Publications

Reviews of books or magazines relating to scale modeling.

Schnellboot in Action

Published: September 27th, 2013     
Schnellboot in Action
Author: David L. Krakow
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Squadron Signal Publications

The German Kriegsmarine developed the Schnellboot (or S-boot) as a weapon of war to be used by elite sailors. As a testament of their skillfully trained men and excellent design, the S-boot flotillas were able to deliver offensive actions as late as April, 1945.

This book is devoted to the description of the main characteristics and features of the following classes: S-1, S-2, S-7, S-14, S-18, S-26, S-30, S-38, S-100, S-151, and the LS class, which was a “midget” S-boot used mainly from auxiliary cruisers. For each class, there are line drawings and pictures (most of them in half-page size, very clear and sharp) illustrating the characteristics of each class.

There are sections dedicated to the power plant, offensive and defensive armament, radar and radio systems, and camouflage, but these sections are brief when compared with the previous sections devoted to describe each class. Despite being shorter sections, they do cover the topic at hand with acceptable detail.

Ki-27 ‘Nate’ Aces

Published: September 24th, 2013     
Ki-27 ‘Nate’ Aces
Author: Nicholas Millman
Reviewed by: Roger Rasor, IPMS# 34117
Company: Osprey Publishing

Volume 103 in Osprey's Aircraft of the Aces series details the interesting story of the Nakajima’s Ki-27 and the pilots who prevailed while flying the little fighter.  The “Nate,” as it became known to most Westerners, contributed to a prevailing myth among aviation experts during the early years of WWII that Japanese aircraft were almost impossible to best in a dogfight. The nimble aircraft was fast enough and agile enough to give well-trained Japanese pilots the edge over almost any adversary as quickly as the fighter could be supplied to the Japanese Army Air Force (JAAF).

Model Art Modeling Magazine, #876, September 2013

Published: September 21st, 2013     
Model Art Modeling Magazine, #876, September 2013
Reviewed by: Mike Van Schoonhoven, IPMS# 41627
Company: Model Art

The feature article of September’s issue covers some of battleships of the Pacific during the Second World War. They use the Hasegawa 1/450th Yamato (there are actually two builds of this particular model by two builders), Fujimi 1/700 Kirishima, Pit Road 1/700 USS North Carolina 1944, Dragon 1/700 USS Pennsylvania 1944, and the HP Models HP 1/700 USS Tennessee 1944 as representatives of some of the vessels that were used by the Allies and Axis. Each model is beautifully built and accompanied with color photographs during the build and b&w in-action photos. This article encompasses thirty six pages of this issue.

Next up are a few small articles. The first is titled "Combined fleet organization course." This features the Aoshima 1/700 Fuso Class IJN Battleship Yamashiro. The article consists of a few color and b&w photos and shows the model in completion. Following that is a very short article on the configuration of U.S. Battleships from 1905 to 1945. This is composed of several period photos and line drawings.

M3 Gun Motor Carriage Detail In Action

Published: September 20th, 2013     
M3 Gun Motor Carriage Detail In Action
Author: David Doyle
Reviewed by: Mike Van Schoonhoven, IPMS# 41627
Company: Squadron Signal Publications

The Squadron Detail In Action series was started in 1971. This series covers the development, testing, and production of aircraft, armored vehicles, and ships. The focus of this book is on the M3 Gun Motor Carriage.

At the beginning of World War Two, the United States realized the need for an effective antitank weapon. Through this need, the Military used the M3 halftrack as the base and married it to the M1897A4 75mm gun to create the M3 Gun Motor Carriage. In October, 1941, the first production contract began. By October, 1944, the Gun Motor Carriage was considered obsolete by the U.S. Army. During its career many of these units were used by Great Britain and U.S. Marines well into 1945.

The author, David Doyle, does an excellent job of using photographs and captions to present the development and use of the M3 Gun Motor Carriage. Almost fifty pages of this book are of a restored M3. In these pages, you will find color photos and detailed close-ups of the different components of the vehicle.

M10 Tank Destroyer vs. StuG III Assault Gun, Germany 1944

Published: September 17th, 2013     
M10 Tank Destroyer vs. StuG III Assault Gun, Germany 1944
Author: Steven J. Zaloga
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Company: Osprey Publishing

The US M10 was originally developed as a tank destroyer while the StuG III was a turretless, low-profiled tracked vehicle developed for direct fire support for infantry formations. This book discusses how these two fighting vehicles went beyond their respective design missions when called upon. It also covers how they fought one another during the 11 month campaign on the battlefields of northwest Europe in 1944-45.

I found the book to be well thought out with a very coherent outline. It’s well written with easy to understand explanations. It has beautiful color maps, paintings, cutaway artwork, and a wide range of period b&w photographs.

The book itself is well printed with a gum binding. The print is easy to read and the photographs are very clear. The artwork and cutaway illustrations are colorful and honestly represented. The maps and charts are rendered so that any layperson can understand them.

