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Found 16 results

  1. Hi there, This is the 1/48 scale Pilot Replicas kit. A real pleasure to build! Among the modifications I made: - Seamless resin intake and pilot from the same manufacturer - Homemade seat harnesses, ladder and pitot tubes, - Replaced the exhaust with a Bubble Tea straw because the original one is too thick, Details in the cockpit and in the landing gear bays are good enough but there is room for improvement. The one thing that bugged me are the rivets on the fuselage: they get distorted and fade away with the curve of the fuselage. Also, part 59 was missing or at least I did not find it. This part depicts the bumper on the bottom of the fuselage and is very easy to scratch build with a bit of styrene, so no big deal. But except for these, there is nothing much to complain about. I liked the luxurious and clear instructions, the excellent Cartograf decals and the PE frets with a sticky transparent film that prevents the parts to spring away when cutting them. The kit is well designed and everything fits. It was the first time for me painting with Alclad, and like everyone I was bit concerned about peeling off the paint during masking, but with a good layer of black primer and polishing, the paint is rock solid! The orange dayglo comes from Faskcolor, and Tamiya paint was used for the Austrian roundels (yes, the Luftstreitkräfte is the Austrian AF, but please don't ask me to pronounce that ) , Hope you like it. Antoine
  2. Pilot Replicas is to release a 1/48th de Havilland Venom Night Fighter kit - ref. 48-A-008 Source: https://www.facebook.com/largescalemodeller/photos/a.459679464104014.1073741828.450176221721005/1054354864636468/?type=3&theater Box art V.P.
  3. A 1/48th Saab 105/Sk.60! More infos here: http://www.ipmsstock...=1172&hilit=105 announced by a new US model company, Pilot Replicas: http://www.pilot-replicas.com Source: http://www.cybermode..._replicas.shtml This is the third reported Mirage IIIE/5 family and derivatives project in 1/48th after those already in quick progress from High Planes/PJ Production and MustHave. And don't forget the new tool Kfir from a Chinese undetermined source announced on ARC forum: http://s362974870.on...howtopic=253907 To be followed. V.P.
  4. Here are some news from Pilot Replicas ( https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pilot-Replicas/390440134419981 & http://pilot-replicas.com/ ). I'll believe it when I see it... Anyway a 1/48th Saab J-21R - jet variant - would be of my interest. About the loooonnng announced Saab Sk.60/105 see here: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234928441-148-saab-sk60a-by-pilot-replicas-box-art-cad-pic/?hl=replicas Source: http://www.network54.com/Forum/149674/message/1411215996/An+update+from+Pilot+Replicas V.P.
  5. see what I dug out this afternoon for some reason I could not find the resin canards/ fore planes replacements I should also have somewhere... maybe with the attack version kit? - strange.... hope they will turn themselves in not too soon I plan to do it in full burner take-off configuration just after lift off, as seen personally at Airpower airshow in 2003 at Zeltweg Airbase, Austria... https://i.pinimg.com/originals/af/9b/a0/af9ba06fd189d4dbdd25eb6b39387ede.jpg some reference photos, not mine, but I should have a similar one, of course lower quality and still analouge somwhere as well https://www.airliners.net/photo/Sweden-Air-Force/Saab-JA37D-Viggen/377751/L https://www.airliners.net/photo/Sweden-Air-Force/Saab-JA37D-Viggen/739958/L https://www.airliners.net/photo/Sweden-Air-Force/Saab-JA37D-Viggen/376792/L https://www.airliners.net/photo/Sweden-Air-Force/Saab-JA37D-Viggen/374781/L decals are a bit of a problem for this scheme.... there is a great build in 1/72 here on BM, going to take as much as possible... if you have any idea, how to proceed with decals or custom masks of the belly insignia, would be very much appreciated! not started as of yet, just glanced at the many sprues I am not gonna use all of the above stuff, not sure about the Pilot Replicas seated Viggen Pilot, somehow does not look like a tall, big Swede... 2 sets of tyres---- flaps? RAT! yes pylons?... cheers, Werner
  6. #12/2019 After the Bird Dog, now another contribution for our homeland collection by my dad. Pilot Replicas kit built oob, MRP White Alu/Dark Alu mix as base colour, MRP White Alu for different shaded panels to have some distortion of the plain metal surface. Build thread here https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235045982-bundesheer148-saab-j29f-tunnan-austrian-airforce/ In 1961 Austria bought 30 used Tunnans from Sweden which stayed in service until 1972 when they were succeeded by Saab 105. Some served also as recce birds. The aircrafts were used by the one and only Jagdbombergeschwader, split into two Staffeln in Styria and Upper-Austria. 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_0018 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0019 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0020 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0021 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr and together with the AZ Model kit DSC_0022 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0023 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr DSC_0024 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr
