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FMA IA 58 Pucará (K48078) 1:48


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FMA IA 58 Pucará (K48078)

1:48 Kinetic Model via LuckyModel

 

boxtop.jpg

 

Originally named the Delfin in prototype stage, the Pucará is a indigenous ground-attack and COunter-INsurgency (COIN) aircraft developed by the Fábrica Militar de Aviones, Argentina’s main aircraft manufacturers.  It was designed to operate from rough fields if necessary, and was powered by two turboprop engines in nacelles in the wings.  That, coupled with the long landing gear legs gave it adequate ground clearance when armed, even on the aforementioned rough fields.  If first flew at the end of the 60s and was developed through the early 70s with various engines and other changes, until the first production airframe came off the line in 1974.  The next year they were in service and engaged in COIN duties as their first combat sorties, but it wasn’t too long before the Falklands invasion led to the war that followed, by which time there were around 60 aircraft in service. 

 

Argentina’s decision to base the Pucarás at Port Stanley airfield led to a substantial number of aircraft being destroyed on the ground by various means, while ground fire took down another quantity, and the Harriers either scared the life out of them in the air or shot them down, famously the one downed by Sharkey Ward, which is one of the decal subjects of the kit (before he filled it with holes).  After the war the British found themselves in possession of 11 airframes, six of which were taken back to the UK, and some are now to be found in museums.  Several attempts were made to improve the aircraft, but suffered from funding issues and were usually cancelled before they got too far.  With the few remaining airframes and subsequent new-builds hopelessly outdated, a programme was instigated to create the Pucará Delta, with more modern avionics, more powerful engines and other improvements.  With their withdrawal from service in their original role, a few have been converted to Pucará Fenix (Phoenix) standards for maritime patrol, with a few more scheduled to join them, funds permitting.

 

 

The Kit

The Pucará has been very poorly served in 1:48, with mostly resin kits, some of them horrible - you probably know which one I mean.  Now we have Kinetic bringing their new injection moulded kit to the market, and a lot of people that have been dreaming of owning a kit in this scale will get their wish without spending a small fortune and having to wrangle resin with its possible pitfalls.  This is a brand-new tooling, and on the box there is a note that new engraving technology has been used in creation of the tooling, using lasers for crisp, fine detail.  Having looked over the sprues under magnification, I can believe that because the myriad of tiny louvers around the airframe are excellent, as are the crisp panel lines and fine rivet lines.  Very smart!  The cockpit, and gear bays are also very nicely appointed and should look great under paint, especially with the Photo-Etch (PE) seatbelts.

 

The kit arrives in one of Kinetic’s Gold boxes with black and gold accents, and inside are five sprues in grey styrene, a clear sprue, a small sheet of PE, decal sheet and of course the instruction booklet with the greyscale profiles in the rear.  A lot of people have complained at the poor quality of these drawings in the past, and I’m sure they’ll do it again now, as the darker of the two is very difficult to see properly.  Fortunately, our resident Rumourmongerer found some colour profiles online, so I’ve reproduced parts of them here.  I’ll link to the original post by @Homebee in the Markings section.

 

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Construction begins with the two ejection seats, which are a variant of the Mk.6 from Martin-Baker.  As there have been more than a few variants, check your references before you replace them with resin seats if you choos that route.  Personally, I think they look pretty good, and are of the correct shape for the type.  Each seat is made from eight styrene parts and has five PE belt parts, so have plenty of detail for most of us.  The cockpit tub is well-detailed with side consoles to which the two instrument panels, rudder pedals and control columns are added, then the coaming is placed over the rear console with a PE edge fitted, before the two seats are dropped into their positions.  There are copious colour call-outs in AMMO codes, which will help you get it painted the correct colours without having to pore over your references.

