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  1. F4U-1D & F4U-1 Birdcage Corsair Interior 3D Decals (for Tamiya & Hobby Boss) 1:48 Quinta Studio When Quinta’s innovative products first came to our attention, they caused quite a stir, as well they should. The replacement Instrument Panels and internal details are mind-boggling to look at, because we’re used to seeing simplified styrene instrument panels, or Photo-Etch Brass panels with either two layers of etch, or laminated parts that can be tricky to glue together, even though they are pre-painted for your ease. But decals? These aren’t your run-of-the-mill decals though, they’re 3D printed in many layers and colours on a flat carrier film, having as much in the way of elevation as is needed to complete a realistic panel printed in the correct colours, complete with shiny dial faces and metallic-effect hardware, and often including cushions and seat belts in the set. Each set arrives in a Ziploc bag with a folded instruction booklet protecting the decals, which are also separately bagged, so they should reach you in good condition. The pictorial instructions are printed on glossy paper, and are shown in full colour as befits the awesomeness of the sets, showing exactly where each part should go on the actual model, so there’s no confusion due to the “pictures speak a thousand words” maxim. Additional hints and instructions are also included, marking out parts needing bases, kit parts that are used or replaced and other useful tips. The technical instructions in the text-based, giving additional tips to the new user about maximising adhesion and preventing lift at the edges by wicking in super glue. Although you are advised to use Super Glue (CA) to attach the decals to the surface permanently, preparation is much the same as your standard decal, but you will need to remove any raised detail that would be underneath the location depicted in the instructions, and some new parts will need small backing panels or bases on which to apply the decal. A slim piece of sheet styrene would perform that task, and painting the edges a matching colour should minimise its appearance or turn it completely invisible. F4U-1D Corsair (QD48108 for Tamiya) This set is patterned for the Tamiya kit. The set comprises one sheet of decals, containing the instrument panel with additional sub-panels to the sides; side consoles with additional parts for the console walls, including a document folder; equipment and instruments for the cockpit sidewalls; levers and a full set of seatbelts for the pilot’s convenience and safety. F4U-1 Bird-Cage Corsair (QD48126 for Hobby Boss) This set is patterned for the Hobby Boss kit, which could use the help. The set comprises two sheets of decals, containing the instrument panel with additional sub-panels to the sides; side consoles with additional parts for the console walls; equipment and instruments for the cockpit sidewalls; levers and a full set of seatbelts for the pilot’s convenience and safety. Very similar to the other set, so you might be experiencing a bit of déjà vu about now. Conclusion The detail on the parts for both sets is incredible, even down to the infinitesimal switches and impressive crispness of the set. This cockpit really needs a crystal-clear or opened canopy to show off the details. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  2. This is the latest build I finished, just a couple days before signing up. The Vindicator was an American inter-war carrier-based dive-bomber and one of the first monoplanes to enter military service for the country. As such, you can see a lot of older design trends based off of biplanes in the design, such as the fabric tail-boom, the whole engine being self-contained in the front cowling, and the full set of flight controls in the rear cockpit, thus allowing the plane to be flown from the backseat (for pilots used to biplanes who preferred flying from there, and as a backup in case the pilot was lost/incapacitated). The kit was from Academy, with original molding by Accurate Miniatures. The plane next to a reference photo (my plane is US Navy operated, whereas the plane in the picture was US Marine Corps operated, per the paint schemes). Zooming out a bit for a better view of the overall aircraft. Constant combat drilling leading up to the Battle of Midway has taken its toll, and the plane is fairly dirty. The front canopy was glued open as it would not sit very well in the closed position. Rear profile, we can see the scratch-marks around the often-used panels. All the rear canopy pieces are glued in the closed position, as trying to fit all of them underneath the central canopy piece to have them open is a disaster waiting to happen with the OOB parts. I'd need to vacuum-form the canopy to do that properly. Also by my references, the solid portion of the rear canopy went between either a full metal plate covering or having the inside covered with the windows still there (I put it down to earlier models being converted). I opted for the latter option since it looks more interesting, but the former can be done by sanding off the canopy window frames in that area. The plane was equipped with a Pratt & Whitney R1530 Twin Wasp radial engine. with a two-blade Hamilton Standard propeller. The engine cylinder banks in the kit were good, but then they went and ruined the whole thing with one of the worst attempts at injection-molding ignition wires I've seen in a long time. Needless to say, I discarded all that and scratch-built all the finer details inside the engine (connecting rods and ignition wires). It was well worth the effort. The propeller does not spin because I was dumb and forgot to install the spinner inside the engine, so I had to glue it. From cockpit with instrument panel (photo-etch upgrade from Eduard). The shape of the instrument panel was actually a pretty major inaccuracy in the kit; OOB it had indented side frames leading up to the top, whereas on the real plane they were straight. I used Milliput to correct the shape. This made fitting it a major pain, but I eventually found a home for it, and thankfully left myself just enough room to fit the tubular bomb sight. Back cockpit, with navigation antenna, seatbelts, and rear machine gun visible. Underneath the plane. we can see the salty tropical air has not been kind to this bird. Getting in closer for a better view of the landing gear assembly (they rotated 90 degrees and retracted into the round divots behind them), as well as the oil and dirt stains on the bottom. I like the way the wear turned out on the bomb, as well. And last but not least a group-shot of the Vindicator with a bunch of her friends from Midway. I've got a Buffalo, a Wildcat, and a Devastator. The Dauntless is in my build queue, but I'm waiting for more materials for it, as I am doing it in 1/32 scale. That's all for now. Hope you enjoyed the photos, and I'll see you soon in the WIP forums for my next build!
