A-4 Skyhawk Gear

Published: April 13th, 2016     
Product Image
Product picture
Reviewed by: Paul R. Brown - IPMS# 24085
Scale: 1/72
Price: $12.95
Product / Stock #: 72116
Product provided by: Scale Aircraft Conversions

This set is provides replacement gear for either the Hasegawa or the Fujimi A-4 kits. As I had a number of the Fujimi A-4 kits, I selected the TA-4J kit for installation. In comparing the metal parts to the kit parts, the set includes two different nose gear struts; one matches the Fujimi strut, so presumably the other is intended for the Hasegawa kit.

One distinct bonus included in the set is a metal reproduction of the Fujimi nose wheel well. As models of the A-4 are notorious tail sitters without nose weight, this part will be greatly appreciated by those of us with 1/72 A-4's in our stash. The wheel well fits just the same as the kit part does, however, be careful with the alignment of the aft part of the part as to ensure that there is sufficient room for the secondary retraction strut that attaches to the left side of the gear and the wheel well. I discovered after assembly that I had installed the wheel well to far to the left as this retraction strut would not fit between the nose gear strut and the sides of the kit opening, so I will have to break out the Xacto and a file to pare back the sides of the opening in the left fuselage half to make room for the retraction strut.

I used a metal brush wheel in my Dremel on low speed to clean up the metal parts and smooth out the casting seams and texture. I then primed all of the parts with black enamel paint before painting them white. This gave me a bit of depth to the white and helped the paint to adhere to the metal parts. I used the kit wheels which have nice detail that popped out nicely with a black wash.

As with all white metal parts I used superglue to attach the gear to the kit, making sure that the small half circle projection on each main strut was on the outboard side and facing to the rear as this is where the retraction struts attach and they won't fit any other way.

The set is well molded and with the few cautions I mentioned above, is a fairly easy replacement for the kit parts. The white metal also is a great help in keeping the A-4's nose wheel on the ground.

I highly recommend this set and plan on picking up several more for my other Fujimi A-4's.

Thank you to Scale Aircraft Conversions for the sample and to IPMS-USA for letting me review it.

  • Product parts
    Product parts
  • Product comparison - Kit parts (left); Review product parts (right)
    Product comparison - Kit parts (left); Review product parts (right)
  • Painted parts
    Painted parts
  • Nose wheelwell installed
    Nose wheelwell installed
  • Product gear installed in aircraft
    Product gear installed in aircraft
  • Closeup of installed parts
    Closeup of installed parts

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