surfaces are poseable, with elevons along the trailing edge, the inner sections of which also act as flaps. On the top and bottom surface of the wing tips are the drag rudders, a set of paired spoilers than allow lateral direction change. Each one plugs into a slot in the underside of the wing skin, and can be posed closed by cutting off the actuators and gluing them flush with the outer skin. A number of scrap diagrams are there to help you get them sitting correctly, as well as a couple of photos of the finished article in the deployed position. The final phase involves adding all the small parts to the completed airframe. A pair of huge bay doors for the nose gear, two smaller captive doors each for the main gear plus tiny centrally mounted inner doors, and doors in the pen-nib tail for the drag-chute, all of which are best added after main painting is done. The Morane IFF antenna hangs down beneath the fuselage, slightly offset to port, and a DF loop is added to the rear spine, with pitot on the port wingtip. The 229's windscreen is extremely complex in shape, with compound curves on almost every surface, which appear to have been done well. It fits directly to the sill, and locates on a pair of pins in the roll-over bar, but be sure to install the one-piece gun-sight before you put it in place, as it will be a lot more difficult if you don't. The sliding canopy section has been well designed, and you are given two options for the outer skin. You can use the single piece clear canopy, or use a front clear section with a crystal clear aft section that has a central frame projecting from the front that fits along the top of the clear part in a slight recess. Either option then fits to a sub-frame to which the sliding mechanism is added on a cross-member – don't forget that there is a set of canopy masks to aid you with painting. The ejection seat and canopy are then added to the model without glue, the former sliding into place on two ejection rails. The canopy should be able to slide back and forth on its own rails too, giving you the option of open or closed canopy on a whim. Adding the gun barrel stubs to the holes in the leading edges of the wings outboard of the intakes and the clear wingtip lights means an end to construction. Markings There are two fanciful schemes included on the decal sheet, both based on the most likely A-0 series of airframes that were closest to reality. Both are in an RLM81/82 wavy camo scheme, with RLM76 on the undersides, differing only in their tail bands. Example A has a yellow/red band, while B has a blue/green chequer pattern. Anything other than the prototype schemes are mere speculation though, so the world is your oyster when it comes to markings choices. Note that there are no white outline swastika decals included, a pair of which can still be seen on the original airframe, but there are a pair of black ones split in half, to avoid issues when shipping the kits to Germany and other countries where the symbol is either banned or actively discouraged. The decals are well printed with good register, sharpness and colour density, although the instrument decals are a little dark with the needle and calibration details over-powered by the black, which may result in a rather drab panel. As well as the individual instrument decals, there is also a single decal with a full panel printed on it, so the modeller can apply it to the styrene panel and get it settled down with some decal solution. A few oblongs of yellow, blue and green are included for patching in of the tail bands if necessary, although there isn't any red supplied for example A. There are full sets of digits from 0 to 9 with two rows of white, yellow and red, and sections of the latter could be used to patch any gaps in the red tail bands if necessary. Masking and painting the bands is always an option though, as you have the decals to use as patterns for your masks. Conclusion This is another beautiful kit from Zoukei-Mura that just oozes quality from every part. Real care and attention has been lavished on the design of the kit, and the instruction booklet not only holds your hand through the build process, but also imparts quite a bit of knowledge during the process. I like to know what the name and function of the parts I'm gluing together are, and the instructions are more than happy to oblige. The instructions are almost unique (so far) in guiding you through the build as you would approach it from a modeller's perspective, which of course is their target market – these are not pocket-money kits by any stretch of the imagination. Superb in every way – I struggle to find suitable words to recommend it highly enough without sounding sycophantic. It is the dictionary definition of awesome before it became diluted by overuse. Buy at least one right now. Scratch that – get two, and put your name on the two-seat conversion set that's coming soon. Review sample courtesy of
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