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Updated: 11 hours 49 min ago

Fine Brass Chain

Wed, 04/24/2019 - 23:37
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Czech Master Kits, known as CMK, is one of the prolific model companies out of the Czech Republic releasing full kits and aftermarket parts for aircraft, AFVs, ships, figures, and more.

This includes a series of brass chains which are listed as Fine (72ndscale), Medium (48th) and Coarse (35th).  This review covers the Fine version of these products as I build mostly 1/72ndscale kits. What you get is a very nice chain in brass that is 30cm long (almost 12 inches).  The links are 2mm long and 1.2mm wide.  The quality is high. You can either use the chain at its full length or cut it into smaller sizes for different uses.

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Brengun 1/144 Spitfire Wheels

Tue, 04/23/2019 - 23:56
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Here's another nifty little "add on" or "fix-it" for your 1/144th Spitfire.  The envelope contains 18 main wheels for Spitfires.  I had to look closely, but there are 3 different types of tires in the envelope. There are 6 with no tread, 6 with a tread that runs around the tire, and 6 with a diamond tread.  When I said I looked closely, I had to use the headband magnifier to see the tread.  But they are there.

As far as using these wheels, they're slightly better in quality than the wheels in the newer Spitfire kits such as Eduard or Mark 1 so you may want to replace the kit items.  But if you're looking at one of the "older" kits (Crown/Revell/Academy), the Brengun wheels are far superior. And then there's another need for wheels.  The wheels are sometimes knocked off the landing gear, or they just get lost.  These are the wheels you need.  

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Redstone Launcher

Sun, 04/21/2019 - 09:19
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Be aware that ordering the kit direct from Horizon will entail a postage fee. Horizon is located in Australia. Also note that Horizon is offering reduced pricing for their other 1/72nd scale spacecraft kits.

The kit instructions can be downloaded at https://www.horizon-models.com/1-72-redstone-launcher

Horizon Models has, in the last few years, has established itself as a source of superior models of launch vehicles for both unmanned and manned space flight.

The Redstone Launcher will be my third Horizon model and hopefully, it will not be my last. This, kit, however, is the final release in the Redstone series according to Tony Radosevic, the Managing Director or Horizon Models.

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KC-10 Extender

Sun, 04/21/2019 - 00:39
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Caracal Models is one of the leaders in aviation decals offered in 1/32, 1/48, 1/72 and 1/144 scale with many unique subjects never offered before now. The KC-10 is not a new subject, however it has been a long time since this subject has been available. With that being noted, older decals may not be reliable and the quality of printing is also in question.

Printed by Cartograph, the single sheet is printed perfectly with the small markings are very fine and easy to read. Markings included from unit markings at March, Travis, Barksdale, McGuire and Seymour-Johnson. With these six different markings, there are three different color schemes with a clear guide on the time frame the color applies to. There are instructions consist of eight color sheets that clearly show placement of markings for the six subjects. The instructions indicate the correct FS paint colors for each aircraft and easy to distinguish where each color is applied. There is a note on a suggested FS blue color which is the one used on the decal sheet so those two will match.

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Mercedes-Benz SL 230 Series 2001-2011

Sat, 04/20/2019 - 10:26
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This publication is one from a series of books covering the Mercedes Benz SL series by Veloce Publishing.  It is a 208 page hardcover book, printed in 25cm x 25cm (9.75" x 9.75") format.  Publication date was February, 2015.

Other publications in this series are:

  • Mercedes Benz SL R130 Series 1989-2001
  • Mercedes Benz SL & SLC 107 Series 1971-1989
  • Mercedes Benz SLK R170 Series 1996-2004


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M3A1 Scout Car: The US Cavalry’s Primary Reconnaissance Vehicle in World War II

Sat, 04/20/2019 - 10:16
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David Doyle's latest book is one of the latest entries in the 'Legends of Warfare' series with entries in Ground, Naval, and Aviation. The first Ground book focused on the Panzerkampfwagen IV, the first Naval book was on the USS Yorktown (CV-5), and the first two Aviation books were are on the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk (#4) and Douglas TBD Devastator (#3). This tome is the ninth release in the Legends of Warfare - Ground series.


