F-105D Cockpit

Published: October 12th, 2010     
Box Art
Box Art
Reviewed by: 
Charles Landrum, IPMS# 26328
Scale: 1/48
Company: Aires Hobby Models
Price: $29.50
Product / Stock #: 4436

A welcome release from Aires is a resin cockpit for the 1/48 Monogram F-105 which provides and alternative in resin and PE over the other cockpits on the market. Even with advent of the Hobbyboss kit, many the Monogram/Revell F-105 still a nice alternative and is in some ways more accurate. So it is nice to see more aftermarket sets coming out for this kit. While the kit plastic is nice, this detail set is far nicer and will really give the cockpit a more prototypical look.

As is typical of Aires cockpits, this is a multimedia set. With 20 resin parts (by my count), it is crisply molded in the now typical durable grey resin Aires employs. The resin is flawless and the accompanying PE fret is superbly detailed with double relief etching. Also included is a film sheet for the back of the instrument panel. The tub is molded in one piece with two side wall pieces that fit tightly in place into recesses on the outside of the side consoles. Separate resin parts and PE are used for the throttle, levers, rudder pedals and control column. The instrument panel backplate is molded in one piece with the windscreen coaming and HUD projector - the detail is superb! The instrument panel is photoetched. The seat is a project unto it with 6 resin parts and 10 PE parts. PE details are provided for the canopy and windscreen.

So how does the set compare to the kit parts? The Monogram/Revell F-105 has a nice cockpit as kits go with nice detail in the instrument panels, side consoles and side walls. The seat is okay, with belts molded in. In comparison the Aires set has a level of detail well above that of the kit, in all areas. The pictures below show the difference.

So how does this set fit? The build up of the parts is straight forward, the fit good and the instructions clear. I glued the sidewalls to the cockpit tub in order to fit the tub into the fuselage. The tub is too wide at its aft end and requires filing to fit. The first picture below shows how much off it is. I chose to file the resin rather than thin the sidewalls since the plastic is soft and weakens easily. It took a lot of dry fitting and filing in order to close the fuselage halves. With all of that work there were still some gaps around the upper back wall at the hinge mechanism recess that will need some filler styrene. Up front, the modeler must remove the molded HUD coaming in order to insert the resin replacement. Be conservative in removing plastic, it is easier to remove plastic than to add. I removed too much and will need to back fill with styrene. Still the work was not that onerous and the enhancement was worth the effort.

Overall this is a very nice cockpit set with lots of cockpit and canopy detail; more than other sets I have seen. While it is not a drop in fit, I have spent more effort on similar sets. The detail is first rate and will go a long way to turning your nice Monogram/Revell model into a stunner. I highly recommend this set.

My thanks to David Lajer and Aires for the review sample.

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