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  1. Hi folks, I've kept this one pretty much away from LSM simply because of the limited time I've had to build this for publication. From start to finish, this was built over 3 weeks, with only about 2 weeks of that really being used. This is a test-shot of the forthcoming 1:32 Focke-Wulf Fw 190F-8, from Revell, finished in kit decals. Watch out for this next month in Tamiya Model Magazine International.
  2. 1:32 Spitfire Mk.II instrument panel Yahu Cataloge # YMA3201 Available from StoryModels for £5.19 I remember having real fun when I built the test shot of the Revell 1:32 Spitfire Mk.IIa last year. The kit isn't perfect, by any means, but one quirk I had to deal with at the time was the rebuilding of the instrument panel which was reversed. Revell actually fixed this and made quite a nice job of it, but if painting and super-detailing instrument panels isn't one of your preferred tasks, then Yahu have come up with a solution. This, with some minor plastic surgery, will give you the very ultimate in cockpit focal points. Yahu's new instrument panel replacement is packed into a small zip-lock wallet, with a cardboard product holder stapled to it. My only gripe here is that the inserted card instructions are very thin, and don't provide much protection from the packet being bent. The front of the card is illustrated with a colour image of the parts contained, whilst the rear pf the wallet contains the loose instrument panel, and several small PE parts in another, smaller sleeve. I have to say that this product is nothing short of entirely amazing, and has to be seen to be believed. I don't know the process of how the parts are painted/inked, but the finish is remarkable, with totally solid, sharp colour, and details which are so fine that I have nothing like this before, except for perhaps in decal form from Airscale. The rear of the panel has a couple of small paint parts, showing the colour application doesn't appear to be digitally printed. The panel itself is finished in a colour which I would describe as about 95% black, for extra realism, and the finish is also matt, except for the recessed instrument faces which are glossy, to represent the glass faces. There is actually another glossy area here, and that is the central panel area. This is because a separate panel fits atop this, and of course, adhesive will stick better to a glossy finish. Smart thinking! Scuffs and scratches are entirely intentional! Again, instrument and panel detail is the very best I have seen, with various fasteners, placard etc. been so clearly replicated. Where instruments have a coloured bezel, these are sharply created, and of course, that bezel detail is beautifully raised and defined. There is also an extra part which is attached to the IP via a small tag, and that is to replace the kit's compass face. This is as superbly printed as the remainder of the parts in this release. The 'UP' and 'DOWN' text on the levers is readable, but only in macro view!! Note more intentional weathering on the panel. The small wallet inside this packet, apart from containing the central, raised basic instruments panel, complete with silver fasteners, also holds a tiny mini-fret, holding three further parts which form various toggle switches. Be careful with these, as no spares are included. For attaching the various parts, I would use Klear which of course won't give the fogging that many CA adhesives create. There are also no instructions which show that you need to actually remove the moulded plastic detail from the kit instrument panel, allowing this unit to sit flush to the bare plastic. I think that's so obvious that you really don't need to be told that you have to do this. Conclusion There are a number of upgrade sets for the new Revell Spitfire Mk.IIa, and this is probably one of the very best that you can buy. A good number of large scale guys probably like to make the most of the cockpit area, and this will go a long way to creating that level of attainment that you strive for. Assembly is so simple, and the result is a panel which is nigh on photo-realistic. For a single instrument pane, you might baulk at spending over £5, but please check this out, and you'll see that it's worth every penny. Very highly recommended (just stunning!) My sincere thanks to StoryModels for the review sample seen here. To purchase this directly, click THIS link. James H
  3. With the Do-335 cleared out of the way I think it's time to finally tackle one of my all time favorite subjects. The He-219... I could have bought the ZM one but I chose not to. Why? Because the kit is over engineered which causes a lot of AM companies to ignore it. Thinking it doesn't need anything. Revell's He-219 is cheap and basic. Yeah yeah, i know about the engine shape and canopy and I don't care. CMK, ProfiModeller, Eduard, HGW, and more companies have released juicy upgrades. This enables me to indulge in my favorite activity.... AM-hunting!! Waiting for some shipments now and when they arrive, I'm taming the Owl! Watch this space... Cheers, Jeroen
  4. This is the old kit from Revell. I think all they did was put some new pieces in their PFM kit to make an MF. Detail is lacking, the cockpit is a mess and inaccurate with the molds and fit are not up to what you'd expect today. Rather than chuck it out I thought I'd just build it as is, for the detail sets would cost more than simply buying the rather nice Trumpeter kit. Mark was nice enough to send me a pilot from the Trumpeter kit and Tony some VPAF markings (thanks guys) and I scrounged some sidewinders from an old Revell F-4E kit to stand in for R3-S missiles as they were pretty much Russian made sidewinder copies anyway. I was meaning to represent red 5040, the MiG 21 nightfighter that allegedly shot down a B-52 during the 1972 Christmas bombings, but I mucked up the masks for the numbers several times and rage quit them, so I'm calling it done. Unfortunantly its a grey old day in Melbourne for taking pictures, as you can see.
  5. Hi all, Recent months on LSM haven't been too kind to me with maintaining build logs and having to postpone and in lots of cases, cancel entire projects. If you expected to see that Fokker D.VII, it won't happen yet. If you were waiting for the Me 410, it won't happen yet. If you were waiting for the 1:48 He 219, it won't happen yet. I think you get the idea. My time isn't running in a linear manner, and commitments have often seen things constantly shift. In an attempt to break deadlock, I'm rolling a project I've had in the sidelines for a long time; a Junkers Ju 88D-1. This is essentially an 88A-4, but with a few very minor external changes. The machine's main differences are in areas we simply won't see. Where the real change here is that this machine will carry AMERICAN markings, and odd ones too. Camouflage is actually of the RAF desert type, with an azure blue underside. Check out that US flag too! I'll use the Revell Ju 88A-4 kit, along with Eduard's BIGED set and Brassin resin wheels. Profimodeller will supply the tail wheel and main gear wells. Exposed fuel tank will be from CMK. I'll ask Mal to make masks for this, as 1:32 decals don't exist. I hope you like it.