  3. Corsair Cockpits F4U-1 Family (ISBN: 978-0-578-37642-4) Rivet Counter Guide #1 by Dana Bell Most of you will have heard of the F4U-1 Corsair and its variants, and a great many of you will also have heard of Dana Bell - a well-known name in our hobby. Vought developed the Corsair as a powerful single-engined fighter during WWII, with a distinctive gull-wing to accommodate its gigantic propeller, which itself was needed to harness the power from the Pratt & Whitney R-2800 radial engine strapped into the cowling. Dana is a self-confessed rivet-counter, but of the kind that is sharing, rather than point-scoring. In fact, there’s a few paragraphs on the subject of rivets and their counting within the inside front cover, my favourite sentence being “The best of Rivet Counters are quick to offer support when asked, and slow to share unwelcome criticism”. Sounds good to me! Why are we talking about Rivet-Counters? Because this is the first in a hopefully long line of Rivet Counter Guides, and is clearly #1. It deals solely with the cockpit of this fabulous and powerful aircraft, discussing the minutiae, and the variations that occurred within production blocks as improvements were made due to experience in the battle space, on deck and in the hangars where the type was used to great effect. The book arrives in a softback card cover, with 72 glossy pages predominantly in black and white due to the period that the Corsair flew, but with spot colour here and there in drawings and to highlight certain sections of both the text and the photos. The photos are also amongst some of the best lit and detailed of usually shadowy areas like cockpits that I have seen, with little left to the imagination by darkness or low resolution. Every complex mechanism goes through changes as it develops due to issues that only show themselves with use, and this book documents these changes relating to the cockpit only, which includes the canopy and the equipment that is within the area of the cockpit, such as items like the CO2 cylinder in the bowels of the cockpit floor that is used to deploy the landing gear in the event of a hydraulic failure, ensuring that the pilot has a second option to avoid a belly landing if he has suffered damage during the mission. There was also an issue of pilots losing radio contact during landing, which was due to the canopy frame shorting out the system when pulled back during landing. The simplest of fixes were used, cutting a semi-circular notch out of the trialling edge of the frame. Many of the photos are annotated and drawn on with text and lines, indicating that they were used by the manufacturers to assist in the design of the alterations that they were working on, and giving insight into the process. Alongside these fantastic detail photographs are other candid photos of aircraft on the apron, in the field, after belly landings and even upside down on the deck of the USS Bunker Hill, which clearly shows the bombing window that allowed the pilot a view of his target, a feature that would otherwise be invisible in the shadows beneath the aircraft on the ground, or distant when photographed in-flight in most photos. Conclusion The detail laid out in this book is incredible, and includes plenty to read alongside the useful photos, so if you are interested in the minutiae of the Corsair cockpit, this book is for you. If you want to build accurate models of the gull-winged beast, this is also a great one-stop source for the aircraft’s cockpit, written for you by a renowned modeller, so you know that modellers were on the author’s mind during its writing. What’s #2 going to be about? pre-war Curtis SOC Seagull colours and markings according to the author. Very highly recommended. Dana has the book available in the US via Amazon US, and for international orders, you can use eBay’s International Shipping from the link below Review sample courtesy of Dana Bell, who is also a member of our forum.
  4. AZ model is to release (in 2016 2019) a 1/72nd Vought OS2U Kingfisher kit (Pavla plastic). Source: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234931186-azmodellegatoadmiral-wwii-aircraft-comments-questions-and-wishes/?p=2147039 V.P.
  5. Introducing this little beaut, resident in my stash since 2005 And inside the box I found that I'd printed the Ebay receipt. Seems I was the only person interested in a Cutlass that day. I've just found 2 copies on Ebay - £34.99 each. Glad I bought mine when I did. Instructions and decals, Options, I'm probably going for the grey/white one. Parts still in their bags - I'll photo those on Saturday.
