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  1. For some reason I don't quite understand I have been fascinated since my teenager years by helicopter cruisers. As you may recall many navies tried to build thee in the 1960's and 70's, but ultimately this class of ship became relegated to being considered a failed experiment. So, in the back of my mind I have this vague plan that I will try to build a series of these, including for example the Haruna, the Italian Vittorio Veneto, the Jeanne d'Arc. Anyway, this plan started to materialise when I got (for an eBay bargain) a Matchbox kit of the HMS Tiger, represented after its 1968 conversion to "helicopter and command cruiser". I did not really know much about this kit other than it was the only one available in 1/700. Opening the box was a rude shock. You know you are in trouble when the images of the built product in the instructions (which presumably represent the manufacturer's best hopes) look like one of those little plastic ships that we used to get in cereal boxes. The kit is ancient, and it does not lie about its origins (see first photo). This got me scrambling for anything that would help make the model look a bit more like a real ship. Fortunately I found that Atlantic models has created a photoetch set for this kit, which I will be using in this build. Well, one has to start somewhere, and here is step one.
  2. Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG 15 Bis, Red 40, 1953 I completed my model of this Soviet fighter which I finished with the colors and markings of the mount of pilot Nikolay Shkodin, who obtained five victories during the Korean war. I chose not to install the provided jet engine inside the fuselage and to display it next to the aircraft. For increased detailing, I used aftermarket seatbelt, instrument panel and main wheels from Eduard's. The jet engine Klimov-vk1 which is provided with the kit is adequately reproduced for this scale and, as said, I am displaying it on a static stand which was scratch built. The model was finished with mixes of Tamiya acrylic colors, while Vallejo metallic paints were used for the metallic finished parts. I sprayed the camouflage bands free-hand to obtain feathered demarcations, however, I am afraid that the obtained effect that might be a bit out of scale. I replaced the 2 x 23 mm gun muzzles with aluminium tubes, while the muzzle of the 37 mm cannon is an Eduard replacement. I also substantially modified the oversimplified pilot seat to better reproduce the type which was used at the time of the depicted aircraft. Panel lines were obtained by oil colors washes and other small stains with watercolor pencils. This is my first Russian subject and I found it rather an interesting aircraft to build (the build log can be found under this link: MiG15 build log). I hope that you like my final pictures. Best regards, Dan
  3. Ilyushin Il-28 - Warpaint #130 Guideline Publications This book is originally by author Nikolay Yakubovich, translated by Kevin Bridge, and covers the birth and development of the Iluyshin Il-28, known as the Beagle in NATO circles, the Soviet Union’s first medium jet bomber after WWII, thanks partly to the foolishness of the British Government at the time, who naively sold the Soviets examples of the Nene jet engine, allowing them to use them in projects until they could reverse-engineer their own, which they eventually improved upon as the RD-45. The Il-28 flew with two RD-45 engines slung under its straight wings in streamlined nacelles, topping 500mph with a crew of three and a reasonable bomb-load that it could haul a decent distance. The book is in the usual Warpaint format of portrait A4(ish) with a soft card cover but has an increased page count from the norm and utilises a perfect binding instead of the usual pair of staples to accommodate the total of 64 pages plus content printed on the four sides of the glossy covers, and a loose sheet of A2 plans in 1:72 printed on both sides and penned by the author. A long section details the birth of the type with its influences from captured Nazi designs such as the Arado Ar.234, the route to the finalised design, then the subsequent variants and history carries on throughout the book, incorporating a summary of the operational experiences of the bomber and its various incarnations. The pages include a lot of useful pictures with informative captions of aircraft on the apron, on the field, in the air, during trials, crashed and under maintenance with panels missing, plus appropriate photos and drawings dotted around, but the engineering-type drawings have Cyrillic text, so you'll have to rely on the captions unless you read Russian. The Colours & Markings section shows the narrow range of official schemes that the type was painted, but the many profiles illustrate that camouflage was applied at times where suitable. The "In Detail" section has some numbered close-up photos with matching captions providing excellent information that will be a boon to modellers as well as people that just like to know what everything does. My favourite variant is the ugly one of course, which is the two-cockpit trainer version that has a slight droop-snoot, although nothing quite so ugly as the Yak-38 or Mig-25 2-seaters. Gotta love ‘em! Conclusion The Warpaint series always gets a thumbs-up due to their inability to produce a bad one. This is an excellent book that will see plenty of use by anyone interest in, or building this semi-ubiquitous aircraft from the early Cold War. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  4. This is my build of the AFV Club 1/700 kit of the Knox class frigates. The kit comes with 6 options of markings, but I chose to represent USS Elmer Montgomery (FF-1082) because it served in the Atlantic. The Knox class frigates were frequent visitors of my home city of Rio de Janeiro, and on a few occasions I had the privilege of coming on board. I have fond memories of these ships designed for the tough job of escorting transatlantic convoys against soviet submarines swarming down the GIUK gap, in case the Cold War turned hot. This is a nice and affordable kit that gives you an accurately shaped representation of these ships, but not without problems (for a build report, and more photos, check my web site; address in the signature panel below). It is also a bit light on detail, and with next to zero instructions for painting. I intended to enhance the model by using a photoetch set, but ended up not using most of it, given that the sizes of the parts were incorrectly represented. The railing I used was generic (Big Blue Boy 1/700 modern USN set), and other parts were scratch-built (e.g. details of the masts, aerials). The decals provided in the kit were a bit all over the place, some oversized (e.g. the ship's name on the stern) and some undersized (e.g. the red cycles around the ASROC and CIWS), so a few had to be home-printed (with mixed results). The rigging was done using human hair. The seascape base was inspired by photos of FF-1082 off the coast of Norway in 1988 (see image below, from navsource.org). Given that the sea was a bit choppy I did not think it was appropriate to leave the helicopter on the pad, so I represented it overflying the ship, propped up by a glass capillary tube. Best regards Marcello
  5. I've gone the markings for a Fallingbostel based vehicle after it had been for a cabby round Soltau. A fun little build - I haven't done a WIP. The only alterations are adding a shroud for the barrel out of tissue and watered down pva, and clear headlights (which I've ended up covering in mud. The main paints are Mig NATO green mixed with a few drops of oily ochre and lightened black. I intended black shading but got carried away with the green and lost most of it. Quick Shine Floor polish for the gloss, Tamiya matt varnish for the final, black oil paint for the pin wash and Mig pigment mixed with plaster and thinners for the mud. My first attempt with the pigment mug and I'm chuffed with how it came out.
  6. I've made a start on the Conqueror on Monday. I've gone unconventional in that I started with the tracks, as I had a crap day at work and they were quite therapeutic, and then started on the turret. I find the running gear quite monotonous at the best of times and this one has more wheels than most: The tracks came in sets of two and had to be separated and cleaned off. The barrel is interesting as it came in two parts, but not in halves as you would expect, but two complete tubes which you put end on end. It is completely hollow and I'm scratching my head how they moulded them as they came just on a normal sprue side on. You lot are a bad influence. Once I was happy with just making a kit straight out of the box, but no, now I find my self making mantle shrouds out of tissue paper and PVA and drilling out the barrel on the 30 cal. All in all, so far the kit fits together reasonably well with not too much flash. It is another kit that has workable tracks, PE, metal springs, and even copper wire for the towing cable but no clear parts. It's strange. Thankfully I have some lens left over from the Centurion that fit but the sights I'll have to live with. Oh, this isn't a tank to buy expecting exiting and varied paint scheme. Only 180 ish were made and all were based in Germany for it's 11 years of service so it's deep bronze green all round. As I mentioned the size before, here is the upper hull compared to a Chieftain: The extra width is down the the wider tracks as when you compare the lower hull: The Chieftain only appears smaller because the hull is slopped but the Conqueror's is square sided. It is funny that the Conqueror was a heavy tank at 64 tonnes but Challenger 2 is still just a MBT at, as I once heard it described in a broad Yorkshire accent, "70 tonnes of grumbling dermatitis". Bill