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Fundekals F4U & FG Corsairs part 2 Whistling Death

Sat, 04/20/2019 - 09:27
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Originally conceived and developed as a carrier-based fighter for the United States Navy, the F4U Corsair was initially adopted by the US Marine Corps as a dependable and extremely lethal land-based fighter-bomber.  The Corsair's unique and innovative configuration incorporated engine oil coolers in the inboard wing sections, with the resulting airflow through them making an unmistakable whistling sound, audible over the sound of the engine and firing of its guns.   So predominant and unnerving was this sound to the Japanese forces on the receiving end of Corsair wrath that they dubbed the Corsair "Whistling Death."  Designed and manufactured by Chance Vought under the designation F4U and license built by Goodyear as FG-1, Corsairs became the staple of Marine Corps fighter units in the Pacific Theatre from 1942 until the end of World War II in 1945.  Rugged, fast, dependable, and robustly armed, Corsairs continued service as fighter-bombers into the jet age through the Korean War.

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M3 Half Track

Sat, 04/20/2019 - 09:17
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When I was around 10-11 years old, I got into a small-scale armor kick.  The local shop carried Airfix kits and I built a lot of their kits at the time.  The first time I built the M3 Half Track it was an MPC release in their Battle of the Bulge Historama kit.

Fast forward 45, cough, years later and Airfix is rereleasing many of their kits under their Vintage Classics range.  The kit appears to be the exact same plastic first released in 1966 including the 1 Ton Trailer.  The kit includes 54 parts molded in an OD plastic.  There is a bit of flash but what would you expect from a set of molds almost older than me.  The kit includes some nice detail, a driver and one of the nicest small scale .50 caliber machine guns.  Decals are included for a M3A1 during Operation Overlord.  More about them later.  The color scheme is shown in full color in the instructions.  Other than that change, the instructions look like they did when I first built it.

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Meng Sd.Kfz. 179 Bergepanther Ausf A

Sat, 04/20/2019 - 00:37
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With the development of the Panther and the Tiger 1 the Germans came to the realization that they needed an armored recovery vehicle that could handle the weight of these larger vehicles. MAN was originally tasked converting Panther Ds for use in this capacity.  The vehicles selected for conversion had the turret removed and replaced with a central 40-ton winch and a large rear spade to dig the vehicle in. A wooden work platform was built over the winch and a light crane (1500 kgs capacity) was installed on the rear deck.  For armament, a 2cm KwK-30 cannon was mounted on the front along with the standard machine gun.  This new kit from Meng is the first new modern kit of this interesting vehicle and the first release of this vehicle since the old Italeri kit from the mid-1990s.    

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Tempest Mk. V

Fri, 04/19/2019 - 09:29
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The Hawker Tempest Mk V was a follow-on fighter from the Typhoon. It proved to be a superb mid to low level fighter and ground attack aeroplane.

This is Eduard's brand new mold of the Tempest and effectively puts their older (but still very acceptable) model, Cat 1169, out to pasture.

This is the ProfiPACK which includes color photo etch, masks for the canopy, wheels, lights and walkways, as well as a nice in register decal sheet and a high quality paper instruction book. The ProfiPACK provides the modeler with just about everything needed to build a very nice model out of the box. For this build review, I also used Eduard's resin wheels, exhaust pipes, "Look" instrument panel, steel seat belts and gun bays.

For whatever reason, several parts had separated from the sprue trees and some were separated or broken. I have other Eduard kits where everything was intact, so this damage may have occurred in transit somewhere with the extra mailing of the review kit. Everything was repairable.

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Kagero Top Drawing 57 Messerschmitt Bf 110 Vol 1

Tue, 04/16/2019 - 21:58
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The book provides great detail drawings of the Messerschmitt Bf 110 which was a work horse for the German Luftwaffe.

