Kits

Reviews of scale model kits.

IL-2M & Panther D - Two-in-One Kit

Published: December 22nd, 2016     
IL-2M & Panther D - Two-in-One Kit
Reviewed by: Dave Koukol, IPMS# 46287
Scale: 1/72
Company: Academy

Background

Mortal rivals, the Soviet Il-2m Sturmovik and German Panther Ausf. D represent pinnacles of combat capability for their respective nations in the 1944 timeframe. Often eclipsed by the mighty Tiger tank, the Panther proved to be an extremely lethal and far more maneuverable and reliable little brother to the larger and more finicky Tiger – truly one of the best all-round tanks of World War II. To stop the Panther and other German armor on the Eastern Front, the Soviets relied on the tank-busting Il-2m Sturmovik. The heavily-armed and armored IL-2 family of close air support aircraft proved a reliable and effective gun platform for dispatching the relentless waves of German armor.

The Kit

Academy draws from 2 externally engineered subjects this time – Accurate Miniatures’ Il-2m and Zvezda’s Panther D – to offer a clever boxing of historical combat rivals.

M40 U.S. Self-Propelled 155mm Gun (with Aftermarket Gun Barrel)

Published: December 20th, 2016     
M40 U.S. Self-Propelled 155mm Gun (with Aftermarket Gun Barrel)
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/35
Company: Tamiya

Background

The 155mm Gun Motor Carriage M40, to give it it’s proper name, mated the M1 155mm field gun with the proven chassis of the M4 Sherman with HVSS suspension, widening and lengthening the M4A3 Sherman chassis in the process. Built by the Pressed Steel Car Company, 311 vehicles were built to replace the M12 GMC in US service. One T83 (prototype of the M40) arrived in Europe in 1945 in time to see action in WW2. However, it was during the Korean War of 1950 – 53 that the M40 saw extensive combat operations. The only other user of the M40 was the British Army, which operated it under the name “M40 Cardinal”. The M40 fired a 95 pound shell to a range of 14 miles. It was operated by a crew of 8.

Panther Ausf. D V2 Versuchsserie

Published: December 20th, 2016     
Panther Ausf. D V2 Versuchsserie
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/35
Company: Dragon Models

So back in April 2016, I reviewed what was purported to be an accurate scale model of the Panther tank prototype, “Panther Ausf. D V2”, then recently released by Dragon Models as kit 6822 in their 1/35th scale military vehicle range. The original review can be found here.

At the time I said that the model appeared accurate based on the scale plans found in the publication Panzer Tracts 5-1. The Panzer Tracts publications have a great reputation for the historical information contained therein, and also for the accuracy of their scale drawings. Yet here we have a NEW “Panzer Ausf. D V2” prototype kit, AGAIN from Dragon Models, and yet this kit contains a number of new parts for the rear end of the vehicle, so what gives??!!

B-17 Wing Intake Upgrade

Published: December 20th, 2016     
B-17 Wing Intake Upgrade
Reviewed by: Timothy Gidcumb, IPMS# 40925
Scale: 1/48
Company: RESIN2 Detail

The Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress is a four-engine heavy bomber developed in the 1930s for the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC). The B-17 was primarily employed by the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) in the daylight strategic bombing campaign of World War II against German industrial and military targets. The United States Eighth Air Force, based at many airfields in central and southern England, and the Fifteenth Air Force, based in Italy, complemented the RAF Bomber Command's nighttime area bombing in the Combined Bomber Offensive to help secure air superiority over the cities, factories and battlefields of Western Europe in preparation for the invasion of France in 1944. The B-17 also participated to a lesser extent in the War in the Pacific, early in World War II, where it conducted raids against Japanese shipping and airfields.

McDonnell Douglas F-4J Phantom II, Fuselage and Wing Assembly, Part 2

Published: December 20th, 2016     
McDonnell Douglas F-4J Phantom II, Fuselage and Wing Assembly, Part 2
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: 1/48
Company: Zoukei-Mura

In Part 1, We worked through the cockpit and assembly of the basic fuselage. In Part 2, we’ll get the wings done and the fuselage finished and button up things for its first set of paint.

The fuselage includes several pieces indicating future variants of the Phantom. The rudder top cap is a separate piece and glues easily in place. Make sure your alignment is straight with the rest of the rudder on this part. There are two different rudder caps so make sure you select the correct one. The front radome is added and with a light sanding fits wonderfully into place. It is keyed but make sure it is in the correct orientation. If not, it will look really weird. Lastly, the top spine of the fuselage can be added. Not the need to add a hole for an antenna. This part took a light sanding and fit well.