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Paul A H

Eduard MiG-21MF Interceptor (Profipack Edition) - 1:72 Eduard

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Eduard MiG-21MF Interceptor Profipack (70141)

1:72 Eduard

 

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The Mig 21 has the distinction of having been produced in greater numbers than any other supersonic jet fighter aircraft in the world. It has seen service with dozens of counties globally and has seen action in Vietnam, the Middle East, Yugoslavia, Cuba and during numerous conflicts in Africa. The design was even copied by the Chinese, where it is known as the Chengdu J-7. The MF is the export version of the SM (itself an upgraded version of the MiG-21S) with modernised radar and avionics and an upgraded R13-300 turbojet engine. This particular variant has seen service with many Soviet states and their post-Cold War descendants. Czechoslovakia had a substantial quantity that were split between the Czech Republic and Slovakia following the Velvet Divorce, eventually to be replaced by Saab Gripens and Mig-29s respectively.

 

This is the first mainstream boxing of Eduard's long anticipated all-new 1:72 MiG-21 kit. I have been waiting years since this kit was first announced and I'm happy to say that it doesn't disappoint... but more of that later. As the kit is part of Eduard's Profipack line, it is supplied with photo etched details, masks and a generous selection of marking options. The kit is spread across three sprues of grey plastic and one of clear plastic. The parts are classic modern Eduard; beautifully moulded, with fine, crisp panel lines and fastener detail where appropriate. If you're seriously into your MiGs, then you may care to note that this kit apparently represents the Gorky produced MiG-21MF, manufactured after the Moscow factory re-tooled for the MiG-23.

 

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In common with many kits of single-seat jet fighters, the cockpit is combined with the nose gear bay. The cockpit itself comprises a floor which is combined with the roof of the nose gear bay, separately moulded sidewalls, rudder pedals and a control column, in instrument panel which can make use of decals or the included photo etched details, and front and rear bulkheads. Photo etched parts are provided for the sidewalls as well as the instrument panel, and again decals are provided as an alternative to the photo etched parts. The KM-1 ejection seat is broken down into three parts and is very nicely detailed. As this is a profipack edition, there are pre-painted photo etched details provided for the seat harnesses. Other parts that have to be assembled before the fuselage halves can be combined include the main landing gear bays and the jet exhaust pipe. The former is comprised four parts including the front and rear bulkheads. There is plenty of moulded detail here and it should take a wash quite nicely. The engine exhaust pipe includes a representation of the rear of the engine moulded into a bulkhead, as well as a single piece forward exhaust tube, the afterburner ring, and a two-part aft exhaust tube. As you will have seen from the photographs above, this kit is unlike most other MiG-21s as the lower wing is moulded as a single span, joined by the central section of the lower fuselage. To this part, the upper wings must be added before being joined to the now-complete fuselage. 

 

The dorsal spine of the MF - which includes the vertical tail - must also be added at this stage, along with the outer part of the jet exhaust and the air intake outer ring. Several cockpit components, such as the instrument panel coaming and HUD unit must also be fitted at this stage. Being as this is a profipack edition, the plastic 'odd rods' IFF array on the fin and below the nose can be replaced with photo etched parts. The slab elevators are, of course, moulded as solid parts, but the ailerons and blown flaps on the main wing are seperate parts. Optional parts are included for open or closed airbrake configurations, and of course there are a plethora of scoops and intakes to add detail to the fuselage. The landing gear on these kits is well detailed. The single nose wheel is clamped in place by a two-part gear leg and the wheel itself features a seperate hub. Two gear bay doors sit at either side of the narrow bay, linked to the fuselage by a pair of hinge tabs with some detail moulded into the inside. The strakes immediately aft of the nose gear bay are provided on both the plastic frame and the fret of photo etched parts. The main gear is a single strut for each leg with a separate hydraulic extender. The wheels have separate hubs and you get a lovely set of pre-cut tape masks to help you paint them. The main gear doors are nicely detailed and included separately moulded parts for the hydraulic mechanisms. The canopy is moulded in two parts and finishing details are provided on the fret of PE parts (including vanes for the pitot probe). The pre-cut tape masks cover not just the canopy but the dielectric panels too. 

 

The kit includes a comprehensive set of external stores, including:
1 x 800L external fuel tank
2 x 490L external fuel tank
2 x RS-2US missiles
2 x R-3S missiles
2 x R-13 missiles
2 x RATO units. 

 

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A generous five options are included on the decal sheet:

  • Polish Air Force: production number 96007600, No. 7600, 11 Pułk Lotnictwa Myśliwskiego, Mierzęcice, Poland, early 1990s. This airfraft is finished in overall silver;
  • Czech Air Force: prodction number 96004017, No. 4017, 9.slp/ 9. sbolp, Bechyně, Czechoslovakia, early 1990s. This aircraft is also finished in overall silver;
  • German Democratic Republic (East German) Air Force: production number 96002170, No. 784, Jagdfliegergeschwader 3, Preschen, late 1980s. This aircraft is finished in a two-tone green disruptive camouflage over light blue;
  • Romanian Air Force: production number 96006721, No. 6721, Regimentul 71 Aviaţie Vânătoare, Câmpia Turzii Airbase, 1990. This aircraft is also finished in overall silver; and
  • Malian Air Force: production number 96005512, No. TZ-356, Senou Airbase, The Republic of Mali, 2006. This aircraft is finished in an interesting scheme comprising two shades of brown and two of green over a light blue underside.

The decals are well printed and a full set of stencils are included. I expect it will take a week to apply all of them!

 

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Conclusion

 

It has been a long time coming, but Eduard have at last given us the definitive MiG-21MF in this scale. The kit is a thoroughly modern tooling of an important and iconic aircraft and appears to be accurate in both outline and detail. The engineering does not seem to be as complex as some recent Eduard kits, but it is still rich in detail. The decal options are comprehensive (the inclusion of an African scheme is particularly welcome) and the usual plethora of aftermarket parts are already available. My only gripe is that on all of the review kits I have received, there have been multiple parts detached from the frames before they have even been removed from the bag. I guess this is the price one pays for small attachment points, but make sure you check your bags carefully for stray parts when you received your kits. Other than that, this superlative kit can be highly recommended.

 

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Review sample courtesy of 


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Article needs some clarification - Czech 4017 was in overall light gray scheme. None of the Czech MF interceptors (i.e. produced in Gorkij Airfcraft Factory) has any other camo then overall light gray.

Silver ones were from Moscow Airfcraft Factory,  Eduard is about to release such kit  under cat. no 70142 as "MiG-21MF Fighter-Bomber" in September 2018.

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I never build in 1/72 but if these kits are anything like their 1/48 versions in terms of a complete package kit, overall detail and superb fit of parts, then the 1/72 chaps are in for a great time and build experience here !

 

Gary

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Well,

I have been building plastic kits in 72nd for some 25 years and never built any better than this MiG-21MF. It´s the same pleasure assembly as L-29 by AMK in the same scale.

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