 

detail-cockpit.jpg

 

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Attention then shifts to the lower wings and fuselage halves, preparing them for use later by opening a number of holes for alternative antenna fits and the centreline tank.  This brief interlude splits the completion of the cockpit in half, following up by adding the well-detailed nose gear bay to the bottom of the forward cockpit along with a few detail parts, then fitting sidewall details inside the fuselage to complement the work on the tub.  With that done, we flit back to the wings, which have the similarly nicely done bays inserted into the bottom of the nacelles before the top wing surface is glued in place, then adding the aft cowling and exhaust, followed by the front cowling halves and a front panel where the prop later fits.  A pylon with landing light is made up and inserted under the outer wing joint, and the same job is carried out in mirror image on the opposite wing.  The lower wing panel incorporates a section of the lower fuselage, and these are mated together with an incitement to insert an undisclosed nose-weight before you do.  The front of the fuselage spine is added behind the cockpit, and the big T-tail is fitted either side of the moulded-in fin, plus two loop antennae underneath them.  At the front, the coaming is glued into the recess and finished with a PE rollbar added to the lip.

 

The ailerons, elevators and rudder are all moulded into their respective flying surfaces, however the flaps that straddle the engine nacelles are separate, fitted on a number of actuators that are glued to the training edge of the lower wing.  The two flap-sections per side are made up of two parts each and attached to the brackets, but for some reason this process has been split by the installation of the landing gear.  The main gear have a simple straight leg with separate oleo-scissors and twin wheels at the bottom end, which have a sag on the tyres that is correct for the type, as they were inflated to lower pressures to cope with rough fields.  There is a perforated retraction arm and various door control mechanism parts, with the nose gear somewhat similar, but with only one wheel.  Scrap diagrams assist you with construction at this stage, then it’s a matter of adding the slab-like doors to each of the three bays.  Like any reasonably modern airframe, there is a forest of antennae over the fuselage top, bottom and sides, plus shell-chutes and a crew step near the front, which are best left off until later.  The canopy is nicely clear, although my sample had a small chaffing mark on the very top, which I’ll polish out before I build it.  There are PE internal side frames for the canopy, plus a pair of rear-view mirrors, and a styrene knob for the opening and closing.  Another scrap diagram shows the correct location of the side frames, and a pair of jacks are supplied in case you want to mount the canopy open.  The windscreen part has a HUD within it, and a wiper blade on the outside, then the two props are made up from a single blade set, front and back spinner, with a three-part extension that gives them that weird look.  Part C42 is often painted a bright sky blue, which accentuates the odd-look of the prop.  The final parts of the airframe itself are a number of static-discharge wicks at the tips of the wings, elevators and rudder.  Nice attention to detail.

 

detail-wheels.jpg

 

The average Pucará was often laden with weapons, and an important part is the 500gal midline tank that it carries under its fuselage.  Smaller tanks can be fitted to the wing pylons, and a pair of BRU-42/A TER racks are included in the box, with lots of parts making a nice focal point under the wings.  You’ll need to find your own bombs or rockets if you want to model one loaded for bear however.

 

 

Markings

There are two markings options in the box on a modest sized sheet that has been designed for Kinetic by Two Bobs Decals.  One Argentinian and one Uruguayan.  From the box you can build one of the following:

 

  • FMA IA-58A/D Pucará Argentinian Air Force, Maj. Carlos Tomba, Falkland Isles, 1982
  • FMA IA-58A/D Pucará Uruguayan Air Force

profiles.jpg

Full colour profiles can be found here.

 

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Decals are by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas.

 

 

Conclusion

This is a kit I’ve been personally longing for for several years now, and I’m sure I’m not alone.  It is well-detailed throughout, with sensible construction and although it only has two decal options, they are high quality in design and execution, although I can’t help wondering if there should be more stencils.

 

This kit is now on my workbench, so if you'd like to see how it goes together, you can find it here.

 

Very highly recommended.

 

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Review sample courtesy of

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2 hours ago, Truro Model Builder said:

Oh, that looks nice...

 

But Kinetic really need to ditch that Banda duplicator that they do their instruction sheets on.

1. Yes

 

2. Oh yes!

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I'm now building this, which you can drop in on here.

 

 

 

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Be interesting to do this as AX-04 ( A-509 ) in its torpedo test aircraft configuration.

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If you are wondering why there are no rearviews in the walkaround, that's because Julien almost stood on a hornet's nest in the long grass.

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1 hour ago, bentwaters81tfw said:

If you are wondering why there are no rearviews in the walkaround, that's because Julien almost stood on a hornet's nest in the long grass.

Yes that was a walkaround too far!

