R.A.F. 3-inch 60lb Rockets

Published: March 12th, 2014     
Packaging
Packaging
Reviewed by: 
Bill Kluge, IPMS# 45849
Scale: 1/48
Company: Aerobonus
Price: $20.00
Product / Stock #: 480 067

This latest weapons set from Aerobonus contains all the parts necessary to represent eight 3-inch aircraft rockets and the launch rails used with them on a variety of British aircraft. The set includes eight rocket bodies, along with four different 8-piece sets of warheads (for a total of 32 warheads). Also included is a photoetch set with clips to attach the rockets to the rails, individual rocket fins (32 of them) and a photoetch alignment tool to help set the fins properly in place. A comprehensive decal sheet completes the package.

Once the choice of warheads is made, assembly of the rockets is pretty straightforward. Be mindful, the resin is somewhat brittle; and around the insert holes in the rocket bodies, where the warheads fit, it is thin. The ends were already broken on two of the rockets in my set, and I chipped a third one assembling a tight fitting warhead. I had to re-sculpt the tubes with putty.

The fit of the fin alignment tool with the fin pieces is extremely tight - too tight, really. If I had stuck with it, I'd still be fitting those fins. Instead, I trusted the reliable Mk. 1 eyeball alignment tool and had all 32 fins attached in a matter of minutes. I painted the completed rockets to match the included color guide, which does seem closely aligned with numerous b/w photos I've seen of RAF and RN rockets. The miniscule photoetch rail attachments are a minor nightmare of small scale PE folding and are best attempted by those modelers that don't have a handful of thumbs.

There are enough decals on the sheet to use with all the warheads. The guide indicates that the markings are different (however slight) on each type of warhead. The carrier film is very thin and only covers each separate print area, not the whole sheet. The thinness of the film, coupled with the smallness of the decals and the parts they go on, requires a very careful application process.  I managed to have four of them fold up on themselves before I adjusted my technique properly. Once the decals are applied, however, the results are quite impressive.  

This is a welcome addition for anyone wishing to up-arm any number of RAF or Royal Navy strike aircraft flown during the latter stages of WWII or Korea. They could probably pass for US Navy weapons, as well.

Thanks to Aires Hobby Models and IPMS for providing the review samples.

  • Instructions
    Instructions
  • Painting Guide
    Painting Guide
  • Decal Sheet
    Decal Sheet
  • FInished Rocket Assortment
    FInished Rocket Assortment
  • Rocket Closeup 1
    Rocket Closeup 1
  • Rocket Closeup 2
    Rocket Closeup 2