  7. Hi everyone! I decided to start something new on the side and get off the F-16 I am building for a while because I am getting a bit burnt out with it to be honest. I decided to start something fresher and I thought simpler.... naive I am!! So I decided to start with the Hasegawa Mig-27 Flogger D in the 1/72: This particular release is from 2003 although I am suspecting it comes from an old old kit as a quick search in Scalemates suggests. Also the combination of raised and depressed panel lines suggests. Furthermore there some significant flash in the kit pointing to a worn out mold. So these are the sprues out of the box: Plus a clear sprue with the 2 piece canopy, which can be mounted either close or open and a couple of clear part for signaling lights on the side of the main fuselage. Some details of a few parts: Flash: Now off we go! First things first I did the research in the following websites if you wanna have a look around (best walkarounds I could find): http://scalemodels.ru/news/4987-Walkaround-mig-27-kokpit-tekhnicheskijj-muzejj-toljatti-rossija-MiG-27-Flogger-cockpit-Tolyatti.html http://scalemodels.ru/news/3565-Walkaround-mig-27k-iz-gosudarstvennogo-muzeja-aviacii-zhuljany-kiev.html http://scalemodels.ru/news/3566-Walkaround-mig-23bm-mig-27-Flogger-D-zhuljany-kiev.html http://scalemodels.ru/news/3082-mig-27k-v-muzee-aviacionnojj-tekhniki-v-borovojj.html http://scalemodels.ru/news/1737-Walkaround-mig-27-irkutsk-MiG-27-Flogger-D-Irkutsk.html ( THIS IS MY MAIN REFERENCE) http://scalemodels.ru/news/1373-Walkaround-mig-27-saratov-MiG-27-Flogger-Saratov.html I am not sure if I am missing something but first thing to strike me was the nose. Completely wrong shape, at least for the Flogger D model, which should be as follow: (http://scalemodels.ru/modules/photo/viewcat.php?id=24979&cid=567&min=60&orderby=dateA&show=12) Photo credit True that there are differences between the mig-27 models: But all those nice targeting systems on the nose (Kaira-1 system) completely non existing on the Hasegawa kit! So I set myself to fix this offend! Original nose: A bit of standard Milliput and water to shape the Kaira-1 system main structure: Sanding and reshapping will follow to lower the profile of the structure, also painted the sockets black and cut open the frontal element of the Kaira-1 using a photo-etched mini saw: Now time for the optics! Clear sprue which has been reshaped thinner and polished: Cut the tip for the frontal element of the lens (see reference picture above): A smear of CA and it is fixed! Now the second optical element at the front: This is just a clear styrene sheet cut and glued into place # Next will be covering all elements with the armoured glass windows which will be more clear styrene sheet and nose it is ready to go! I have also been working on the frontal wheel bay which again kit version is FAAAAAAAAAAAAR from reality! I will prepare another post just focusing on that one After that comes the cockpit which in the kit is mysteriously missing! As always comments / suggestions are more than welcome! Hope you like this Cheers, Alex P.S. if you wanna check my F-16 build this is the link http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234965428-172-heller-f-16-ab-old-issue-first-model-fighter/
  8. Mig-15Bis Update Sets (For Bronco/Hobby 2000) 1:48 Eduard This new tooling has popped out from partners Bronco and Hobby 2000 recently, and Eduard have been hard at it creating some detail improvements over and above what’s available in the box. 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 SPACE (3DL48016) Part of Eduard’s new range of combination 3D Printed decals with a pre-painted PE sheet to complement the details. The 3D Printed sheet contains a brand-new multi-part instrument panel with glossy dial faces plus a number of dials, additional instruments on the side consoles and a few more for the sidewalls. The PE set has a set of four-point seatbelts; rudder pedals with straps; a substantial change to the kit seat, which has the stirrups, side supports and headrest removed before adding new parts that are more accurate. The rear deck is skinned with a new part and the sills are lined too, then an opener is glued to the port side of the canopy. Seatbelts STEEL (FE1179) 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. These belts are for use with the kit seat, a caveat you’ll understand better if you read the review of the SPACE cockpit set first. Masks (EX775) 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 the wheels, allowing you to cut the demarcation perfectly with very little effort. Masks Tface (EX776) 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. Mig-15 Wheels (648622) Kit wheels are generally in two halves, which means you have the resultant joins to deal with, possible mould-slip issues on single part wheels, and sometimes less than stellar detail due to the moulding limitations of styrene injection technology, especially in the tread department. That's where replacement resin wheels come in, with their lack of seamline and superior detail making a compelling argument. They are also usually available at a reasonable price, and can be an easy introduction to aftermarket and resin handling, as they are usually a drop-in replacement. This set includes three new wheels in grey resin, and a nose wheel leg in tougher white resin, plus a set of kabuki tape masks (not pictured) that makes cutting the demarcation between the tyres and hubs cleanly and with no fuss. Review sample courtesy of
  9. Hi Pals, A small diorama with my last tank, a Takom Chieftain MK2, inspired by the kit's boxart and some photo of the real model. I add a link to the RTI, and another to the WIP, in case there is anyone interested in seeing more photos, with the model alone. Thanks for watch and comments. Cheers mates.
