The U-2 is one of those historic planes that many people have heard of whether they are fans of planes or not. From the shooting down of Francis Gary Powers to its long service of gathering intelligence, it has always interested me. AVF Club has issued their first kit of this iconic plane as the U-2A Dragon Lady.
Inside the box, there are eight grey sprues with petit panel lines and no flash, easily the equivalent of top-flight manufacturers. One crystal clear sprue is provided along with a large decal sheet and a nice picture of the box art. There are three options in the box for markings:
Before starting this review, I was un-aware of RES KIT and now that I am aware, I will certainly keep an eye open for some of their other accessories. They supply modelers with resin ordnance, weapons, wheels, engines, intakes as well as figures. Check them out!
Currently on my workbench is an Airfix B-25C/D and I thought I might give the wheels from RES KIT a try on the model when it is finished. For a very reasonable amount of money, RES KIT provides you with a very nicely set of detailed wheels for any B-25 Mitchell. (Also available in 1/ 48 scale.) RES KIT supplies you with nicely molded set of wheels molded in dark grey resin. The wheels are molded separately from the hubs which really saves a bunch of time NOT having to mask the wheels for painting.
Wikipedia strikes again!: The AAI RQ-7 Shadow is an American unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) used by the United States Army, Australian Army, and Swedish Army for reconnaissance, surveillance, target acquisition, and battle damage assessment.
Launched from a trailer-mounted pneumatic catapult, it is recovered with the aid of arresting gear similar to jets on an aircraft carrier. Its gimbal-mounted, digitally stabilized, liquid nitrogen-cooled electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) camera relays video in real time via a C-band line-of-sight-data link to the ground control station (GCS).
The RQ-7 Shadow is the result of a continued US Army search for an effective battlefield UAV after the cancellation of the Alliant RQ-6 Outsider aircraft. AAI Corporation followed up their RQ-2 Pioneer with the Shadow 200, a similar, more refined UAV. In late 1999, the army selected the Shadow 200 to fill the tactical UAS requirement, re-designating it the RQ-7.
Among the iconic aircraft of World War II, the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt not only was physically the biggest single-engine fighter, it also had and enormous impact on history.
P-47's were flown by 132 US Army Air Force squadrons during the Second World War, but they were not flown only by Americans. The Aircraft also served with sixteen British Royal Air Force squadrons and four French squadrons, as well as Brazilian, Chinese, and Mexican squadrons attached to US units. The Soviet air force also prominently flew Thunderbolts, through the exact number of squadrons equipped with the massive fighter is uncertain.
The Bf-109 is an iconic fighter of the Third Reich. Developed in 1935 the single engine monoplane fighter struck fear into the enemies of the Reich until the end of the war. Continuously developed throughout the war the fighter even survived the fall of Germany in the air forces of Spain, Czechoslovakia and ironically the fledgling Israel.
This softbound book contains 80 pages of high quality paper and 100 color illustrations and pictures. The book includes a variety of black and white historical images, as well as, a number of contemporary color photos not just of the Bf-109 but also its opponents. There are eight pages of color profiles that are quite nice and run the entire production from the first 109 to the last Spanish and Czech ones.
Res Kit offers a wide variety of resin parts and bits for a large number of aircraft in 1/48th, 1/72nd, and 1/32nd scale. This review looks at the set of wheels for a P-51 in 1/48th scale. The product is not specific to any particular P-51 kit and therefore, can be used on any 1/48th P-51 that is in your "stash".
The F-15, no other aircraft in history has been as successful in air-to-air engagement, as the Eagle. Prior to Desert Storm, the Eagle was used successfully by the Israelis but had been unproven in use by the US Air Force.
The F-15C is a beautiful aircraft and during Desert Storm it proved itself so successful scoring 32 aerial victories of the 41 victories achieved by the US forces.
Here is another caricature tank from Meng Models. These models are obviously targeted at kids, but many of us "serious" modelers are finding them to be fantastic "breaks" from our usual in-depth subjects. I am seeing them on the contest tables as well.
The kit comes in a strong end opening box with a colorful painting of a British Matilda. All the sprues, instruction manual and tiny decal sheet are located within a single plastic bag.
