By Modelers... For Modelers
Banner 2 Banner 3 Banner 3 Banner 1

MQ-9 Reaper Landing Gear

Published: November 27th, 2012     
MQ-9 Reaper Landing Gear
Reviewed by: Dave Koukol, IPMS# 46287
Scale: 1/48
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions

Another very welcome offering from our friends at Scale Aircraft Conversions is their white metal landing gear set for SkunkModel Workshop’s 1/48 scale MQ-9 Reaper.  Since reviewing the Reaper kit back in June of 2011 (http://web.ipmsusa3.org/content/mq-9-reaper-unmanned-aerial-vehicle), my sample has succumbed to the insatiable pull of gravity against its spindly injection-molded main struts, settling into a “low-rider” crouch with the low-hanging vertical stabilizer all but dragging in the dirt.

Enter SAC’s aftermarket set!  Patterned from the kit parts, the SAC struts are a perfect fit to the base kit.  Although some detail is softened in the casting process, they are still convincing in appearance and a necessity to preclude the dreaded “low-rider” effect of the kit struts.

I highly recommend this set for anyone building the 1/48 SkunkModel MQ-9 Reaper with gear down.

Many thanks to Scale Aircraft Conversions for the review sample and to IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review it and to upgrade my Reaper.

Sherman Basics: Basic Markings for Sherman Tanks

Published: November 26th, 2012     
Sherman Basics: Basic Markings for Sherman Tanks
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/35
Company: Archer Fine Transfers

Over the years, I have discovered there are four ways to apply the required markings to my military models: first, and most obviously, the water slide decals that come in almost every commercially available model kit; second, one can, of course, hand paint one’s own markings, provided you have the high degree of skill this requires; third, there are various forms of masks – photo etched versions or various forms of tape masks; and finally, there are dry rub transfers, the subject of this review.

Grumman X-29

Published: November 26th, 2012     
Grumman X-29
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1/144
Company: Dragon Models

The X-29 was built in 1984 as a test bed for the forward-swept wing concept.  The result was an extremely maneuverable aircraft, but because the center of gravity was behind the aerodynamic center, the aircraft was inherently unstable.  The solution was a fly-by-wire system which used a computer to make 40 corrections per second to keep the aircraft going where the pilot wanted it to go.  Two test aircraft were built.

If the aircraft looks kind of familiar, the basic airframe was a Northrop F-5A and the main landing gear was from an F-16.

The Kit

Since it’s 1/144, it’s pretty simple.  The parts are on 2 sprues, one for the clear parts, one for everything else.  But simple doesn’t mean crude.  The molding on this kit is very good, and the fit is really great.  And it includes a cockpit and seat with choice of open or closed canopy, and a boarding ladder.

Scale Aircraft Modelling, Vol. 34, Issue 10

Published: November 26th, 2012     
Scale Aircraft Modelling, Vol. 34, Issue 10
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Scale Aircraft Modelling

Scale Aircraft Modelling is an excellent monthly publication focusing on modeling scale aircraft. No surprise there. And if you are a long-time fan of SAM, then it is also no surprise that I state that SAM is one of the best modeling magazines focused on aircraft that money can buy. Averaging just under 100 pages, SAM is filled with build articles featuring some of the newer kits on the market, as well as projects based on old favorites.

Many modelers associate a jungle diorama with an armor subject, but in this issue in “Jungle Juice,” James Ashton builds the Fine Molds 1/48th scale Ohka and puts it “in the jungle”. View the image labeled Content Sample B to see one of the pages in this article. James shared the materials used in the construction of the jungle and focuses on that aspect of the project rather than construction of the Ohka itself.

Republic F-105 Thunderchief

Published: November 25th, 2012     
Republic F-105 Thunderchief
Author: Peter Davies
Reviewed by: Bart Cusumano, IPMS# 31882
Company: Osprey Publishing

Originally designed as a nuclear response aircraft, the F-105 Thunderchief was always one of my favorite jet propelled fighter/bomber aircraft from the Vietnam war. Its sleek and aggressive lines and large presence were quite intimidating and left no doubt as to its mission in life. The Thud compiled a distinguished service record, flying over 20,000 combat missions by the end of the war and proving to be a rugged and capable aircraft in the Republic tradition. However, despite its durability, losses were heavy, with over 330 F-105s lost in the skies of Southeast Asia.