  10. Here is my completed USS Gearing, built from the Dragon 1/350 kit, out of the box apart from railings and some home made improvisations. Little did I know that, when I was gifted this kit by some friends at work (my birthday, 2019) this was going to become my most ambitious project yet. Pretty much from day 1 you have to deal with sub-millimetre pieces (each Oerlikon has to be put together from 9 parts, including a mixture of polystyrene and photoetch). My learning curve became very, very steep (this is only my third ship). The rigging is largely human hair, although for some thicker and thinner parts I used surgical silk and Caenis thread, respectively. I also substituted the jackstaff and the aerials sticking out of the aft stack with metal (hypodermic needle and tungsten wire), since the parts provided in the kit looked unnaturally thick, and kept breaking during the build anyway. There were some problems with the instructions. I have compiled a list of tips to avoid getting into trouble in my web site (address in my signature panel below). Feel free to email me for any questions. I am sorry for the quality of my photos, particularly in comparison with some of the stunning stuff I have seen in this web site. I only have my iPhone for this.
  11. Hello everyone! This is Mikro Mir kit, which I really like and highly recommend. I'd venture to say it is the crispiest and most delicate short-run kit I've seen. Mikro Mir's Tu-22 comes close, and I am looking forward to building that one. Having checked the gear details I had serious doubts whether designing PE details for it makes any sense (in the end it did - there are still some tiny PE bits that can further enhance it). I like the slightly irregular, hair thin panel lines, sharp trailing edges of wings and tail; the plastic is good to work with, no big fit issues and it is so lovely tiny. The scene is loosely based on a monument airplane that used to be displayed on a square in Świdnica, Poland. I wanted to build two-seater variant of Yak-23, however Polish Air Force never used two-seater Yak-23s which instills a major and obvious historical inaccuracy. Having this one already onboard I was less worried by some other bits that may or may not fit any particular reference photos. The airplane on display was easily accessible, kids favorite, and as such subject of slow but steady decay and settling on one single "proper" state of the airframe to reproduce is nearly impossible. (decals are custom printed, PE parts used in my usual prototype fashion, some scratchbuilt elements) Here are couple of period photos from Świdnica: And here is the model: Thank you! Leszek
  12. Some time ago I was designing turned/PE missiles that are now Shelf Oddity mainstay. I also did the design for 3d print of Sparrow I missile back then. The F7U Cutlass or F3H Demon that would best accommodate the early pointy Sparrow are still on wish list. At some point however I bumped into the following pictures: Here we are: late 1940s / early 1950s, Point Mugu Test Center - Naval Air Station west of Los Angeles. First Sparrow missile, named XAAM-N-2 (X for experimental, A for air launched, another A for air target, M for missile, N as Navy and 2 - well - number two) is casually tested on F6F Hellcat, one that is well outside its color comfort zone (as indicated by further research). Perfect, isn't it? After theWW2 the dawn of jets saw Hellcats quickly shifted to secondary/support roles. Fortunately the aircraft was designed in traditional Grumman fashion - sturdy, tough and capable of taking abuse. The test machine was F6F-5K (drone) converted back to be piloted. Steel blast shield was added to the cabin wall in expectance of test missile bahaving unexpectedly. The regular centerline fuel tank was substituted by a pod containing cameras, pylon fitted to the right wing and there it was. The (X)AAM-N-2 Sparrow I was much more pointy than its later variants. Much faster looking. Hugely cumbersome homing process required the pilot to maintain the target locked throughout the whole flight of the missile. It found very limited use in late 1950s on F7U Cutlass and F3H Demon but was quickly phased out and replaced by semi-active homing Sparrow III (AIM-7B). This is Platz kit which means good fit, good detail, whatever's faulty is my own contribution. Of course no manufacturer does such exotic one-offs, therefore own input was required with regard to: - missile (3d print) - pylon (plastic sheet) - centerline pod (plastic sprue+some small bits) - lengthened tailwheel leg (brass rod) - decals (custom printed in MF Zone) - blast shield (aluminium foil) The model: Thanks!
