Kits

Reviews of scale model kits.

T-54-3 Soviet Medium Tank Mod 1951 Interior Kit

Published: February 4th, 2018     
T-54-3 Soviet Medium Tank Mod 1951 Interior Kit
Reviewed by: Michael Novasad, IPMS# 36721
Scale: 1/35
Company: MiniArt

Brief History

The T-54 and T-55 tanks are a series of Soviet main battle tanks introduced in the years following the Second World War. The first T-54 prototype was completed at Nizhny Tagil by the end of 1945. Initial production ramp up settled for 1947 at Nizhny Tagil, and 1948 for Kharkov were halted and curtailed as many problems were uncovered; the T-34-85 still accounted for 88 percent of production through the 50's. The T-54 eventually became the main tank for armoured units of the Soviet Army, armies of the Warsaw Pact countries, and many others. T-54s and T-55s have been involved in many of the world's armed conflicts since the later part of the 20th century.

The T-54/55 series eventually became the most-produced tank in military history. Estimated production numbers for the series range from 86,000 to 100,000. They were replaced by the T-62, T-64, T-72, -80, T-90 and soon, T-14 tanks in the Soviet and Russian armies, but remain in use by up to 50 other armies worldwide, some having received sophisticated retrofitting.

Jaguar XJR-9 IMSA (Daytona Type) Limited Edition

Published: February 3rd, 2018     
Jaguar XJR-9 IMSA (Daytona Type) Limited Edition
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Scale: 1/24
Company: Hasegawa

From Hasegawa's website: Designed specifically for taking the racing world by storm, the XJR-9 was the eighties Jaguar that finally cracked the iron grip Porsche had on the 24 Hours of Le Mans and brought Jaguar its first Le Mans win since 1957. In America, the type also brought home the win at the 24 Hours of Daytona and took third in the overall Constructor's Championship. This limited edition kit features markings for three IMSA-GTP class Daytona Sunbank 24 hours racers: Car No. 60 (the winner), Car No. 61, and Car No. 66 (third place).

Hasegawa originally released this kit in 1989, shortly after Jaguar had won at Daytona the previous year. This limited edition version is the same kit with new box art. (Limited Edition usually means that this will be the last release of these molds.) What is under that new box art are sixty seven parts molded in white plastic, clear parts for the windscreen and headlamp covers, four rubber tires as well as decals for all three cars (#60, #61, #66) that entered the 24 Hours of Daytona in 1988.

1976 Ford Gran Torino 2 Door Hardtop

Published: February 3rd, 2018     
1976 Ford Gran Torino 2 Door Hardtop
Reviewed by: Alan Wickham, IPMS# 49022
Scale: 1/25
Company: Revell, Inc

A very nice new kit from Revell, this is the stock version, issued after the "Starsky and Hutch" version. The kit is a very simple build that almost harkens back to the old screw bottom kits. It was a pleasure to build, as there was basically no flash, and fit and finish were fantastic. Chrome is excellent quality, and the glass are all seperate pieces that fit very nicely. A welcome attribute.

I built my kit mostly box stock, except for the following: I added a distributor and wires and I also added the factory optional quarter "opera" windows and vinyl top, simply to break up the large expanse of roof and quarter panel on these cars. I also used vintage Uniroyal white walls, as the kit supplied white wall tires seem to have too low of a profile. A wonderful kit that I would recommend to anyone, advanced or not. The only problem I found with the entire kit, are the relatively low profile tires, that if used, would look too small on the car.

Thanks to Revell for a great new kit, and thanks to IPMS for allowing me to review it. (The colors I used are Ford Light Green, and Ford Dark Yellow Green)

FW-190A-4

Published: January 26th, 2018     
FW-190A-4
Reviewed by: Floyd S. Werner, Jr., IPMS# 26266
Scale: 1/48
Company: Eduard

No one can accuse Eduard of not listening to their critics. First the redid their Bf-109s and now they have started to redo their FW-190 series. The first Focke Wulfs that Eduard released were complicated and over engineered for most modelers. They contained a lot of great detail but the fit was fiddly and could confound some modelers. Well all that has changed with the release of the FW-190A-4.

J7W2 Interceptor-Fighter Jet Version

Published: January 26th, 2018     
J7W2 Interceptor-Fighter Jet Version
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Scale: 1/48
Company: Hasegawa

Hasegawa has reissued an old friend in the form of a 1/48th scale J7W2 (Jet Version) Interceptor Fighter. The J7W2 was a natural follow-on to the prop-driven J7W1 kit which was released quite some time ago. While the J7W1 prototypes actually flew short test flights for a total time of just under an hour, the J7W2 never got off the drawing board. The Info-Paragraph on the Hasegawa website states that, "It took its first flight on August 3rd, 1945", but that comment refers to the J7W1 prop-driven aircraft. The only J7W1 left in existence is in the Smithsonian collection, and the J7W2 was never actualized. Within the kit instructions, the issue of whether the jet version ever flew is correctly put forward with a statement that reads, "The IJN, encouraged by the previous success of its propeller-driven Shinden prototype, had plans to build a jet-powered Shinden Kai, but historians have been able to ascertain exactly how far along this project was at war's end."