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Hawker Tempest II Hi-Tech 1:32

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Hawker Tempest II Hi-Tech

1:32 Special Hobby




As one variant of the Typhoon replacement that were both penned by Sidney Camm, the Tempest was split into a number of threads to prevent the project stalling in the event that any of the possible engines ran into difficulties or were cancelled.  The Tempest II was designed from the ground-up to sport a radial engine, and ended up using the Centaurus that had originally been destined for the failed Tornado project, which initially caused some teething troubles until the engine mounts were replaced and some other tweaks made.  The aircraft was very similar to the well-known V aft of the firewall, but with the huge cylindrical cowling it bears more than a passing resemblance to a Sea Fury.  Due to the state of the war as it reached service, the initial orders were successively cut back, even though the aircraft's massive power delivery and more streamlined front section resulted in a faster aircraft.  Under 500 airframes were eventually built, some as pure fighters, while the rest were converted to fighter-bombers, as the needs of the war shifted once the Allies dominated the skies.



The Kit

This is the second Hi-Tech boxing of the basic Tempest moulds, with much of the plastic retained from the Mk.V, and new sprues tooled to replicate the Mk.II's differences.  As is usual with Special Hobby, the Hi-Tech boxing includes a wealth of what would normally be considered "Aftermarket" to most modellers, and on opening the box you see a card insert that holds the four (four!) decal sheet plus a set of those marvellous HGW fabric seatbelts, plus a small inner box in yellow that is literally rammed with resin in two separate bags.  If you have come to expect just a set of resin wheels from a luxury boxing, you will be impressed at the 44 parts within, and you will hardly need anything other than paint and glue, even if you are addicted to aftermarket, especially when you spot the Photo-Etch (PE) and masks behind the seatbelts.  The main sprues are in two separate bags, split between "Tempest" and "Mk.II" parts, as you would expect.  There are seven sprues in the former category, and two in the latter, both in mid-grey styrene, plus a set of clear parts in their own bag, the aforementioned goodies, and of course the instructions in full colour glossy stock.  Coupled with the lovely box art, you really do get a luxury package with the Hi-Tech boxing, which is well priced considering the contents.



















New Sprues








The new sprues contain the important engine cowlings, their fairings into the standard fuselage, the huge props and spinner, plus a few mounting parts.  Also included are a full set of rockets and rails for the ground-attack role, each of which have separate fins that are fitted with tapering roots that fit into corresponding grooved in the tail of the rocket, which will improve fit and alignment.


Construction follows the same path as the original boxing until the fuselage halves are mated around the beautifully detailed cockpit assembly.  The new cowling is built up from the main halves, plus a number of ancillary parts top and bottom, as well as resin exhaust stacks on the sides, and a depiction of front of the engine that was actually present in the Mk.V boxing too.  The big four-bladed prop is built up on a backing plate with keyed blade roots, with the two-part spinner added after, and a spacer setting it to the correct position within the cowling, so that it can be left to spin freely if you desire.


Some of the additional resin in this boxing is used in adding a pair of cannon and their ammo feeds in the port wing, which requires a T-shaped portion of the upper wing to be removed, the resin bays to be constructed and painted in the suggested colours, and inserted from below with PE supports for the edges, and resin panels that can be left nearby to give a more candid appearance to the scene.  There is a small addendum to the instruction booklet to correct a mis-step during construction of the wings that advises you to cut off a section on the wing lower corresponding with the removable panels in the upper wing.  This is incorrect, and you should not do this.






The engine cowling and wing-root intakes are then mated with the completed wings and fuselage, along with the tail feathers.  The landing gear is almost identical to the Mk.V, but instead of smooth tread tyres throughout, a choice of smooth or blocked tyres is given, and these have paint masks supplied on the accompanying sheet.  The choice of drop-tanks with clear pylon sections or bombs is included in this boxing, with the new option for eight unguided rockets on their rails, which just need a launch wire added at the rear of each rocket to add a bit of extra realism.






As already mentioned, there are four decal sheets, containing national markings, aircraft codes, stencils, and finally some additional codes with squadron crests and instrument dials for the cockpit.  The decals have been printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, sporting a thin glossy carrier film cut close to the printed areas.


From the box you can build one of the following:


  • HF-X/MW774 NO.183 Sqn, RAF Chilbolton, August 1945 – Grey/green camo over medium sea grey.  White cowling front and fin stripe.
  • 5R-V/PR533 No.33 Sqn, RAF Kuala Lumpur, Malaya, 1949 – All over aluminium with yellow leading edges and blue spinner.
  • EG-X/PR733 S/L R E Mooney, No.16 Sqn, BAFO Fassberg, West Germany - Grey/green camo over medium sea grey.  Sky tail band and white circle on the fin.
  • T/A139 (ex PR809) No.14 Sqn, RPAF 1948 – Earth/Middle Stone over Azure Blue.
  • M/HA557 (ex MW704) RIAF, late 1950s – All over aluminium with black wingtips.






Quite a broad spread of options that should suit most modellers, given the variety of the schemes.



Another stand-out Tempest from our friends at Special Hobby, with a box full of goodies that might usually be options with other manufacturers.  The quality is excellent, and there are finished models popping up all over the internet, which is usually a good sign of buildability, popularity and that the manufacturer has hit the sweet-spot with the price.


The standard boxing will be along shortly for those that don't want to tackle all that resin, or have a tighter budget.




Review sample courtesy of


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That is some really good resin in there.

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It's really nicely moulded - quite tasty! :)

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Thanks, Mike,


So, in the end, it's possible to build a Tempest that was not flown by P. Clostermann?

With Pakistan and India colour options, this box suit me well.

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1 hour ago, Antoine said:

Thanks, Mike,


So, in the end, it's possible to build a Tempest that was not flown by P. Clostermann?



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