Kits

Reviews of scale model kits.

Jonny Quest: The Dragonfly

Published: January 4th, 2015     
Jonny Quest: The Dragonfly
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Scale: Undetermined
Company: Moebius Models

History Brief

The Adventures of Jonny Quest was produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions for Screen Gems. An animated television series, it ran on ABC in prime time on Friday nights for one season from 1964 to 1965.  A true original for the 1960s, it was created and designed by comic-book artist Doug Wildey and was inspired by American radio serials, American action-adventure comics and American science fiction genre. Ground breaking for it’s time it featured unmatched realistic art, interesting characters, and a better story line than any previous cartoon seen on television.

The Quest Labs Supersonic Suborbital Aircraft known as The Dragonfly is the iconic Jonny Quest aircraft featured in the episode introductions. It was also featured in some of the best episodes.

The Product

The Quest Labs Supersonic Suborbital Dragonfly is a 12 inch long desk top model with a base reminiscent of the old Aurora kits and comes well packed

‘29 Ford Street Rod Blue Bandito

Published: January 3rd, 2015     
‘29 Ford Street Rod Blue Bandito
Reviewed by: Gordy Miller, IPMS# 49574
Scale: 1/24
Company: Revell-Monogram

The Revell/Monogram 1/24th scale kit is a rerelease of a previously available kit known as “The Blue Beetle“. I am not sure of the exact offerings provided in that earlier release of this model but the version that I’m reviewing here was quite impressive . The box art only shows the build up on the side and the drawn box art on the front of the box outfitted in “The Blue Beetle” version. The only way I’ve seen this release come in. So, I was thrilled to open the kit up and see parts for both the pictured version as well as the roadster adaptation listed for these separate parts throughout the very well detailed instruction sheet which includes descriptions of all pieces by their part number and the name of the part. The majority of the parts come molded in a light blue with one white sprig of pieces molded in white which includes snap in white walls and a convertible top. Among the added pieces are two different drive train choices  that consist of two separate rear end assemblies.

Toyota AB Phaeton

Published: December 31st, 2014     
Toyota AB Phaeton
Reviewed by: David Wrinkle, IPMS# 45869
Scale: 1:35
Company: Tamiya

The AB was a soft-top variant of the Model AA, and inherited features such as the 3.4-liter inline-6 engine and live axle leaf spring front/rear suspension. It differed from the AA in its folding cloth roof, dedicated windshield design, and front-hinged door layout. To make room for the new folding auxiliary seats, the rear seat bank was moved somewhat further back. Of the 353 produced by 1938, the majority were eventually sent to the military and never made it into the hands of the public as was originally intended.

Shopping Cart

Published: December 31st, 2014     
Shopping Cart
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1/72
Company: Hauler

There’s not a lot of military history for this kit.  It’s a pretty standard European-style shopping cart.  I have pushed a bunch of these around stores in Italy when I was TDY at Vincenza.  From my experience working at Kroger’s I know that the American version has a different wheel setup and a shelf below the main basket. 

This kit is a marvelously done piece of photoetch.  Everything except the push bar, which is done in resin, is on one fret.  The basket is one piece with the legs attached.  The wheels and axle supports are separate pieces, and there’s a chain which attaches to the push bar.  I remember that this chain hooks into a dispenser outside the store, and you put a coin in the dispenser to get your cart.  When you’re done, return the cart, and you get your coin back.  That’s one way for the store to make sure you don’t leave the cart out there in the parking lot.  And if you do, some kid would probably take it back to get the coin.

Panzerhaubitze 2000 German Self-Propelled Howitzer

Published: December 31st, 2014     
Panzerhaubitze 2000 German Self-Propelled Howitzer
Reviewed by: Robert Head, IPMS# 48922
Scale: 1/35
Company: Meng Models

The Panzerhaubitze 2000 is one of the most advanced self-propelled howitzers in the world. The vehicle utilizes a large number of chassis parts of Leopard 1 MBT and Leopard 2 MBT. It is powered by the MTU MT881 engine which provides excellent mobility and is armed with a Rheinmetall 155mm L52 gun with an advanced sight and fire-control system. 60 rounds are stored vertically on board in a horseshoe arrangement. Its automatic shell-loading system has realized automatic management of all ammunition. This vehicle entered German Army service in 1998, and then into armies of Italy, the Netherlands and Greece. The Croatian Armed Forces (COA) recently completed a purchase agreement for 12 former Bundeswehr vehicles to fulfil their NATO requirement.

The kit is composed of nine sprues molded in green and 6 sprues of track links and pads molded in black, a small sprue of clear parts, two small frets of photo etch, a piece of rope for the tow cable, upper and a lower hull along with a metal barrel.

Marking Options

The decal sheet provides marking options for five Panzerhabitze’s:

Hot Rod Hydro

Published: December 31st, 2014     
Hot Rod Hydro
Reviewed by: Jim Stepanek, IPMS# 48016
Scale: 1/25
Company: Revell, Inc.

