Details

Reviews of scale model detail sets.

RA-5C Vigilante Landing Gear

Published: June 24th, 2014     
RA-5C Vigilante Landing Gear
Reviewed by: Matthew Cottrell, IPMS# 48174
Scale: 1/72
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions

Scale Aircraft Conversions has released a set of white metal replacement landing gear for Trumpeter’s 1/72 RA-5C, the Vietnam-era nuclear bomber turned reconnaissance aircraft.  SAC’s conversion set includes four parts: the nose gear strut, a separate nose gear torque link, and the two main landing gear struts.

The SAC nose gear strut is cast in two pieces, separating the torque link from the main strut. This should aid in painting the moving portion of the oleo strut. The casting is very nice, although the surface texture (on all of the struts) is slightly grainier than the kit part, but should aid in paint adhesion.  The torque link and strut will both need a bit of very minor cleanup. As with the kit strut, a clear landing light and a small bit of equipment (a brake booster or steering pump?) will need to be attached to the strut.  SAC’s replacement retains the mounting holes for these parts.  The strut’s keyed mounting tab fit easily and snugly into its receiver on the cockpit floor.

North American RA-5C Vigilante Pitot Tube and AOA Probe

Published: June 24th, 2014     
North American RA-5C Vigilante Pitot Tube and AOA Probe
Reviewed by: Matthew Cottrell, IPMS# 48174
Scale: 1/72
Company: Master Model

Master Model, maker of fantastic turned-metal details, has released a new set of 1/72 probes for the RA-5C Vigilante. The Vietnam-era RA-5C, a supersonic nuclear bomber turned capable reconnaissance aircraft, features a prominent pitot tube with multiple diameter changes along its length. Master’s set includes both the complicated pitot tube and an AOA (angle of attack) probe. The set can be used on any 1/72 RA-5C kit, and should be an outstanding upgrade. In this review, I’ve compared the parts to the Trumpeter kit.

N1K2-J Shiden-Kai Gun Barrels for Hasegawa Kits

Published: June 23rd, 2014     
N1K2-J Shiden-Kai Gun Barrels for Hasegawa Kits
Reviewed by: Paul Mahoney, IPMS# 8943
Scale: 1/48
Company: Quickboost

Aires is constantly adding to the Quickboost line, and here is one of the latest.

QB 48-602 are gun barrels designed to be used with Hasegawa’s 1/48 N1K2-J.  As with other Quickboost products, these are meant to be drop-fit replacements for kit parts.  The molding on this resin set was extremely crisp.

In comparing these to the kit items they are designed to replace, I found a few key differences.  First, and probably the main reason one would want this set, the tips of the QB set are open.  Hasegawa’s barrels are sadly molded flush across, with no opening.  While in general I am fine to create an opening with the tip of my Xacto and a small drill on ‘standard’ gun barrels, the flared muzzle on these makes that a bit more challenging of an undertaking.  So I will happily be using the QB ones instead.  Second, the QB barrels just have a much less ‘clunky’ look to them.  A quick glance at the photos should help demonstrate that. 

SB2C Undercarriage Doors

Published: June 19th, 2014     
SB2C Undercarriage Doors
Reviewed by: Steve Collins, IPMS# 33811
Scale: 1/72
Company: Quickboost

This Quickboost set is a direct replacement for the undercarriage doors for the Academy SB2C kit. They are almost identical to the kit parts, but have the push pin marks that are present on the kit parts taken care of. Due to the framework on the inside of the doors, the pin marks can be difficult to eradicate. Quickboost has done this delicate work for you. Basically, it comes down to the question: is the time and effort it would take you to fill and sand away the push pin marks without damaging the framework worth $6.50? If it is, this set is certainly recommended!

Thanks go to Aires Hobby Models for supplying the parts and to IPMS/USA for allowing me to review them.

SB2C Helldiver Wheel Bay

Published: June 19th, 2014     
SB2C Helldiver Wheel Bay
Reviewed by: Steve Collins, IPMS# 33811
Scale: 1/72
Company: Aires Hobby Models

This Aires accessory wheel bay set is made for the Academy SB2C-4 kit. As you can see from the photos, the kit’s molded-in wheel bay details are found on both the top and bottom halves of the wing. The resin replacement bays are single pieces with additional detail inside each bay. The instructions will have you remove the molded-in details on each upper and lower wing and replace them with a one-piece resin bay. This will prevent any seams from showing inside the wheel well.

You also get replacement pieces for the gun tubes that go through the outboard end of the wheel wells as well as a retraction rod for the landing gear. All of the parts are nicely cast in Aires’ customary medium grey resin; they are well molded and bubble free. This set is certainly recommended.

Thanks go to Aires for providing the parts and to IPMS/USA for allowing me to review them.

