Cockpit Set for ME 163B

Published: December 30th, 2014     
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Product package
Reviewed by: Rod Lees - IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/32
Price: $32.00
Product / Stock #: 2198
Product provided by: Aires Hobby Models

Thanks first to Aires/Quickboost for providing IPMS USA this review set and IPMS leadership for passing it my way!

OK, here we go. The Meng ME163B is a very nice kit; the addition of a bit of resin is applied in this case to the cockpit. I believe this set could also work in the 40-year old Hasegawa powered-egg... have not tried it yet.

The overall presentation is excellent. The tub itself is well detailed as is. Mounting straps for the "S" stoff tanks on either side of the pilot are there; the back bulkhead has rivet and seat mounting details. A yoke for the rudder pedals mounts in the forward tub, to which are attached massive foot pedals with standard boot harnesses. I recommend you remove about 1/4" of the lower cheeks off the forward cockpit tub, because it will not fit in the model fuselage halves if you don't. A simple fit check indicates that will work as a solution.

Side walls include plumbing, electrical wiring, an oxygen regulator, and some other detail I am not familiar with on this bird. Aires suggests you to re-utilize the kit trim wheel, which fits right into place.

The instrument panel is the older technology film under Photoetch. I used automotive primer gray to paint the PE fret, then removed the panels I needed . Paint the backside of the instrument film flat white, carefully cut the individual panels out, and install on the backside of the PE panel. This effect is better than trying to paint kit instruments...

Some PE detail levers are incorporated, including the release for the wheel dolly. I was unsuccessful in installing the 1/64" T-handles on the left upper sidewall. (I believe these are for opening the fuel cocks, but I could be wrong... so my Komet won't be flying anytime soon).

Installing the control stick and the throttle lever (the long handle) was no problem. Paint and superglue these parts into their respective holes.

The Seat harness is made up of PE; a bit of paint and careful bending and installation effort on the harness came out with an effective look. The seat is the exact same item as provided in a separate Quickboost version; only the harness is missing until you put it on!

There is a forward dash which goes behind the instrument panel, which somehow disintegrated when I tried to remove it. Another small detail included the canopy release lever made in resin.

This item is, like all Aires sets, is well-worth the discretionary cash, as it looks great in the final fit. . Thanks again to Aires for another great review opportunity, and IPMS for sending it my way.

  • Side view
    Side view
  • Nose view
    Nose view
  • Aft view
    Aft view
  • Side view
    Side view

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