  7. Finally my dad started a new project for our home country collection. DSC_0012 by Reinhard Spreitzhofer, auf Flickr
  8. I started this one almost as soon as I'd finished the review here, but haven't been making very rapid progress due to a few factors that I won't bore you with I started by building up some assemblies for painting, with the view to closing up the fuselage in one go, which included cockpit, wheel bays, exhaust and while I was about it, I built up the simple landing gear. I wasn't too happy with the exhaust, as it was over-thick and blessed with no internal detail of the jet engine that's clearly visible, so I broke my OOB rule on the build and fabricated a new exhaust from brass rod, which I soldered a couple of pegs onto to replicate the kit mounting lugs. I made an end-plug, spun up a bullet fairing for the rear on my Dremel, and then cut four stator-blades, gluing them into the bottom. I sprayed it up, then painted on some fan blades in three shades of Games Workshop metallics as I figured that's all that was needed. Looking at it, I think I may well have been right With the new Vallejo Metal Color metallics in place, I masked the cockpit floor and sprayed one of the many shades of green found on a Tunnan. I altered the shade a little here & there, and then broke out another green for the landing gear legs & hubs, followed by some Vallejo Dark Rubber for the tyres. I received a resin pilot with the kit from Claes (thanks ), and have done a little digging to get some suitable uniform colours for him, which I sprayed on & then lightened, spraying a "highlight" coat from above. I've got a lot of detail painting left to do on his harness, life-jacket, helmet & face, but it's a start. The cockpit has had its dial decals added, plus a few dabs of white paint to highlight the buttons & switches, but I'll add a bit of colour here & there later too, then matt it down to give it a more used look. The tyres also need their usual highlighting, and it all needs a wash of Ultimate Dark Dirt to accentuate the recesses, so it's most definitely a work in progress, rather than a set piece "here's the cockpit I did earlier". That's why everything is on a stick!
  9. Hi Guys Here is my latest completed model, I thought it would be a 'quickish' build and paint, but it took a little longer, I will add some more detail and a few pictures to look out for a few trips and snags, not all kit related there were some of my own. The kit is good but I found a few little niggles that I could have done without, or the manufacturer could have taken a little more care. Would I build another....YES but would certainly do a few things differently. Straight out the box, and painted mainly with Vallejo Acrylic 'Metal Color' cheers Ali The tail plane is not shown very leerily on the instructions as to what is top side and what is bottom side, I eventually with totally smooth elevator on the TOP side, I think it is correct. I think that there should be a few extra lumps and bumps (control horns) but I did not add these. When decals are applied for this scheme, there are two separate decals that fit the side that has the additional detail (on the bottom of my kit) but the one for the top is supplied in full length, when that is applied to the kit it is fractionally too short, so I had to make a quick slit through the decal while it was applied so I could get it to fit correctly. Additional pictures and some guide lines and things to look out for when building the kit. If doing this scheme the black strips for under the wing do not quite fit. The decal gives a cut out for the pylon be placed within, if that is done then the decal will not fit between, the flap and the aileron area, so I positioned the cut out correctly for the pylon, but then had to add small additional black strips just inboard of the aileron, look carefully at the picture, and you will see a faint joint line in the decals. The undercarriage doors on the front wheel bay are not shown clearly on the instructions, in one picture (15) they are shown with the cut out areas at the back, this is correct next stage 16 shown at front, it is just confusing. Also I would try and think of making a small modification to allow for a more positive attachment of the doors, when all painted up it is quite tricky to get the wheel assembly and the doors securely in place. Great care needs to be taken on getting all the decals correct on the fuselage, the black decals and the 'roundels' I found that it quite tricky to get the cockpit to fit correctly and the instrument panel is very week in the narrow areas, and I broke mine a few times. Some of the fit may have been down to me, but I would advise that you take care and possibly have a trial run before it is all painted. I painted most of the parts individually and then tried to assemble and fit, next time I would do more of a dry