TSR-2 Landing Gear

Published: June 19th, 2014     
TSR-2 Landing Gear
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1/144
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions

The Aircraft

The TSR-2 has now been kitted in three scales: 1/48, 1/72, and 1/144. Because of space limitations, I built the 1/144 model. Only one TSR-2 ever flew, and the two in museums are prototypes. What if the RAF had managed to salvage the program and this marvelous looking piece of hardware actually went into full production? RAF TSR-2s could have seen action in the Cold War, the Falklands, Bosnia/Kosovo, the Gulf War(s), Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya! The Pit Road kit comes with two of these “what if” schemes, and due to the popularity of the kit, several decal makers have produced sheets for “what if” TSRs. Of course I had to do a different one.

The Scale Aircraft Conversions Set

The SAC set for the TSR-2 consists of seven parts, all in white metal. There is a nose gear leg, two main gear legs, oleo scissors, and bogies for the main wheels (the kit’s wheels are used). These replacement parts closely match the Pit Road parts.

BAC/English Electric Lightning Pitot Tube

Published: June 19th, 2014     
BAC/English Electric Lightning Pitot Tube
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/72
Company: Master Model

The firm Master Model, from Poland, produces a very wide range of exquisite turned-brass accessories for the aircraft, ship, and armor modeler. Their products include Pitot tubes, machine gun and cannon barrels, shells, and spent shell casings in almost every scale you can think of from 1/700 scale for ship models to 1/24 scale for aircraft models.

The pitot tube under review today came in a simple card-backed package with the part contained in a plastic sleeve. It is listed for “all kits” of the BAC/EE Lightning in 1/72 scale. This includes the most recently released gem from Airfix, the recent Trumpeter releases, and kits dating all the way back to the Frog issues of this aircraft.

I compared the Master Model pitot tube to the stock version contained within the recently released Airfix Lightning. The brass part is perfectly straight, more in scale, and is missing the mold-seam line that needs to be removed from the plastic kit part. It is also made of a stronger material, brass, than the plastic part.

Dassault Mirage III/5 Pitot Tube

Published: June 18th, 2014     
Dassault Mirage III/5 Pitot Tube
Reviewed by: Steve Collins, IPMS# 33811
Scale: 1/72
Company: Master Model

This is one of a prolific series of very fine brass replacements for pitot tubes and gun barrels from Master Model Poland.  They do ranges in 1/24, 1/32, 1/35, 1/48 and 1/72 for aircraft as well as guns in all the major scales for ships and a few guns in 1/35 for our armor-building friends.  They are all very well made, being very petite and usually more in scale than their plastic counterparts.  And, once installed, they’re much harder to accidentally break off than plastic.  Yes, some of them are sharp enough puncture the less than vigilant.  Ask me how I know.

This pitot was made to replace the pitot in any Mirage III or Mirage 5 kit.  In the included pictures, I compare the brass pitot to the plastic one from the Heller Mirage IIIE/R/5BA kit as well as the Mirage IIICJ from AML.  As you can see, it is much finer, with a better shape and scale thickness than that included with either kit.  It is a direct replacement for the kit part, with instructions to ‘Drill proper hole if necessary’ with a .5mm bit.  That is slightly smaller than a number 76 drill bit.

F-4E Phantom II Cockpit Set

Published: June 18th, 2014     
F-4E Phantom II Cockpit Set
Reviewed by: Steve Collins, IPMS# 33811
Scale: 1/72
Company: Aires Hobby Models

The Aires F-4E cockpit set is typical of most of their cockpits.  The set is made up of resin, photoetch, and an acetate sheet.  Cast in a medium grey resin, the detail is very sharp and very complete.  Included in resin in the set are the cockpit tub with both side consoles and the rear bulkhead of each pit molded in, side panels for each side that have detail for both pits, the rear instrument panel with detail of the back side of the instruments on the upper half of the panel, the front instrument panel cast in place with the glare shield and radar reflector glass, two seats without belts, and a sprue with both control sticks, a control grip for the radar, the radar display unit for the back pit, the scope hood for the radar, throttles for both pits, and an insert for the canopy bow between the seats.

IL-10 Oil Radiator

Published: June 7th, 2014     
IL-10 Oil Radiator
Reviewed by: Bill Kluge, IPMS# 45849
Scale: 1/48
Company: Quickboost

The Special Hobby IL-10 is one of those relatively obscure kits that one would never think you’d find many after marked parts for. While the kit has its own particular set of build issues, it does come with a fairly complete package of resin detail parts. The level of detail on those parts varies widely, and the oil radiator is a prime candidate for substitution with something better.

As with everything that I’ve received from Quickboost, their replacement IL-10 oil radiator is highly detailed and crisply molded with no flash or surface imperfections anywhere to be found. The screen mesh that makes up most of the surface of the radiator is nicely represented; it’s a far cry better than the smooth surface of the kit’s resin radiator part. The radiator can be prominently seen on the aircraft‘s belly, so this new part enhances the realism factor considerably.

There are several other parts of the IL-10 kit that could benefit from the Quickboost treatment. Hopefully they’ll see this as an opportunity to continue to upgrade a deserving subject.