This set is another of Eduard’s new “Steel” seatbelt line. The set is intended for early WWII RAF aircraft and includes three sets of shoulder harnesses and four sets of lap-belts. There is no explanation for the extra lap-belt set, as the instructions only show installation of the full set of belts.
Each harness set includes just four parts, a left lap-belt, a right lap-belt and two part shoulder straps. As I had one of the new Airfix Hurricane Mk. I kits in my to-do pile, I decided to try out the set on it. The Airfix cockpit is really well designed and looks great. I used a micro drill to open up the slot in the seatback and at the top of the armor back plate. Some photographs of Hurricane seats show the “y” portion of the shoulder harness going through the slot in the back of seat. I elected not to do this as the Eduard parts are only painted on one side, so the unpainted steel would have shown had I routed the belt through the back of the seat.
The belts themselves are tiny, so I recommend using photo-etch scissors to cut out the parts. Once cut out, the parts are easily attached to the kit parts and to each other as appropriate with superglue. I first attached the lap-belts to the sides of the seat and once the glue had set, I used a toothpick and some fine tweezers to bend the belts so they draped across the seat like I wanted. Once they were where I wanted them, I put a dab of superglue under the belts and pressed them into place with the toothpick.
For the shoulder harness, I first glued parts 1 and 2 together as shown on the instructions. I then bent the “y” section of part 1 over the back of the seat and attached it with superglue. Next I attached the seat to the armor plate. Once this was set, I ran the free end of part 2 through the hole I had drilled in the armor plate and attached it to the back of the armor plate, completing the installation.
This set is a great set and really dresses up the kit seat/cockpit. My experience is that the steel seatbelts are much easier to shape and install than the standard brass ones are. Highly recommended.
Thank you to Eduard for the review sample and to IPMS-USA for letting me review it.