All the parts show a good amount of detail, and it is intended to be a "snap fit" model. The instruction manual is easy to follow, but the painting and decal diagrams are very small and quite dark, making it a little difficult to determine decal positions and color demarcation areas. There are two decal schemes offered: a British tank in the Caunter paint scheme and a captured German tank painted in Panzer Grey.
Harriers are famous for being able to take off and land vertically. Of course, taking off vertically with a full combat load isn't practical, unless your mission is to drop a teacup of napalm just off the airfield border. Nevertheless, the Harrier has been successful, and it's because of the ability to adjust the exhaust to vector it through the nozzles to allow downward as well as normal push for vertical and normal flight.
The entire kit is two sets of nozzles, one forward, one rear, left and right sides.
I used the Dragon AV-8B kit for this review, and the nozzles fit in the Dragon fuselage with no modification.
The Renault FT (the 17 was added after World War I) was the first modern tank to reach production. The big advance over previous armored vehicles was the armament in a fully rotating turret, which allowed the tank to shoot without maneuvering. There were over 3,000 FTs built in France during the war, and there were 950 M1917 light tanks built in the United States. None of the US built tanks were completed in time to see action in the war, but France lent 144 FTs to the US Army in mid-1918.
There were many users of the FT, including Afghanistan, where 4 were discovered by US Forces in 2003, Belgium, Brazil, China, Croatia, Czechoslovakia, and 19 others, including Nazi Germany.
The recent re-release of Airfix's catalogue of 1/76 AFVs has generated a bit of a buzz among Airfix fans, many of whom grew up building these little gems as lads. Now, as adults, these kits bring back memories of the simpler times with the re-boxing of these little beauties. I never had much of an opportunity to build Airfix kits in my youth, I don't remember them, or their many American boxings being available in my local hobby shop. However, coming back into the hobby as an adult, I've really taken a liken to many of Airfix's recent offerings, as well as a few of their golden oldies.
These "Vintage Classic" releases from Airfix, fit both categories. They're old molds repackaged into the new box with newly printed decals, and most important of all, new tracks. The kits come packaged in the now familiar side-opening red box, but feature the artwork on the original packaging. In the case of the Stug III, the artwork is more of a fiction piece, showing a Stug III and infantry charging down a sand dune as U.S. troops assault the beaches from landing crafts.
The DeHavilland DH-82 Tiger Moth, like the Stearman Model 75 and possibly the Curtiss JN-4 "Jenny", is one of the standard and best known biplane training aircraft, in terms of numbers built, reputation, and number of surviving aircraft. Like the Stearman, the Tiger Moth began as a primary training aircraft, moving into fame as World War II began and providing the basis for the training programs for the British Commonwealth air forces, including the RAF, RCAF, RAAF, RNZAF, RSAAF, and many other smaller air arms. Originally conceived as a civilian trainer evolving from the DH-60 Gypsy Moth of the late twenties, the DH-82 featured staggered wings and an inverted engine to provide better forward visibility for the pilots. It was fully aerobatic. Wartime versions were equipped with anti-spin strakes ahead of the horizontal stabilizers, although all DH-82's did not have these. All pre-war DH-82's were impressed by the RAF at the beginning of the war, and while many were sold surplus afterwards, a large number remained in service, some until as late as the early sixties.
Panzer Rollen provides an insightful look into the workings of the Military Intelligence Service that was so invaluable in shaping both the strategy and tactics of the Allied forces during the Second World War.
Captured German field manuals translated and published by the US Military Intelligence Division are crucial in offering a perception of the intelligence provided to Allied fighters. The two volumes gathered together in this publication were originally published by the German War Office and therefore are particularly valuable, as they also provide a rare glimpse into the methodology underlying the operation of an armored division from the German perspective. Comprising of two supplementary field manuals, this book is essential reading for any military history enthusiast.
Bob Carruthers is an Emmy Award - winning author and historian, who has written extensively on the Great War. A graduate of Edinburgh University, Bob is the author of a number of military history titles including the Amazon bestseller The Wehrmacht in Russia.
Fightertown decals is an online retailer offering decals for the various series of F-14 Tomcats and F-18 Super Hornets. Currently, the offerings are limited to 1/48th scale aircraft and data markings. Each decal sheet includes marking for several aircraft.Decal Sheet Contents
The decal sheet is big: 8 5/8" by 11 1/2" size. A smaller decal sheet is also included that provides additional windscreen tinting decals, plus smaller items that are somewhat of a mystery to me at this point.