  6. Tease Revell A-1 kit, Aims and CMK conversion sets and decals, RB belts and Master barrels Aaron
  7. Welcome to our first ever Group/Build Review here at Large Scale Modeller. For our initial installment we'll be doing the new Revell Bf 109G-6 in 1/32 scale. We've assembled a crack team of builders aka "The Knights of the 109 Round Table" including myself (Mike/mikester), Dave J., Matt M. (DoogsATX), Matt L. (Matt_) and Rick. We'll be bringing you a step by step analysis of how the kit goes together, our likes and dislikes and some hints and tips that might you help you out a bit if you decide to tackle this kit in the future. Please feel free to chime in with comments and questions, without further ado let's get this thing rolling! Mike: The cockpit: Pros: - Overall nice level of detail - Smooth IP faces makes using replacement decals much easier - Separate clear fuel line easy to paint and detail - Parts fit together into a nice little "cocoon" which fits nicely into fuselage halves Cons: -Molded on seat belts - Incorrect joystick - Fuselage sidewall detail a little sparse Not much to report here as far as hints and tips other than if you "hypothetically" forgot to put to put the fuel line in you can still squeeze it in with the cockpit assembled, hypothetically! The cockpit deck looks pretty nice with paint applied (Mr. Color RLM 66), I've used HGW seat belts and some lead foil for the straps on the rudder pedals. I've also replaced the kit joystick with a Quickboost part. Port fuselage sidewall: I've added some Airscale and Mike Grant placards for a little more visual interest. Starboard fuselage sidewall: Prior to installation of the fuel line. The gauges for the oxygen panel are from a Mike Grant sheet, the Revell sheet does not include these. I made a cursory attempt at adding some wiring to the fuse panel but I didn't go overboard. Instrument Panel: The gauge decals were cut out individually and applied. The decals are extremely resistant to softeners and solvents. They shrugged off repeated applications of Mr. Mark Softer and Micro-sol. Overall I liked the level of detail and the setup, the completed assembly fits nicely into the fuselage halves. I might spend some more time adding a few details next time around but this looks pretty good right out of the box. Stage Rating 7 Dave: Here is my thoughts from early on - Pro's - Cockpit parts fit together pretty well. Its' not a Tamiya or Wingnut fit, but I have seen worst from other manufactures. I like the way Revell has provided the parts in a workable sub-assemblies that you can easily handle during painting & detail stages.. An extra point for Revell moulding the Fuel Line in Clear Plastic.... But then that point marked off as they have placed one of the sprue attachment points to the only part of the line that needs to be clear. Love the Instutment Panel, as Revell have left all the dial faces blank. I used Airscale & MDC Dials on my IP's. Con's - I don't know what Revell where thinking with the moulded on Harness on the seat parts. If they were to do this again, I rather them not to do it at all, or give you optional parts with harness or without. I filed mine off and replaced them with RB Production Harness. The Revi gun sights are very poor and undersized compaired to the Hasegawa part. Will replace with Quickboost parts. Control Stick is missing a couple of small details.... I have used the part, but I would replace with a Quickboost part if I built this kit again. Revell could have added more details like wiring looms etc.. to some of the parts. I have added some looms to one of my cockpits using .3mm wire and fine wire striped from an small R/C toy car. Parts Layout on Sprues. There is no order to it, they are just laid out everywhere... Revell have added letter codes to their sprues eg (A, B & C...etc) but they don't use the call outs on the intrustion sheet. eg sprue A part 114. I don't like the huge tabs that have been included to fit the canopy... I will address this later in the build when I have to fit them. Stage Rating 6.5 Matt M: Pros: Revell deserves props for attention to detail - the cockpit is a step up from Hasegawa's effort. Providing the fuel line as a clear part was inspired. Instrument panel is rather well done for injection molding, and Revell thankfully leaves the gauge faces blank so gauge decals can be used. Some may list it as a con, but the general lack of molded wiring detail. If it's not there, I don't have to sand it away to add my own. The full tub cockpit subassembly is a welcome change from the typical molded-sidewall approach. Cons: Well, the cockpit's not THAT much better than Hasegawa's effort. Some areas are noticeably better (the fuel line) while others feel like backsteps (cargo compartment door) Several of the details are clunky. Knobs. Molded-on seatbelts. The full-tub assembly could lead to some pain down the road, with seams riding the cockpit sills. Aftermarket Used: Scratched wiring loom with 0.2mm lead wire Replaced control stick with Quickboost Replaced gunsight with Quickboost Revi gunsight Replaced molded belts with RB Productions microtextile belts. Used Airscale Luftwaffe gauge decals on instrument panel (NOTE: I found I needed 1/48 scale) Built Notes The instructions and the parts layout are just awful. Sprue letters aren't called out in the instructions, but that doesn't matter because the part numbers are completely randomly placed. Like...part 19 next to part 83 next to 41 next to 16 next to 133. HUH? My go-to solvent glue, Tenax 7R, has had problems with the Revell plastic. Others using Tamiya Extra Thin have been in the clear. I found it most useful to start by mounting the wing spar to the cockpit floor, then use the fuselage as a jig for fitting the seat/rear bulkhead and sloping cargo compartment parts together. The sidewalls were added later. Install the clear fuel line to the floor/bulkhead first. When you install the sidewall, a dab of PVA glue and a quick push will seat the fuel line right into place. Overall, at the cockpit stage, Revell's 109 does a lot of things right, but makes a few head-smackingly ridiculous choices that detract somewhat from the otherwise really solid effort. The cockpit definitely rates an improvement over Hasegawa's G-6, but not so much of an improvement that I'd recommend the Revell on that factor alone. OVERALL STAGE 1 RATING: 7 Matt L: Overall for me a big thumbs up for this part of the kit. Pros: Excellent basis for super detailing, whilst being pretty good looking OOB and will satisfy most; Nice instrument panel which looks good after kit decals or Airscale additions; Clear fuel line - inspired and effective... Cockpit-module (like most resin replacements) is a good approach (though needs care fitting into fuselage); Good enough spar, seems like it'll do the job, not quite as elegant as Hasegawa's I like the fact Revell left off most wiring, saves removing it to do more realistic job of one's own Cons: Moulded on seatbelts; Instrument decal too thick and solvent resistant to use as a single piece over panel without removing all surface detail; misplaced left hand air vent (minor pick really); Gun sights (along with 99% of other IM attempts) are pretty poor. Overall stage 1 rating 7.5 Aftermarket used: Radu Brinzan's fabulous harness set Scratch: Removed and replaced in correct position the left side cockpit air vent; Straps on rudder pedals; Beefed up throttle with slice of rod; Flattened lead wire to represent the chain linked to hand wheels; Brake line from rudder pedals; Wiring loom from lead wire; Revell dials punched from panel decal and placed into bezels. Removed canopy attachment 'lumps', scratch hinges later. Build notes I also used the fuselage to set up the correct angles for the rear bulkheads. Spar is a useful handle once you've started painting. Whilst I like the modular design of the cockpit, It will leave a seam to be filled once the fuselage has been closed up. Matt Low Rick: I have yet to build a Trumpy or Hasegawa Bf109G so my benchmark is limited. That said, overall the real issue is the "Instruction Call Outs", bad, really bad. Stage 1 worked well for me. So far an enjoyable build. I will give a RATING OF: 7 Pros: Nice sidewall detail parts Sidewall construction allows for easy scratchbuilding, wiring looms, etc Pit tub assembly allows stand alone upgrade construction before insert into fuselage Cons: IP is chunky Not too great molded seatbelts Cockpit tub construction can be tricky and should use fuselage as a jig (thank you Matt) Canopy hinge is huge Gun sights poor shape Instruction call outs. Incomplete reference to sprue letter with part number. Always an epic search for a part Random placement of part numbers Aftermarket Used: Eduard 109G10 cockpit for IP and sidewall detail. Center console must be removed HGW Luftwaffe textile belts Quickboost Revi 12 gunsight Quickboost control stick Scratchbuilt wiring looms and cannon cover/detail with 0.2mm and 0.3mm lead wire Scratchbuilt pedal straps with 0.3mm flat lead wire IP details sanded off for PE IP Eduard 109G10 IP secured on original IP. Center console will be removed, light sanding on PE near both notches of IP for tight fit. Pedal straps made from flat lead wire. Wiring looms from 0.02mm and 0.03mm lead wire. 0.03mm lead wire wrapped around cannon cover and 0.02mm lead wire for latch detail. Following Mr. Surfacer 1500 primer the pit is painted Vallejo RLM 66. Wiring looms and other detail picked out. After balance of detail picked out and weathering the front and rear bulkheads are glued (not glued to fuselage). Fuselage is used as a jig to assure correct position of bulkheads. Thank you Matt for this tip. Fuel line attached to side wall and rear bulkhead. Thank you Matt for this tip. Sidewalls ready for fit and glue. The fuselage will once again be used as a jig. Sidewalls taped just forward of IP is to assure tight fit. Glue is cured pit tub complete. Revi 12 gunsight will be added later.
