The F-4 Phantom is an iconic aircraft. The new Academy kits do the aircraft justice, but if you have the Hasegawa kits these stabilators will work there as well. There are some things that can always be improved by the application of resin and photoetch.
There are three ways to use this set. You must decide which way you want to add these parts. The first way is to just replace the kit parts with the new resin ones. That is the least amount of work. The second option is to replace the kit stabilators and replace the molded-on cover plates with the PE parts from the set. And finally the third way is to use the resin and PE and set your angle of choice. You’ll have to decide which way to go. I recommend that you read through the instructions thoroughly and make sure you are using the Academy instructions when using the set on that model and vise versa.
This set is for the Unslotted Stabilator but the instructions show you both styles. The stabilators are beautifully cast in light grey resin. There are three small Ziploc baggies with cardboard stiffeners inside of each baggie. The first bag contains the actual stabilators with a cardboard stiffener to protect the fragile ends. The second baggie contains the resin parts used to adjust the stabs. The third bad contains a fret of photoetch protected by some cardboard to ensure that it stays straight. They are all held together by a staple and this in turn is held to the instructions by an elastic band.
The instructions are two-sided high quality A4 sized pages. They are well written and make perfect sense. You just must know which kit you are building and how you want to use the set.
The main part, the stabilator, is mounted to the front of the stabilator. Care must be taken to remove this correctly. I had a set of slotted stabilators and I ruined both trying to remove them. DO NOT CUT directly at the part. I’d recommend cutting in the thicker part and sanding down to the proper shape. The stabilators themselves are beautifully rendered with rivet patterns and accuate shapes for the heat areas of the Phantom.
The other resin parts are for aligning the PE parts and their use is called out in the instructions. If you are using Option 1, which is a direct replacement there is no need for these parts other than part #1.
The photoetch fret is in a separate baggie with a carboard protective piece. It is beautifully done in brass. There are ten pieces of photoetch should you elect to use them based on mounting option. The external stiffeners for the stabilators are provided should your aircraft have them.
Overall this is an impressive set for either the Academy or Hasegawa kits. The packaging is unconventional but the cardboard backing protects the parts adequately. The detail on the stabilators and the photoetch is superb. The hardest part will be removing the stabilators, but if you follow my tip you should have no problem whatsoever. This set is indicative of the high-quality product put out by Hypersonic.
Thanks to Hypersonic and IPMS/USA for the review items. You can get your copy directly from them at www.hypersonicmodels.co.uk . While there check out their entire line of products. Let them know you heard about it here.