Kits

Reviews of scale model kits.

SS Tiger Tank Commander 1944-45

Published: March 2nd, 2011     
SS Tiger Tank Commander 1944-45
Reviewed by: Floyd S. Werner, Jr., IPMS# 26266
Scale: 1/35
Company: Ultracast

With the new Dragon Tiger tanks on the market, more people than ever are building tanks. I'm one of them. Armor, more so than aircraft, lends itself to figures. Enter Ultracast with their line of resin figures.

Molded in light cream bubble free resin, this figure features two heads, one with a headset and one without. The headset head has a nice action pose of the commander yelling. The neck is nicely rounded so you can articulate the head as you want, up, down, and left or right, excellent flexibility.

You also get two left and three right arms so you can pick and choose how you want your figure to look. The arms are keyed with square pegs so you can alter the look of the parts easily. Amazingly the thumbs are not grouped with the others and articulated and perfectly molded.

The body has a natural lean to the side for posing it inside the turret. Unlike some figures this one is a complete body. It is also a single piece of resin with only tiny pour blocks at the bottom of the feet so there is virtually no cleanup. Amazing casting. The P-38 holster is particularly well done.

Lockheed F-80 Shooting Star

Published: February 28th, 2011     
Lockheed F-80 Shooting Star
Reviewed by: Chris Smith, IPMS# 39182
Scale: 1/48
Company: Revell, Inc.

History

Yet another classic design from Kelly Johnson, the Lockheed F-80 was America's first practical, jet powered fighter. I say practical because the real "first U.S. jet was the Bell P-59 which was really a transition trainer for new jet pilots, not a viable combat aircraft. The first "Shooting Star," was produced in 141 days and flew on Jan 8, 1944. Teething issues included fuel consumption levels higher than anticipated (a common problem of early jet engines) which required hanging extra tanks under the wings. Armed with 6x 50 cal. machine guns and a stable flight profile, the F-80 proved its worth in the Korean conflict primarily as a ground support aircraft.

USS Chevalier (DD-805)

Published: February 26th, 2011     
USS Chevalier (DD-805)
Reviewed by: Rick Bellanger, IPMS# 35220
Scale: 1/350
Company: Dragon Models

History:        (taken from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

The USS Chevalier was a Gearing Class Destroyer, the second ship to be named after Lcdr. Godfrey De Chevalier (1889-1922), a pioneer of Naval Aviation. She was launched 29 October 1944 at Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine. She was commissioned 9 January 1945 with Cdr. F. Wolsieffer in Command.

She cleared her trials in June 1945 and reached Pearl Harbor on 9 July 1945. On the 24th she sailed to join the bombardment of Wake Island which occurred on 1 August 1945. Arriving in Eniwetok the next day she joined Task Force 38 (TF38). She sailed the next day for Honshu and arrived on 18 Aug 1945. TF38 entered Tokyo Bay on 26 Aug 1945 to take part in the Surrender of Japan and the end of WWII.

7.5cm PaK 40/4 RSO

Published: February 26th, 2011     
7.5cm PaK 40/4 RSO
Reviewed by: Michael Novosad, IPMS# 36721
Scale: 1/35
Company: Dragon Models

History and Performance

In the summer of 1943 a proposal was offered by Steyr Werke to the Ordnance Department for the mounting of a PaK 40/4 on a RSO chassis as a small self-propelled anti-tank weapon. 60 machines we converted for testing. Combat trials on the East Front began in early January 1944.

The Kit

The kit is packaged in Dragon current sturdy box, with a color image on the front and a montage of features on the box bottom and sides. The box top shows that over 460 Parts are included. There are eleven sprues, molded in the familiar grey plastic with crisp detail. The hull and chassis front are molded separately.

Instructions - The instructions are typical Dragon, with eight fold-out pages. There are a total of 21 construction Steps, with numerous subassemblies noted. Very busy for such a small kit, but it gets one's attention. There are no unused Parts indicated.

Hayabusa Muses-C

Published: February 26th, 2011     
Hayabusa Muses-C
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Scale: 1/32
Company: Aoshima

A Brief History

For seven years, 1 month and 4 days, Hayabusa (translated as Peregrine Falcon) traveled to and from the asteroid, 25143 Itokawa. Returning to Earth, the Hayabusa, or more precisely, that portion of the spacecraft designed for re-entry and landing on Earth, landed near Woomera, Australia. Hayabusa returned particles of the asteroid for study, resulting in a significant advance in our knowledge of asteroids and, at the same time, setting a high standard for future flights of this nature.

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