  8. 1:32nd Supermarine Spitfire Mk IIa Revell Catalogue# 03986 In August 1940 611 Squadron RAF became the first unit to be equipped with the latest MkIIa Spitfire. With the Battle of Britain at its height the MkII sealed its position as part of the Battle legend. Despite early production troubles the MkII had the distinction of being the first variant to be produced at the Castle Bromwich aircraft factory, it incorporated a number of improvements over the MkI chiefly the latest Rolls Royce Merlin XII which used a Coffman cartridge starter rather than the electric start allowing the MkII to be started independently; this also gave the MkII a small blister under the exhaust which is one of the few external distinguishing features between the MkI/II. Other additions such as armour plating would increase the all up weight of the MkII meaning it actually had a slightly lower performance than the MkI although thanks largely to a decision to equip it with a Rotol Propeller the MkII had a superior rate of climb. Eventually 921 Spitfire MkII's were manufactured, and today the Battle of Britain Memorial flight still operates MkII P7370 which is the only airworthy MkII and also a BOB survivor. Due to its role in the Battle of Britain (The conflict and the Motion picture) the MKI/II is one of the most famous variants of the ubiquitous Spitfire, despite this a new kit of the early variant hasn't been produced in 1/32 since the 1980's (also by Revell ) and this was actually based on the 1970's vintage Hasegawa kit. Not a bad kit at all and thanks to its Hasegawa origins also a very accurate one, the newer parts like the wings had recessed panel lines but the more elderly Hasegawa parts such as the fuselage all had raised detail. High time we had some fresh plastic then!! Thankfully Revell have come to our rescue with an all new tool kit of the early Spitfire. Keep your eyes on the sun, here its comes!! TAKKATAKKATAKKATAKKA!! Presented in Revells characteristic blue end opening box, the artwork depicts a Spitfire of 19sqn engaging marauding HE111's and really captures the elegant lines of the Spitfire; Stunning. Inside we find 11 sprues moulded in the pale grey plastic Revell have favoured for a while now and three in clear, the main parts have a smooth surface finish and don't seem to suffer from the pebble like finish previous kits such as the HE219 had, these are bagged together in small groups which is fine for the main parts but the clear sprues are all shoehorned in to one bag and the armoured windscreen in my example had some scuffs on it unfortunately. A medium sized decal sheet is provided along with Revells typical black and white instructions. I can't really understand why Revell chose the MkIIa sub variant for this new release as it saw rather limited service and externally is little different from the MkI which surely would have been a better choice from a marketing perspective? In fact as we'll see they have missed several of the MkII's distinguishing features. Read on... Sprue A&B Revell start quite naturally with the fuselage halves, these are moulded in the traditional way divided vertically down the centre and unlike their Bf109 kits there's no modular break down to attempt to extract the maximum number of variants from common parts; although this fuselage could still yet be used for the early "baby spits" like the MkV/VI who knows. Unlike their Bf109 series Revell have chosen to fully rivet their Spitfire and the fuselage is peppered with rivets, it seems Trumpeters mad riveter has relocated to Germany! I'll reserve final judgement until I have seen them under a few coats of paint but my initial feeling is that they are a tad clumsy and overdone but nothing a heavy coat of primer or something like Mr Surfacer couldn't correct, the early Spits featured raised domed rivets on the rear fuselage but no attempt to depict these has been made; the engine panels on the nose have the correct dzus fasteners which should look great once a few layers of paint have been laid down. One feature that had me scratching my head is the small square panel on the fuel tank, this has even made it onto the box art and as far as I can see this is only a feature of a very limited number of early Spitfires such as the Photo Reconnaissance variants like the ones below, the BBMF's MkI also has this window anyone know what it's for? Revell would have you fit a small clear part into it so I'm guessing maybe some sort of visual check on fluid levels? Answers on a postcard please. No stringer or raised detail for the cockpit is really present on the inside other than on the starboard cockpit wall where some ribbing and an oxygen hose are moulded in situ, although the lower portion of the cockpit side wall is a separate part anyway. My example had some faint sink marks along the top of the front fuselage and they correspond to the alignment pegs on the inside, sink marks are also present on the outside of the starboard fuselage and correspond to the raised cockpit wall detail but they are again very slight. Sprue C Here we have the lower section of the wing which is moulded as one whole piece as is logical with Spitfire kits, I feel it captures the dainty elegant shape of the spits wing perfectly and is commendably thin (unlike Hobbyboss's spit for example) again the wings surface is fully riveted and for a reason I can't quite put my finger on looks a lot more convincing than the fuselage rivets. The ejection slots for the empty round casings are moulded open but other than the most outboard slots seem a little on the large side to me, the vents by the outboard ejection slots are solid and would also benefit from being opened up with a pin vice to add more realism. Another odd feature I can't understand is the inclusion of a raised plate in front of the two middle gun slots, this I believe is a result of measuring the MkI Spitfire R6915 that has just been moved from the Imperial War museum London which exhibits these plates; this had a busy service life so the plates are possibly some sort of strengthening due to fatigue. You'll find that the wing tips and control surfaces are moulded separately including the landing flaps (insert anecdote here about Spitfires never having their flaps down on the ground, possibly mention a fine from the CO etc). Sprue D&E These sprues deal with the upper wings, just like the lower portion they are nice and thin and again fully riveted more convincingly than the fuselage, the strengthening plates seen on the Imperial war museums example have been depicted here again but removing them shouldn't pose any problems. The bulges for the wheel wells don't look quite correct, I believe they were a little more asymmetrical and more of a kidney shape but they are barely discernable in period photos. On the underneath we find the detail for the flaps and the roof of the wheel well, the wheel well detail is rather basic and a little scratch building will liven the whole area up. Sprue F Sprue F mainly handles the interior as well as some external detail, although the Spitfire cockpit didn't exactly have a floor one is provided to represent what would be the top of the wing to which all the rudder pedals etc are fixed on the kit, the rudder pedals and their control rods are a multi part assembly and should look suitably busy once complete adding plenty of interest. The seat is also made up of multiple parts and represents the composite seat (very early spits had metal seats of a similar design) the strange depression on the back rest would benefit from some milliput or similar to add a back cushion that was a typical feature of the spitfires seat. The support structure for the seat is nicely done including the mechanism used to raise and lower the seat and the structure would just benefit from having the lightening holes drilled out. The bulkhead behind the pilot is well moulded, the lightening holes are slightly flashed over so take a couple of seconds with a pin vice to take care of that; the instrument panel I'm glad to say has been corrected from the early test shots in which it was reversed, it also looks to of been improved as well and features some excellent detail, they have resisted moulding on dial faces so all it really needs is some Airscale decals to bring the gauges to life. We also get external details