  6. V-156F Vindicator ‘Aéronavale Service’ (SH48213) 1:48 Special Hobby The Vindicator’s original designation in US service was SB2U, and it served with the US Navy until the battle of Midway, latterly as trainers, despite having its beginnings in the mid-30s as a scout bomber that reached its peak by the outbreak of WWII in 1939. The French ordered 40 to serve on one of their carriers, but it was mothballed as out-dated when the war began, so the aircraft had to serve from ground locations, fighting against the Italians and even providing air cover for the Dunkirk evacuation. The remainder were so few that they were phased out after the French surrendered. The British Fleet Air Arm took over the pending French order for an additional 50 airframes after capitulation, and in FAA service they were known as the Chesapeake. In US service, a number were destroyed on the ground during the Pearl Harbour attack by the Japanese that drew America into WWII, with most of the low number of airframes produced eventually being replaced by the more capable SBD Dauntless in front-line service. The Kit This a Special Hobby reboxing of the 2005 Accurate Miniatures kit that has also been seen in an Azur and Academy boxes over the years, but this boxing has been augmented by the inclusion of resin and Photo-Etch (PE) details, plus a new set of wings and decals that make a more unique product. It arrives in a standard Special Hobby top-opening box, with four sprues in grey styrene (the wings are a different grey), two sprues of clear parts, a bag of resin, a fret of PE, a clear slip of acetate with the instrument panels printed in black, plus the instruction booklet that is printed in colour on glossy white paper. The wings stand out as more modern and are moulded in SH’s style, having a more matt finish and plenty of raised and engraved detail over the surface. The Accurate Miniatures plastic that has been moulded for them by Academy, also has plenty of detail, including the ribbed surface of the fuselage, sagged and round tyres, and plenty of interior detail. The Vindicator’s cockpit is a long slot with a deck separating the two seats, which is where construction begins. The front cockpit is assembled on a short floor at the front of the raised deck, with the internal steel framing of the fuselage and instruments/controls depicted as fine parts that attach to the sides, joined by the seat with PE belts, a tie-down web for the dinghy pack and small control parts in PE, which take up a substantial number of parts. The rear cockpit has a longer floor and is built up in a similar way with fuselage framework supporting controls and accessories, with a rear bulkhead and gun mount that has fine PE parts, then the seat with PE lap belts and furniture. Before they are installed in the fuselage, the multi-layer instrument panel is made up from a styrene rear, acetate mid-layer and PE front detail parts in two stepped sections that fit to the front of the fuselage framework along with some more tiny parts and a frame over the rear of the gunner’s position. The fuselage can then be closed up around the sub-assemblies, the tailwheel and a small bulkhead forward of the tail, with some interior painting and some ejector-pin marks that may need filling. Under the rear fuselage is an insert with more ribbing, which has a slot in the back to accommodate the resin arrestor-hook. The new wings are full-width on the underside, and have their upper sections added, checking whether any of the internal ejector-turrets need cutting back before you apply the glue. The elevators have moulded in flying surfaces, and are each made from top and bottom surfaces. Before these assemblies are added to the fuselage, the engine and its cowling must be made up, beginning with the cowling flaps in open or closed position, onto which the engine mount is fixed. The radial engine is represented with both banks of pistons and a bell-housing with push-rods and some oversized wiring harness moulded-in. You can cut the wiring loom out and replace them with something more in scale if you feel the urge. The cowling is made from two curved panels that are joined into a cylinder and have internal parts added to the intake, then the lip is fitted over the engine to (almost) complete the fuselage. The wings are then inserted into the gap in the upper wing and glued in place along with the elevators. Flipping the airframe over, the landing gear is made up mostly from styrene parts with the assistance of a few small resin parts, and a choice of either round of slightly flattened smooth treaded tyres on two-part hubs on the main wheels. Separate oleo-scissors, bay doors and retraction mechanisms are included, or you could use the round tyres and hubs with extra parts for the combined leg and doors to portray the aircraft in the wheels-up pose. The Vindicator used spoilers to provide the impetus to dive, which came out of shallow bays in the upper and lower wings when needed. These are moulded-into the wings and can be fitted in either retracted or deployed positions by setting the PE spoilers flush or perpendicular to the wing surface, as shown in the instructions. The long greenhouse canopy can be fitted closed by using the windscreen and single canopy part, or you can change it out and use the four-part open canopy that is also on the sprue, checking your references for the correct angles and position of the parts. The prop is a two-blade affair and has a separate cap on the axle, then you depict the gun ports by drilling out a 2mm hole in the leading edge of the wing, and applying a PE patch over the hole, with a pitot probe on the left wingtip and aerial mast at the front on the engine cowling. More spoilers are fitted to the underside, and two resin bombs on shackles are glued into holes under the inner wing panels along with the pilot’s two panel window in the underside that helps locating the target's position in preparation for diving on its prey. Markings The Vindicator had a relatively short career in French hands, so three of the four are painted in a blue grey shade, while one has some green camouflage splotches oversprayed to give a more unusual look. From the box you can build one of the following: No.13/AB1-12, Escadrille AB1, Boulogne-Alprech, winter 1939-40 No.7/White 6, Escadrille AB1, French Vindicators’ carrier tests, aircraft carrier ‘Béarn’, may 1940 No.10/White 9, Escadrille AB3, Hyeres, 1940 No.8/AB1-6, Escadrille AB1, Boulogne-Alprech, autumn 1939-40 Conclusion A welcome niche variant reboxing of this lesser-known type that fought valiantly at the beginning of WWII but received little in the way of acknowledgement for its efforts or those brave aviators in the cockpit. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  7. Good Afternoon chaps, Right ho ! Seeing as building is slowing down on the Swordfish and its in to painting, weathering and final assembly my mind has begun to wonder onto what's next..... Cue fanfair !!!!!!!! Yes I know its hopelessly ambitious and it might all end as a horrible disaster but either way I'm determined to have fun and hopefully learn a few things. Not sure how long this will take or how much of the extras will find their way into the final model as its all new ground to me. Hope you'll follow an idiot on his intrepid adventure !, if you do be warned lol Toodle Pip ! Alan
  8. LukGraph is to release a 1/32nd Vought SBU-1 Corsair resin kit - ref. 32-09. Source: https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1672359276411472&id=100009122475726 V.P.