Revell hit a real winner with the Hot Rod Hydro kit.  Very little flash and the parts fit very well.

Engine: The Hemi engine goes together extremely well.  I opted to pull a dual quad intake manifold from the parts bin rather than use the 6 carb set-up in the kit.

Trailer: The trailer was slightly warped so I used very warm water to try and straighten it out.  Nicely detailed, but it lacks lights.  Parts bin came in handy.

Interior: Interior panels are very well engraved.  Getting the side panels glued in gave me a few minutes of frustration because of the tight fit.  Once in though, the panels look real nice.

Body: The body of the boat comes in 2 halves that need to glued together and then some rails are installed to mount the engine and interior on later.  Rather than using the excellent decals provided, I decided to use HOK limetime pearl with HOK Sherwood pearl accents.  The hood was treated with water spots and then the whole boat was sprayed with Nason 2K clear.  After drying the body was sanded, polished, and waxed.

Panzerfaust with Box

Published: December 30th, 2014     
Panzerfaust with Box
Reviewed by: Eric Christianson, IPMS# 42218
Scale: 1/35
Company: Hauler

The Panzerfaust ("armor fist" or "tank fist") was an inexpensive, single shot, recoilless German anti-tank weapon of World War II.  It consisted of a small, disposable preloaded launch tube firing a high explosive anti-tank warhead, and was operated by a single soldier.  The Panzerfaust was in service from 1942 until the end of the war.

Hauler, a small company out of Czechoslovakia, continues to add to its list of quality aftermarket and modeling supply products; this time with a package of Panzerfaust weapons complete with two cargo boxes in 1/35th scale.

The package contains a small PE sheet, a small sheet of decals, a sheet of instructions and a single baggie containing all the resin parts, including eight Panzerfausts.  My sample arrived with one of the two delicate ‘rope’ handles broken off of each of the two boxes.

The resin boxes, the box lids, and the interior Panzerfaust stands are very, very thin and care must be taken in separating them from their thin resin blocks.  The Panzerfaust weapons themselves are attached to their resin blocks at the ‘business end’, simplifying painting and finishing.

Panzerbeobachtungswagen III Ausf.F Sd.Kfz.143

Published: December 29th, 2014     
Panzerbeobachtungswagen III Ausf.F Sd.Kfz.143
Reviewed by: Tom Moon, IPMS# 43192
Scale: 1/35
Company: Dragon Models

This is a multimedia kit comprised of 470+ styrene parts on 24 sprues, DS tracks, one photo-etched fret, decals and the set of instructions that need to be reviewed very carefully before gluing any parts together. The DS tracks are misshaped with the guide horns flattened, there is substantial flash on the side, and the locating holes to glue the ends together do not line up with the pins on the other end. I tried to salvage these by using the Hobby Trax forms to straighten the guide horns. Generally I was successful, but if your model is to be shown in a contest, I suggest that you replace the tracks with individual links (Magic Tracks or Fruil).

Most Dragon models today are a collection of old sprues with additional new sprues added to create a new variant. Dragon has done so with this kit, and you will have some sprues using the same letter but are called out on the instructions with a separate color (see sprues blue A & B).

F-35C "Lightning II"

Published: December 28th, 2014     
F-35C "Lightning II"
Reviewed by: Scott Hollingshead, IPMS# 34786
Scale: 1/48
Company: Kitty Hawk

As I write this review, the real F-35C aircraft has recently been performing carrier qualification testing with the US Navy aboard the USS Nimitz (CVN-68), which lasted about two weeks.  The C-variant is the last release of the F-35 series following the A-variant that will be flown by the US Air Force and foreign nations purchasing a land-based plane, and the B-model, meant for Short Take-Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) capabilities required by the US Marine Corps and a few other nations.  The F-35C is the navalized version of the plane, which has stronger landing gear, longer wings with hinged tips (for storage onboard aircraft carriers), a tailhook, and the largest internal fuel stores of the three versions.  If you follow any articles about the F-35, you already know that it is one of the most controversial aircraft ever produced for the United States, and some initial foreign interests have dried up due to early production issues.

U.S. M1 57mm Anti-Tank Gun on M2 Carriage (Late Version)

Published: December 28th, 2014     
U.S. M1 57mm Anti-Tank Gun on M2 Carriage (Late Version)
Reviewed by: Dave Koukol, IPMS# 46287
Scale: 1/35
Company: Riich Models

Background

As the United States found itself drawn into World War II, it was clear to Army commanders from the outset that their standard 37mm anti-tank guns were obsolete in the face of German armor.  Pressed for time to field a suitable replacement, the British 6 pounder was adapted to the needs of the US Army.  Although considered too heavy by many elements of the US Army, and limited to primarily armor-piercing ammunition, the M1 eventually became the standard anti-tank gun of American infantry divisions by 1944.  The type saw action with American, British, Russian, and Free French forces by the end of WWII, and was phased out in the early 1950’s, although some smaller armies still have examples still in service.