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12 hours ago, Julien said:

Yes that was a walkaround too far!

So brave, and so dedicated :wub:

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3 minutes ago, Stephen said:

He took one for the team!

...or rather he didn't. :doh:  He didn't take pictures of the rear of the machine for fear of being stung by the nasty waspies :cry: I've ordered him to go back and finish the job, and to get some pics of the cockpit too :whip:

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13 hours ago, Julien said:

Yes that was a walkaround too far!

 

24 minutes ago, Mike said:

...or rather he didn't. :doh:  He didn't take pictures of the rear of the machine for fear of being stung by the nasty waspies :cry: I've ordered him to go back and finish the job, and to get some pics of the cockpit too :whip:

 

 

I'm with Julien on that one.  Once a hornet - the insect that is -  that flew past me and it sounded like a very angry Lancaster on speed.  I didnt hang about - discretion being the better part of valour and all that. 

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The lack of weapons is very disappointing.  There is an unsubstantiated rumour that Kinetic were going to release the kit with the wrong armament then settled on he fuel tanks... 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/25/2021 at 6:55 PM, Tim T said:

The lack of weapons is very disappointing.  There is an unsubstantiated rumour that Kinetic were going to release the kit with the wrong armament then settled on he fuel tanks... 

 

And decals options are very limited as well, to put it mildly.

Just look that DUKEL HOBBIES Pucara decal sheet, they put much more effort in those decals then Kinetic.

I already asked DUKEL HOBBIES if their Pucara decals will be available as separate item ... still waiting for their reply.

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2 minutes ago, Zacharias said:

 

And decals options are very limited as well, to put it mildly.

Just look that DUKEL HOBBIES Pucara decal sheet, they put much more effort in those decals then Kinetic.

I already asked DUKEL HOBBIES if their Pucara decals will be available as separate item ... still waiting for their reply.

Well Condor decals (Argentina)TwoBobs and Caracalmodels are all doing decal sheets for the Pucara at the moment..

The Condor sheet and TwoBobs sheet are going to be comprehensive as well... I don’t have an idea how the caracal sheet is going to be!

 

cheers, Jan

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21 hours ago, janneman36 said:

Well Condor decals (Argentina)TwoBobs and Caracalmodels are all doing decal sheets for the Pucara at the moment..

The Condor sheet and TwoBobs sheet are going to be comprehensive as well... I don’t have an idea how the caracal sheet is going to be!

 

cheers, Jan

 

Good to know, thanks for info. But still, Kinetic should have put much more effort in their Pucara decals, those look miserable. 

And what to say about a lack of weapons? Pucara price in EU will be close to 50 €, is it too much to ask for decent decals and some weapons at that price?

That reminds me about "Hasegawa way" ... you need weapons fore Hasegawa expensive kits? Sure, fork out another 20€+ for Hasegawa weapons sets.

The same goes to recent Kitty Hawk 1/48 Sukhoi kits like Su-30SM, it's 80€+ kit with no weapons included, isn't it cute?

Edited by Zacharias
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18 hours ago, Zacharias said:

 

Good to know, thanks for info. But still, Kinetic should have put much more effort in their Pucara decals, those look miserable. 

And what to say about a lack of weapons? Pucara price in EU will be close to 50 €, is it too much to ask for decent decals and some weapons at that price?

That reminds me about "Hasegawa way" ... you need weapons fore Hasegawa expensive kits? Sure, fork out another 20€+ for Hasegawa weapons sets.

The same goes to recent Kitty Hawk 1/48 Sukhoi kits like Su-30SM, it's 80€+ kit with no weapons included, isn't it cute?

Decals are already designed by TwoBobs... so I guess it is in their interest to sell extra and more complete decals ;)

If you look at Kinetic's Harrier, there is not much need for aftermarket decals...

And there is not a lot of markings anyway on the Pucara...!

I guess a future boxing might contain one or the other special marking...

 

Regarding weapons, which one do you want?

MK.82 in slick and snakeye form?

Hydra rocket pods?

https://de.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datei:Pucara_armamento_picture.jpg

I guess one can easily source them elsewhere.. 

 

Better not include bad / wrong weapons :)

 

 

 

 

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