Jump to content

F-86F-40 Sabre Upgrade Sets (for Airfix) 1:48


Recommended Posts

F-86F-40 Sabre Upgrade Sets (for Airfix)

1:48 Eduard




The new Airfix Sabre has been out for a wee while now, and in their usual style, here comes a batch of upgrade sets for you to drool over.  Eduard's new range of sets are here to improve on the kit detail in the usual modular manner.  Get what you want for the areas you want to be more of a focal point.  As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE), SPACE and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between.



Detail Set (491298)

Two frets are included, one nickel-plated and pre-painted, the other larger fret in bare brass.  It starts with a comprehensive overhaul of the ejection seat, which is very much different afterwards, having a pair of raised sides that make it look a bit like an arm chair; a more realistically shaped headbox; a set of more accurate foot plates that are folded up to shape and fitted in place instead of the moulded-in kit steps.  The instrument panel is sanded back flat and has a two-layer pre-painted main panel and another centre panel installed.  The same is done to the side consoles, but the removal of material includes reducing the height of the consoles to 8mm before applying the new parts on top, on the sides, and on the side walls, including a detailed throttle quadrant with protruding levers.  Behind the pilot on the rear deck, the soft and ambiguous kit detail is augmented by numerous parts, then a shaped head-armour panel with fitments is glued in at an angle behind the seat headrest.  In the canopy a single rear-view mirror is provided, needing your shiniest silver paint to give it some realism.




The nose gear bay is built under the intake trunking, which has some ribbing moulded into it, which is first upgraded with rib-top details and the removal of a run of straight wires.  The bay walls have some triangular fillets removed, then have details and surface skins fitted to the rear face before it is joined to the bay roof.  The gear leg is updated with a PE oleo-scissor, and a support strut has additional details applied to the visible surface.  When the bay is together and is inside the fuselage, additional panels and wiring looms are inserted to complete the overhaul.  The main bays are left as provided, but the gear legs are augmented with new oleo-scissors and links between the Y-shaped captive bay door, which will require some short lengths of 0.6mm rod from your own stocks to complete.


In the gun bays to the sides of the cockpit, a bump is first removed from the front corner, then new skins are fixed to the front and rear bulkheads before inserting the three .50cals on each side, which have been upgraded with detailed tops to their breeches after removing raised areas from front and rear.  The bay doors in the kit are thicker than the real thing, which is fixed by the new two-layer gun bay doors included in the set, which also have appliqué parts fixed to the inner side.  Before gluing the two layers together, they need to be bent slightly to shape to match the curve of the fuselage, which can be done by pressing the annealed parts against the kit doors and tweaking them until they sit flush with the fuselage during test fitting.


The last area to see improvement are the air-brake bays found on the sides of the fuselage.  The bays are left as-is, but the brake panels are replaced entirely by a totally new assembly that is made from a curved piece of PE for the exterior skin, laminated to an inner skin that is bent to shape to give it thickness.  The hinge-point is buried in a hole in the inside skin, and a number of stiffening parts are fitted along the length of the inner face to form the pivot-points at the front of each brake.  Each one is then glued in place once painted using the original actuator strut.  The result is a much more in-scale look to the assemblies.





Zoom! Set (FE1298)

This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above.  Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements.





SPACE 3D Printed Cockpit Decals (3DL48083)

The Eduard SPACE sets use new 3D printing techniques that lay down successive layers of different colour resin, creating highly realistic almost full complete panels that are supplied on a decal sheet.  They can depict metallic shades, plus glossy, satin and matt colours too, which really ups the detail on everything they print.  In addition, a small sheet of nickel-plated and pre-painted PE is included for the aspects of the set that lend themselves better to this medium, such as seatbelts and rudder pedals.




The PE sheet has a set of four-point crew seatbelts with separate comfort pads under the buckles, plus levers for the throttle quadrants on the left side console.  The decals require removal of the kit panel and side console moulded-in detail, after which they are replaced by superb new consoles, the throttle quadrant base, sidewall instruments, and the main instrument panel, which is in two parts and has a PE lever protruding from the left side.





Seatbelts STEEL (FE1299)

These belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting.  Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE.  As well as a set of four-point crew belts, you also get comfort pads underneath the buckles.







Masks (EX887)

Supplied on a sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the canopy, with compound curved handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape.  In addition, you get a set of hub/tyre masks for the wheels, allowing you to cut the demarcation perfectly with little effort.







Masks Tface (EX888)

Supplied on a larger sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with everything above, but also give you another set of canopy masks tailored to fit the interior of the glazing so that you can paint the interior and give your model that extra bit of realism. 






Highly recommended.


Review sample courtesy of






Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...