  13. MiG-23MS Red Eagles YF-113E from the secretive American Red Eagles squadron under the Constant Peg program out of Tonopah, Nevada in the 80s. MiG-21 F-13 Red Eagles YF-110B Ex Indonesian aircraft also in the Red Eagles. I stripped down this Hi Kit resin 1/48 MiG Ye-8 Prototype Red 82, rebuilt the cockpit and gave it a better paint job And I did the same for an old Italeri Eurofighter, I stripped it and rebuilt it as the second prototype to pose with the Ye-8 and a Chinese Chengdu J-10, all are canard/delta winged aircraft I can't resist an Aggressor, this was a fairly quick build of the Wingman Models F-21A A very easy build of the Micro Mir 1/350 Project 1710 Beluga I had shelved the Tamiya F-14A after attempting to make it the red striped wolf livery of the first cruise VF-1 Wolfpack that I really liked a lot but the red paint went a bit wrong so after a spell I decided that the VF-84 scheme was probably the coolest scheme ever so went with the kit's decals - which were amazing. Perfectly cut for the kit. I had no idea the old US Marines TF-9J Cougars were used in Vietnam until I read a magazine article explaining their use as Forward Air Controllers. The photos showed some gun exhaust grimy well used aircraft which led to this 'quick' build (the kit is no Tamiya...) which was not an easy build. And finally to end the year the Collect-Aire resin YF-23, a great kit, half built but then shelved for years. Recent info allowed me to finally accurately build the cockpit and so built the Hobbyboss YF-23 at the same time as the second prototype. Both aircraft competed against the YF-22 Advanced Tactical Fighter contract which eventually led to the F-22A Raptor. And the last thing I finished in 2020, not a model but it did have a lot of detail painting....Happy New Year
  14. Better late than never! NATO forces are being bolstered by forward deployed recon birds in W. Germany, based out of Bremgarten Air Base near Freiburg. Due to the fairly limited time, this will be a largely OoB build. At this time I will likely be building RF-4E 35+23.
  15. Build #1 - 1/72 MiG-21 Fishbed Original tool/boxing. I forget how I ended up with this one, but it is the oldest kit in the stash...both in terms of possession and outright age. The only kit I've had longer is the Academy F-8...which is currently next to the bench technically in work, therefore I don't consider it part of the stash. There has been a little painting started...however it's incorrect for the early F-13s so it will all need to be repainted anyways. I've got a couple little bits to dress it up, though I'm not certain on the decals yet. I'll have to size them up, as technically the set is for the MiG-15. I do have some Polish MiG-21 decals (from a MF) that I can rob from if need be. Intent is to build wheels up in flight...hence the addition of the pilot (hope they fit ).
  16. Hi All! This is my latest finished build in 1/144 scale. Why ”NOTSnik”? Because of the Sputnik. In 1956 US Navy Naval Ordnance Test Station was developing various unmanned vehicles. One of them being air launched vehicle propelled by motors from SUBROC antisubmarine missile. Following Sputnik launch this idea was successfully sold to high authorities as simple and low-cost way of achieving satelite orbits. Originally known as ”Project Pilot” it quickly gained nickname NOTSnik. Douglas F4D-1 Skyray was assigned as a carrier, effectively acting as missile ”first stage”. Under a lot of political pressure, in summer of 1958 six launches were attempted. All of them failed due to technical difficulties. The program was classified until 1994. The model depicts early aerodynamic test vehicle, later missile would be much larger, consisting of four SUBROC motors wrapped together, somewhat similar to first stage of Nike-Hercules SAM. I used Miniwing kit upgraded with Shelf Oddity photoetched details and decals.
