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Mike

Khibiny ECM Pods for Su-34 (Hobby Boss & Kitty Hawk) 1:48

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Khibiny ECM Pods for Su-34 (Hobby Boss & Kitty Hawk)

1:48 Zactomodels

 

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Some of you may have heard of Zactomodels before, especially if you're into Soviet/Russian jets in 1:32, but if you haven't already, now you have.  The owner, Chris Wilson is a perfectionist, and strives for the ultimate in detail, with little things meaning a lot to him, but he doesn't let that get in the way of the enjoyment of his hobby, which is always nice!  Based in the US of A, he has decided that the ECM pods that are attached to the wingtips of every 1:48 Su-34 needed to be more accurate, and off he went.

 

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The set arrives in two thick Ziplok bags, one of which has a heat-sealed partition to prevent the parts from getting damaged, and accompanying them is a Photo-Etch (PE) brass fret, a slip of pre-cut vinyl masking material, and small sheet of very detailed instructions.  There are four resin parts, comprising two pods (one for each wing), and two nose cones if you want to depict your Fullback with the new nose cones that were rolled out in 2018 (check your refs, as always).  That means you'll need to cut the noses off the pods, but Chris has you covered with a dotted line on the diagrams guiding the way.  The PE parts are fences that were added to the pods in 2015/16 to prevent/reduce flutter.  They need to be folded to right-angles before they are glued onto the pods with CA, and again the location is shown from two angles for your convenience.

 

The rest of the instructions detail the alterations to the kits that will be needed for the two kits.  The Hobby Boss kit needs the wings thinning a little, a section removing from the tip to accommodate the radiused fillet, the attachment tabs removing, and the vinyl stickers adding to the wingtip.  For the Kitty Hawk kit it's a little more simple – you just need to shorten the pins a little.  That makes me glad I'm building (or trying to find time to at least) the KH kit.  Engage smug mode ^_^ For the HB kit you might want to add some brass pins to the wingtip to line up with the holes in the resin, which will strengthen the joint no end.

 

As usual with resin, take the precaution of wearing a mask when cutting or sanding resin, as the tiny particles are harmful to your health if breathed in.  Washing the parts in warm water will also improve the adhesion of paint, as there may still be some moulding release agent on the parts when you receive them.

 

 

Conclusion

A simply lovely set from Zactomodels, and the first time I've seen their stuff in the flesh after many years of admiring from afar.  Needless to say it's totally in line with expectations, and will look great when applied to the model – whenever that might be on my part at least.  The shame of it!  Happily he's now got a website, and accepts PayPal payments, so what's keeping you?

 

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Review sample courtesy of

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Review updated to remove a "deliberate" mistake I incorporated to catch Chris out.  It didn't :clap2:

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Thanks for the review Mike!

Now we habe only try to convince Chris of having a distributor on order to reduce shopping costs to outside of the US....

This really adds up to being out of my reach....

Maybe the 48thers can make a deal with him.....

@the48ers.com

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