Aircraft

Reviews of products for scale aircraft models.

MiG-15 & MiG-15BIS Gun Barrel Set / Antenna Base / Pitot Tube

Published: June 13th, 2019     
MiG-15 & MiG-15BIS Gun Barrel Set / Antenna Base / Pitot Tube
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Scale: 1:144
Company: Master Model

In southeastern Poland runs the beautiful, but powerful San River. The San winds its way through the steep mountain gorges on its way to the Vistula River. Before it gets there, the river widens and is used by a number of hamlets along its banks to power various watermills and all manner of  machinery. Some of that machinery is diminutive lathes and the other assorted machines common to a tool and die maker. It is within this environment that we find ourselves in the company of a number of gnomes working diligently on various tasks. It is this skilled work force that Master Model of Poland  utilizes to manufacture their ever-expanding line of small scale, after-market brass replacement parts.

One of Master Model's newer items is a set of gun barrels (three), antenna base, and pitot tube for a 1/144th scale MiG-15.  While these items will work nicely for any small scale kit, the one kit that I immediately thought of is the lovely series of MiG-15 offerings from Eduard,  for which this particular set of brass replacement parts seems to have been designed. 

MiG-21 SM/ M/MF /BIS Fishbed J/L/N Pitot Tube

Published: June 10th, 2019     
MiG-21 SM/ M/MF /BIS Fishbed J/L/N Pitot Tube
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Scale: 1/144
Company: Master Model

Master Model of Poland is becoming as prolific as Eduard when it comes to supplying modelers with after-market brass bits to enhance their latest projects. One of the latest offerings from Master Model is a brass replacement pitot tube for any 1/144thscale MiG-21. While this part will do nicely with any kit, you'd be hard pressed to find a finer example of a small scale (1/144) MiG-21 than those produced by Eduard.

This brass pitot tube is a straightforward replacement for the kit-supplied part. All you need do is snip off the forward section of the kit part, drill a hole in the mounting bracket to accept the new part, and attach the pitot tube (All of this, courtesy some well-drawn instructions). Exercise some caution because I managed to bend the thing just getting it out if the packaging. But don't fret too much as the brass pitot tube will need to be bent slightly (see instructions) to conform to the curve of the fuselage.

Hawker Typhoon and Tempest - A Formidable Pair

Published: June 10th, 2019     
Hawker Typhoon and Tempest - A Formidable Pair
Author: Philip Birtles
Reviewed by: Allan Murrell, IPMS# 49715
Company: Casemate Publishers

The book goes into great detail of the development, service, variants, and full history of a classic British World War II aircraft, the Typhoon and the Tempest.

I found this book so informative and was full of facts and details I was never aware of. The articles on the variants that were explored during the development were especially interesting.

The book is full of amazing photos of the aircraft in development, manufacturing, in action etc. These would be great as reference for any modeler. Another nice touch is the inclusion of the Pilots Notes and aircraft production lists.

I was amazed at the amount of information and history found in the pages of this extremely enjoyable book. The pictures along are worth the cost of the book. I will find this book indispensable in my library.

I recommend this book to everyone with an interest in military aircraft.

Thanks go to Casemate Publishing for providing this book to review and IPMS USA for allowing me to review it.

English Electric Lightning F1/F1A/F2/F3

Published: June 10th, 2019     
English Electric Lightning F1/F1A/F2/F3
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/48
Company: Airfix

Thanks first off to Hornby/Airfix for sending IPMS/USA this kit, and keeping the brand alive! If you have not built one of the new Airfix kits, you need to get over to the store and buy one, or several. HELP KEEP THEM IN BUSINESS, as Airfix has many economical and fantastic kits. Kudos to John and Phil to providing it to me to review.

Airfix's re-release of their venerable 1/48 English Electric Lightning kit is a welcome return of an old friend, not one of their newest molds. When originally released in 1997, the kit was considered ground-breaking with "state-of-the-art" molding technology. The parts fit was lauded as best available, with detail impeccable for the time. This kit and the Spitfire Mk 22/24 and Seafire FR46 were the "new Airfix" in the late 1990's for a short time, but this kit was one of the best at the time.

The Lightning F-1/1A was first out the door, with its small fuel tank on the belly. This kit was rapidly followed by the F-6 with a totally new fuselage with large underbelly tank and over-wing tanks as optional parts, including gun panels for the lower fuselage tank area for the few fitted with that setup.

Aero Commander 560

Published: June 9th, 2019     
Aero Commander 560
Reviewed by: Chris Smith, IPMS# 39182
Scale: 1/72
Company: Croco

The Aero Commander line of medium twin-engine aircraft began with the Model 520 first flown in 1948. Designer Ted Smith used design cues from his work on the A-26 Invader in formulating the Aero Commanders layout. Known for stable handling characteristics and seating capacity, the Aero Commander proved its utility in service. The 560 series introduced more powerful engines and a swept vertical tail. In its later variants, the Commander would gain PT-6 turboprop power. Notable firsts for the type include the U S Air Force purchasing some designated L-26 or U-4 to carry President Eisenhower, the first medium twin authorized to carry the POTUS. Perhaps the most famous Aero Commanders were flown by the legendary Bob Hoover. His routine included full aerobatic maneuvers with two engines, one engine, and no engines!