run fit first. Note the sliding canopy does not have any 'metal frame work' on the front edge Note these are the parts for the intake, well as can be seen above and below the 'turbine face' is JUST too large to go at the end as they would have you assemble so I shortened the pipe as shown. As can be seen there are even small slots there in the tube for the turbine face to clip into, makes you wonder??? I am not 100% sure what this clear lens is to be honest BUT I could not get it to look right by just painting the inside face, so i coloured the small dot in the middle as shown and then added a piece of plastic card with some chrome foil on behind the lens, see picture a few above, I think it worked quite well. The area for the landing lights does not have any backing, so I added a small piece of card to block that in. The exhaust is not great, so I replaced the kit parts with a one piece tube. A few general notes and things to be aware of or to look out for. There are some areas where the rivets, have gone altogether, especially top and bottom of mid to rear fuselage, also some have been stretched, I did some repairs to these but if you really want a much improved model you will need to spend time on these to make these a lot better. The main undercarriage doors should also have some rivet detail added, they are very bare compared to the rest of the kit, and it show's, I will add them next time round. I found the 'coloured' decals quite thick and they needed warm water to remove them from decal paper but once on the model they were quite difficult to move and certainly needed a strong deca solution to bed down onto the detailed rivet surface, I use the DACO strong decal solution. I was tempted to spray the black areas, but then went with the decals, I thought these maybe tricky to apply BUT they are more pliable that the colour decals, but they need to handled with care, and as mentioned earlier the alignment of six black decals and the roundels on the fuselage is tricky. I found a very good sight with amazing pictures that are really good, and inspirational, you can see all the rivet and marking details and panel colour variations. here is the link http://www.jn-photo.se/Browse-my-images/By-Type/SAAB/SAAB-J29F-Tunnan/i-jw8Kt24/X3 Hope all this helps, cheers Ali
  10. Probably the best kit I've ever built. Bravo Pilot Replicas Thanks for watching Andrew
  11. Pilot Replicas is to release a 1/48th de Havilland DH.100 Vampire FB.50/ J28B kit - ref. 48-A-007 Source: https://www.facebook.com/largescalemodeller/photos/a.459679464104014.1073741828.450176221721005/1054354864636468/?type=3&theater Box art V.P.
  12. Pilot Replicas is to release a 1/48th de Havilland Sea Venom FAW.21 kit - ref.48-A-009 Source: https://www.facebook.com/largescalemodeller/photos/a.459679464104014.1073741828.450176221721005/1054354864636468/?type=3&theater Box art V.P.
  13. Saab Tunnan Aux. Fuel Tanks 1:48 Pilot Replicas Another of the aftermarket upgrades for the lovely new Pilot Replicas kit that comes straight from the manufacturers, and ensures a good fit (see my review of the pilot here) is this set of resin gas-bags for the little Barrel. They arrive in a small ziplok bag on two casting blocks that are easy to remove, as I found out the other day when I did just that. I'm building the kit at the moment, which you can have a look at here if you're interested. Casting is excellent, and the details have been captured well, including the narrow waist and the copious rivets over the rear end. The pylons are integral to the casting, and have two pins for attachment to the underwing hard-points, which match up perfectly with the kit. Give them a wash in warm soapy water to remove any residual mould-release agent, and they should be good to go. They also add a little weight forward of the centreline that will help keep the nose wheel planted on the ground. A small instruction sheet shows the correct orientation of the tanks, as they are handed, with their filler-caps on the outboard side. Review sample courtesy of
  14. Swedish J29F Tunnan Pilot 1:48 Pilot Replicas In conjunction with the recent release of their excellent little Barrel, Pilot Replicas have created a number of aftermarket items for anyone wanting to add a little more personalisation to their model. This little resin chap is supplied as three resin parts that arrive on one casting block, which contains the pilot's head and partially unclipped mask, the main figure with one arm and both legs moulded in, plus his left arm that fits into a little socket in his shoulder. The parts are keyed to the Tunnan's cockpit, so fit with no adjustment once you have removed them from their casting block, which is the work of moments. The resin is good quality and the sculpting is too, with a very natural pose and lots of great detail. Having checked the available pictures out there for flight-crew of the time, there has been a lot of effort expended in getting this accurate, including the harness detail, life preserver and the helmet details. The figure's face is especially well sculpted, and with careful painting will look most impressive. I've included below