Kits

Reviews of scale model kits.

Su-35 Flanker 'Prototype'

Published: July 16th, 2015     
Su-35 Flanker 'Prototype'
Reviewed by: Tom DeMichael, IPMS# 49640
Scale: 1/72
Company: Hasegawa

First shown to the public in 2007 the Su-35 has been under development since 2005. The Russians have classified the Su-35 as a “fourth ++ generation” fighter. Essentially the Su-35 is an upgraded version of the Su-27. One of the most noticeable upgrades being the Su-35 having thrust vectoring nozzles.

There are roughly 299 parts in the kit however some of them aren’t used. There are 15 total sprues, one of which is a stand for the model, and there are 3 duplicate sprues. The decals provided allow making either the 901 or 902 prototype version plane. There are a lot of options selecting armament for the plane, which makes that step fun. This is a re-boxed kit with a change of decals so there isn’t a major upgrade in any of the tooling. The fuselage comes in two halves and they fit together really nicely. The panel lines are scribed and some will need to be put back in when you sand down edges, but most of it looks deep enough that it shouldn’t be too much of an issue.

1953 Corvette

Published: July 15th, 2015     
1953 Corvette
Reviewed by: Gordy Miller, IPMS# 49574
Scale: 1:25
Company: Round 2

The first Corvette made it's debut in New York City's Waldorf Historia Hotel at the 1953 Motorama, a traveling showcase of the days' automotive industry's newest styles. The '53 Corvette was designed by GM legendary designer, Harley Earl. For it's debut, the Corvette was made available in only a single color, white. Also, it had only a red interior with a black folding top. I did not know this until reading up the 1953 Corvette. And much to the chagrin of hot rodding enthusiasts, it also came with a V6! There were only 300 of these produced, as they were assembled in a single plant in Flint, Michigan.

Halifax B III

Published: July 12th, 2015     
Halifax B III
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/72
Company: Airrfix

Thanks to Airfix for providing an excellent “blast from the past” for IPMS USA to review, and to IPMS leadership for providing it to me to review.

This kit first saw the light of day back in 1961; I remember seeing the advertisements in “Flying Review International”… Yes, that pretty well dates me as a ‘60’s child. So, now that you know the heritage, what can you learn from this review?

This kit is old technology. OK… The fit is not exemplary; in particular, the nacelles for inboard engines do not fit up to the wing. Same for just about all the clear parts; there were plenty of issues with the fit of them. But it’s a 1/72 Halifax BIII.

The rivets are not huge, but they are all over the model. If you want to remove them, be prepared to spend a lot of time sanding, etc., etc. It’s how things used to be. Bring wet/dry and get busy.

This kit is molded in the newer, softer gray plastic verses the old brittle, black plastic. MUCH easier to work with. See #2.

Details, are, as to be expected, not up to current standards. See #1.

53 Foot Smooth Side Trailer with Reefer

Published: July 10th, 2015     
53 Foot Smooth Side Trailer with Reefer
Reviewed by: Doug Cole, IPMS# 46605
Scale: 1:25
Company: Moebius Models

The Kit

This review covers the 53’ Smooth Side Trailer 1:25 Scale Moebius Model Kit #1303. A new release, this model should be readily available at most outlets. This is a complimentary version of the original corrugated side 1:25 scale trailer model with a reefer and roll-up rear door option. Moebius designates this as a Skill Level 3 kit for modelers 12 years and older. It is molded in white styrene with soft vinyl tires, chrome wheels, waterslide decals, and an extensive instruction manual. This kit features all the details of the real thing. There is a highly accurate undercarriage featuring cross-members with angle-braced landing gear and a tandem axle configuration. The instruction booklet is top notch with a centerfold for decal placement. The completed model is a whopping 26.5” long with the reefer option. Massive but simple, this detailed kit is the perfect compliment for your 1:25 scale tractor models.

US Army Driver

Published: July 10th, 2015     
US Army Driver
Reviewed by: Bill O’Malley, IPMS# 46473
Scale: 1:35
Company: L. Z. Models

This figure is part of L. Z. Models 1/35 D7 Bulldozer and Tractor Crew series. Other figures in the series include US Army Mechanic tuning engine, and US Army Mechanic cleaning track. L.Z. states that another civilian mechanic and a British driver figure will also be released. These figures are intended for use with the new dozers from L.Z. Models, Trumpeter, Commander Models, and the new series of MiniArt dozers. I recently built PlusModel’s US Grader, but he doesn’t fit without major surgery to his legs (see photo). The driver’s legs are too short for the Grader seat. I fit him into MiniArt’s dozer seat and he fits much better.