such as the radiator ailerons and flaps, the ailerons are depicted as metal with rivet detail to match the wings, however while later MkII's were converted to metal ailerons BOB era MkII's left the factory with fabric ones; the kit options are both circa 1941 so they're probably correct but bare that in mind should you want to depict a BOB machine. The armoured head rest looks the part and has a separate cushion and the slot for the harness cut out already, conspicuous by its absence was the armour plate that was fitted behind the seat, this was added after early combat experience showed it was necessary and was a production feature of the MkII. The access door has the crowbar moulded in place although as the photo below shows early Spits didn't have the crowbar initially so sticklers might want to sand this area smooth. Sprue G The rest of the control surfaces make up most of this sprue, the rudder, elevators, tail plane and wingtips have raised fabric detail which looks a little square to my eye and would benefit from a light sanding to soften the edges. The elevators are separate to the tail plane so can be posed drooped as usually seen on a parked spit but strangely the rivets on the underside of the tail plane seem to of been done by the fuselage team while the upper surface seems to of been done by the wing team!! The cockpit sidewall detail is here as is the rear most bulkhead and the front firewall, the control column has a well moulded spade grip with the correct round brass fire button rather than the later rectangular rocker switch, and this is otherwise devoid of any other detail so you might like to add the cables that run down the column. The circular walls for the wheel wells are a simple way of achieving a similar effect to that seen on Tamiya's MkIX with the correct angled wall but there is no other detail inside, I believe Eduard have this covered in their update set. A couple of puzzling features are the insulator moulded onto the top of the rudder mast which is more akin to a Luftwaffe bird, and also the aerial mast itself which is poorly done looking nothing like that seen on a Spitfire and more like a cocktail stick. Sprue H Two sprue H's are provided carrying the radiator matrix and a rudder pedal each, not a lot to say here but the rudder pedals certainly look decent although consider that MkI's and early MkII's would have had the single step pedals. Sprue Q The stand out part here is the lower engine cowling which is moulded to fit all the way up to the carburettor intake and also incorporates the pointed back end of it, again it seems like the wing team have done the rivet and fastener detail here, the carb intake itself is a good replica of the real thing. The exhausts are also good with hollowed ends, Revell have taken an interesting approach to the undercarriage by moulding the legs separate to the knuckle joint used to retract them accurately depicting them which is refreshing as is the way they've moulded the undercarriage doors and their inner detail separately which again is a new approach. Then there's the oil cooler, ahh the oil cooler! It must have been the BBMF's MkII that they measured for this kit as that has a few modern concessions to keep her flying, were they looking forward to producing a MkV? Because that's what this one's off! They've provided a circular oil cooler not the semi-circular oil cooler fitted to the MkI/II, it's a nice depiction of the MkV oil cooler though made up of 4 parts so that's sorted should they decide to produce a MkV. Sprue S Again two sprues are provided here with two halves of the wheels and two propeller blades per sprue, to my eye the prop blades start off well from their base but don't taper back to a fine enough tip giving a slight paddle blade appearance; no doubt some sanding could get them looking more convincing. Sprue T This small sprue appears to hold the MkII specific parts such as the Coffman starter bulge and various lumps and bumps along with the spinner and backplate. From looking at my reference photos most MkII's seem to have two bulges (large and small) above the exhausts the same both sides, the BBMF's MkII has a distinct scoop (like Revell supply) adapted from the larger bulge on the starboard side and next to this is a much smaller scoop as seen on wartime MkII's, Wartime aircraft would only of had the small scoop (no scoop at all in some cases) and the two bulges in the same place each side. One of the first issues apparent once preview photos of this kit began to circulate was with the spinner, based on the propeller blades supplied im assuming that it is supposed to represent the Dehavilland spinner; the main issue here is that it's too pointy and five minutes with a sanding stick should get it looking more like the Dehavilland spinner. The bigger issue is that the vast majority of MkII's were fitted with the blunt Rotol spinner with the wide wooden propeller blades, most MkII's I've found with the de Havilland spinner are from second line units such as the Air fighting development unit (AFDU) so the lack of a Rotol spinner in the kit is a bit of a stumbling block, especially since the aircraft on the decal options provided actually had the Rotol spinner (although if they'd gone for YT-W from 65 squadron instead of YT-L problem solved as that had the de Havilland!) Clear sprues (R, U, I) The clear parts are a highlight of this kit, being crisp, clear and numbering 13 parts. The armoured windscreen of the MkII is well represented and the external armour is given as a separate part that will require very careful placement when you come to glue it (Krystal Klear perhaps?). Revell also supply the rear view mirror, gun sight, navigation light and even the compass comes as a clear part which is a nice touch. Not forgetting the small square windows for the fuel tank. Just bag them separately please Revell!! Instructions Love them or hate them Revell have done their instructions this way for years, Black and white with lots of steps. I actually enjoy them and find them reminiscent of Matchbox's old instructions, they're always clear and concise and easy to follow I just wish they'd give the colour call outs by name such as Dark earth rather than in their own colour ranges codes. Colour schemes Bit of a Model T Ford situation here, any colour scheme as long as it's Dark Earth/Dark Green over Sky! To be fair the MkII really only wore Dark Earth or Ocean grey during its short career. The options provided are: YT-L 65 Squadron July 1941 QV-J 19 Squadron June 1941 Decals Not always Revell's strongest point, this sheet however appears to be different to their usual standard and has more of a glossy finish than previously seen. In the bottom right corner it says "Printed in Italy" and although it doesn't say Cartograf they are very reminiscent of their style so I wouldn't be surprised if they had some input. All the decals are in perfect register with the red centre of the roundels being separate, the font of the stencils is spot on for the period. A decent instrument panel decal is provided and they even give you a few cockpit placards for the undercarriage lever and the font on these is still readable despite being microscopic! I'm looking forward to trying these out. Conclusion I'm very aware that this review has almost amounted to a list of the errors I've found, being such a popular subject reference material on the Spitfire is in abundance and if an enthusiast such as myself can find the answers easily then why can't one of the biggest Kit manufacturers who've been in the business for 60 years? I'm certainly no rivet counter and a few mm here and there don't concern me at all, but visible errors do. That said if it looks like a Spitfire I'm happy, having seen and fondled a built up test shot of this kit it certainly captures the look of the Spitfire and builds up superbly with no fit problems. Most people won't even notice most of the issues I've raised and to be fair they won't detract from the finished kit at all, others will want to make corrections and no doubt this kit will be well served by the aftermarket with Eduard in particular being quick off the mark; the huge potential locked up in this kit will keep modellers happy for years and at the price Revell knock them out for it'll sell by the bucket load. Now where did I leave that tin of PRU Pink?! Recommended. Ben Summerfield My thanks to Revell for this review sample. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For details visit www.revell.de/en, @RevellGermany or facebook.com/revell
