A-4 Skyhawk Landing Gear (HB) (for 1/48 Hobby Boss)

Published: November 8th, 2017     
Product Image
Package
Reviewed by: 
Scott Hollingshead, IPMS# 34786
Scale: 1/48
Company: Scale Aircraft Conversions (SAC)
Price: $18.95
Product / Stock #: 48338

Scale Aircraft Conversions now has over twenty-seven years of experience supplying resin and white metal parts to model builders, and their product listing continues to expand. This is the ninth landing gear set from SAC that I have reviewed, and once again, they have provided an excellent metal option for kit-supplied landing gear. This set is intended for the 1/48 scale A-4 Skyhawk that was recently released by Hobby Boss (kit 81764). The purpose of this replacement set is to provide stronger landing gear that is adjustable if necessary to obtain the proper angles. Even with no previous experience in using white metal parts, this set will provide an upgrade that most modelers will have no issue installing.

The beauty of the white metal used by Scale Aircraft Conversions for their gear is that it will hold up to the weight of larger aircraft, and the metal is soft enough to allow for some final positioning if that is needed to square up the gear. Scale Aircraft Conversions does not use lead in their white metal mix, so the builder does not have to be concerned with that hazard. If you look at the company's web site, their intent is to provide stronger landing gear, not to make better-looking gear, if the kit is already accurate.

There are no directions contained within the set, you simply swap out the kit provided plastic parts with the new white metal items. It is easy enough to find the corresponding kit parts for the items included in this set. The kit parts that are replaced consist of items on sprue "C" consisting specifically of parts C1 through C4 as well as C12. White metal can be cleaned like plastic with files and sanding sticks, or your abrasive of choice. Although paint will adhere to white metal alone, it is recommended that you prime the parts first, and the parts will need to be installed with your favorite CA glue or epoxy.

For my hits of this landing gear set, I will start by mentioning that the folks at SAC do a nice job with their level of detail, as it can be challenging to get reasonably crisp detail in white metal. The items in this set are mostly clean (the parts will only require some mold line removal), and should not be a challenge to install into their proper places on the Hobby Boss kit. For this review, I photographed the SAC parts next to the items that they will replace in the kit to allow the reader (and potential buyer) to see how they compare.

While I did not identify any misses on this release from SAC, I will mention that the replacement front wheel is significantly smaller than the kit wheel. Using my digital caliper, the kit tire has a diameter of 0.3565 inch, while the SAC tire is 0.3095 inch. While this did catch my eye comparing the two wheels side by side, I have not found documentation on the dimensions for the real wheel/tire at this point, so I am just mentioning it here for the potential buyer to know.

In conclusion, I would highly recommend this landing gear set from Scale Aircraft Conversions to anyone owning the new 1/48 scale Hobby Boss A-4 Skyhawk kit. The ease of installation should make the set user-friendly for nearly any model builder wanting to add landing gear with improved strength to their project.

I would like to thank the folks at Scale Aircraft Conversions for providing this detail set to the IPMS-USA for review. I always like to recognize the folks behind the scenes at the Review Corps, who keep things running smoothly for the reviewers and those reading our work, and finally I send my appreciation to all who take the time to read my comments.

  • Package Contents
    Package Contents
  • Comparison - Forward Legs
    Comparison - Forward Legs
  • Comparison - Front Wheel & Yoke
    Comparison - Front Wheel & Yoke
  • Comparison -  Main Gear Legs
    Comparison - Main Gear Legs
  • Comparison -  Main Gear Braces
    Comparison - Main Gear Braces