  9. 1/48th Chance Vought F4U-7 Corsair "French Navy" - ref.80392 Source: http://www.primeportal.net/models/thomas_voigt7/hobby_boss/ V.P.
  10. Hello, I'm happy to share my completed Azur Vindicator. It's a lovely kit to build, matching original Accurate Miniatures parts with new Azur wings, resin and etch to create a French naval version. It took a little while, with breaks for holidays etc, and the full WIP is here. Hope you enjoy it, and welcome all constructive comments as ever. The last image is also in the WIP, but shows the amount of interior detail on offer, and much stays visible. Take care, Matt
  11. Hi My next model in the series "Yellow wings" - Vought SB2U-1 Vindicator, which released Special Hobby. I build this model in the same time as BT-1, and today I finished. The build thread can be found here -> http://www.pwm.org.pl/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=77766 . And photo session with BT-1. Best regards. Jaro
  12. Kitty Hawk is to release a 1/32nd Vought OS2U Kingfisher kit - ref.KH32016 Now 1/32nd and not 1/48th as initially announced. Source: https://www.facebook.com/736521713066784/photos/a.736556396396649.1073741827.736521713066784/900453140006973/?type=1&theater V.P.
  13. Morning all, Sneaking over the line just before new year are my final two completions, the Airfix Wildcat and Tamiya Corsair. Both in 1/72 and completely out of the box. Two very neat little kits. Thanks for looking, comments welcomed Happy new year Shaun
  14. Done in Tamiya and Vallejo acrylics as usual- brush painted. I attempted to get a faded look from the humid south east asia air by blending together thinned paint in slightly different stages. Am pretty happy about the way it turned out aside from the gap on the underside, which I completely forgot about, and the fact that for the life of me I can't get rid of the gloss finish- will try spraying the rattle can humbrol matt varnish, as matt cote and XF-86 don't seem to be able to do it. Now on to the Vietnam GB!
  15. XF5U-1 Flying Flapjack 1:48 KittyHawk At a time when engineers were struggling to squeeze every ounce of speed from the piston engines that had almost reached their limit in terms of power, there were some radical solutions proposed, and one such aircraft was the Vought XF5U, which began gestation during WWII as a carrier fighter with high top-speed, but good slow handling characteristics for deck operations. By mounting the two props at the edges of the disc-shaped blended fuselage/wing and giving them opposite directions of rotation, the prop-wash cancelled the energy sapping vortices, giving the aircraft a higher top-speed and allowing it to use a smaller lifting body to achieve its performance. That benefited carrier stowage as well as saving materials, so a great deal of effort went into developing the concept. Based on a smaller prototype, the test aircraft was constructed and began ground trials that ended up with some small hops, but never fully-fledged flight if you'll excuse the pun. Vibration issues remained by the time the project was cancelled in 1947, by which time it was over-budget and being closed upon rapidly by the jet-age. It was doubtless an interesting proposition that struggled to find its feet due to the radically different technologies needed to make it function reliably, but it was ultimately to be the more promising jet engines that sealed its fate. The Kit An unusual choice by KittyHawk, but an interesting one nonetheless, from an age where anything was considered to steal a march on the opposition. The kit has been tooled to represent the development airframe, however the box art shows a what-if scene of a Flapjack scything through the sky having just destroyed a Japanese fighter that was attacking an Allied bomber stream, firing cannons at the next target "off-screen". Very nice artwork it is too. Inside the box are four sprues of mid-grey styrene, which are irritatingly (from a reviewer's point of view at least) still linked in pairs, having been folded at their centres at the factory. Clear parts are individually bagged, and a separate ziplok bag contains a tiny sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, and three decal sheets of varying sizes. The instruction booklet is portrait A4(ish) with a glossy colour cover with fold-out inners that contain the colour guides. The rear cover has had its fold-out pasted closed at the factory however, and another page in thinner stock inserted in the centre of the booklet, possibly due to a mistake in the profiles, or more likely due to the large Animé/Manga style decal that has been removed from one of the decal sheets for wider release. The sprues are square, so there's a reasonable amount of room in the box, because the Flapjack was a small aircraft. The part count is also fairly low due to the blended nature of the design, with two large top and bottom fuselage/wing surfaces taking up the majority of two of the sprues. Construction is therefore straightforward and consists of creating the small cockpit from a floor panel, seat with PE belts, side and rear panels, plus the instrument panel, which has a decal for it and the side consoles. Rudder and control column finish off the area, and little more is needed due to