Iliad Design is a Canadian producer of decals, books, and aircraft color charts. Decals are offered in 1/32nd, 1/48th and 1/72nd scales and cover propeller- and jet-powered aircraftDecal Sheet Contents
This sheet offers markings for seven MiG-19 and Chinese manufactured J-6 aircraft. Countries include Egypt, Pakistan, and Russia. Many of the color schemes are a bit odd and unusual, which makes for some interesting subjects.
The first aircraft is a Shenyang J-6, the Chinese version of the MiG-19S, in Pakistani Air Force markings. The aircraft is a three-color scheme, with the FS colors called out.
Next is a Shenyang J-6 of the Egyptian Air Force, in a two-color scheme, and the FS colors are noted.
The third aircraft is another Pakistani J-6 in red, green and white retirement markings. This is a very colorful aircraft.
The fourth is a MiG-19S from the Moscow Military District aerobatic display team with an all red topside finish.
Next another Shenyang J-6 of the Albanian Air Force. This aircraft is in a natural metal finish, with few markings.
Eduard has hit a major home run when they went back and redesigned their FW-190 series of kits. The latest version is the FW-190A-2. In my case, I had the Bunny Fighter version which includes decals for Oblt. Frank Liesendahl.
What is the Bunny Fighter Club? It is a discount for buying directly from the Eduard webstore. It is a 15% discount on all items. It also allows the modeler access to special and limited edition releases, both kits and accessories. When you visit a show where Eduard is vending you get an additional discount. You even get a T-shirt and finally if you attend E-Day you get free entry into the show.
The BFC decal instructions are available on the Eduard webpage. The only downside to this release is that this particular marking option does not show up in the instructions as to which bomb rack is required. You'll have to figure out which holes to open and build up the bomb and rack.
Thank you to Bert Kinzey and Rock Roszak for continuing to bring back a tremendous resource for the modeler, in a print-on-demand paperback format. Thank you to the IPMS Reviewer Corps for allowing me to test out this new and exciting story of the F-8/RF-8 Crusader's history, details, versions and markings.
The F-16 has always been a favorite of mine. So when these decals came out I just had to get a set. The Aviano aircraft have been involved in all major campaigns since 2001. This sheet covers from 2002 to 2009.
Packaged in a large ziplock bag are seven double-sided high-quality sheets with full color printings. There are marking options for 14 aircraft. Each aircraft has both side profile views. All the markings are clearly seen. If there was a variation in the markings it is pointed out. Each sheet has two aircraft on each side of the sheet. Some of the aircraft have really colorful markings, including nose art and tail markings. The Wyvern and fin flash are quite colorful. If you like color on your Falcon this is a great sheet. There are mission markings and kill markings.
I've always been a big fan of the F.A.Q. books; while they are not cheap, they are packed with stunning pictures and high-quality modeling know-how. AK Interactive's latest F.A.Q. release, version 3 by world-class modeler Ruben Gonzalez, focuses on modern armor. And just like its predecessors, it's stunning.
The soft-cover book is contains 463 pages on glossy paper. Each page averages six high-quality images and their accompanying descriptions, which means there are around 2500 beautiful images in the book. But this book is more than just pretty pictures...it's a how-to book and provides stet-by-step methodologies on how to use the modeling techniques used in the images. If you really want to take your modern armor models to the next level, the ways to do just that are in this book. Also included is a section on 3d-printed parts and how to use them.
The book is laid out in the following order:
Back in the mid-90's, the late Ed Kinney and I co-founded IPMS Fame Cities in the Akron/Canton area. While many ribald tales could be told of those days, the tenuous link to this review is that the owner of MCW Finishes, Mike Guest, is a member of Fame Cities. I reconnected with Mike after I read about the new line of military colors he's producing in gloss lacquer. I asked mike to supply us with a group of sample colors and he more than obliged. I was recently building the little Brengun 1/144 Horten 229 night fighter, which called for an RLM 75/76 upper finish, so this gave me my first opportunity to try these paints.
I generally don't write overly superlative reviews, but I have to tell you that these are absolutely fantastic paints. Mike and crew formulate their own colors using PPG base, and these are provided in ready-to-spray format.