I found the drawings in this book to be fascinating and show many of the variants of this very versatile aircraft.

Along with the many outline drawings (both 1/48 & 1/72 scale) there are 10 very nice profile drawings. Also include in the book is a mask for the Eduard 1/72 BF 110 C/D/E kit.

There is also a pull out 1/48 scale plan drawing.

I recommend this book to everyone with an interest in the BF 110 and a must for modellers.

Thanks go to Casemate Publishing for providing this book to review and IPMS USA for allowing me to review it for them


Mon, 04/15/2019 - 11:25
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From the author's website:

Although only 100 examples were produced, the 155mm Gun Motor Carriage M12 served with distinction as an infantry-support weapon and in particular as a bunker-buster during the U.S. assault on the Siegfried Line in the winter of 1944-45.

Spread through 144 pages, almost 200 photos, nearly evenly divided between photos of the sole surviving example and vintage development and combat photos, including numerous previously unpublished images, chronicle the history of this pioneering self- propelled gun and its companion M30  ammunition carrier.

What's Inside...

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Real Colors of WWII Aircraft, Limited Edition

Mon, 04/15/2019 - 01:15
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This massive tome landed in my mailbox courtesy of the fine folks at AK Interactive who have also provided us with multiple samples of paint, brushes, weathering media and the like.  This is the icing on the cake for any modeler of American, Russian, Luftwaffe, or British aircraft of the WWII period.  The book is divided into 4 sections accordingly, with sub-sections for the various branches (e.g. USN, USAAF and/or time periods such as pre-war, early and late war and again, where appropriate, operational theatres such as Tropical and Mediterranean areas).  

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Airfix Hawker Sea Fury FB.II

Mon, 04/15/2019 - 00:48
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I've had a couple of Trumpeter and the Hobbycraft versions of the Hawker Sea Fury in my growing stash waiting for a rainy-day project to come around.  I really like the brutish appearance of this big five-bladed prop driven monster.  I purchased several Barracuda Studios aftermarket goodies for the Trumpy kit to do a colorful Canadian Navy Artic Research version.  So, when Airfix announced their version of this aircraft, and it came up for grabs from the kit review stash, I jumped at the chance to do a review build as a warm-up for and comparison to the others.  John Noack had been given the Fundekal's Sea Fury Pt. 2 decal sheet at last year's Phoenix Nationals for review.  He emailed an offer to use them as I was in the middle of the build. You can find my concurrent review of that sheet elsewhere on the IPMS Reviews website.  The Sea Fury's colorful history is well known and extensively documented, so let's get on with my build and impressions of this 1/48 scale plastic version.

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Tempest Mk. V TFace Canopy Masks

Sun, 04/14/2019 - 14:56
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One of the greatest things to ever hit the modeling community was the invention of the canopy mask! These unassuming sets have to be the Holy Grail of saving untold hours masking simple and complex canopies!

Eduard has supplied canopy masks for many years, and recently they introduced a new line of TFace masks. These include the standard masks for the outside of the canopy and also a set for the inside. The beauty of these is that the canopy frames can be painted their respective color on the inside. This results in a more realistic look and no tedious masking to remove glossy frames.

I used the TFace masks on Eduard's new Tempest Mk V. The inside of the canopy was masked off and painted black, while the outside received the camouflage colors. My canopy is quite small, but the inside painted areas can still be seen. The masks for the sliding canopy fit perfectly, but I thought the inside masks for the windscreen side glass were a little large.

Where these TFace masks will really shine is when used on a model with larger windows that are easily seen. Examples would be side opening canopies, or models in 1/32 and

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Tempest Mk. V - Instrument Panel and Harness

Sun, 04/14/2019 - 14:50
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The "LooK" instrument panels sets are a welcome addition to the ever expanding offerings from Eduard. They provide the modeler with a ready to use panel. To compliment these, they are accompanied by a set of steel pre-painted seat belts. These two items will really set a cockpit apart and take it to the next level from the standard kit parts.

