Eduard has an outstanding line of F6F Hellcat models in both Profipack and Weekend boxings and it has released photoetch frets for the Weekend line as a stand-alone item. The Weekend models have only plastic parts (as opposed to the Profipack boxes), but at times you might want to enhance the look of them by adding some photoetch, hence the Weekend Photoetch frets. Often they only cover the cockpit, the part number tends to be low, and the parts require limited bending, hence being a simplified version of the full photoetch fret of the Profipack package.
In particular, this fret is devoted to the night-fighter version of the Hellcat used during the last few years of WWII. Note that the instrument panel (IP) includes a visor/screen for the radar. In addition to an IP, you also get cockpit side detail and seatbelts, making for a very nice and busy cockpit.
The IP is of the “layer” type, with a part that includes the instrument dials and another part on top of it with the bezels and “holes” that allow you to see the instrument dials. I like to use PFM (Future) to bond the bezel layer with the back layer. The advantage is that the Future provides a shiny finish that looks a bit like glass on top of the dials.
The side console details look great, with a combination of pre-painted black and red areas. Please note you have to modify the original plastic parts in order to place the photoetch details.
The seatbelts are simple affairs that require minimal bending to be conformed to the final shape and they look great. They even have a light weathering printed into them!
You can see from the pictures how nice and detailed the cockpit looks like. And believe me it is easy to use. It took me about 15 minutes to modify the plastic parts and about 30 minutes to get all the photoetch pieces in place. (BTW: I’m not counting the painting and drying time of the plastic parts, but you would have done that work regardless)
The only thing I think it is missing in this PE set is the levers that will be in the throttle quadrant. You are given the quadrant, but no levers for it. I just repurposed a different lever for the throttle. You can hardly tell the difference.
Highly recommended to modelers that are familiar with photoetch.
I would like to thank Eduard and IPMS/USA for the review item.