a picture of my effort for my current review build here, but I'm sure you can do better! There is a little moulding flash to remove here and there, but that's to be expected with a resin figure, and of course give the figure a wash in warm soapy water once you have him ready for painting. The build of the kit continues here. Conclusion A superb little figure that would benefit only from having painting instructions included in the bag. That said though, if you've taken note from the picture above, you'll not go far wrong. The pilot's garb is suitable for Swedish or Austrian service, so you don't need to worry about any alterations if you choose to model an Austrian hand-me-down airframe. There is also an alternative figure wearing a cap and with his arms up holding onto the windscreen hoop, with his helmet nearby. You can see more on that one by clicking the Buy It Now link below. Review sample courtesy of
  15. Saab J29F Tunnan 1:48 Pilot Replicas After WWII Sweden decided that they also needed to move into the jet age, and ordered a new fighter, which first flew late in 1948. Due to its chubby fuselage it became known as the Flying Barrel, and owed at least some of its design cues to late war German aerodynamic research, which the design team had access to, which may explain its passing similarity to the Ta.183 Huckebein. Unlike that paper/workshop project however, this one flew and served with the Swedish Air Force until the mid 60s, and later in the Austrian service. Powered by a license built Ghost engine, which later gained an afterburner for additional thrust, she was armed with four 20mm cannons, and could carry additional fuel on wing-mounted pylons for longer missions. As well as adding the afterburner to the F model, it also carried forward the dog-tooth leading edge of the wings, with a short fence at the break-point. This diminutive fighter still flies in the Swedish Air Force Heritage Flight along with a Draken and Viggen amongst others. Our own RAF would do well to follow their lead to preserve our flying heritage. The Kit There have been a few kits of the Tunnan over the years in 1:48, and for years a fairly accurate resin kit was the way to go, followed by injection styrene with a rather weird nose. Another kit from a large Chinese manufacturer has been released recently, but it is underscale and therefore inaccurate in almost every dimension, so our hopes are firmly pinned on this release from Swedish company Pilot Replicas. This kit is the final fighter variant, and arrives in a fairly small box in the now standard top-opening box with captive flap held closed (sometimes) by a fetching Pilot Replicas sticker. Again, it doesn't hold together well, and would be easily crushed in a pile, so needs to go near the top for its own safety. Better yet, just build the thing now, as I'm going to! Inside the well-appointed box are five sprues in a mod grey styrene, plus a clear sprue, Photo-Etch (PE) sheet, decal sheet, instruction booklet and separate painting guide, both in a thick wipe-clean coated paper, which will come in handy if you're a bit liberal splashing the paint about. First impression is that this kit has moved on from their already excellent J21 kit reviewed last year here, and has more detail, with very crisp panel lines, fine rivets and some nicely done raised details, all of which will look great under the metallic finish appropriate to this aircraft. The instructions cover only nineteen steps and makes it look very simple, which in fact it is. As an early jet the seat is very straight-forward, but is dressed up with crew belts, plus a large frame behind it. The cockpit tub builds up from a combined floor and aft bulkhead to which the seat attaches, with two cockpit sidewall parts and side consoles. The rudder pedal box fits to the front, and is partially covered by the instrument panel (complete with instrument decals) and control column, before being set aside until needed later. The lower nose is a separate part of the fuselage, and is moulded in two halves with a nose bay box held inside, as well as a faceted clear panel behind the bay that is painted inside to complete the effect. The fuselage is also split fore and aft, along the same line as the real thing breaks for engine access, and the front section is first to be detailed with cockpit sills, additional side panels and the main gear bays, which are nicely detailed, but would probably benefit from a little plumbing to finish them off. The two halves (quarters?) are then brought together around the cockpit, which at this stage can still be seen from underneath. The intake lip is another separate part, and attaches to the two-part intake trunk, which also has a rendition of the engine front at the end, and slides inside the fuselage to be covered over by the nose gear bay/lower fuselage assembly. It is clear that the kit has been tooled with an eye on future releases of other variants, so keep your eyes open for announcements in due course. The aft fuselage has a couple of small intakes and a tail-bumper added, is then glued up around a short two-piece exhaust tube. The two halves are then glued