  9. 1:32 Junkers Ju 88A-4 with bombs Revell Catalogue # 03988 Has it really been SIX years since Revell released their much-lauded 1:32 Ju 88A-1? I really don't know where time goes. What perhaps isn't too forgivable, giving that time span, is the length of time it's taken Revell to finally launch the A-4 boxing of this kit. The A-1 parts break down did pretty much indicate that we would indeed see other variants of this iconic aircraft, but why so long to deliver? Never mind, for me, I'm just pleased to say that we finally have this kit here on our desk for inspection. Revell, you are forgiven. If you've seen the previous A-1 boxing of this kit, you won't be surprised to know that the A-4 occupies the same size packaging, this time adorned with superb artwork. Inside that slightly flimsy top-opening box, THIRTEEN sprues of light grayish-blue styrene, and TWO sprues of clear plastic are supplied. With the exception of the clear sprues which are packaged individually, the remaining sprues are packed in a combination of separate packets, with a number of them doubled up – notably those for which sprue multiples are supplied. This kit isn't simply a reworked A-1 with a handful of different parts. Yes, there are a good number of parts which are indeed common to the previous release, but not all. Some sprues have been replaced with newly-tooled ones which are specific to the A-4, whilst we also have new parts which weren't included in the first release, namely a set of external bombs and ETC racks. This is the summary of changes/inclusions in this the Ju 88A-4 kit. SEVEN sprues common to Ju 88A-1 kit, including new radio set part on sprue C, omitted in A-1 kit FIVE newly tooled sprues, specific to this release TWO sprues deleted from A-1 variant. So, in total, more plastic included in this release. Let's take a fresh, new look at this release in more detail. You'll notice a break in the sprue lettering sequence due to deleted sprues and newly included ones. SPRUE A Being the first, common sprue to the previous A-1, you'll not be surprised to see this one carries key airframe components for this build, namely the fuselage halves and wing upper and lower panels. The beautifully detailed exterior surfaces to both wings and fuselage contain some very refined panel lining and port access detail. As is common with Revell design, there are no rivets to be found anywhere. A few fasteners here and there, yes, but apart from that, the surfaces are a blank canvas for those who perhaps want to add these themselves. I'd much rather add rivets than want to remove excessive divots seen on some kits. All moulding is exceptional, with no defects, next to no flash anywhere, and no trouble with ejector pin marks in the cockpit area due to the interior walls being separate parts. The spine and lower forward fuselage are provided, as before, as separate parts. Slots in the wing roots exist for the interior formers with their integral wing spars to pass through. SPRUE C Here we find more parts which are common to the previous release, namely the two internal formers with their integral wing spars, rear engine nacelle sections, where there bisect the wing leading edge, and also the large rear nacelle underside section, with the gear doors moulded in situ in a closed position. For the tail area, we have two more spars which insert within the rear fuselage, and give a positive locating point for the large horizontal tail surfaces. There are also the two tail root fairings included here. The interior walls for the cockpit are included on this sprue, but will be fitted out slightly different for the A-4 version. These are superbly moulded, with plenty of sharp detail, and look great when painted and assembled. Lastly, a new part for the upper radio bank panel is included. This was snipped off from the previous A-1 release so as not to confuse it with a similar part which was included on the deleted sprue B. SPRUE D Another common sprue. The Ju 88A-4's horizontal tail surfaces were common to its earlier incarnation, and you'll find them moulded here, complete with their separate elevators. The remainder of this sprue is given over to the rather chunky undercarriage legs with moulded gaiter, undercarriage support structures and also dive brakes. Going back to the undercarriage legs, these are moulded as halves, which for me, was always a weakness in their design when it comes to supporting a large and heavy model. Still, this does at least allow you to add a steel pin within them in order to make them a little more rigid.You'll notice just how warped this sprue is. Nothing in the packaging seemed to have caused this, so I can only assume the sprue was perhaps too soft when being handled from the mould. SPRUE F (x2) This sprue contains a mish-mash of parts, from the two part, un-weighted wheels, and numerous other parts associated with the u/c, such as scissor forks and hydraulic rams, to the aileron horns and sealing strips which allowed unbroken airflow when aileron angle was changed. My experience of the earlier version showed that these need to be trimmed to their correct length before installation. SPRUE G Revell have spilt the ailerons over two sprues, with the upper halves being included here. The common cockpit parts, such as internal canopy 'roll frame', radio wall, etc are superbly moulded, with fine, sharp detail. Here, you will also find the lower, forward fuselage section, the exterior panel to the front of the windscreen, as well as numerous parts concerning assembly of the tail wheel fork. SPRUE H This is the last of the regular, common sprues, and again contains a variety of parts from a number of airframe areas. Apart from the lower aileron halves that I mentioned were separate to those parts on sprue G, included here are the gondola shell itself, cockpit floor, consoles and seat/seat frames etc, fuel dump parts, and a series of formers which install into the tail wheel bay. Just as an aside, if you are a super-detailer, then there is an upgrade pack from Profimodeller which replaces the tail wheel bay parts with a completely detailed interior. See our review here. SPRUE I Although this clear sprue is common to the A-1 variant, the instructions rightly shadow out the use of the rear facing canopy part, with it's single MG installation point. Also not for use are the round window panes through which the MG would fit, despite there being two moulded. They are not the correct pattern for the A-4. The gondola rear MG glazing is also redundant. Parts which can be used of course, are the forward canopy, side window panels, and lower forward glazing, and the glass nose. Other parts here are for the bomb aimer position, and forward gondola etc. All glazings are beautifully clear and frame lines have sharp edges, unlike those of the later He 111 kit. SPRUE J We nip over to a newly tooled sprue now, in its light grey/blue plastic, matching the rest of the kit. Now perhaps you can get an idea as to why Revell engineered this model with a separate spine and wingtips. The A-4 variant had a span which was around 5 feet longer than the A-1, and those extended wingtips, and the resultant lengthened ailerons are moulded here. Not only where the wings slightly different, but so was the vertical fin. As well as being a slightly different shape, the rudder also had a tab which notched into the fin at the top of the section. All parts are included on this newly tooled sprue. Now what about that spine? The A-4 spine is slightly different too, housing the Funkgerät‎ dipole aerial and the clear cover which sits atop it. Some panel lining is different too, indicating a slight change in the position of the dinghy stowage position. The remainder of the parts on this sprue concern the cockpit of the A-4, and its different 'fitting out', including new ammunition boxes and MGs, and an entirely new instrument panel which also differed to the previous release. The panel is excellent, and individual decals are supplied for the instruments. SPRUE K This newly tooled sprue contains the external ETC bomb racks and swing braces. Prior to this