the small opening in the fuselage. The two main gear bays are also built up from panels, and have the five-part gear legs and two-part twin wheels added before they are installed. Spacer ribs help to hold them firmly within the fuselage once installed too, which is good design. The small tail wheel uses the same construction method, although the twin wheels are single parts due to their size. Two exhaust tubes are made up and installed in the lower wing, at which point the four assemblies can be added and the airframe closed up. A turtle-deck behind the pilot is added, and twin main-bay doors are inserted on separate hinges, as are the tail wheel bay doors. Cockpit glazing is in two parts, and is thin with very little in the way of distortion, allowing the canopy to be posed open or closed. A gunsight is added before gluing the windscreen in place, after which the various airframe details are brought together, such as the twin intakes in the leading edge; twin tails and elevators; two inserts in the top and bottom engine humps; the two part elevons with separate mass-balances and formation lights in clear; the crane-like arrestor-hook, which deploys from the upper fuselage; and of course the twin props. The blades are separate from the spinner, which is made up from two parts each for the cylindrical extension and the spinner itself. Happily the blades are keyed, so will be easy to get set up to the correct angle. If you're doing the prototype, all you need do is bring these final assemblies together and add the clear nose dome, but KH have thoughtfully supplied a pair of bombs and pylons if you wanted to go a bit whiffy. There aren't parts for guns however, so you'd be expected to add those yourself from tubing. Markings There appears to be a decal for a Japanese manga style character missing from the three sheets, as evidenced by the half-moon edge of one of them. A small picture on the box contents page gives that fact away as do the stuck-together pages in the instruction manual, and a blanked off image on the box, so I guess that one of these little aircraft featured in animé somewhere along the line, but KH probably thought that the average Gaijin wouldn't be interested. From this boxing you can build one of three airframes, as follows: US Navy – Midnight Blue with red prop blades & substantial walkways on upper surfaces. US Army – Uncle Sam Wants You – Midnight Blue with large Uncle Sam decal and stars on the upper surfaces, red/white rudders & red prop blades. US Navy – All over silver with red prop blades, and red/white rudders. The decals are spread across three sheets, with the national insignia, walkways and striped rudder panels taking up the majority of one sheet, while the tiny sheet contains just two images of Bugs Bunny on a flying carpet. The sheet with Uncle Sam on also contains the instrument decals, but the words "I want you" has the I replaced with a bullet, and O an oozing bullet-wound, which I've not seen before and find a teensy bit disturbing. The figure image seems to have been culled from one easily found on Google, so I hope they don't run into any copyright issues! Quality of the decals is good, with sharpness, register and colour density up to standard, and the thin carrier film tightly cropped. Conclusion A nice model of an interesting technological dead-end during the last days of WWII that should provide a quick easy build due to its simplicity, although detail hasn't be sacrificed at all. If you read our reviews regularly, you'll see I like the esoteric so you can imagine that this one is right up my street. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
  16. Evening all, Having run out of steam a little with my Battle of Britain project, I've switched my attention to my main area of interest, naval aviation. I started a Hobby Boss F9F last week, but couldn't resist making a start on another couple of classic fighters whilst the Panther trickles along in the background. Having been o impressed with the Defiant, I wanted to crack open another of Airfix's recent toolings, and having picked up the Wildcat and Kate dogfight double, the F-4F seemed an obvious choice. My pair of Tamiya Corsairs have been screaming at me from the stash for some time now too, so I thought, given the similar schemes worn by the Wildcat and the Birdcage variant of the Corsair, I might as well crack open the latter at the same time. Both seem lovely kits, the Tamiya especially, though I guess that's to be expected. So, first progress, and after a bit of construction the cockpit interiors have been sprayed. Whilst not altogether interesting in itself, the answers to my questions in my other thread, and the IPMS Stockholm website proved to be fairly enlightening regarding the colours. The IPMS Stockholm page contains information regarding these colours specific to the types, revealing that my usual go-to colour of interior green was not accurate for either of these aircraft. For the Wildcat, and indeed most Grumman types it seems, a darker, Bronze green was used, whilst the Corsair had a dark dull green interior, as confirmed in my question thread. The latter is a little less clear cut it seems, but images posted by LanceB in my question thread of a recovered wreck seem