together and the horizontal tail added to a slot in the rear of the fin. Whether you would prefer to join the fuselage fore and aft before cementing the two halves together is entirely up to you, but ensure you test fit along the way if you do to avoid building a flying banana instead of a barrel. At this point the exterior section of the cockpit is detailed with a coaming and gun-sight, plus the runners for the sliding canopy, as well as the windscreen part`, which should be blended into the moulded-in fairing following your references. A small part glues into the top of the windscreen hoop, and a pair of rear-view mirrors and sliding guide are added to the canopy part when it is added later in the build. The clear parts are beautifully moulded in crystal clear styrene, and although they don't have a protective runner around their sprue, they are salted away in their own resealable ziplok bag to avoid damage. The Tunnan sits on big wheels mated to stumpy legs, which are replicated with separate scissor-links from the box, with slight sag moulded into the tyres and see-through spokes on the hub. These fit into sockets on the bay walls, and a scrap diagram shows that the centres of the tyres should be 46mm apart once fitted. It might be worth rigging up a jig to ensure you get this dead-on and don't end up with a saggy Tunnan. The nose wheel is similarly moulded and sits between a single yoke with a two-part mudguard attached before it is snapped into place. Again, it fits into a socket in the roof of the bay, and has two long bay doors set one on each side. In front of the bay is a small drop-down landing light panel, which has clear lenses for additional detail. The main bay doors are attached at their tops, and hinge outwards over the wheels, with a couple of clever airbakes that slide out of the fuselage from slots when needed, or after the hydraulic pressure bleeds away following power-off, so it is good that they are included. Check your references for the correct "limp" angle for these on the ground. No barrel would fly without wings, and as befits the simplicity of the aircraft, they are similarly straight-forward. All the flying surfaces are capable of mobilising, and fit to tabs on the lower wing panel before being trapped in place by the addition of the upper. Drill out the pylon holes before gluing if you plan on using them, or have some of the resin drop-tanks that are also available. Some of the additional "detail-up" parts were included with the review sample, so I'll review those separately later. A clear navigation light is added to the front of each wingtip, plus wing fences, optional pylon and pitot probe, after which you can slide the mating tabs into the fuselage slots, completing your model. Markings The F was overwhelmingly finished in un-polished aluminium, and Pilot Replicas recommend the new Vallejo Metal Colors to replicate the finish. There are three decal options included in the kit, varying in squadron or tactical markings, and you can build of the following from the box: #29547 1st Squadron at F3 Wing, Malmen/Linkoping, Sept 1956 – black identification bands on nose, fuselage and wingtips, plus red C on tail and red striped rudder & elevators. Red/black band on nose. #29621 Swedish Airforce Academy, F20 Wing Uppsala, Summer 1966 – dayglo leading edge to fin and parallel lines on fuselage, plus black 18 on tail, black 20 on fuselage. #29422 3rd Squadron F15 Wing, Soderhamn, spring 1959 – daylgo wing stripes and diamond on upper fuselage, plus yellow nose band. The decals have been printed by Cartograf with good register, sharpness and colour density, and were designed by RBD Studios, who specialise in decals for Swedish aircraft. Helpfully, all the identification panels have been provided as decals, but you might still wish to paint them yourself, using them as templates. A separate page of the guide shows the common stencils and position of the Swedish Crown roundels, with one variation on the nose between different production batches. Conclusion I've been wanting to build a 1:48 Tunnan for years now, as my first completed model when I came back to the hobby was the old Amtech Huckebein, and it just appealed to me. Detail is excellent, the shape looks good, and the decal options are nice and colourful. As already stated, there are even additional detail packs available from Pilot Replicas to satisfy your urges, including pilots in various poses, brass pitot tubes and drop-tanks, which should all fit neatly in place. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  16. Saab J-21 A-3 1:48 Pilot Replicas Saab have always been innovative in their aircraft designs, and the J-21 certainly was ahead of its time when it began gestation in the early years of WWII. Although Sweden were neutral, they believed in having a strong defence force to dissuade potential attackers, and this was part of their policy. It evolved over a number of design iterations into a pusher prop with twin booms based upon a license-built Daimler Benz engine, and because of the rear-mounted prop it was able to carry its armament in the nose, with the pilot having an unobstructed view of his quarry. The large prop at the rear dictated a tricycle landing gear configuration, and to save the pilot from injury when exiting the 'plane in flight, a simple ejector seat was developed by Bofors to blast him clear of the airframe and the flailing propellers. After the initial production the A-2 variant was re-armed with a Swedish developed 20mm cannon replacing the French model, and these were later superseded by the A-3, which had a bomb sight for air-to-ground operations, and was able to carry bombs and missiles, as well as use RATO bottles to improve take-off capabilities under heavy load. As the J-21A was nearing the end of its service life in the early 50s, a re-design was undertaken to change to jet propulsion, mounting a De Havilland Goblin in a re-designed fuselage, with its tail adapted to clear the hot jet exhaust. The R has a much shorter service life due to the appearance of the J29 Tunnan, and only lasted until 1956. The Kit I have an interest in Swedish aviation, and have had a hankering for an injection moulded kit of the J-21 in 1:48 as well as the Tunnan, but I certainly didn't think we'd get an injection moulded J-21 any time soon. When Pilot Replicas came to our attention they did so by wafting the promise of this unusual aircraft under our noses as their first entry into the injection moulding arena. As more information became available it was clear that the project was going to reach fruition, and we were very happy to receive a sample for review in our inbox a few short days ago. What a first kit! It arrives in a diminutive box, and about the only gripe I have with the kit is that it's a top-opening box, but it is a flap rather than a lid, which won't stand up to stacking very well. To some that will be a new layer of Hell, but to others it's just encouragement to build it now! The quality and printing of the box is otherwise first-rate, and there is a little shield-shaped sticker sealing it that gives it a quality feel. Inside are four sprues in a light grey styrene, a clear sprue, a small fret of Photo-Etch (PE) parts, a decal sheet, all of which are individually wrapped in re-sealable bags. The instruction booklet and painting guide are both printed on thick glossy paper of folded A3 size, the smooth surface of which should allow them to stand up to handling and splashes of paint and so forth, giving them a feel of a café menu! The detail that has been put into the kit is top-flight, with raised and engraved lines, fine engraved rivets and raised panels where appropriate. The flying surfaces have unusual diamond-shaped raised sections that although they look like a poor attempt at fabric covered surfaces to the untrained eye, are actually prototypical of the construction method, although I think perhaps a light swipe with a sanding sponge would perhaps improve their look. Construction looks to be straight-forward, and the clear, helpful 3D CAD rendered steps in the booklet do their level best to smooth the way for you. Each part is accompanies by either a single white box that gives the part number, or a double box with the white half showing the part number, and the black denoting the colour, for which you can refer back to the conversion table, which gives a description of the colour, plus codes in Tamiya and Humbrol, with a few FS codes where they match. The build begins with the simple ejector seat, which has foot stirrups and the ejector frame added to a fairly standard seat that wouldn't look amiss in a contemporary fighter. The long cockpit floor has the nose gear bay detail moulded on the underside, and also provides a place to stick your 20g nose-weight. At the rear you add the bulkhead, the side walls, a curious looking single-part rudder panel, stick and a couple of small detail parts. The instrument panel is added to a busy coaming, which has the two-piece gun-sight on top, and detail here is excellent, with raised and recessed dials, switches and knobs that should respond well to careful painting. A set of PE seat belts completes the cockpit, which is very well detailed straight out of the box, and is then set aside while the thre-bladed prop with separate two-part spinner and nose gear leg are built up. The nose gear is a single strut with yoke and a choice of very fine styrene oleo-scissor links, or optional PE replacement. To be honest, either will do the job very well, as the styrene parts are laudably thin. With these complete, the nose gear leg is trapped between the fuselage pod halves along with the cockpit and spinner, not forgetting to push the exhaust stubs through from the inside before doing so. At this stage the gear bay doors are shown as being added, but you'll probably leave them off 'til later to save them getting damaged. The main gear legs are moulded with their yoke integral, between which you slip the two-part main wheel, which has a massively aggressive tread pattern to cope with airfield conditions and winter snow landings. Again there are either PE or styrene oleo scissor-links, and all you need to do is add the brake lines from lead fly-tying wire or similar. These are clipped into the twin tail booms, which