Reviews of products for scale miscellaneous models.

Shot Down and in the Drink

Published: November 12th, 2017     
Shot Down and in the Drink
Author: Air Commodore Graham Pitchfork, RAF
Reviewed by: George Cully, IPMS# 2290
Company: Osprey Publishing

Drawing heavily upon an unpublished history of Britain's Air Sea Rescue Service produced after WWII by the Air Ministry's Air Historical Branch, this softback reprint was originally published in 2005 as a follow-on to a 2003 effort by Pitchfork entitled Shot Down and On the Run. That book dealt with British and Commonwealth aircrew who found themselves on the ground in enemy territory--mostly in northern Europe--but were able to successfully "escape and evade," often with the help of brave souls who risked their lives--and the safety of their families--in so doing.

The difference between the two books is that the airmen who fell to ground in enemy-occupied territory had some hope of finding friendly aid or, failing that, at least the possibility of humane treatment when they were captured. Those who fell into the water faced a graver menace. Yes, their Axis enemies were determined and tough, or even cruel, but the sea is utterly implacable: it will not provide comfort, and it has no concept whatsoever of mercy.

Hawk MIM-23 SAM

Published: November 7th, 2017     
Hawk MIM-23 SAM
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Scale: 1/35
Company: AFV Club

This is what the website Army Recognition has to allow about the Raytheon Hawk Missile: The HAWK (Homing All the Way Killer) MIM-23 is an all-weather low to medium altitude ground-to-air missile system developed and designed by the American Defense Company Raytheon. The HAWK semi-active radar seeking medium-range SAM system commenced development in 1952 with the US Army awarding a full-scale development contract to Raytheon for the missile in July 1954. Northrop was to provide the launcher and loader, radars and fire control. The first guided test firing took place in June 1956 with the development phase completed in July 1957. Initial Operational Capability (IOC) of the Basic HAWK, MIM-23A, took place in August 1960 when the first US Army battalion was activated.

Follow the link to a video, via Critical Past, of a Hawk missile blowing a QF-80 drone to smithereens.

(Technical Note: Smithereens is a technical term for lots and lots of little pieces.) Video of Launch

Railway Guns of WW I

Published: November 5th, 2017     
Railway Guns of WW I
Author: Marc Romanych and Greg Heuer
Reviewed by: Doug Hamilton, IPMS# 21985
Company: Osprey Publishing

Railway guns are in simple terms huge guns on trains. First conceived and fabricated during the American Civil War in 1862 by Confederate forces, railway guns came into being to rapidly bring large artillery where needed. Traditional methods of dismounting a large gun tube and moving them by horse drawn train was time consuming and manpower intensive. European observers sent to scrutinize took notice of many of the advances made during the Civil War, and improved upon what they saw. Fast forward to World War I and railway guns were again deployed. Most of the combatants deployed railway guns of varying size and with varying results. This book is a basic course on these WWI era weapons.

Astaco Neo Crusher/Cutter

Published: October 31st, 2017     
Astaco Neo Crusher/Cutter
Reviewed by: Allan Murrell, IPMS# 49715
Scale: 1:35
Company: Hasegawa USA

This is a re-issue of a kit first issued in 2015. It is an excellent kit in the Hasegawa range and is very easy to build as long as you watch the instruction details carefully.

In the box is:

  • 2 x black rubber sprues
  • 2 x orange sprues
  • 1 clear sprue
  • 2 x light grey sprues
  • 3 x dark grey sprue
  • 1 length of hose
  • 1 decal sheet
  • 4 x poly caps
  • 1 mesh sheet
  • 2 x springs
  • 1 instruction booklet
  • 1 collector card

The sprues are extremely well molded with no flash and great detail. The parts are all molded in the correct colors so if the build is done well there is no need to do much painting.


Stage 1 Assembly begins with the female driver, I left the arms off as these need to be positioned correctly once in the cabin seat.

Dunkirk 1940 Through a German Lens

Published: October 31st, 2017     
Dunkirk 1940 Through a German Lens
Author: Alan Ranger
Reviewed by: Allan Murrell, IPMS# 49715
Company: Mushroom Model Publications

The book is a Photo album of photographs taken from the German perspective of Dunkirk in 1940.

The book contains many photograph's never before published and makes this a fascinating book.

All the pictures give some great views from the German side and allows you to see Dunkirk form a very different direction to the normal publications. I was particularly impressed with the pictures showing vehicle's and the sunken ships of the beach.

I recommend this book to everyone with a interest in the Dunkirk

Thanks go to Mushroom Model Publishing for providing this book to review and IPMS USA for allowing me to review it for them