release, you had to pay for such parts from AM companies, but now, you can save yourself a few £/$/€. The racks also don't disappoint, being detailed enough for most modellers. SPRUE L (x2) The A-4 variant called for a new cowling, and these are supplied over two new Sprue L additions. These have been designed so the channel section which sits below the cowl, is a separate part, so no seam to remove here. There are also newly shaped prop blades, new exhausts, spinners and hubs too. Revell have chosen to add the undercarriage doors to this sprue too, as they did on the equivalent, deleted sprue E SPRUE M (x2) Bomb racks need bombs, of course. Revell have provided two 50lb bombs and two 100lb bombes for this purpose. Moulded as halves, with separate tail fins and fin strengthening rings. There will of course be seams to remove on those bomb cases, but that's pretty unavoidable. SPRUE N Now we have the very last of our sprues, and again, another new one. Containing seven clear parts, this covers the new 'bug-eye' rear facing canopy, with its twin MG installation, and also the dipole cover, rear gondola glazing, and also an internal forward canopy-mounted gun sight. This sprue was cracked in my review sample, but Revell quickly rushed another one out to me for this article. Great service! Again, all parts are superbly clear, and frame definition is excellent. Plastic summary There are a few traces of flash on some parts, but nothing really out of what you would expect from most mainstream injection moulded kits. The kit is free from any troublesome sink marks, and ejector pin marks are thoughtfully placed. A few seams will need to be removed, but certainly nothing out of the ordinary. INSTRUCTIONS You either like Revell instructions, or hate them. Oddly enough, I quite like them. They're fairly retro and remind me of my misspent youth. They almost look like drawn images, and not the usual CAD-rendered sort we commonly see today. The paper they are printed on is not the best grade either. For me, I find them easy enough to follow, and they also show colour call-outs for the various parts and assemblies. This booklet has 18 A4 pages, and there are 113 constructional stages, with two more stages given for the two schemes supplied with this release. DECALS A single, large sheet, printed by Cartograf, is included. Printing is exactly what we have come to expect from this manufacturer, with nice thin decals, minimal carrier film, and perfect registration. Colours aren't too vivid either, so no need to tone things down. As Revell is a German company, no swastikas are included, so you'll need to source your own. A tail band is included for one version, but I would mask and spray this as you're sure to get a more pleasing result. A full set of stencils is included, as well as those cockpit instrument decals etc. Two schemes are included, and these are: Ju 88A-4, 4./KG54, Catania, Sicily, April 1943 Ju 88A-4, 3./Kü.Fl.Gr 506, Leeuwarden, Netherlands, April 1942 Conclusion A lot of modellers have been waiting for this version for a long time. Of course, there have been conversions for the earlier A-1 release, but that does indeed cost extra, and in this day and age, perhaps an extra expense that some modellers can ill afford. Revell have produced a superb kit, with those new parts being every bit as good as those from the original release from 2008. You now have a world of new schemes at your fingertips too, with decal releases from the likes of Eagle Editions. Thankfully, Revell have chosen not to mould seatbelts on the parts in this release, as they did with the He 111 and Bf 109G kits. Their belt renditions are bloody awful, to be honest. If you want belts for this set, consider the textile sets now available from both HGW and Eduard. In all, this is a superb release! Very highly recommended James H Our sincere thanks to Revell for the review sample. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit www.revell.eu
  10. 1:32 Bf 109G-6 undercarriage legs BRONZE Eduard Brassin Catalogue # 632021 Available from Eduard for 17,25 € Bunny Fighter Club price: 14,66 € How about a brand new set designed to entirely replace both the kit undercarriage struts and the main gear doors on your Revell Bf 109G-6? This is the very latest in Eduard's Brassin range of products catering to the recent release, so let's take a peek. Presented in Eduard's familiar clear blister packet, this remit of this set is about as simple as it can get, and most certainly easy when it comes to implementing it. Containing just four parts, this is a set for which pretty much any modeller of any still can make use of. Eduard's love affair with white bronze (jeweller's bronze) continues, with this set replacing the 109's undercarriage strut, as a single part, complete with oleo scissor and brake line incorporated. There is also no clean up to do with these are there is no casting block to remove, and the faint mould paring seam is hidden to the rear of the strut, up against where the undercarriage door will fit. The locating lug for inserting to the model is also a part of the leg, as per the original kit part. There's no doubt that these bronze legs are indeed extremely strong. Being jeweller's bronze, they also hold detail amazingly well, unlike some replacement parts we have seen cast from white metal. As said, these parts are designed to be swapped straight out for the kit ones. The undercarriage doors are a massive improvement over the Revell parts, being thinner and having far more detail too. A locating indentation around the wheel axle point is designed to fit the oleo precisely, and is positively located around the top of the strut by means of a bracket. These doors incorporate hydraulic line detail as well as the double skin, pressed interior shell, with raised riveting. Very impressive indeed. Al small casting block will need removing from each gear door via a thin wall of resin, and two overflow tags need to be snipped from the top of each door also. Of course, there are instructions for this set, indicating assembly, and the possibly use of Eduard's Brassin range of wheels instead of the kit parts. A head on view and side view give you an idea of the attitude of the legs when they are installed, despite the kit allowing this to be attained pretty easily anyway. Colour call-outs are given GSI Creos/Mr Hobby paints. Conclusion A simple set which is so beautiful it almost seems a shame to put any paint on them. They aren't too cheap, but the quality is outstanding, and they are a definite improvement over the kit parts. If you add the resin cockpit, engine etc, then perhaps bronze undercarriage legs will be a useful insurance policy over all that added weight! Very highly recommended James H Our sincere thanks to Eduard for the review sample used here. To purchase directly, click this link. Consider joining Eduard's Bunny Fighter Club programme for further discounts on your purchases.
  11. A "cart before the horse" project as I posted finished pics before the WIP pics. I started this build in late August, there were no After-Market items available so I missed out on the Eduard and Alley Cat upgrades. There will be some custom fitting of available AM as I proceeded. I was able to connect with some AM stuff such as land gear and canopy masks from Eduard. So far my biggest angst is the way the parts are called out in the instructions. Only part number is given and it would be most helpful if the sprue letter was included in the part call out. Lots of time looking, cross ref, etc. Some enhancements to pedals and future work on the gun cover to come. Detail is really nice and I like the effort on Revell's part to add some fine detail for the pit. Will break out the primer and RLM 66. The Eduard SA/IP G10 is identical to the G6 with exception of a center consol. Careful measure, it'll fit. I'm going in! Sanding finished. Enhanced the pit with some additional wiring. Fine tuned the gun cover. Hope to get some paint laid down tonight. IP done. Eduard PE applied to IP. Center console on IP will be removed. Geeze! Those frackin bezels! Over a dozen! Will apply either Future or Still Water in IP dials. Needs a few more PE placements, details picked out, weathering/wash and HGW belts. Waiting for, QB Revi 16, QB stick. Love HGW belts, just a PITA to cut out.