have some ribbing detail moulded in, but also have a couple of tricky ejector-pin marks that you'll have to decide whether to hide or not, depending on whether you think they'll be seen. Bay doors are also added on stub hinges here too, which you might want to leave off again. The lower wings are a single part, and have large slots in the rear to accept the tail booms, while the upper wings are separate and locate on top of the lowers with a narrow lip moulded-in that gives a nice neat leading edge, and commendably thin trailing edges. Check your references to see whether those lines will need filling later, and if you're using liquid glue you can press the seam to part-fill it after initial application. The wings are attached to the sprues by wide gates that are as thin as the trailing edge, so should be very simple to remove cleanly by scoring with a sharp blade. In fact, one of mine had come loose in the box, and had snapped so cleanly that you'd wonder where the join was if the other had gone too. With the wings glued and cleaned up, the booms are placed in their slots, butting up against the aerodynamic front fairing, and the single elevator is trapped between the two tail units. All the flying surfaces are moulded into the relevant surfaces, so if you feel like mobilising them you'll need to break out the razor saw, but as this is an injection moulded J-12, I won't be complaining. Placing the fuselage pod onto the wings should be a simple task if you have test-fitted it all together as you went on, and remember not to stand her on her legs before the glue is set, or you might end up with a curious angle of incidence! The canopy is thin and clear, and made up of quite a number of parts, due to its design. The two rear blown windows are added to the fuselage sides over the scalloped areas either side of the pilot's head after the depression is painted fuselage colour. G-S Hypo or white glue is probably best used here to avoid damaging the paint finish. The canopy has opening top and starboard sections, with a fixed port side, which is best added first and supported by the single-piece windscreen part. The roof part has a PE frame that includes a pair of grab-handles, and another part at the front with a rear-view mirror included. This attaches to the port canopy part, and the starboard opening section also has a PE frame and fixes to the cockpit. All that addition of PE to clear parts may sound a bit intimidating, but if you curve the parts to fit and paint them beforehand, you can then put them in place and attach them using a few drops of clear gloss acrylic varnish that will wick under the parts by capillary action, drying to hold them in place. Add an intake on the port side of the fuselage pod, gun at the front, landing lights in the sponson tips, crew ladder on the starboard, aerial under the wing and pitot in the leading edge, and that’s the construction phase completed. Markings There are three markings options in the box, and all share the same basic green over sky blue scheme and general scheme. The first page of the booklet contains locations for all the stencils and gives placement measurements for the national insignia, which is the first time I have seen placement detailed so clearly on kit instructions. From the box you can build one of the following: 21377 Blå Cesar 2nd Division FI5 Wing in Söderhamn Aug 1950 to Dec 1952 – blue nose cone and spinner, and blue C on the tail fin. Small lion graphic on the nose. 21394 Röd Martin 1st Division FI2 Wing in Kalmar Nov 1950 to Feb 1952 – red spinner and M on each tail fin. Castle emblem on the nose. 21397 Gul Petter 3rd Division F9 Wing at Säve Dec 1948 to Mar 1951 – brown spinner, Bumble-bee emblem on the nose and yellow P on the tail fin. The decals are printed by Cartograf, so you'll be unsurprised to find that register, sharpness and colour density are excellent. The carrier film is cropped closely around the majority of decals, and is of the glossy type, but on the C and M decals there is (by necessity) a substantial amount of film within the letter, which you may consider removing to avoid silvering. The stencils are well-printed, with all the text legible if you can read Swedish of course. Conclusion I'm extremely pleased with this kit, and not just because it is an interesting (to me) and quirky type that hasn't been kitted in mainstream injection moulded styrene at this scale before. It is a superb first kit from any company, and Pilot Replicas have done a great job of hitting the ground running with a very refined and professional package. Detail is excellent almost everywhere, from the airframe's skin to the nose gear bay, with only the main bays being a little bland, but that's more than made up for elsewhere. They hold themselves to the highest standards, and it shows. Packaging, content and instructions are excellent, and I'm really looking forward to their next kits. I understand that they'll be treating us to the Flying Barrel – the J29 Tunnan, and have reached the stage where they have received the initial test shots. Review sample courtesy of
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