Mechatro WeGo Aka and Kiiro (2 Kits)

Published: July 10th, 2015     
Mechatro WeGo Aka and Kiiro (2 Kits)
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: 1:35
Company: Hasegawa USA

Mechatro WeGo robots are not as well known here as they are in Japan where the series has been a hit for a while now and their world continues to grow. Simply put, they are personal robots meant to carry children anywhere and everywhere. Here’s the detail from the web site:

“Direct from Japan’s Chubu Mechatronics, Mechatro WeGo mechatrobots have taken the world by storm! These innovative, child-sized transports are the world’s smallest mechatrobots, built for carrying kids to school, soccer practice – and everywhere else in between. Mechatrobots have made carpooling obsolete, leaving parents with more time to take care of everyday errands. The only thing mechatrobots are missing? An alarm that ensures the kids are home in time for dinner!”

Battlestar Galactica Viper Mark II (2 Pack)

Published: July 10th, 2015     
Battlestar Galactica Viper Mark II (2 Pack)
Reviewed by: Doug Cole, IPMS# 46605
Scale: 1/72
Company: Moebius Models

The Kit

This review covers the Battlestar Galactica Viper Mark II (2 Pack) 1:72 Scale Moebius Model Kit #957. A new release, this model should be readily available at most outlets. These are resized versions of the original 1:32 scale model. Moebius designates this as a Skill Level 3 kit for modelers 12 years and older.  It includes two main trees containing most of parts for each craft. It is molded in white styrene with a transparent canopy, display stand, waterslide decals and an extensive instruction manual.  

There are markings for different craft in the decal sheet. I have to give Moebius Models credit for releasing this model and to IPMS for providing the review sample.

Space Shuttle Discovery

Published: July 9th, 2015     
Space Shuttle Discovery
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1/144
Company: Dragon Models

The Space Shuttle (actual name “Space Transportation System) was a reusable manned low Earth orbit vehicle.  It consisted of the space plane which went into orbit and glided back to Earth, two Solid Rocket Boosters and the expendable fuel tank. 

Shuttles were operated by NASA from 1981 to 2011, flying a total of 135 missions. 

The missions ranged from launching satellites and interplanetary probes to delivering components for the International Space Station, and later delivering supplies and crew for the ISS.

There were originally 5 shuttles built, Enterprise, which had no orbital capability, Challenger, Columbia, Discovery and Atlantis.  After Challenger was destroyed, Endeavour was built. 

The Kit

Dragon’s kit of Discovery can be built as a “cutaway”, using the clear parts to show the interiors, or as a standard display model.  This model is also available in Dragon kit DRA 14705, which includes the 747 used to transport the shuttle from the landing area at Edwards AFB to the Kennedy Space Center.  

Boulton Paul Defiant Starter Set

Published: July 8th, 2015     
Boulton Paul Defiant Starter Set
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Company: Airfix

History Brief

The Boulton Paul Defiant Mk I, among RAF pilots it had the nickname "Daffy". It was a British interceptor aircraft that served with the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. They were designed and built by Boulton Paul Aircraft without any forward-firing guns, as a two-seat turret fighter, powered by a 1,030 hp (768 kW) Rolls-Royce Merlin III piston engine and 723 built. It was a contemporary of the Royal Navy's Blackburn Roc and the concept of a turret fighter, as it was developed in both aircraft, related directly to the successful First World War-era Bristol F.2 Fighter.

In service, the Defiant was reasonably effective as a bomber–destroyer but proved vulnerable to the Luftwaffe's Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters. Its lack of forward firepower was its major weakness in daytime combat and its true potential was found when it switched to nighttime operations. In the end, the Defiant found use in gunnery training, target towing, electronic countermeasures and air-sea rescue. The sole remaining Defiant is kept at the Hendon museum. 

F-4G Phantom II Wild Weasel

Published: July 7th, 2015     
F-4G Phantom II Wild Weasel
Reviewed by: Tom Pope, IPMS# 47261
Scale: 1:32
Company: Revell, Inc.

Introduction

Since late in the Korean war, into the Vietnam War, and even more importantly today, one of the most important missions within the United States Air Force and Navy is the suppression of enemy air defense systems. Blinding the enemy air defenses was and still is crucial to clearing the road for massive bombing campaigns and air superiority. In the United States Air Force, this mission went to a group aptly named the wild weasels. Much like a weasel, the job of these aircraft is to stick their head up and get the enemy air defense systems to see and lock their radar on the aircraft. When the electronic systems in the weasel aircraft indicate the enemy is locked on you, you would launch your anti-radiation missile to ride the enemy radar beam back to the antenna it was broadcasting from. Once in proximity of the antenna, the missile would detonate releasing thousands of bits of steel shrapnel, shredding the enemy radar antenna thus blinding the enemy. In the Vietnam War, the USAF wild weasel mission went to the F-105 Thunderchief. After the F-105s retired and through the first Gulf War, the wild weasel role went to the F-4G.