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Pe-2 Guards Units of World War 2

Published: March 26th, 2013     
Pe-2 Guards Units of World War 2
Author: Dmitriy Khazanov and Aleksander Medved
Reviewed by: Perry Downen, IPMS# 44000
Company: Osprey Publishing

I’d like to thank Osprey Publishing for offering this book to be reviewed, and I’d like to thank IPMS/USA for allowing me to review it.

The Petlyakov Pe-2 was an interesting and formidable aircraft widely used by the Soviets against the Germany army during WW II.  Originally designed as a high-altitude fighter by Vladimir M. Petlyakov while he was in prison, the Pe-2 became the standard tactical bomber of the Soviet air force.  The twin-engined aircraft was used as a light bomber, a dive-bomber, a heavy fighter, a ground attack aircraft, a night fighter, and a reconnaissance aircraft.  It was fast, maneuverable, and rugged.  These attributes, along with its versatility, made it the most produced twin-engine combat aircraft ever.  When production ended in 1945 over 11,400 Pe-2's had been built.  Its two 1,260 hp liquid-cooled V-12s carried the 3-man crew to a speed of 360 mph, an altitude of 28,800 feet, and to a range of 720 miles.  Its armament consisted of machine guns and cannons, which varied as to model.  Its payload topped out at 3,500 pounds.  The Pe-2 would serve on all major fronts for the Soviets, but nowhere did it have more impact than on the Soviet’s western front against the Germans.

Focke Wulf Ta-152H-1

Published: March 26th, 2013     
Focke Wulf Ta-152H-1
Reviewed by: Brian R. Baker, IPMS# 43146
Scale: 1/72
Company: Aoshima

History

The Focke Wulf Ta-152H series was the ultimate development of the FW-190 design, and appeared in small numbers right at the close of World War II in Europe.  Most of our readers are probably familiar with the history of the type, so I won’t go into many details.  Needless to say, the Ta-152H series, which was powered by a Junkers Jumo 213E-1 engine of over 1,700 hp., was as good as any of the piston engine fighters that were operational at the end of the war.

A-4 Skyhawk Walk Around

Published: March 25th, 2013     
A-4 Skyhawk Walk Around
Author: Lou Drendel
Reviewed by: Bart Cusumano, IPMS# 31882
Company: Squadron Signal Publications

Squadron Signal’s latest Walk Around title deals with the Douglas A-4 Skyhawk. The book is presented in its typical 80-page softcover landscape format. You can also get the book in hardcover format for an additional $10. It is chock full of clear and well presented color and black & white photos which provide not only overall long-shots, but the typical Walk Around up-close detail shots. All photos are accompanied by descriptive captions, although I did find an error to the caption of a photo on page 58 which describes the photo as a Marine loading an Mk-82 Snakeye, when in fact, he is loading ammo for the 20mm gun. Otherwise, all seems in order.

All A-4 variants are covered in the pages, although I was a bit disappointed not to see more detail coverage of the A-4C to help me out with my build of the Hasegawa 1/48 kit – but that’s my problem. The book does do a good job of covering the A-4’s of the Blue Angels, which I had had the good fortune to have seen in flight many moons ago. There are also a lot of nice shots of IDF A-4’s (both close-up and overall), which make for quite colorful modeling subjects.

Messerschmitt Bf-109F-4

Published: March 25th, 2013     
Messerschmitt Bf-109F-4
Reviewed by: Floyd S. Werner, Jr., IPMS# 26266
Scale: 1/48
Company: Zvezda

The arrival of the Zvezda Bf-109F-4 has been highly anticipated by this modeler.  Having built the Bf-109F-2, I was excited about the possibilities.  Packaged in an extremely sturdy cardboard locking-lid box, the kit features a beautiful painting of a JG54 aircraft in combat.  This is just an exciting beginning to the model.

Inside the cardboard box, you are treated to three large light grey sprues, two smaller light grey ones, and a sprue of clear parts.  There are over 200 parts and they are beautifully rendered, although my lower wings were slightly warped.  This would be no big deal, as the upper wings would take care of the warp.  The detail is gorgeous and perfectly rendered with no flash anywhere.  You get parts for the F-4 and F-4/Trop.  A relatively complete engine is included, and you’ll have to use most of it regardless if you have the engine cowlings open or not.

Replacement British Naval Gunbarrels, 16", 6", and 4.7"

Published: March 24th, 2013     
Replacement British Naval Gunbarrels, 16", 6", and 4.7"
Reviewed by: Ron Bell, IPMS# 12907
Scale: 1/700
Company: Master Model

  • 16" - SM-700-033, $7.00 (9 barrels)
  • 6" - SM-700-034, $5.00 (12 barrels)
  • 4.7" - SM-700-035, $4.50 (16 barrels)

Master Models is a company in Poland that must employ elves, incredibly small tool and die makers, and/or people with exceptional eyesight. They make replacement gun barrels for aircraft and ship models out of brass, and some of these are incredibly small and all are exquisitely detailed. The subjects of this review were selected because they would enable a modeler to replace all the main weapon gun barrels on either a 1/700 HMS Nelson or Rodney. The 16" were only used on these ships, but the 6" and 4.7" could also be used on other Royal Navy ships with these weapons. For example, since 16 4.7" barrels come in a packet, you could replace all the main guns on up to 4 destroyers, depending on the class of the ships. Let me be clear, each caliber barrel packet is a separate item and is priced as such. This is NOT a set of all three types of barrels. It was just easier to review all three at once.