M7 Priest 105mm Howitzer Motor Carriage

Published: September 17th, 2013     
M7 Priest 105mm Howitzer Motor Carriage
Author: Steven J. Zaloga
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Company: Osprey Publishing

Based upon the Grant/Sherman tank, the M7 Priest was a self-propelled howitzer with a high-mount machine gun ring resembling a pulpit. It was utilized by the US, British, Canadian, and Free French forces. This book tells the complete story from design and development to deployment. In addition, this book covers all variants of the Priest, including the British/Canadian Sexton 25-pounder version and the US M12 155mm GMC.

I found the book to be well thought out with a very coherent outline. It’s written with easy to understand explanations. It has beautiful color paintings, cutaway artwork, and is packed with a wide range of period b&w photographs.

The book itself is well printed with a hearty gum binding. The print is easy to read and the photographs are very clear. The artwork and cutaway illustrations are colorful and honestly represented. The maps and charts are rendered so that any layperson can understand them.

F4F Wildcat vs. A6M Zero-Sen

Published: September 17th, 2013     
F4F Wildcat vs. A6M Zero-Sen
Author: Edward M. Young
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Company: Osprey Publishing

These are two of the most iconic fighter aircraft that came out of World War II. They’re the Mitsubishi A6M Zero-sen and the Grumman F4F Wildcat. This book covers the ways in which these two contemporaries, with very different design influences, each possessed its unique strengths and weaknesses. The book includes information on the pilots who flew them and technical data including performance specifications. The author explains in plain English how each of these aircraft was developed in a side-by-side chronology. He further explains how these two enemy aircraft existed in the harsh, war-ravaged Pacific Ocean and jungle island environments.

The book itself is well printed with a hearty gum binding. The print is easy to read and the photographs are very clear. The artwork and cutaway illustrations are colorful and honestly represented. The maps and charts are rendered so that any layperson can understand them.

Polish Wings 17

Published: September 16th, 2013     
Polish Wings 17
Author: Tomasz J Kopański
Reviewed by: Hub Plott, IPMS# 31328
Company: Stratus

This book takes a look at the most famous of the Polish bomber type in WWII and its developments. The PZL 23 was known as the Karas (or Carp, according to Google translation) to the Polish Air Force and, along with its offshoot variants PZL 42, 43 and 46, did the lion’s share of bombardment work for Poland.

The majority of the book (65 pages) gives us a brief history of the main variant, the PZL 23, and its service with both Poland and Romania. There are many previously unpublished black and white photos used to illustrate this aircraft, along with gorgeous color profiles. The Poles had some of the best group insignias I have ever seen. Who could resist doing a model of a Karas with a flying fire breathing dragon with a bomb clutched in his talons?!

Martin B-26 Marauder

Published: September 16th, 2013     
Martin B-26 Marauder
Author: Martyn Chorlton
Reviewed by: Hub Plott, IPMS# 31328
Company: Osprey Publishing

“Martin’s Mistake”, “Martin’s Murderer”, “The Flying Prostitute”, “The Baltimore Whore”, and “One a day in Tampa Bay” are all some of the derogatory nicknames and phrases used to describe the Martin B-26 Marauder. This outstanding aircraft was never able to get out from under the bad reputation it got early on. The early versions with the short-span wings and other ticks that come with a new design contributed to the type’s undeserved reputation.  A really “hot ship”, it could be difficult for a newbie to handle, but once mastered it then demonstrated its full potential. And when the longer improved wing was installed on later variants, the crews felt that almost all of the ship’s vices disappeared.

Books on the Martin B-26 are not all that common, so it is good to see one that does its level best to dismiss the bad reputation this aircraft garnered in training. As the author state, crews loved the Marauder.

Saab 37 Viggen Walk Around

Published: September 14th, 2013     
Saab 37 Viggen Walk Around
Author: Mikhail Putnikov
Reviewed by: Perry Downen, IPMS# 44000
Company: Squadron Signal Publications

The Saab 37 Viggen was designed to a Swedish air force requirement for an integrated weapon system with high performance, great versatility, and STOL capability.  It was intended to replace the Saab 32 Lansen attack plane and the Saab 35 Draken fighter.  To meet the requirements of a multi-roll aircraft, Saab came up with a radical configuration for the day.  The design used a conventional low-set delta wing extending from mid-fuselage to tail pipe, with small clipped canard wings mounted forward of the main wings and above the intakes.  This single-seat aircraft was powered by a single license-built version of the Pratt & Whitney JT8D engine equipped with a thrust-reverser.  This innovative design package created a plane capable of Mach 2 at high altitude and Mach 1 at low altitude while maintaining short-field takeoff and landing capabilities.  A total of 329 Viggens were built, and from 1970 to 1990 they were the backbone of Sweden's air defense.

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