Publications

Reviews of books or magazines relating to scale modeling.

Model Art Modeling Magazine, #900, September 2014

Published: October 11th, 2014     
Model Art Modeling Magazine, #900, September 2014
Reviewed by: Mike Van Schoonhoven, IPMS# 41627
Company: Model Art

Model Art Magazine is a monthly magazine that covers aircraft, armor, ships and car modeling. Model Art started releasing magazines in 1966 and has evolved from there over the past forty eight years.

The September issue starts off with several small articles which include the IJA/N Airplane Illustrated and a build article on the Trumpeter 1/35 Soviet JS-7 Heavy Tank which includes a walk around on a actual vehicle in a museum and the history of Russian and American heavy tanks.

The main article this month features tools. What modeler doesn't like tools? The article consists of thirty three pages of pictures of tools and a brief description of what it does and price. The tools in the article range from colored pencils, files, trimmers, drills, solvents, lights, sandpaper, saws, tweezers and punches.

 Following the main article are several small monthly reoccurring articles. Some of these articles are Union Fleet Organized Course, Modeling JASDF and a article on the F-16. 

Model Art Modeling Magazine, #897, All About IJN Heavy Cruisers 1922 - 1945

Published: October 10th, 2014     
Model Art Modeling Magazine, #897, All About IJN Heavy Cruisers 1922 - 1945
Reviewed by: Mike Van Schoonhoven, IPMS# 41627
Company: Model Art

Model Art Magazine is a monthly magazine that covers aircraft, armor, ships and car modeling. Model Art started releasing magazines in 1966 and has evolved from there over the past forty-six years. They also release many special releases during the year, as is the case of this issue.  

This issue covers IJN Heavy Cruisers that were produced from 1922 - 1945. During this time period there were eighteen heavy cruisers built and these fell into six different classes. The classes being the Furutaka, Aoba, Myoko, Takao, Mogami and Tone.

The magazine is broken down into nine sections. Section one covers all eighteen of these cruisers. There are thirty-six pages devoted to them with black and white period photos and line drawings showing the updates and changes that took place through the cruisers life.

Section two covers the armament found on these vessels. The armament ranges from the main guns to the anti-aircraft guns and also includes torpedoes, radar arrays and speakers. Each of these includes a black and white period photo, line drawing and a photo(s) of what is available to modelers.

Mezek a Turbina: Messerschmitts in Czechoslovakia

Published: September 30th, 2014     
Mezek a Turbina: Messerschmitts in Czechoslovakia
Author: Bohumir Kudlicka
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Mushroom Model Publications

Bohumir Kudlicka follows the transition of Czechoslovakian production of the Messerschmitt Bf 109G “Mezek” and the Messerschmitt Me 262 “Turbina” from underground facilities for the Luftwaffe to production by Avia for the Czechoslovakian Air Force.  Mr. Kudlicka weaves an interesting tale of how and why the Czechoslovakian Air Force came to use the ‘hated’ German designed aircraft in lieu of English and Russian aircraft that their returning pilots had been flying during the war. 

There are many unpublished photos that describe in detail the selection, modification and production of these two aircraft.  The text and photos are complemented with color profiles, 3-D plan views, 1/48 scale plans, and period scrap illustrations.

The Table of Contents focuses on three major chapters:

Mezek – “Mule”

Military Aircraft Insignia of the World

Published: September 29th, 2014     
Military Aircraft Insignia of the World
Author: John Cochrane and Stuart Elliott
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Specialty Press

Military Aircraft insignia dates to pre-World War I era, with France and Romania as the first two countries to have designated official military markings.

This book covers every country that I can think of, including a handful of little know countries like Transinistra and some major countries that over the years had multiple military air force insignia (like the US or the Regia Aeronautica).

Each country has a section devoted to the markings, the colors in the insignia and a small description of their aerial assets. In most cases there is a picture of an airframe showing the insignia. Countries like Spain, that had multiple insignia and even civil wars, the book covers the markings of both sides.

All the markings are printed in full color and most of the pictures of the airplanes are in color too (the only exception are period pictures that were originally taken in black and white).

Boeing 377 Stratocruiser and KC-97 Stratofreighter

Published: September 28th, 2014     
Boeing 377 Stratocruiser and KC-97 Stratofreighter
Author: Bill Yenne
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Company: Crecy Publishing, Ltd.

Every once in a while a book shows up on the “available for review” list which grabs my interest.  This book is one of those.  I was able to convince Dave Morrissette to send it to me because I have a personal interest in the KC-97.  It was a KC-97 which took me on my first military flight, from Peoria Air National Guard Base to Lackland Air Force Base to begin basic training.  I’ve had a lot of rides in various aircraft types since then, but there’s only one first one.

Bill Yenne covers the entire life of the Boeing 367/377 series, from the first airliners to the C-97 to the KC-97, then back to the mature airliner and the mature KC-97, and the last of the series, the Guppies.  He does a very good job of tracing the lineage of the series from the B-29 and the B-50.  The 367 was the C/KC-97, the 377 was the airliner.

