Published: March 16th, 2014     
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Reviewed by: Michael Scott - IPMS# 43177
Scale: 1/144
Price: $18.00
Product / Stock #: 14690
Product provided by: Minicraft Model Kits

This is a small scale kit of the USA JM-1 in two schemes: Joe's Banana boat and US Marine Corps MJ-1. It is a basic 1:144 kit with limited interior, no painting masks and a small, but nice set of decals.

I opted for the JM-1 Banana Boat scheme. As you can see from the kit instruction sheet - one large fold out - there are minimal parts. There was little flash, but some of the detail was very soft on some parts. The kit provides the option to build the model on the ground, or in flight. I chose the latter. The issue with this decision was with the poorly fitting nose gear doors. The main gear doors were a much better fit.

The molds must be for a different type since you are instructed to fill and sand smooth a circular area on the top aft of the fuselage, which I believe would have been for a gun turret. This was a pain and I'd say unnecessary. Minicraft could have produced the correct fuselage. I realize this would have been costly, but if you're going to put out a specific version, it shouldn't be a different one in a new box.

I used Tamiya rattle can aluminum and some Model Master non-buffing aluminum. The teeny canopy lines were lined in by #2 pencil after scoring them with a razor saw to create a surface for the graphite. They look better for real than in the photos.

The decals performed better than expected.

If you must have a JM-1 in this scale, the Minicraft is an o.k. choice. I'm not sure if it is the only one. Be prepared to spend time on the fuselage modification required.

Thanks to Minicraft Models for providing the review sample.

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