Publications

Reviews of books or magazines relating to scale modeling.

Model Art - All About IJN Light Cruisers 1919 - 1945

Published: March 14th, 2015     
Model Art - All About IJN Light Cruisers 1919 - 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 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 Light Cruisers that were produced from 1919 - 1945. During this time period there were twenty-four (This is the number that I came up with from Wikipedia. If it is incorrect, please forgive me as I am still new into IJN subjects, but learning.  Light cruisers built and these fell into seven different classes. The classes being the Nagaro, Agano, Tenryu, Kuma, Sendai, Oyodo and Katori.

The magazine is broken down into ten sections. Section one thru five covers the guns, torpedo tubes and catapults found on these cruisers. Each gun is represented by a line drawing, model kit parts, and a period b&w photo. The catapults are represented by line drawings.

The Sopwith Dolphin in RFC, RNAS, RAF and Polish Service

Published: March 11th, 2015     
The Sopwith Dolphin in RFC, RNAS, RAF and Polish Service
Author: Mick Davis, Philip Jarrett, Norman Franks,
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Cross & Cockade International

This is Cross & Cockade International’s fourth book in their series of WW1 aircraft. The first was Nieuports in RNAS, RFC and RAF Service (2007). The second was the Royal Aircraft Factory Fe2b/d and Variants (2009). Somehow the third (Although still yet to be published) will cover the Airco DH 2.

This tome was developed in cooperation with the Royal Air Force Museum and it shows. Many of the some 300 plus B&W photos and details were pulled from the archives of the museum where they are nicely reproduced on the slick paper of this monograph. The front and back covers, as well as the inside covers feature six color paintings of Dolphins in action. The final chapter on the RAF Museum’s restoration of a composite Dolphin (now C3988 at Hendon) alone has nearly fifty color photographs.

Before And Beyond The Niihau Zero

Published: March 8th, 2015     
Before And Beyond The Niihau Zero
Author: Syd Jones
Reviewed by: Roger A Rasor, IPMS# 34117
Company: Signum Ops

If you believe you know a lot about the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor but don’t know about the Niihau Zero, you are in the same boat I was in before reading Syd Jones’ book about this obscure episode.   During the second raid on December 7, 1941, a flight of A6M2s from the carrier Hiryu made a series of low level strafing runs on Bellows Field.  After making what would be his final pass, Naval Airman1st Class Shigenori Nishikaichi was forced to break away from the group and climb to distance himself from the small arms ground fire that had peppered his aircraft.  The Zero seemed to be responding to the controls and he was at maximum power but the cockpit was welling up with fumes.  He cracked open the canopy for fresh air and was surprised to find he was alone.  There were no American defenders in the air and by now he was far from the action.  He could see that his control column and rudder bar had been damaged by the ground fire, his seat pan had taken a hit and he could hear wind whistling through bullet holes in the fuselage.

Scale Aircraft Modelling, Vol. 36, Issue 12

Published: March 8th, 2015     
Scale Aircraft Modelling, Vol. 36, Issue 12
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33643
Company: Scale Aircraft Modelling

I get excited when the new issues of Scale Aircraft Modeling arrive. This issue had a large surprise upfront in that the editor, Jay Laverty, has moved on and they are in search of a new editor. The good news is that Neil Robinson, frequent builder and previous editor has stepped in to keep the great article coming. While the previous formats have been consistent, this interim issue is a collections of great articles an aviation in profile plus two bonus profile sets and all the expected news on new releases and current in stock materials.

To start, the Aviation in profile series has eleven pages of coverage of the North American T-2 Buckeye. There are bunches of different color schemes including the trainer colors but also camouflage version of Greek use as well as some really interesting Navy schemes.

The second profile is the Sepecat Jaguar which has several pages of photographs and two pages of great color profiles. There are color call outs in ModelMaster brands for all colors which is extremely helpful. There is also an excellent build of the Revell kit but more on that later.

Show Rod Model Kits Preview

Published: March 3rd, 2015     
Show Rod Model Kits Preview
Author: Scotty Gosson
Reviewed by: Bill O’Malley, IPMS# 46473
Company: CarTech Auto Books & Manuals

This excellent book is a showcase of show rod model kits from the perspective of a collector rather than a model builder. The book is an excellent read and includes hundreds of photos of classic show rod kits.

The first chapter is An illustrated History of Show Rod Modeling. The section describes how in the 1960s scale hot rod models begin to replace factory cars and older classic cars in popularity. Several examples of early show cars included the Lincoln Futura, Leva Car, and Outlaw as examples of early show rods. The chapter has 50 pages listing some of the most popular and most collectible show rod kids.

Chapter 2, The Corporate Sprue, describes the formation of the early model car companies and again includes some early kits as examples.

Chapter 3, The Human Element contains two Q&A sessions, one with show rod & model designers Tom Daniel, Ed Newton, and John Bogosian. The second session is with an advisory panel of show rod builders and collectors talking about their experiences with kit building and collecting kits.