TANKART 3 Modern Armor

Published: September 21st, 2014     
TANKART 3 Modern Armor
Author: Michael Rinaldi, with Andy Taylor
Reviewed by: Dave Koukol, IPMS# 46287
Company: Rinaldi Studio Press

If the first two volumes of TANKART didn’t provide enough “eye candy” and inspiration to armor modelers looking to up their game, TANKART 3 provides another potent dose of armor building and finishing “how to” and “why to” for creating true works of scale modeling art – specifically for modern armor subjects.

Consistent with the first two editions, Michael Rinaldi provides an image- and narrative-rich guide for modelers to create jaw-dropping finishes and weathering effects through techniques centered around layering and “artistic scalism.”  In TANKART 3, the author shares with the reader his latest learnings in his quest to create fantastic finishes while improving the overall efficiency of the process.  Notable examples, and a take-aways for this reviewer, are the reduction or elimination of washes in favor of Oil Paint Rendering (OPR), and improving the execution of the Hairspray (HS) chipping technique.

Similar to preceding TA volumes, #3 is broken down into a background section covering foundational topics of:

Hauptmann Godwin von Brumowski – Austria-Hungary’s Ace of Aces

Published: September 14th, 2014     
Hauptmann Godwin von Brumowski – Austria-Hungary’s Ace of Aces
Author: Ivan Berryman
Reviewed by: Roger Rasor, IPMS# 34117
Company: The First World War Aviation Historical Society

The name Hauptmann Godwin von Brumowski may not immediately register with model builders, but those who build WWI aircraft models probably have given his bright red Albatros a second look when considering a vivid scheme while building a model of that aircraft. 

Like Germany’s ‘Red Baron’, Austria-Hungary’s ‘Ace of Aces’ flew a red painted fighter.  But, ironically he had much more in common with his world famous contemporary, Manfred von Richthofen than the color of their aircraft.  Brumowski's career followed a course that was quite similar to that of the more widely known 'Red Baron'.  Born into a military family, he was educated at cadet school and commissioned into the artillery while Richthofen was still in the cavalry.  His early adult life was spent in the army, much of it in war service.  And, like Richthofen, he first served on his country's Eastern Front, transferred to the air service, started to attract attention as a successful observer/gunner and eventually excelled as a fighter pilot.

Wrecks and Relics – The Indispensable Guide to Britain's Aviation Heritage

Published: September 12th, 2014     
Wrecks and Relics – The Indispensable Guide to Britain's Aviation Heritage
Author: Ken Ellis
Reviewed by: John Noack, IPMS# 23017
Company: Crecy Publishing, Ltd.

If you ever wish to locate an aircraft in Great Britain that is on display in a museum, in the hands of a private collector, undergoing restoration, or moldering away in a field, this is your go-to reference. Author Ken Ellis has obviously made it his life's work to locate, document, and track the 5000+ aircraft that fall into one or more of these categories within the bounds of the British Isles.  Over 700 types – ranging from front line Lightnings to obscure one-of-a-kind homebuilts – are found within, sorted by geographical location.  Of course, all the great museums – Duxford,  the FAAM in Yeovilton, the RAF Museum in London – are represented, but who knew that a Westland Wasp was being kept in the hands of a private collector in Kirkham (“on the A583 between Blackpool and Preston”, p.94).

Will this book be the ultimate modelers' reference guide?  No, but that's obviously not its intent.  However, if you EVER find yourself fortunate enough to travel across the pond, you might very well use this book as an adjunct to a good GPS.  When I spent 2 weeks in Birmingham some years ago, I would love to have had this book with me.

Sino-Japanese Naval War 1894-1895

Published: September 11th, 2014     
Sino-Japanese Naval War 1894-1895
Author: Piotr Olender
Reviewed by: Mike Hanson, IPMS# 41117
Company: MMP Books

I enjoy looking at and reading about early military steam ships that participated in conflicts prior to WWII, such as the Spanish-American War or even the US Civil War. So when I saw this book up for review, I knew I had to read it.

Piotr Olender’s book on the Sino-Japanese Naval War qualifies as an eclectic subject. I’m not sure there are any model kits that feature ships from this war, though there are kits of ships from this general era. That’s where this book really shines. It covers, in detail, nearly all of the ships from both sides that took part in this war. Additionally, if features period photographs and has some excellent line drawings.

Where the text of some books of this type can be very dry and hard to read, this one is just the opposite. It’s very engaging, and even though the author does supply plenty of dry info in the form of tables and lists, he also tells a good story with the rest of his text.

AV-8B Harrier II Units of Operation Enduring Freedom

Published: September 11th, 2014     
AV-8B Harrier II Units of Operation Enduring Freedom
Author: Lon Nordeen; Illustrator: Jim Laurier
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Company: Osprey Publishing

This book is the third in Osprey’s series on the Marine Corps’ Harriers in combat.  It is of great interest to me, as I spent over 20 years involved in the Tactical Air Control System, as a radio repairman and comm. maintenance officer.  The Marines bought the AV-8 knowing it would be used for CAS (Close Air Support), and very little else.  But that’s what they want and need. 

The Harrier IIs were involved in OEF from 2001 to 2013.  There were only a few Harriers involved at any time, usually 8, either on an Amphibious Assault Ship (LHD) or ashore at Kandahar, Bagram or Camp Bastion.  The STOVL (Short Takeoff Vertic