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Mike

Supermarine Spitfire Mk.1a

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Supermarine Spitfire Mk.1a



1:72 Airfix

boxtop.jpg

The Spitfire is perhaps one of the best known and well loved aircraft in Britain, and deservedly so for its work in the Battle of Britain alongside the doughty Hurricane, and beyond through many versions and types.

This kit from Airfix has been eagerly awaited by lovers of the scale and the aircraft, who have been waiting for a modern tooling to get their teeth into. The kit arrives in an end-opening red Airfix box, with some rather splendid artwork, depicting a dogfight above the clouds.

Inside the box, we have two sprues of Airfix's light grey/blue styrene, a separately bagged transparency, instructions, and a nicely printed sheet of decals. The major parts are cleanly cast, with deep but crisp panel lines, and recessed fasteners on the cowling panels. A neat and detailed cockpit is provided, even down to ribbing inside the fuselage halves, plus a pilot with his hands folded across his lap if you feel to urge to install him. Unlike some other Airfix pilots, he's suitably attired, well moulded, and appears to be of around the correct size for his scale. A decal is supplied for the instrument panel, which is otherwise a flat slab, with no relief.

sprue1.jpg

sprue2.jpg

Cockpit glazing is a one piece affair, so posing the canopy open will be either a case of chancing your luck and cutting it with a razor saw (don't forget to pack it with blutak first!), or obtaining a suitable aftermarket vacform canopy, which I know doesn't appeal to many. It would have been nice to have the option from the box.

clear.jpg

Constructions should be straightforward with little to trip up even the novice, and detail continues into the wheel wells, with the small elliptical depression, ribbing and even a representation of the retraction gear being provided. On the topside of the wing, there is even a small "gear down" stud, which you'll need to remove if you're portraying your kit with wheels up. Separate wheel/door parts are provided for this option, and the other wheels for the gear down option have a small flat to simulate the airframe's weight on its tyres.

The small decal sheet allows you to portray only one airframe, namely DWK of 610 Squadron, 13 Group, Biggin Hill in July 1940, which is appropriate given that the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain occurred this year (2010), and is referred to in a little rosette on the boxtop. A full color painting guide is provided on the rear of the box, together with the Humbrol codes and color names as per usual.

decals.jpg

Conclusion

A welcome re-vamping of an old favourite and one of Airfix's perennial sellers. The buzz around the forums indicates that those that know their Spitfires are pleased with the quality of both the tooling and the shape, but as no model is perfect, I'm sure some minor issues will come out in due course.

It's a great little kit to tempt the younger generation into our hobby, with a relatively low part count (36), quick build, and a well known subject - it should also satisfy the more "intense" modeller with good detail throughout. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this to modellers of any skill level.

Review sample courtesy of logo.gif

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nice review ive just built one and i love it its a great kit. i still love the old one and it shows how good the old one is as they look good together.

im currently planing to by a load of spit 1/ 1a / 2a and making a little scene in a field some form of diorama.

it is good for modelers of all age and abillity very enjoyable and very welcome.

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It is an nice little kit. For what I knew it's one of the first kits with an mirror moulded with the cockpit glacing. It has also been reisued as an Mk.IIa and an Mk.Va (kit A02102) with the special parts for those variants including the blunter spinner with the rotol propeller and the oilcooler for the Mk.Va. An two bladed propeller and flat canopy for an early Mk.Ia are also provided in this later reissue with more parts.

 

http://modelingmadness.com/scott/allies/previews/airfix/a02010.htm

 

Whit the correct parts and some  new nice decals Airfix could reissue it with markings for both Spitfire's that Douglas Bader flew (the Mk.IIa and the Mk.Va).

 

Cheers / André

Edited by Andre B
Spelling as I am from Sweden...

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