Boulton Paul Defiant

Published: March 3rd, 2015     
Boulton Paul Defiant
Author: Mark Ansell; Illustrator: Artur Jusczak
Reviewed by: Clare Wentzel, IPMS# 1096
Company: Mushroom Model Publications

The Yellow Series from Mushroom Model Publications covers individual aircraft in great detail. This book on the Boulton Paul Defiant is an excellent example. The book starts out with the basic concept of the Defiant as a daytime bomber destroyer. It then covers night fighter operations, followed by air-sea rescue operations, its use as a target tug and other tasks.

Along with, and in addition to the description of the operational history of the Defiant, a great number of photos are included. These show experimental and operational aircraft as well as incredible details of all parts of the aircraft. The majority of the detail photos were taken of the only complete surviving example of the Defiant at the RAF Museum Hendon. The modeler will be very pleased with these detailed color photos.

Thunder Over the Reich: Flying the Luftwaffe’s He-162 Jet Fighter

Published: February 26th, 2015     
Thunder Over the Reich: Flying the Luftwaffe’s He-162 Jet Fighter
Author: Wolfgang Wollenweber
Reviewed by: Hub Plott, IPMS# 31328
Company: Hikoki Publications

This book is written by one who was there. 1st Lt. Wolfgang Wollenweber flew for the Luftwaffe from 1943 till the surrender. Beginning his service in Me-110s and continuing on to Fw-190s, a brief training stint on Me-163s and finishing up in the He-162!

The book begins with his assignment to 13. Zerostorerstaffel/Jagdgerschwader 5 in Salmijarvi. Where on earth is Salimijarvi you ask? So did Lt. Wollenweber!  Having expected an assignment to warm North Africa he soon found himself heading to above the Artic Circle along the Artic Ocean to fight the Russians. A desolate area with stark living conditions and never ending day or night depending on the time of year. An area with little to do outside of combat and most depressing on those who served there.

The first 10 chapters of the book details his experiences in this frozen wasteland! From combat with the Russians to working as a shipboard liaison officer, to friendships made, and problems with squadron mates and superiors, it is all well documented in a very interesting story.

Model Art - Air Model Special No. 08: Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker Series

Published: February 20th, 2015     
Model Art - Air Model Special No. 08: Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker Series
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Company: Model Art

Model Art magazine is in my estimation the premiere monthly modeling magazine on the Japanese market.  The publisher also produces a series of “Specials” on various topics, including aircraft.  The magazine under discussion in this review is Model Art’s eighth “Air Model Special”, and is mainly based around modern jets, with a small smattering of WW2 subjects.  The production values are first rate, utilizing high quality glossy paper, and with excellent quality photography.  Japanese text is used throughout.

This issue starts off with two New Kit release articles: Airfix 1/72nd Douglas C-47 Skytrain 4 pages and Airfix 1/72nd Bristol Blenheim Mk.I. Each article is accompanied by over a dozen color photos of the models under construction, including added detail such as aerial rigging, engine plumbing etc., and the completed models are to an extremely high quality of finish.

Model Art - All about Imperial Japanese Navy Battleships 1913-45

Published: February 20th, 2015     
Model Art - All about Imperial Japanese Navy Battleships 1913-45
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Model Art

ModelArt magazine is a Japanese publication that covers all genres of plastic models. Besides its regular journal articles, it also has special books covering a single subject, in this case IJN Battleships between 1913 and 1945.

Be aware that the full book is in Japanese. There are some very limited English captions, however they are very useful as they list the type of weapon, ship name, timeframe, etc.

This book is divided in 3 main sections.

The first section deals with the weapons of the different battleships, from the heavy cannons in twin and triple turrets, to smaller guns and finally anti-aircraft weapons. Each weapon includes some line drawing(s), period pictures and also an assembled plastic replica, typically in 1/700 scale.

The second section includes photographic, step-by-step builds of the Nagato (in the 1927 and 1944 configurations), the Yamato, the Hyuga, the carrier ship Ise, the Kongo and the Fuso, all of them in 1/700 scale.

A-3 Skywarrior Units of the Vietnam War

Published: February 19th, 2015     
A-3 Skywarrior Units of the Vietnam War
Author: Rick Morgan, Illustrations by Jim Laurier, Gareth Hector
Reviewed by: Bill Kluge, IPMS# 45849
Company: Osprey Publishing

Developed in the years following World War 2 to fulfill Naval Aviation’s “Heavy Attack” capability, the Douglas Aircraft design team under the legendary Ed Heinemann created the jet powered, swept winged A-3 (originally designated A3D-1) Skywarrior to carry nuclear destruction to the Soviet Union from the decks of the Navy’s new Midway class carriers. Replacing the little loved North American AJ Savage, what started out as a single purpose “heavy” bomber soon became one of the Navy’s most “multi-purpose” aircraft in its inventory. When its nuclear delivery mission was taken over by the A-5 Vigilante, the A-3 found itself with a new mission list that eventually included, “iron” bombing, aerial refueling, photo reconnaissance, electronic jamming and counter-measurers, electronic surveillance, high speed COD and VIP transport, and navigation training. It was an inspired design that led to the heaviest operational aircraft flown regularly for over 35 years from the largest and smallest flight decks in the US fleet.