  17. Dear modelling enthusiasts For my first contribution to Britmodeller, I attach here some images of my just completed 1/700 HMS Eagle (R.05). This is the old 1976 Fujimi kit, and was a bit of a challenge due to reasons including old, brittle plastic, and missing pieces (eBay purchase). The only upgrade was a set of 1/700 railing. Otherwise built out of the box and home made items. This was also my first attempt at creating an ocean diorama base. I tried to represent the Eagle at high speed. Best regards Marcello
  18. Hello everyone! This is P-42 (former T-10-15 Su-27 demonstrator modified to set time to climb records) in 1/144 scale. Base kit is Trumpeter, with some chopping done to align with the original airframe. Anything that was not essential to the very basic purpose of flight - including paint finish - was removed. Tips of vertical stabilizers, ventral fins, IR dome, tail sting - are all gone, so are most of antennas. In 1986-7 the P-42, equipped with uprated engines which along with other modifications gave thrust to weight ratio of ~2.0, set series of time-to-climb records, beating those set in 1975 by likewise lightened and stripped out F-15 Streak Eagle. This model served as a prototype for Shelf Oddity brass Time and place: Thanks for watching! Leszek
  19. So folks with the M113 rapidly coming to an end I thought I'd let you all in on the next project. Undecided on the scheme but it might be the NATO 3 colour jobbie ? The beautifully done Master MG-42, this will be a modern MG-3 though. Expensive but worth it And a couple of crew figures It will be a few days before I cut plastic on this one. Regards Dan
  20. Latest tank to go out of my father's confinement factory . Slightly touched up by me prior to photographing. A kit bought in this year's only model exhibition here in Malta before everything was cancelled due to the pandemic. Just for 5 €. A nice kit, with lots of photoetched (a bit too many, for our taste) and wonderful rubber tracks and moving wheels that allows smooth movement. To photograph this in the wilderness was an odyssey, trying to find somewhere remotely similar to Finland in the middle of the Maltese summer. After walking for hours on end, we decided for a small spot in a dried up stream under one of the only woods on the island, and we emptied a whole water bottle to moisture a bit the environment. I love that the kit depicts a version of a minor country, I am tired of seeing Russian, German and American AFVs coping everything on the market. Made happily OOB.
  21. Mikoyan Mig-25PD Foxbat-E (48903) 1:48 ICM In an attempt to fulfil the perceived need for a supersonic interceptor that could take off, climb to height and attack an incoming bomber stream, which at the time was the most efficient method for delivering the newly invented nuclear warheads, The Mig-25 Foxbat was created. It managed the job to a certain extent, but as it never truly achieved its goals, it was left to its successor the Mig-31 Foxhound before the task was handled competently, by which time the role of ICBMs was about to make the primary role redundant. The Mig-25's inadequacies were hidden from the West however, until the famous defection of a Soviet pilot to an airfield in Japan revealed that the Foxbat wasn't as high-tech and all-conquering as we had been led to believe, having many steel parts instead of the high-tech alloys that the investigators were expecting. The prototype flew in 1964, and was constructed primarily of stainless steel, and reached service at the turn of the decade, although it had been seen before that, both in reconnaissance photos of the West, as well as at some parades. The West assumed that the large wing was to aid manoeuvrability, when in fact it was a necessity due to the aircraft's enormous weight, which made it fast, but changing direction was a chore due to all that momentum wanting to carry on in the direction it was travelling. It was also lacking in the avionics department, especially in one crucial aspect. It had no credible capability for targeting aircraft that were lower than itself, which coincided with the change in tactics to low level attack by the Western Allies, so a lack of a useful look-down/shoot-down capability was a serious deficiency. Nevertheless, several hundred were made, with the last one rolling off the production line in 1984 with a number of export orders into the bargain. The PD was the second iteration of the P interceptor, having improved engines, ability to carry R-60 missiles, and a more efficient Pulse-Doppler radar for basic look-down-shoot-down capability, which was later coupled with an infrared sensor under the nose. NATO gave it the Foxbat-E designation, which was also extended to the PDS, which were original P airframes that were later brought up to the PD standard. Although it suffered from some serious deficiencies, it held a number of speed and altitude records, and was theoretically capable of Mach 3, so could give an SR-71 a run for its money, probably at the expense of significant damage to its engines however. Attempts to improve the Foxbat were unsuccessful, and the Foxhound was its eventual replacement, and delivered everything that was expected of its forebear, staying in service until it is replaced by the Pak-Fa at some point in the near future. The Kit Since the release of the reconnaissance based RBT in Q1 and RB in Q3 of 2017, ICM are now releasing the interceptors, and we hope (well I do anyway), eventually the trainers, which relies of course on us all getting lots of the other marques, so what're you waiting for? Now the Revell/Monogram kit has been put out