to match with this green rather well. For the Wildcat, the Stockholm colour charts recommend Hu 75 plus a touch of other greens, which I was happy to ignore, as the neat 75 looked reasonable to my eye, whilst Hu 149 was suggested for the Corsair. This seemed a little bright straight out of the (very old!) pot so I darkened it a little with some of the Hu 75 and some black. Neither are 100% perfect, but not too bad I reckon, and lets face it, it'll be pretty difficult to see inside either cockpit once everything is closed up. Next step will obviously be to detail paint and weather the interiors, and I shall also set about getting the remainder of the interior colours laid down, notably that wonderfully garish pink in the corsair tail Thanks for looking, comments welcomed Cheers Shaun
  17. Vought F-8E Crusader VF-162 "The Hunters" 1:72 Academy Vought designed the F-8 (Then the F8U) in the early 1950s in response to a US Navy requirement for a supersonic fighter to be armed with 20mm canon as Korea had shown the short comings of aircraft armed with the traditional 0.50 calibre ammunition. The F-8 would be the last USN aircraft designed with guns as its primary weapon, indeed the F-4 which followed never has a gun in USN service. This lead to the F-8 being called "The Last of the Gunfighters". A novel feature of the F-8 was the fitment of a variable incidence wing. This afforded extra lift without compromising forward visibility as the main fuselage stays level. The F-8E was a major development of the Crusader. A new AN/APQ-94 Radar unit was fitted giving the nose a new profile with its larger nose cone. Another noticeable addition was the dorsal hump. This contained the electronics needed to fire the new AGM-12 Bullpup missile. Weapons pylons appeared on the wings able to carry a combined 5000lbs of ordnance. A new J57-P-20A engine was also fitted. A total of 286 E models would be built. The Kit Academy's Crusader was first released in 2004 and welcomed by 1.72 scale modellers. It is as good now as it was then, the mould still producing crisp parts, with fine recessed detail. The kit arrives on three main sprues, with a smaller sprue for weapons; and a clear sprue. Construction starts with the cockpit. The four part ejection seat is assembled and then installed onto the cockpit tub. The instrument panel is added complete with its gunsight, a control column is added as is a rear cockpit bulkhead. Following this the engine intake, and main gear well sub assemblies are made up. Once these three sub assemblies are complete they can be added to the main fuselage. Also to be added to the main fuselage before closing it up are the main ventral airbrake, arrestor hook bay; and the bay under the main wing. The main wing can then be assembled. It is worth noting that the kit allows the modeller to make the variable incidence main wing and allow it to be shown in the raised position. For this separate leading edge slats are provided as they drop when the wing is raised. However at the same time the slats drop the flaps also drop. Academy do not provide this as an option in the kit so the modeller will have to cut these out if they wish to raise the wing. To help there are a number of aftermarket kits to replace the flaps. It is slightly annoying Academy have not fixed this error. To make the main wing the electronics hump for the to is added along with the leading edge slats. The next area to receive the attention of the modeller is the underside of the Crusader. The nose wheel is built up and installed along with the nose wheel bay doors. The nose wheel is a three part leg with a one part wheel. The ventral airbrake is installed in either the open or closed position. It is worth noting that on parked Crusaders there is some droop of this as pressure bleeds of the hydraulic system. The main gear is then built up next. There is a two part leg with a one part wheel. The main gear bay doors are then installed. The tail planes and ventral strakes are then added. Again if the crusader is parked the tailplanes tip backwards slightly as the hydraulic pressure bleeds off. The modeller is now on the home straight. The canopy is added on the front, and the exhaust nozzle to the rear. Also at the rear the afterburner cooling scoops are added. If the modeller is going to arm their crusader up single and double "Y" racks are provided for the nose to hold either Sidewinder Missiles, or 5" Zuni Rocket Pods. For the wing pylons Multiple Ejection racks and 500Lb Snake eye bombs are provided. The bombs sit on the pylons in slant configuration where by only the bottom and outer parts of the rack are used. The last items to be added are the pitot tube and finally the main wing. Decals Decals are by Cartograf and should pose no issues, markings are provided for two options; VF-162 "Hunters" - USS Oriskany 1966 VF-103 "Sluggers" - USS Forrestal 1964 Conclusion It is good to see this kit re-released with new decals, in particular a non Vietnam Squadron. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  18. MustHave is to release a Vought F4U-1/F4U-1A Corsair resin conversion set for Tamiya kit - ref.MH172001 Source: https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=422377244635082&id=297895983749876 V.P.