Osprey’s latest title in their Air Vanguard series is Republic F-105 Thunderchief. Although I refer to the Vietnam war above, it is just one of six sections of this interesting and insightful read:

USS Fort Worth – LCS-3

Published: November 25th, 2012     
USS Fort Worth – LCS-3
Reviewed by: Tom Pope, IPMS# 47261
Scale: 1/700
Company: Cyber-Hobby

Introduction

The US Navy's third littoral combat ship (LCS), the USS Ft. Worth was just commissioned in late September, 2012 – a mere few weeks after Dragon released this kit.  Designated LCS-3, the Ft. Worth is a single V-hull, and the second of the Freedom class LCS ship.  LCS ships are sleek and fast, make a small radar target, and can maneuver close to the shore in only 20 feet of water.  Dragon's LCS-3 Smart Kit is an excellent representation of the LCS class ship, in a small size and with excellent detail, that can be displayed just about anywhere.

Wessex UH.5/HU.5 Landing Gear

Published: November 25th, 2012     
Wessex UH.5/HU.5 Landing Gear
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/48
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions

This is a simple upgrade, consisting of four items (both struts and two steps); it improves on the kit items by a major factor in that you don’t have to glue what is a basic triangle with an angle as the kit would have you do – see the comparison picture below, where the kit-supplied oleo strut is separate from the torsion strut.  On the real aircraft, this provides dual purpose action in that it dampens impact with the ground without causing the aircraft to rebound, which could result in really bad things with moving rotor blades.

(This was changed on some versions by using an “A” frame strut, replacing the torsion bar completely.  This is the version Revell used for their release from 1987.  I can’t vouch for the effectiveness of this modification, but it’s obviously a bit more sturdy.)

As well as making overall assembly easier, the strength of the new SAC gear is obvious; any failure won’t be at a glue joint behind the wheels, and the torsion strut will not splay out, as it is made of metal.

MiG-29 Fulcrum A Landing Gear

Published: November 25th, 2012     
MiG-29 Fulcrum A Landing Gear
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/32
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions

SAC continues its prolific output of gear to handle the loads on our models  Thanks to Russ at SAC for providing IPMS USA this set, and IPMS for sending it to me for review!

This set improves on Revell’s 1/32 MiG-29 Fulcrum A’s items in two ways – it has both main gear strut halves combined into one item, so there is no seam to fill (a bit of a swipe with wet/dry emery board after scraping the almost imperceptible mold line, and you are done), and it adds structural rigidity to a kit requiring it due to sheer size and weight.  This is particularly true if you use a lot of resin aftermarket, which the Revell MiG- 29 needs to bring it up to standard.

Besides the main gear, three actuator struts and one nose gear with separate side braces are included, all necessary as previously noted.

Once again, no concern of collapsing gear within a year after I finish the model.

Highly recommended and well done to SAC for yet another winner!
 

T-50 Advanced Trainer

Published: November 25th, 2012     
T-50 Advanced Trainer
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/48
Company: Academy

Thanks once again to Akiko at MRC for providing IPMS USA the opportunity to review one of their products…and IPMS USA for forwarding it to me to do the review!

This kit is a sleeper.  The reason I say that is I would not have purchased it on a whim.  It’s a cool-looking “Indigenous” production of the Korean defense industry, designed as an advanced trainer, and incorporates many design elements of aircraft already flying.  Their display team, “The Black Eagles,” fly T-50s, and Academy produces a kit with their markings as well.

Molded in “true white” plastic (it almost glows), the part trees have a staggering amount of detail.  Academy tends to design their kits with many details as separate items; this results in a bit more complex construction, but also provides kit fidelity in the final product.  Take your time and produce an excellent model!

F-35B Metal Landing Gear

Published: November 24th, 2012     
F-35B Metal Landing Gear
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: 1/48
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions

Hot on the heels of the release of Kitty Hawk Models’ 1/48 F-35B is Scale Aircraft Conversions’ metal landing gear set. The set consists of 11 pieces of white metal to replace the entire landing gear structure on the F-35. There are three gear struts, three torque links, three retracting arms, and two retraction cylinders. As you can see from the pictures, the metal castings are excellent.

For review, I installed the parts on the kit (which I am in the process of reviewing) and they fit like a charm. In one picture, you can see the nose gear torque link has snapped and, thankfully, SAC to the rescue. All it takes is a little clean up and they drop into place, providing a sturdy base to the kit. You can also polish the metal where the silver parts are and leave them bare metal for a realistic look.

An excellent aftermarket set from Ross McMillan and Scale Aircraft Conversions. Recommended. My thanks to Ross and SAC for the review set and IMPS/USA for the review space.
 

Theme by Danetsoft and Danang Probo Sayekti inspired by Maksimer