  12. Despite all the angst this is really a nice kit with some great engineering work. A fun, sometimes challenging build. A few engineering decisions on Revell's part is questionable. The instruction callouts are hideous. Should hold its own against Hasegawa. Albeit, Revell missed an opportunity to knock this out of the ballpark. Indeed this kit is an After Market goldmine. I used a bunch of after market stuff: Barracuda Wheels Eduard Landing Gear Eduard IP HGW Belts QuickBoost Exhaust QuickBoost MG131 QuickBoost Revi 12 Gunsight EagleCals "The Blond Knight" Painted: Fuselage ID Band Lower Cowling ID Hungarian Theater Band on lower starboard wing I added: Wiring Looms in cockpit Pedal Straps Canopy Grab Handles Canopy Hinge Canopy Laynard FuG25a Antenna Rebuilt Rear Cockpit Bulkhead Drilled out Pitot Tube and AAG-16 Antenna and replaced with wire
  13. 1:32 Bf 109G-6 Cockpit (for Revell kit) Eduard "Brassin" Catalogue # 632 022 Available at most online retailers, $49.95 (US) MSRP In the USA, we have an old saying "In life, only two things are certain, death and taxes". I think it appropriate to amend this to "only three things are certain, death, taxes and when a new Bf 109 kit is released a flood of aftermarket will follow!". Revell introduced their new Bf 109G-6 (early and late) last year and the typically prolific Eduard has not let us down in providing a host of add-ons. The flagship of their releases to date is their Brassin cockpit set. For the most part the Revell Bf 109G-6 cockpit is nicely done, the biggest detractors being an inaccurate control stick and "gimmicky" molded in seat belts on the seat bucket and back rest. Of course there is a large amount of after-market available for the Hasegawa Gustav but this is the first cockpit set specifically designed for the Revell kit. Before we proceed let's deal with the pink elephant in the room, the price. At an MSRP of nearly $50 this set is not cheap, nearly twice the price of the kit itself! Typically I only purchase items like this on sale though, I picked this up for 50% off at Squadron's last "Black Friday" sale. Purchasing from the US is not always easy for all of us though so let's take a look and what we have and you can determine if this set is worth your hard earned sheckles. Before we go too far a few words on real life cockpits are appropriate. The Bf 109G-6 was produced by three different factories and the aircraft itself was constantly being upgraded. When it comes to 109's the only thing we can say is "standard" is "non-standardization". Therefore the best someone can do with a set like this is give a good composite of what the cockpit should look like. If you delve deep enough you'll be able to find subtle and some sometimes not so subtle differences. Here's a couple of pics of the real thing just for reference: Upon opening the box, which contains a good amount of foam padding (always appreciated with resin parts) we're presented with four zip-loc bags. Three containing resin parts and a fourth with two photo-tech sheets, one standard and one pre-painted. The resin is crisply cast with no flash whatsoever, quality looks absolutely superb. The rear deck and seat rest have some added detail not present in the kit parts, particularly the control boxes on the starboard side and of course the seat back is (gratefully) lacking the molded in belts. The seat bucket detail is exceptional with delicately cast rivet detail and seat belt attachment points. The firewall also features nicely done rivet detail. The starboard sidewall contains junction boxes and wiring that were omitted by Revell. The oxygen regulator and hose are also an upgrade over the kit being more detailed and crisply cast. You'll note the fuel line is molded in here as opposed the separate clear part that is provided with the kit. The port sidewall has the chain for the flap actuators molded on and as with the starboard side contains some additional detail on the forward portion of the part. As with the kit both styles of gun breech covers are provided. The MG 151 cover here features finely wrought weld beads, really a nice touch. Eduard has provided two options for the instrument panel. The first is a standard resin replacement for the kit part, which decals for the instrument faces would be used. The detail on this is amazing and Eduard has also included the lower auxillary control panel present on some aircraft. The second IP is intended for use with the pre-painted photo etch parts. Some of the miscellaneous parts here including the gun sight and the control stick. These are both welcome additions since both of the kit parts were lacking in this area. The KG-13A control stick is beautifully rendered, in my opinion this is the best rendition I've ever seen of this part. The color PE sheet contains a set of pre-painted seat belts and instrument panel details. Eduard seems to have refined their process for their pre-painted parts, the instrument detail appears to be sharper than previous offerings and should look great once assembled. My only gripe with the pre-painted stuff is that typically the RLM 66 on the IP is a different shade than my Mr. Color RLM 66. I've found with some careful application of Mr. Masking Sol I can paint the outer section to match the rest of the cockpit, here's one I did for a Fw 190D-9 just for reference: The other sheet of PE contains other various parts for the cockpit. Typically I mix and match parts like this with what's in the kit depending on how fiddly and delicate the PE is. So what do we think? Eduard has a packed a lot into this set. It's a definite upgrade over the kit cockpit in just about every aspect. Obviously the price will put some people off but if you decide to spend the money I don't think you'll be disappointed with what's in the box. The detail supplied with the kit cockpit is certainly adequate but I think the kit will really shine with this set. Highly Recommended! Mike O. Review copy courtesy of my wallet.
  14. As Jeroen suggest, I present my DH-82 Tiger Moth from Revell in 1:32 scale, finished last year: Please be mercyful... All your comments are very appreciate. More pics at: http://ipmsbogotaar.net/blog/?p=463 Regards.
  15. Here is my first of three Revell Bf109G-6, built for the LSM Review Build off. Enjoyable kit... I will echo what's been said about the kit so far.. That has some points over the Hasegawa kit and a couple of strange things that makes you scratch your head... I would build another one for sure... but I would throw more AM at it.. Mostly built out of the box, only things that were added were - Barracuda Wheels RB Productions Seatbelts Aber MG131 Barrels Master MG151 Barrels Hasegawa MG151 Gondolas Airscale IP Dials EagleCals Decals.
  16. 1/32 Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6, Late & Early Version Revell Catalog Number 04665 Introduction: There’s probably not much to say about the Bf 109 that hasn’t been said already. Easily one of the most iconic and recognizable of all WW II fighters it was produced in greater numbers than any other fighter during the war. At the time of it’s introduction in 1935 it was equipped with many modern features including all-metal monocoque construction, a closed canopy, retractable landing gear and was powered by a liquid-cooled, inverted V-12 engine. Many of it’s contemporaries were open cockpit biplanes with fixed landing gear. Making it’s combat debut in the Spanish Civil War it would prove superior to it’s opposition and it’s pilots would develop tactics and gain experience that would serve the Luftwaffe well in the coming World War. The Jagdwaffe would prove to be master of the skies when Hitler unleashed his Blitzkrieg on Europe and the Bf 109 was usually in the forefront of the action. The RAF shattered any illusions of Luftwaffe invincibility but many pilots came away from the Battle of Britain as seasoned veterans and would put their experience to use when Hitler’s eyes turned East. Here the Bf 109 would start to truly carve it’s place in history. The USSR laid claim to the largest air force in the world in 1941 but it was truly a paper tiger. Hampered by lack of spare parts, inflexibility and poor pilot training the VVS lost aircraft in droves on the ground and in the air. Bf 109’s sporting their unit heraldry, bright identification markings and Luftsieg on their rudders ruled the skies and pilots began to accumulate victory totals that were previously unheard of. This truly was the zenith of the Bf 109 and the Luftwaffe. It would remain the preferred mount of many of the Luftwaffe’s legendary Experten until the end of the war. Although it was constantly being updated the 109’s mastery of the skies began to slip away. Called upon to do things it was never designed for, maneuverability began to suffer due to ever increasing demands for heavier armament and more speed. It continued to soldier on though, where the Wehrmacht went, so went the Bf 109, from the deserts of North Africa to the Arctic Circle and of course defending the skies of the Reich from ever increasing Allied bomber formations bent on bringing Germany’s industrial complex to it’s knees. In February 1943, the Bf 109G-6 was introduced with the 13 mm MG 131s, replacing the smaller 7.92 mm MG 17, externally this resulted in two sizeable bumps (beule) on the cowl over the gun breeches, reducing speed by 9 km/h. Over 12,000 units were built well into 1944 making it the most produced variant of the Bf 109. During the course of it’s production run it would also receive numerous upgrades such as the Erla canopy, tall tail and the 30 mm Mk. 108 cannon along with a dizzying