  19. Source: http://www.hobbyboss.com/index.php?g=home&m=product&a=show&id=382&l=en V.P.
  20. F4U-4 Corsair (Early Version) 1:48 Hobby Boss The Corsair is an iconic fighter aircraft that had speed agility and an unusual look to recommend it to pilots, but its gestation was far from easy due to the optimistic and highly demanding specification that required not only high speed but great war-load carrying capability and a low stall speed to make it suitable for carrier operations. It was given the largest engine then available in the shape of the Pratt & Whitney Double Wasp radial engine, which could drive a huge three bladed prop that was almost 14 feet across. This meant that the wings had to be given an inverted gull shape so that the prop didn't strike the ground on take-off or landing. It had already proved itself capable before the United States entered WWII, being the first US single-engined aircraft to exceed 400mph. Concerns about armament led to the cowling guns being deleted and three .50cal machines guns being installed in each wing, which displaced the fuel tanks into the fuselage ahead of the cockpit, giving the aircraft its distinctive set-back appearance. By 1941 it was in production and had been allocated the name Corsair, but initial trials revealed an unpleasant stall characteristic that would lead to one wing dropping suddenly, which had to be fixed with a small root mounted stall strip. The set-back cockpit also gave poor forward visibility on landing and take-off, with oil from the engine further obscuring the view. The top cowling flaps were replaced with a fixed panel, and the landing gear struts re-tuned, but this delayed its use as a carrier borne fighter until 1944. Despite these set-backs it was used successfully as a land-based fighter, and was used in large numbers by the US Marines to good effect. A number of aces got their kills in the Corsair, which was superior to the Zero, which coupled with the pilots' experience over the poorly trained rookie Japanese pilots made them easy targets. Because the Corsair was fast at low level it was also used for ground attack, firing unguided rockets and bombs on wing pylons. The Royal Navy also used the Corsair from 1943, putting it into use immediately, as it was far superior to their existing options, and despite its unforgiving deck handling characteristics it found favour with pilots. After WWII it went on to serve in many conflicts, with the production line finally closing in 1953, more than 10 years after it opened. As a testament to its longevity and usefulness, some foreign operators still had Corsairs in service in the 1970s! The Kit This kit is most definitely one of Hobby Boss's more upmarket kits, and bristles with detail. Inside the top-opening box are 11 sprues of varying size in mid-grey styrene, a clear sprue and a reasonably sized decal sheet. On initial release there was discussion over the cowling, which appears to have an oversized opening at the front, and a misshapen auxiliary chin-intake as a result. This shouldn't be a major problem for most builders, but if you are striving for accuracy, there is a resin replacement in the wings from True Details that will address this issue, and we will bring you a review of that item shortly. This version of the Corsair is the final mark used in WWII, but an early block, although it has the by now familiar Malcolm type blown hood, rather than the claustrophobic bird-cage hood originally used in earlier versions. The build is pretty straight forward, complicated only by the decision whether to fold the wings or not. The cockpit is built up as a "cot" with oval bulkheads at each end and a two layer floor that exposes some of the control lines through a central hole. Side consoles and the main instrument panel are supplied with raised and recessed details, plus decals in black and white if you don't feel up to painting them, or using Airscale individual instrument decals on the build. Rudder pedals, trim wheel, fire extinguisher and control column make for a nicely detailed interior. The big P&W engine is well stocked with parts, and depicts both rows of cylinders, as well as the complex spaghetti-like exhaust stacks, which eventually wend their way out to the two exits on the side of the fuselage. There is also a reproduction of the reduction gear bell-housing with a ring for the wiring harness, although the wiring itself is absent in this kit. A little research and some lead wire will soon put that right though, and you will have a handsome looking block to put in the aircraft. The instructions then bog down in building the wings and landing gear, when every modeller just wants to close up the fuselage. In order to do that, a pair of ribbing inserts need installing inside the fuselage for the cockpit detail, and the large tail-wheel and arrestor hook bay need building up. The wheel sits at the front of the bay with a sturdy looking framework keeping it all in place, while the tail-hook takes advantage of the strong attachment point and hangs off the back of the strut. There are two deployment jacks supplied for the hook, one shorter for a stowed hook, and the other longer for one that is deployed. A V-shaped arrangement with aft bulkhead part is also assembled, and placed within the bay, which also has plenty of sharp ribbing detail moulded into the fuselage sides. This is good news, because the bay is very visible on the finished model, so this is good news. To close up the fuselage, the cockpit, rear wheel/hook assembly and the rear stub of the engine are trapped between the two halves, leaving a gaping hole in the bottom for the wings and one behind the cockpit for a couple of panels. It might be as well to add these inserts to the fuselage halves before they are mated in order to get the best joint possible along the fuselage sides where excessive sanding would obliterate more detail. The cowling flaps are supplied as a ring which slips over the engine before the cowling is installed. I'm a little disappointed that the option of closed cowlings isn't included, but it's certainly not a major issue. The main cowling is then slipped over the engine and mates with the flap-ring as well as the fuselage front along the lines where the flaps are absent. The big four-bladed prop is supplied as a single part with a separate hub/boss. There are demarcations for the yellow tips moulded into the blades though, which although handy for the novice isn't really very