Reviews of products for scale aircraft models.

Spitfire Mk. VII Weekend Edition

Published: September 17th, 2017     
Spitfire  Mk. VII Weekend Edition
Reviewed by: Brian R. Baker, IPMS# 43146
Scale: 1/72
Company: Eduard


The Spitfire is perhaps one of the most famous fighters to emerge from World War II, combining performance, development potential, versatility, and beauty in one airframe. I cannot imagine a modeler who does not know the basic history of the type, so I won't repeat it here. The Mk. VIII represented by this kit was an upgrade from earlier models, which gave improved performance. Developed from the Mk. VII, the Mk. VIII featured a 1710 HP Merlin 63 or 66 engine, and all were fitted with the Vokes tropical filter. While most had the standard elliptical wingtips, some had the extended wingtips for high altitude use. A few were also equipped with "bubble" canopies. Most Mk. VIIIs were used in the Middle East or with the RAAF in the Far East against the Japanese, where they were superior to every Japanese fighter encountered.


There are many references available dealing with all versions of the Spitfire. Also, the type is well covered online.

Japanese Type 99 20mm Mark 2 Cannon Barrels

Published: September 15th, 2017     
Japanese Type 99 20mm Mark 2 Cannon Barrels
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1/144
Company: Master Model

Master Model of Poland produces small brass parts for detailing models, be they aircraft or ships. They have parts for aircraft in 1/32, 1/35, 1/48, 1/72, and 1/144, mostly pitot tubes, refueling probes and gun barrels.

These are 4 20mm gun barrels for Japanese WW2 fighters. I had a 1/144 Platz N1K2 "George" on the shelf, which I built for a review about 4 years ago. I selected it for the upgrade.

Removal and Replacement

Removal was a simple job. I used sprue cutters and cut the guns off the wing, as close as I could to the leading edge. The kit has fairings at the base of each gun, but I fixed that later. Once I got the plastic guns removed, I used a sanding stick to flatten the base of the kit fairings. This gave me a clean surface to drill into. The instructions call for a .4mm drill. Looking at my .4mm drill and the guns, I downgraded the drill to a .25mm. The hole was still just a little large, but .25mm is about the smallest drill I've got.

Defiant Mk.I Undercarriage Covers

Published: September 14th, 2017     
Defiant Mk.I Undercarriage Covers
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Scale: 1/48
Company: Aires Hobby Models

Want an nice upgrade to any 1/48 Boulton Paul Defiant? Step right up to the new Quickboost Defiant Mk.I undercarriage set that provides a beautiful replacement to what is supplied in your kit. The parts are packaged in the standard Quickboost re-closable packaging with a paper stiffener along with the description card. There are no instructions. These parts are specific to fit the Airfix accurate and highly detailed 1/48 Boulton Paul Defiant Mk.I injected plastic kit. They may also work for the older limited run Classic Airframes kits (471, 481, and 482) that were introduced in 1995.

Quickboost has molded the undercarriage set perfectly in light grey resin with no apparent bubbles. The undercarriage set detail is an improvement over what is provided in the kit providing more of a 3-dimensional aspect to the doors.

Make sure you consult your photographs to get the correct geometry for all six parts. I found some useful pics by Ron Patterson at:

Vought F-8 Crusader

Published: September 13th, 2017     
Vought F-8 Crusader
Author: Bill Spidle
Reviewed by: Rob Benson, IPMS# 44038
Company: Specialty Press Publishers and Wholesalers

Thank you to Andrea Lindell of Specialty Press for providing a review copy of their new release, Vought F-8 Crusader, Development of the Navy's First Supersonic Jet Fighter, by William D. Spidle. Specialty Press has sweetened the debut of this new book by providing an author-signed limited-edition of the book directly on their website or by calling 1-800-895-4385. As always, I appreciate all those in the IPMS Reviewer Corps, whose work is critical to sharing new and exciting modeling products with the world.

Beechcraft 17 Decals

Published: September 13th, 2017