When the IPMS offered Eduard's latest releases for review, I requested the Tempest Mk V along with this set. My intention was to use the LooK instrument panel and seat belts.

The Tempest kit was the ProfiPACK that included a color photo etch (PE) instrument panel.

Eduard's new PE instrument panels come complete with clear gloss over the instruments. No more having to carefully add tiny clear gloss drops to simulate glass instrument lenses. The LooK instrument panel likewise includes clear "glass" over the instruments.

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Hawker Tempest Mk. V Gun Bays

Sun, 04/14/2019 - 14:37
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The recently released Eduard Hawker Tempest Mk V really sets a high standard for all other 1/48 scale Tempest's. While building this kit, I included the Eduard gun bay which took it to an even higher standard!

Gun bays are provided for both wings, but I decided to only use the right wing parts. Now I have a spare set for another build.

The set includes resin and photo etch (PE) parts. They are very nicely packaged in zip-lock bags, within a cardboard box and protected by soft foam.

All resin parts are attached to pour stubs or resin supportive framework. They were easily removed with careful use of a razor saw and gentle sanding. I managed to break a delicate cross member part beyond repair and replaced it with sheet plastic.

I first removed the right wing gun bay covers using a razor saw. Extreme care is needed not to damage the lovely surrounding wing details so I used Dymo Tape to outline the bay edges. Any slips went over the tape and not the wing. Sanding any rough cut areas completed this stage, and ensured a perfect fit of the resin gun bay walls.

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Tempest Mk. V Wheels Late

Sun, 04/14/2019 - 11:48
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These Hawker Tempest resin wheels replace the already nice kit plastic wheels. The stand out features are the extra detail on the rims and tire side walls, flat spots and they are single pieces.

The kit wheels are supplied in two halves to be glued together and the seam dealt with.  The resin wheels just have to be removed from the resin pour block with a razor saw. This is located under the flat spot. If you are careful cutting it off, you only need a few swipes with a sanding stick to smooth out the cut, and the wheel is ready for paint.

Paint masks are supplied and fit nicely, resulting in great looking wheels that really compliment Eduard's superb Tempest Mk V model. These are a direct fit replacement, although I found the axel holes needed to be opened a little for a good fit.

My thanks to Eduard and the IPMS for the opportunity to review this fantastic product.

HMS Illustrious

Sun, 04/14/2019 - 11:37
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The Illustrious class was a class of aircraft carrier of the Royal Navy that included some of the most important British warships in World War II. The 1st ship in this class was HM Illustrious. She was laid down on 27th April 1937, launched on 5th April 1939 and commissioned on 25th May 1940. The Illustrious class relied on their anti-aircraft armament and the passive defense provided by an armored flight deck for survival.

In the Illustrious class, armor was carried at the flight deck level and formed an armored box-like hangar that was an integral part of the ship's structure. This armor scheme was designed to withstand 1,000-pound bombs. The flight deck had an armored thickness of 3 inches.

The Kit

Upon opening the box you will find 13 sprues of grey plastic, 2 metal ballast, a decal sheet and an 8-page instruction fold out. The plastic is crisply molded and pretty much free of flash and sink marks. The reason for the high parts count is that there are many parts which are not used for this kit. The decals are printed cleanly, but their accuracy leaves a bit to be desired.

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Abandoned Little Treasures

Sun, 04/14/2019 - 11:14
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Courtesy of the AK Interactive website: As the title suggests, Abandoned Little Treasures is a book that offers you detailed descriptions of how to create models of various abandoned objects. Following the concept of the best sellers Extreme Reality, we release this new super-book. The best modelers from around the world share their scratch-building, painting, and extreme weathering techniques in richly illustrated step-by-step articles. Amongst the subjects covered, you will find a tank, an aircraft carrier, a WWI airplane, a sci-fi vehicle, a tractor, a building, and a few others. This book shows us how realism can be achieved in scale modeling and will be a good experience for our next projects, 136 pages of quality modeling!

Included in this publication are detailed articles for modeling abandoned versions of the following:

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