to pasture, we can delight in these kits from ICM that have given us a new level of detail and accuracy from the days of the Cold War when things had to be guessed at. The box is the same size and style as the other releases, although this time my review sample lid was almost destroyed due to it being such a tight fit on the box lower. I managed to get it off eventually, but it's a struggle every time. This is a revised tooling from the original, with four shared sprues and three new ones in grey styrene, the same clear sprue, and of course a different set of markings for the decal options, with the same stencils on a separate sheet. The instruction booklet is also different, and shows which parts aren't needed in this boxing, thankfully including the clear dials for the instrument panel, which I never quite understood the need for when you have a paint over it to depict the dials and the rest of the panel. Sharing much of the sprues of the original it has excellent detail, with lots of this apparent on the outer skin, as well as the new single part styrene instrument panel part that has a decal on the main sheet providing all the instrument faces. Good news! The build sequence is almost identical too, but as well as a new nose for this Interceptor (sporting the IR sensor with tracking facility), there is also the new instrument panel as mentioned above, and some slight changes to the exhausts. The biggest difference however is the inclusion of weapons! These are supplied on two of the new identical sprues, containing a quartet of R-60 Aphid Air-to-Air (A2A) missiles that can be fitted to the outer pylons for short-range fighting, and four R-40 Acrid long range A2A missiles, two of each of the Semi-Active Radar and Infrared homing varieties. These are usually fired in pairs with the Infrared missile first and the Radar missile second, to avoid confusing the former with the latter's heat signature. If the R-60s were carried on the outer rails, this reduced the Foxbat's long range capability to a one-shot deal, with only shorter range R-60 missiles left at its disposal. The Syrians claim to have shot down an Israeli F-15, but this was never confirmed for many reasons, some of which were political, some not. A US F-18 was shot down in the early part of Desert Storm by an Iraqi Mig-25, presumably not one of the ones they found buried after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. Markings There are four decal options included in the box, two from the Soviet Union and one each from Libya and Iraq. As mentioned earlier, the markings are on one sheet with the instrument panel decals, while the copious quantities of stencils for the airframe and missiles are on the other. Decals are printed anonymously, and have good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. From the box you can build one of the following: Mig-25PDS 146th Guard Fighter Regiment, Vasilikov 1989 – marked Blue 56 with 60 years celebration scroll on the intakes. Mig-25PD Soviet Air Force, 1986 – marked Red 17. Mig-25PD Iraqi Air Force, late 80s – Arabic code on the nose, Iraqi flag on the tail. Mig-25PD Libyan Air Force, 90s – Coded 6716. Conclusion It's nice to have the fighter (read interceptor) variants reaching us now, as although recce is an important task for any air force, the aircraft with the missiles and bombs are just that bit cooler to many. Another sterling effort from ICM who are now the kings of Mig-25 in 1:48. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  22. Hi Pals, I have finished the model, along with its base. A well detailed OOB kit and easy to assemble, with the exception of the tracks, which are very laborious, although not particularly difficult. I added some small extra bit, such as the headlight wires, and the rearview mirror rods, and the strips of the barrel's thermal sleeve straps, as well as a pair of antennas. The only thing that could have focused better, is the behavior of the bogies of the undercarriage, when climbing the vehicle on the slope, although it is not too steep, and the solution was, or take off parts (too risky), or lay it flat on the terrain, but I prefer as it looks ... and that is that at first, I didn't think about making a base ... I wrote it down for a next occasion ... I have had a lot of work with the photos, because although I have the means to do them quite well, the backgrounds are a real headache to get them to have a pure color, either white or black. As far as I can tell, you have to do post-process, that is, some software to use (Photoshop). There are different series of photos, with different background color, different lighting, and different post-process. I include some photos of the real model that have inspired me, and to see how much I approached the real model. I will indicate a small comment in each series. The main thing for me, when making them, is that the color of the model does not change, and if it does, the minimum possible, because the one that has, for better or worse, is the one that I want to show. Thank you very much everyone for taking time to watch, comment and suggest improvements. Until the next model and Cheers. Set of black background, with two lights, and white / black Photoshop setting. Set of White background, with a lights, and brightness adjustment with Photoshop. Set of White background, with two lights, and brightness adjustment with Photoshop. Set whit diorame, and white background, with two lights, and brightness adjustment with Photoshop. Black background, with two lights, and brightness adjustment with Photoshop. Real photos of the model and box art, for inspiration ...
