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Paul A H

I-153 Winter Version - 1:72 ICM

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I-153 Winter Version

1:72 ICM

 

i153_01.jpg

 

The Polikarpov I-153 Chaika (Seagull, for all you Chekhov fans), was the ultimate incarnation of the biplane fighter to find its way into VVS service. The aircraft was of mixed wood and metal construction, with a gull wing, manually retractable undercarriage and armed with four shKAS machine guns. It entered service in 1939, and was first blooded in the border skirmishes that took place between Soviet and Japanese forces that year. The combination of biplane maneuverability and modern fighter performance made the I-153 a competitive design, albeit hampered by an unreliable supercharger design and the lack of a firewall between the fuel tank and the cockpit. The type soldiered on into the 1940s, mainly due to the lack of modern alternatives in sufficient numbers. 

 

Inside ICM's typically robust box is a large sprue of grey plastic which holds all of the main parts of the diminutive fighter, as well as a much smaller sprue which holds the new parts for the landing gear skis. A tiny clear sprue, instructions and decals complete the package. Moulding is clean and crisp, with plenty of fine detail. There are 85 parts in total, although one or two (wheels) aren't used in this boxing.

 

i153_02.jpg

 

i153_03.jpg

 

Construction on the cockpit begins with the internal framework, onto which the instrument panel, four-part seat, control column, rudder pedals and floor all fit. The oveall impression should be reasonably good for the scale, which is just as well as the cockpit is not enclosed by glazing.  The whole sub-assembly fits onto the single span of the lower wing, which in turn fits into the two halves of the fuselage. The engine and propellor are comprised six parts, with an optional spinner hub. As with the lower wing, the upper wing is a nicely-moulded solid piece of plastic, onto which the two sturdy struts fit. Alignment shouldn't be a problem, as the gull wing section fits directly onto the front upper fuselage. The horizontal stabilisers are solid parts. 

 

i153_04.jpg

 

i153_05.jpg

 

The undercarriage legs and skis are accurately represented, with the same excellent level of detail as the rest of the kit. Each leg is made up from six parts, while the tail skid is a single part on its own. There are partial covers for the redundant main gear wheel wells. A surprisingly good selection of ordnance is included, with a choice of eight rockets, four small bombs or four larger bombs. The rigging is fairly simple and should therefore be within the capabilities of even the biplane averse. 

 

i153_06.jpg

 

Decal options include:
I-153, Red Army Air Force, Winter 1939-40
I-153, Finnish Air Force, LeLv 14, April 1940
I-153, Finnish Air Force, LeLv 14, March 1942
I-153, Finnish Air Force, 3/LeLv 6, November 1942
The decals look nicely printed, but the finnish swastikas have to me made up from the provided strips of blue decal.

 

Conclusion

 

ICM's I-153 is a well-regarded kit, which makes this new edition complete with skis a very welcome addition to the range. Detail is good, while construction is not overly complex. Overall, it looks as though this should be an enjoyable and rewarding build.

 

Review sample courtesy of


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Thank Paul for the good review,

I missed the SH one, will not miss the ICM

Thank for sharing.

Sincerely.

Corsaircorp

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