Brewster Buffalo Flaps

Published: May 20th, 2018     
Product Image
Reviewed by: 
Gino Dykstra, IPMS# 11198
Scale: 1/32
Company: Brengun
Price: $10.71
Product / Stock #: BRL32023

Anybody who knows me and my modeling preferences know that I am NOT a fan of photo-etch for photo-etch's sake. Too many model companies have begun including photoetch sheets in their products not because they actually enhance the accuracy and scale of the model, but because it gives them an excuse to jack the price up. This does not make me their friend.

That being said, there are times when nothing but photoetch will do the job. In this case, Brengun has offered a set to model separate landing flaps for the 1/32nd Special Hobby Brewster Buffalo, and what a lovely little accessory kit this is!

The parts come on two separate sheets - one for each wing - and feature not only the flap itself but the interior of the upper wing. They also include a somewhat cryptic instruction sheet to help with assembly. As a technical writer by profession, I can think of a few things that they might have shown differently, but it's still clear enough to be quite functional.

Although my model of the Buffalo is far from ready to accept these gems, I decided to completely assemble one flap system just to see how they went together. Frankly, for all the fiddly bits involved it took a surprisingly small amount of time. I had the entire flap assembly completed - top and bottom - in something less than half an hour. Not bad for such a seemingly complex build!

On the other hand, this is one of those jobs where a folding tool would definitely be useful. Unfortunately, I don't own one, so I had to do the long folds by hand, carefully bending along the entire length of each flap bit by bit until the section was more or less perpendicular. Obviously, those modelers with more foresight than I will have an easier time of it.

On to the fiddly bits. Each flap has a plethora of tiny angled flap reinforcers, each of which has to be removed from the backing sheet, folded in half and glued into position on the flap. If you do this systematically and follow the sequence, it goes surprisingly fast. I'd cut each little piece out, carefully fold it with tweezers, add a drop of superglue to keep the fold together and then superglue it to the flap. The end result speaks for itself, I think, and certainly is going to look good on the model.

In the end, is this accessory kit worth it? Indisputably. The cost is quite fair and the kit itself is well engineered with exceptionally good results with a minimum of heartache. It will add immeasurably to the look of the completed Buffalo and really does the job as advertised. Who can ask for more? Highly recommended.

As always, my very heartfelt thanks to Brengun for making this excellent set and to IPMS/USA for letting this old curmudgeon take a shot at them.

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