Mark IV vs. A7V Villers-Bretonneux 1918

Published: March 23rd, 2013     
Mark IV vs. A7V  Villers-Bretonneux 1918
Author: David R. Higgins
Reviewed by: Howie Belkin, IPMS# 16
Company: Osprey Publishing

This volume of the Osprey Duel series follows the series format, comparing two combatant tanks against each other, and in this case focusing on the occasion of the first tank vs. tank battle in history that occurred on April 24, 1918.  True to the format, rather than simply describe that historic battle, the author describes and compares both vehicles and the events that both led up to and followed the battle.  In drawing perspective, Mr. Higgins reminds us that the Industrial Revolution had already altered warfare into an unimagined horror only writers of a new, ever popular genre, Science Fiction, dared dream.  The Gatling gun already had decades of warfare by the time the Great War began in 1914, and had become obsolete then by the improvements of several other manufacturers including Maxim, Vickers, and Lewis.  Machine guns turned the war into a grinding stalemate of attrition that baffled commanders on both sides.  Digging in left scars of the deathly stale stench of trenches that stretched from the Swiss border to the North Sea, where progress of inches cost thousands of lives.

L1500S German 1.5t 4x2 Cargo Truck

Published: March 23rd, 2013     
L1500S German 1.5t 4x2 Cargo Truck
Reviewed by: Fred Wilms, IPMS# 42113
Scale: 1/35
Company: MiniArt

Items in the box

The model is made of injection molded plastic, gray in color. The instructions were made up in book form printed both sides. Clear plastic parts were also included, along with two small sheets of photo etch details (brass material).

Soviet T-26 Light Infantry Tank Model 1931

Published: March 23rd, 2013     
Soviet T-26 Light Infantry Tank Model 1931
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Scale: 1/35
Company: Hobby Boss

History Brief

The T-26 tank was a Soviet light infantry tank, and was a development of the British Vickers 6-ton tank. Many consider it to be one of the most successful tank designs of the 1930’s. With more than 11,000 made, it was the most produced tank of its period.

The T-26 Served in many conflicts of the 1930’s and was used during World War 2. The tank served with the armies of Turkey, China, and Spain. In addition, the Finnish, German, Romanian, and Hungarian armies used captured T-26s.

The Product

The kit is 100% all-new tooling and consists of over 988 parts. It comes packaged in a very sturdy corrugated box featuring an interesting illustration of T-26s parading across a stream. The bulk of the plastic is molded in dark green while the elaborate track system comes in a neutral brown. The kit also included a comprehensive 30-piece photo etch set. Hobby Boss offers different radiator and turret options. Other items included are well-illustrated instructions and a small decal sheet. Lastly, there is a double-sided multi-view color plate featuring the two decal options.

Bf-109E-1 Weekend Edition

Published: March 23rd, 2013     
Bf-109E-1 Weekend Edition
Reviewed by: Tracy Palmer, IPMS# 39188
Scale: 1/48
Company: Eduard

This aircraft need little introduction, being one of the two major fighters of the German air force in World War 2.  The Bf-109E-1 was the first of the Emil versions and lead to the F through K versions.  The Emil was also the basis for the ill-fated carrier fighter for the Graf Zeppelin.

Eastern Front (Part 1)

Published: March 22nd, 2013     
Eastern Front (Part 1)
Author: Stanislaw Jablonski & Jacek Pasieczny
Reviewed by: Roger Rasor, IPMS# 34117
Company: Kagero Publishing

Model builders of military vehicles and aircraft have come to rely on Kagero Publications for well-researched reference books.  Their Topcolors series provides builders with a pairing of detailed color profiles of specific military vehicles or aircraft in a softcover book packaged with decals needed to reproduce the subjects covered within the publication.  Topcolors 12 Eastern Front (Part 1) focuses on the camouflage and markings of (drum roll please…) forty-four different military vehicles that the Polish People’s Army used on the Eastern Front from 1943 to 1945.  This 26-page all color book is presented in a larger (landscape) format than most previous Topcolors books and, because of the number of subjects that are covered, it comes with a clear sleeve containing two large-size decal sheets.  The sheets are filled with everything that will be needed to replicate the markings of any of these subjects in all three major AFV scales: 1/72, 1/48, and 1/35.  One sheet provides the markings in 1/72 and 1/48 scales, and the second sheet provides the markings in 1/32scale.  The decals are well printed in opaque colors on