  23. USAF MD-1 Towbar Early & Late (191548 & 191648) 1:48 VideoAviation Our friends at VideoAviation specialise in accessories for our aircraft models such as ground-handling gear and weapons sets. These two sets from them depict the two versions of the USAF’s trusty MD-1 Towbar that debuted in the 80s and is still in use today. The original design was updated to improve the operation of the transport wheels by adding an additional damper and wider wheels and tyres, presumably to improve its handling during transport to and from the apron. Both sets contain many of the same parts and arrive in a clear clamshell with a card front and instructions behind, plus the resin parts behind in a ziplok bag for safety and cushioning. The clamp/hitch that attaches to the nose-gear are first to be made up, and they are the same for each variant, consisting of a wide Y-shaped bracket with two fingers that wind in and out on a worm-screw that’s hand-cranked from one end. This attaches to one end of the bar, and at the join between the two halves of that the two suspension arms and their wheels are added. The modern version has wider, smaller wheels and additional pair of arms that stand up and attach to the damper with the other end slotted into an additional bracket clamped over the bar. The towing eye slots into the hollow end of the bar, and has a wire that you shape by using the included jig (bottom left & right in the photo) and slip into the base of the eye. Scrap diagrams show the wheels in both transport and towing positions, and you are told to paint the finished piece in green or grey depending on the era or your references. Conclusion Great for dioramas either in the foreground or as background clutter, with a choice of two types depending on when your model is in time. Casting is excellent as we’ve come to expect from VideoAviation, and it’s also available in 1:32, which we reviewed a while back here. Highly recommended. MD-1 Towbar Early (191548) MD-1 Towbar Late (191648) Review sample courtesy of
  24. After a lot of help from fellow modellers on this site through this thread I now have enough information to at least start a build. In fact I am going to build two AV-8C's, One as a normal service machine and the other as 719 operated by NASA So let's post an out of focus picture so show what I am starting with Hopefully some progress pictures later today, mayby not as I am not the fastest builder in the world Gondor
  25. I thought it was when I cut up a Vulcan to convert it to a Vulcan B.1a was when I had officially lost it, but wow.... I have built a second 1/72 Victor (much better than my first I think!) and am planning to buy a K.2 next to put on that lovely hemp scheme, after that I'll probably get around to a camouflage aircraft (perhaps by then there'll be a conversion set for the Airfix kit to make a BK.1a!). Not only have I built another of these, I also used Air Graphics' conversion set to convert this to a Victor B.Mk.2 at the very beginning of its service life, this is XM718 which I think was the final Victor built and left the factory with the later drooped leading edges on the outer wing rather than leading flaps. Anyway, my ramblings aside, here is my second Airfix Victor B.Mk.2: I particularly like his image from the front, probably the angle the Victor looks best from. Another great angle to view this aircraft from. The flaps and airbrakes are deployed, which isn't right for a parked aircraft but perhaps they were testing them or showing off the aircraft? Imagination needed there a bit. The awesome airbrake assembly of the Victor. It's one of my favourite parts of the aircraft, I'd love an airbrake door from one on my wall but they're quite big and I imagine quite rare to find. If XH673 is scrapped (I feel very strongly about how that aircraft should be saved!) I might go after one from that.... I imagine they'll sell off all sorts of bits, I can only dream... I'd still rather the full thing to to a good home though! And the underside, I don't think the weathering is that bad on here at all. I will admit, there's one spot I need to work on at the rear of the bomb bay where I'm still repairing the paint after a crack opened up between the fuselage halves. Bomb bay is open, the part at the front is held on my friction only so I can put on the closed bomb bay part if I so wish (and if I could find it!) which is also held on by friction alone, clever engineering from Airfix to be able to do that. And now with my other Victor I've said so much about Now having finished the model I think adding the extra intake vanes was an improvement aesthetically Here's where I used the resin APU intake (less than perfectly blended in) showing the difference between the original B.Mk.2 APU intake (XM718) and the B.Mk.2R (and later) APU intake (XL512) And my three Victors together Some pictures of my other Victors on their own: Mikromir 1/144 Victor B.1, XA940 Through a filter which I think is closer to how the model actually looks And my first Victor, also Airfix's Victor B.Mk.2R (built out the box that time), XL512. I need to replace the IFR probe on this which I snapped a few months ago (part of the motivation for doing the conversion on my second one of the kit was to end up with a spare, aside from the fact that I really really like early Victor B.Mk.2s)
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