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1:48 Scale F-16 or F-15 which kit is the best on a budget


David Hadland
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I've been thinking of getting either a F-15 or F-16 and I've been reading some of the debates on this forum about which is the very best kit which puts them in the £40/£45 range.  My price range is around £22 with about £8 for extras.

 

What does everyone think of the 1/48 scale Revell F-16C Wild Weasel, it's about this price but I can't seem to find any reviews of it online. 

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I would go for a Hasegawa F-16CJ kit as this has more options and is more up to date than the Revell offering. The Hasegawa F-16C in the original boxing can be sought within the budget you have, although I don't think you'll get much extras with either alternative ;) 

 

The Revell instructions can be seen here: 143958-32-instructions.pdf (scalemates.com)

The Hasegawa instructions can be seen here: F-16CJ Fighting Falcon "Misawa Japan", Hasegawa 07232 (2004) (scalemates.com)

 

Personnally I don't like the Revell offering, as it is very old and not properly reflecting a modern day F-16CJ which Hasegawa does. Depending on boxing, you also can find those with the bird slicers if that's what your seeking. 

 

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for that amount you can easily get one of the excellent Revell F-15E model,and extras if you want to (bot do not actually need)

 

https://www.scalemates.com/de/kits/revell-04550-f-15e-strike-eagle--111440

https://www.scalemates.com/de/kits/revell-04891-f-15e-strike-eagle--467753

 

or if lucky a Hasegawa F-16A/B/C/D

 

tried on ebay? 

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Another vote for the Strike Eagle. A lovely kit and really well detailed (really no need for aftermarket, the cockpit is great as-is). With the money spared you could invest in some decals if Tiger Meet schemes are not your thing.

 

Cheers

Markus

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I made a mistake and bought Tamiya F15 1/48, as it seemed a bargain. Its not a good idea. It's a paint mule now.

I've built their 1/48 F16c and it's a great kit, if pricey, and really highlights how old and out of date their F15 kit is.

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58 minutes ago, Shorty84 said:

Another vote for the Strike Eagle. A lovely kit and really well detailed (really no need for aftermarket, the cockpit is great as-is). With the money spared you could invest in some decals if Tiger Meet schemes are not your thing.

 

Cheers

Markus

Add a vote from me. Just finished one last month and with almost no exceptions thoroughly enjoyed the build and the result. My only complaint: the canopy pieces, while very clear, were molded a bit off center in my copy, and some of the framing on the large piece disappeared. Also, be prepared to use up a lot of Gunship Gray!

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On 1/14/2021 at 9:19 PM, exdraken said:

for that amount you can easily get one of the excellent Revell F-15E model,and extras if you want to (bot do not actually need)

 

https://www.scalemates.com/de/kits/revell-04550-f-15e-strike-eagle--111440

https://www.scalemates.com/de/kits/revell-04891-f-15e-strike-eagle--467753

 

or if lucky a Hasegawa F-16A/B/C/D

 

tried on ebay? 

 

Tried on eBay and the only one available is a kit from Germany which cost £151.99 and everywhere else is sold out.  The next most available kit is the Great Wall Kit, which from all accounts is an excellent kit however with a price tag of £72 it should have all the bells and whistles.

 

Thanks for all the advise on which kit to get, it looks like I'm going to complete my MIG collection before my US jet collection.

 

Strange thing is there are plenty of good Russian/Soviet 1/48 models out now, with ICM and Zvezda making really good kits and at a reasonable price (I have kits from both and they are well worth the money) yet you try and find a good kit of American Fighter/Bomber Jets and unless you are prepared to pay bank you may as well not bother.

 

Well rant over, it looks like the US will be represented in my collection by the F-22, F/A-18E and a P-51D-15, until better kits are released at a reasonable price in 1/48.

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I don't know if it makes a difference which side of the pond one is on, but accessing eBay from here in the USA there are a lot of listings for the Revell F-15E at reasonable prices. Of course, most of them aren't the boxing with all the ordnance options, but that's not an insurmountable problem.

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I think that boxing was only US thing. It is occasionally pops up in hobby shops for $20-$30 or on ebay, however with current shipping rates if shipped to UK might cost as much as GWH.

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I try not to spend over £30 on any kit, apart from the odd unavoidable exceptions like the Airfix Valiant and Javelin. I always shop around on eBay where I’ve got about 95% of my kits.

 

I got the 1/48 Italeri F-16A for under £20 and the Academy F-15C for about £23. Both seem ok to me, but I’m no rivet counter. They build into decent enough looking models though. I’ve seen one or two Hasegawa F-16s for around your stipulated price, you just have to be prepared to give up once someone frustratingly bids a silly amount! 😂

 

They do crop up there quite a lot though.

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If you don’t mind an old kit, the Monogram F-15A may be a choice. Raised details and all, but should be manageable within your budget. You may also get lucky and get an Academy F-15 on sale somewhere in your range, which has recessed surface details. A kit that usually is cheap is the Revell, but this is even older than the Monogram and much less detailed. 
 

 The Italeri F-16 does not appear to be a very popular kit, but is the most modern of the budget kits. Didn’t Academy also do one? Otherwise, the Revell base kit is 40 years old now, with some updates over time. I think it’s not too bad in general, but you will be Limited to relatively early airframes I think. If you don’t mind a prototype or FSD (or possibly a mix between both), there are a bunch of old kits of varying quality (Tamiya, Otaki, Monogram, Esci[also boxed by Revell in the Late 70s]) that you would likely be able to buy cheaply as I don’t think any of them is collectible.

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Revellogram is quite cheap and in recent US boxing is worth it's money just for the decal sheet alone plus a good shape, however if you are going to count rivets you would notice that it represents very early C model. It has some fit issues but by end of the day you might end up with quite nice model (especially in those 2016 special markings) https://www.scalemates.com/kits/revell-85-5870-f-15c-eagle--1015040

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  • 3 weeks later...

On a total. Budget build I have been putting together some ESCI F-16s recently. Raised detail - check, early small tail horizontals - check, basic cockpit - check. But for about £10 a time the shape is pretty good, especially if you get the one with the ground crew set.

 

RaPXE24.jpg
 

I have also just picked up an Italeri F-15A/C so will see how that compares to my Monogram one.  Only one to avoid I have built so far is the Academy F-16C.  Nice recessed detail, poor wing fit, awful intake and it sits too low at the tail with the undercarriage height just not right

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  • 5 months later...

nice trio of Euro Vipers.

Really must do a Euro one rather than USAF all the time.

 

Might do a Polish block 52 with conformals and a dorsal spine.

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Best kit (imho) Kinetic ROCAF F16A/B - basically an  MLU block 15/20 but with the bonus of either a 1 or 2 seater from the same box. Plus you get 20 ish sets of artwork and loads of spare numbers and stencil decals. Kingkit sometimes get them , look to pay £35 secondhand

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