accurate, so they will need to be filled unless you have the True Detail set, which includes replacement blades and hub. The inner wings are moulded as a single part on the underside that has cut-outs for the gear bays, while the upper parts have the large boxed in wheel bays with rib detail moulded into them. The downside is that there is a tiny sinkmark evident on the upper wing skin where a large sidewall sits, but a dab of Mr Surfacer should see it off. The radiators are mounted in the front of the wings, and are supplied as inserts that slot into the completed wing, and are backed by an insert containing a number of vanes, which prevents the viewer from seeing the boxes that are set inside the wing and help complete the walling in of the gear bays. A pair of wingfold bulkheads are added to the ends of the inner wing section, and the large sectioned flaps are supplied as separate parts, which although shown in the retracted position should be able to be deployed with little or no extra work. The outer wings are attached with strong hinge parts that are either straight(ish) or canted upward depending on whether you are modelling them open or closed. The outer wing panels themselves have their gun bays included, which can be modelled open or closed, with a boxed in bay and lengths of .50cal ammo supplied with the guns. You'll need to close them up if you're modelling the aircraft with its wings folded, and with that in mind, a full set of covers are included. If you've the foresight to choose closed panels before you put the wing halves together, it would be a good plan to install the panels beforehand, so you can level them up and minimise of even obviate any clean up afterward. The wing-fold bulkheads hide the interior of the wing, and you are supposed to be able to slot them together whether you are building the kit with folded or unfolded wings. Some test fitting of the straight wings would be a wise move to reduce the chances of a step, and I would definitely consider attaching the inner and outer panels in advance of closing up the wing parts. The tail feathers are all posable, with a separate rudder that attaches to the fuselage's moulded in fin, and separate elevators and trim tab actuators on the horizontal tail. The kit is designed to be built with the wheels down, so all of the gear bay doors are engineered to fit the open bays, but if you're after a wheels-up look, you may have some work ahead of you. The main gear legs are constructed early in the build, and have separate oleo-scissors, and a large A-frame retraction jack that beefs up the gear to stand the rigors of deck landings. The two small "knee-pad" bay doors attach to the front of the struts, and should be painted underside colour on the outside, and primer on the inside. The wheels are in two halves, and show a good level of detail, including circumferential treads on the tyres, and nicely moulded spokes on the outer hubs. There is no flat-spot on the tyres, so a sanding stick will be needed if you prefer them a little saggy. The canopy is in two parts, with a separate windscreen. It is shown modelled closed, but I'm sure it will be possible to pose the blown "Malcolm" style hood in the open position. Apart from a few aerials, the remaining parts are weapons to load your Corsair up with for a more aggressive look to the finished model. There are eight HVAR unguided rockets that were used to great effect at the end of the war, which have separate mounts, and will just need actuators made from wire to finish them off. The underwing pylons have two large auxiliary fuel tanks attached, and these have separate sway brace and filler/overflow hose parts to give them a little extra interest. Markings There are two decal schemes included on the sheet, both of which are post-war aircraft in all over Gloss Sea Blue, with only the squadron crests on the cowlings and some rather fetching red shark mouths on the drop tanks of one option to differentiate (apart from the obvious codes). The options are as follows: F4U-4 (81048) of VF-61 Group 6, USS Midway, 1949 F4U-4 (80887) of VF-22, USS Cord Sea, 1948 Unusually, the yellow prop tips are included on the decal sheet, which unless backed by white will probably look very dull over a black prop, so you'll need to paint a white background on the tips, and it would seem a waste of effort to not then overspray the area with yellow, rendering the decals redundant. That's just my take on it though... your mileage may vary. The tail-hook also has a pair of black and white striped decals that I would imagine will be horribly tricky to get on the cylindrical hook, but there they are. I'll be resorting to masking tape myself! The decals are cleanly printed, in good register, and seem to have good colour density. There is a little too much carrier film on the larger code decals for my liking, but it is thin, and can easily be trimmed whilst still on the sheet. Conclusion With the exception of the too-wide cowling opening this is a really nice kit that's packed with detail, and should build into a good looking model. If you can live with the cowling issue, it will look great out of the box, otherwise, you'll doubtless need to pick up the aftermarket replacement. It's a shame that a couple of WWII options weren't included on the decal sheet, or at least some variation in colour. Other than that, a set of DIY serials would have been nice to allow the modeller a bit of leeway. Overall however, it's a very nicely done kit, and should provide hours of entertainment for your average modeller. Highly recommended with the above-mentioned caveat. Review sample courtesy of
  21. The Vought Corsair at the Fleet Air Arm Museum KD431 is a Goodyear built FG1. The aircraft was the subject of a Groundbreaking project to strip the outer layers of later paint off to reveal the original FAA Paint. The details of this can be found here. Pics thanks to Merlin101.
  22. The Vought V-173 "Flying Pancake" was an experimental test aircraft built as part of the Vought XF5U "Flying Flapjack". This aircraft is now part of the Smithsonian collection. It was restored at the Vought Aircraft plant in Grand Prairie, and is now on loan to the Frontiers of Flight Museum in Dallas, Texas. Pics thanks to GeorgeUSA.
  23. Pics mine of the one at Duxford
  24. Vought F-8 Crusader. Pic is an F-8K thanks to Bootneck Mike.
  25. Vought SB2U Vindicator / Chesapeake, pics thanks to Allan.
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