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MiG-15 Weekend Edition (7459) 1:72


Mike
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Mikoyan MiG-15 Weekend Edition (7459)

1:72 Eduard

 

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The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 was the most famous fighter aircraft to emerge from behind the Iron Curtain during the early years of the Cold War. Although a Soviet design, the MiG-15 made use of captured German research on the aerodynamic properties of swept wings, combined with a reverse engineered Rolls Royce Nene turbojet engine naively provided by the British Government. The resulting aircraft was a triumph, easily outclassing the more conventional jet fighters then in service, benefiting from the inclusion of swept wings that gave it impressive flight characteristics. In order to ensure it could perform adequately as a bomber destroyer, it packed a formidable punch, with two 23mm cannons and a single 37mm cannon mounted in a pack under the nose.

 

The MiG-15 was the original production version, which lacked the plethora of small improvements made to the follow-on Bis variant. The MiG-15 made its combat debut during the Korean War, where it provided a nasty shock for UN forces in theatre. It wasn't until the North American F-86 Sabre became available that American forces had anything able to hold its own against the new Soviet fighter, and even the Sabre required a good pilot at the controls to give it an edge. The MiG-15 went on to become one of the most widely produced jet fighters in history and saw service with air forces around the world.  There are a small number still flight-worthy, and they wow crowds at air shows, not least due to the compact size of the airframe.

 

 

The Kit

Eduard have acquired a reputation for excellent models, and this one is no different, and although this boxing originates from 2012, it has a finesse that some 1:72 kit manufacturers struggle to achieve even today.  This weekend boxing has a new set of decals and suits either the novice builder, or anyone that doesn’t wish to get bogged down with resin or Photo-Etch (PE) details, a perfect tonic for those paralysed by so-called AMS – Advanced Modeller Syndrome.  The name suggests you could complete the model over the weekend, which is an unlikely thing for me, but many modellers could probably manage it!  It arrives in a newly re-designed blue-themed Weekend box, and inside are three sprues moulded in the blue-grey plastic often used by Eduard and a single sprue moulded in clear plastic. The sprues are the same as those provided with the earlier bis edition, with the exception of the sprue that holds the fuselage halves. The instruction book is a glossy, stapled A4 affair which includes full-colour painting diagrams at the rear. The quality of the mouldings is up to the usual Eduard standard.  Details are clean and crisp and there are no flaws to be seen anywhere. The surface detail on the outside of the airframe is comprised of fine recessed panel lines and delicately engraved rivet and fastener detail.

 

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Construction begins with the cockpit sidewalls, painting them and adding decals to the tops of equipment boxes moulded into the curved sides that are actually the sides of the bifurcated intake trunking that is diverted around the cockpit.  The seat with decals for belts is made of two parts and inserted into the floor, which has the control column and forward/aft bulkheads glued in place to support the sidewalls with their curved edges and raised orientation arrows.  The nose gear bay is inserted under the front of the cockpit, which is then put to one side while the exhaust trunking is made up from two halves and a front bulkhead with engine details moulded into it.  You have a choice of a flat instrument panel to which you add a decal, or a detailed panel that you paint.  Or you could cheat and apply the decal to the textured panel and smother it with decal softener so it conforms to the surfaces.  It is inserted into the cockpit tub during closure of the fuselage along with the exhaust tube and the rudder panels, with a tiny cartoon bunny advising you to put some nose weight into the front of the fuselage before things get too far along.  It doesn’t give you a number for the nose weight, but it does tell you to drill a hole in the fuselage top if you are depicting some of the decal options.

 

The wings are made of two halves each, and have a couple of holes drilled out for underwing tanks, plus a pitot probe in the starboard wing tip area.  The wings fit to the fuselage with slot and tab as well as an aft pin in the wing root, and the low T-tail has a pair of pins to hold them in place, each surface a single part.  Under the nose is still open at this stage, which is cured by an insert and another reminder from the bunny about nose weight.  The intake lip with splitter insert and the nose gear leg are inserted along with the two bay doors, and next to it is the 37mm cannon barrel in a shallow trough, and on the other side of the nose wheel the two lower calibre barrels have their own recesses.

 

The main gear wheels have a single tyre part, and a choice of two styles of hubs, which then fix to the axle on the gear leg with a captive bay door, and finally slots into the outer end of the bay, propped up with a retraction jack and two more bay doors around the periphery.  A number of scrap diagrams show how the gear legs, doors and the overall aircraft should look once this stage is completed.  Sitting the Mig on its own wheels allows the gunsight and rear deck to be put into the cockpit, plus the windscreen and a choice of open or closed canopy with internal parts added inside, according to your choice.  One or two antenna stalks are fixed nearby, depending on which decal option you choose.

 

Two styles of drop-tanks are supplied in this boxing, one type being semi-conformal with no pylon, the other having a tripod pylon insert and twin stabilising fins at the rear.  They both fit into the same holes under the wings that were drilled out earlier.  Hopefully.

 

 

Markings

Early Weekend boxings would include a solitary decal option, but this has been increasing over the years to the stage that this boxing includes four options on the main sheet, and a full set of stencils on the smaller sheet.  From the box you can build one of the following:

 

  • S/n 141303, 3 Fighter Air Regiment, Brno-Tuřany, Czechoslovakia, c.1958
  • S/n 0615334 Maj. V I Kolyadin, 28 GIAP, 151 GIAD, 64 IAK, Mukden, China, Dec 1950
  • EP-01 Josef Kúkel, 1 Fighter Air Division, Hradec Králové, Ruzyně, Sep 4th 1955
  • S/n 231611, Romanian Air Force, late 1950s

 

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

 

Don’t forget that as of last year, the carrier film of the decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them film-free, making the decals much more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the film.  It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view.

 

 

Conclusion

The kit is both accurate and well-engineered, putting other 1:72 kits of the type in the shade. The level of detail Eduard have packed in is superb, as is the treatment of surface details.

 

Highly recommended.

 

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Review sample courtesy of

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Lovely review, I';ve ordered a couple through my LHS, Painting those blue checkers would be quite a challenge! 

 

  

On 3/10/2022 at 5:39 PM, Mike said:

Don’t forget that as of last year, the carrier film of the decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied

 

I have had mixed succes with this, I must say. On a Hobbyboss MiG-15UTI I've had in the stash I used the Eduard cockpit decals from a couple of my Profipack editions, since those come with both decals and etch for the office. When it works, it looks great, but with about half of the decals my attempts to remove the carrier film resulted in the markings coming off as well.  

 

Cheers,

 

Andre 

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