array of other equipment and configurations. The 1/32 Bf 109G-6 in plastic: In late 2001 Hasegawa released their 1/32 Bf 109G-6. Although not perfect it was a landmark kit, it went together well and looked very much the part. An avalanche of aftermarket soon followed to correct the kit’s discrepancies and Hasegawa followed the G-6 up with later and earlier versions of the Gustav (as well as a "K" model), even giving us a Friedrich a few years back much to large scale enthusiast's delight. In 2011 Trumpeter entered the arena with their Bf 109G-6 (Early). Considered by most 109 enthusiasts as a disappointment the Trumpeter kit shared some of the same issues as the Hasegawa kit while introducing some new ones of it’s own. So, the Trumpeter G-6 came up a little short, all is still well in 109 land, right? Well, not exactly. Although the Hasegawa kit is solid and generally well received it does suffer from an Achilles Heel, the price. While quite reasonable in it’s home market of Japan, it seems to get expensive as it leaves the Land of the Rising Sun. Distributor mark up and foreign government import tariffs push the price in Europe (and in North America to a lesser extent) to a point that many people are unwilling to pay for a kit that doesn’t have all the bells and whistles that a new Tamiya 1/32 aircraft has. Enter Revell. Coming off critically acclaimed releases of the Ju 88, Ar 196 and the He 111 in 1/32 all with very consumer friendly price tags, (particularly in Europe and the USA), Revell has decided to enter into the Bf 109 arena. Potentially very profitable, but check your thin skin at the door! So without further ado let’s get to it. This review is a collaborative effort between myself and Matt Low. Matt is an acknowledged 109 “gearhead” and will be bringing to light the nuts and bolts accuracy issues of the kit. I’ll primarily be focused on the modeling and “build-ability” issues, although we’ll cross lines freely. There will be occasional comparisons against the Hasegawa kit since it’s been “King of the Hill” for some time and I think many of us are familiar enough with that kit to use it as a benchmark. The 1/32 Revell Bf 109G-6, what's the in box: Box art is typical Revell, a nicely rendered late production bird from JG 5 engaged in a dogfight over the fjords of Norway. The pilot is apparently very brave or a little forgetful engaging in aerial combat with the drop tank still on though! The first thing we note is the dreaded Revell side opening box. Most of us hate the damn things so first order of business is transferring it to the empty box from Hasegawa G-10 I just finished. The sprues are molded in light gray plastic and appear to be mostly free of flash and ejector pins marks are located in inconspicuous areas. As with other Revell kits the plastic has an ever-so-slight pebbly texture, easily smoothed out with some fine sandpaper or steel wool. One of the first things that strikes me is the finely rendered panel lines and surface detail. The Japanese typically set the bar in this area but Revell has done an outstanding job here. Rivet enthusiasts will be disappointed, as with their other 1/32 offerings Revell has elected to forego the complete rivet treatment. I realize that the subject of whether rivets are appropriate remains the topic of much debate but personally I would love to see something like what Eduard has done on their 1/32 Emil, restrained, subtle rivet detail. Cockpit: Matt: Instrument panel is nicely done, no instrument detail, allows the use of supplied decal, or you could punch out individual instruments, quite effective. Accuracy wise, great variation over 109G panels so has to be somewhat generic in nature but the relevant instruments are in the right locations. Mike: I think skipping the raised instrument detail is the way to go, decals usually give a much more realistic appearance anyway. I think this will look the part after some paint and application of the decals. Matt: The cockpit floor has some decent detail around the rudder pedal supporting assembly, the fuel primer pump on left and radio control boxes on right. The last items are a little squat to my eye, however once in the depths of the ‘pit they are fine. Mike: The raised rivets help give a little visual pop, looks like an upgrade over Hasegawa. Mike: Cockpit sidewalls are nicely rendered, although inclusion of some wiring looms, particularly on the starboard side would have been appreciated. Oxygen gauges have been molded in place rather being provided as a separate part. Matt: One thing that was noted from early test shots was the location of the left side cockpit vent. Revell didn’t manage to move it to the correct location. The images above show the real aircraft from inside (Australian preserved Bf 109G-6 aircraft) and outside (Bf109G-2 trop ‘Black 6’). Immediately above you can see where the vent should be re-located to – this obviously needs filling and re-scribing on the outside as well. Mike: The KG-13A Control Stick is a little lacking, the small junction box on the forward portion of the stick is missing as well as some other details. Many will probably elect to replace it with the Quickboost part, shown above for comparison. Mike: The molded on seatbelts are a curious decision, especially in 1/32. Although with some work they can be made to look okay, HGW, Radu B. and Eduard all offer aftermarket parts that will look much more realistic. At least they opted for the flat rear seat rest that will make them easier to sand off, removing them from the lower bucket of the seat will be a little more challenging. Matt: Parts M4&5 are the MK108 breech cover, not MG151 as indicated by Revell. Parts I7 and M8 provide for two different foot boards. The more typical treaded metal unit (M8) can be replaced by a late war non-strategic wooden one – could be seen in late 109G-6s, especially rebuilt machines. Matt: MG151 cannon breech cover well shaped. Note Revell incorrectly label this as the MK108 cover – it isn’t! Matt: Part M23 gives us the rear cockpit panel with a square bulge. This accommodated the re-located battery on aircraft fitted with MW50 powerboost. Bf109G-6 aircraft weren’t fitted with this system and, therefore, this part should not be used – stick with part K22. Part M26 is a strange inclusion as it depicts a very late war demisting system developed by Erla and fitted to their and some other manufacturers’ G-14s. G-10 etc... but not the G-6. Fuselage: Matt: The kit was engineered using original factory blueprints which, combined with modern CAD, should result in a very accurate representation. To look at the kit, I have used dimensioned drawings from factory drawings/blueprints, rather than comparisons to available drawings. This should be accurate and avoid issues of distortion produced by scaling up plans from smaller scales. The generally accepted length of the Bf109F through K is 9020mm (this is quoted by both John R Beaman Jr. and Mansur Mustafin - read advisor to Zvezda on their Bf109F kits). 9020mm divided by 32 gives us 281.87mm. The Revell kit measures out at 281.15mm. This is pretty good, a mere 23mm in 1/1. Of course my ability to accurately measure such small differences isn’t exactly state of the art, but I think we can safely say this kit is very good on length. Within the overall length the panels break down well against factory measurements. Some of these numbers don’t completely add up, due to rounding error and my ability to measure totally accurately (even with digital callipers). There appears to be a discrepancy in the panels forming the rear fuselage. On the real aircraft these panels alternate between 413mm and 493mm. However the panel in which the radio access hatch sits and the one immediately behind it appear to break that pattern, one is slightly short and the other slightly long References: Soviet Bf109G nose. Blue print, measurements taken from captured aircraft. Bf 109F/G fuselage Messerschmitt factory drawing 8-109.142 Rumpf Bf109F/G Wing Messerschmitt factory drawing Baumuster :109G, Blatt:13, Flugel Bf109F/G Tail/rudder factory drawing Seitenleitwerk 109F Matt: The left fuselage nose has two oil filler points moulded in place. As far as my references suggest, only the lower opening, indicating a 35 litre ‘horseshoe’ oil tank is suitable for the Bf109G-6. The upper filler which indicated a 50 litre tank was found on aircraft with the more powerful DB605AS or D engines (Bf109G ‘AS’ and G-10/K-4 aircraft). Mike: Interesting, perhaps a G-6/AS or G-14/AS variant is planned using the same fuselage at some point in the future? Also note that the air intake scoops are molded solid and will require some hollowing out. Fastener detail is nicely done. Matt: The right hand fuselage has a series of moulded fill points (see annotations). Revell have covered all their bases here, which means you will need to fill one or more. 1 – This is the filler for the engine primer fuel. Applies to all but the earliest Bf109G-6. 2 – This is the filler used for either the GM1, nitrous Oxide power boost system or the MW50, Methanol/Water power boost system. MW50 was not slated for use on the Bf109G-6, in fact a Bf109G-6 with MW50 was a Bf109G-14. GM1 was used on some Bf109G-6 aircraft engaged in high altitude interception duties, though it is more usually associated with the pressurised versions of the G series. 3 – A cover for the inlet valve of the compressed air system for the MK108 cannon. So, for many Bf109G-6 aircraft this cover would not be present. Only those with the /U4 suffix (denoting the MK108 fit) had this. The filler is often easily visible due to the pressurised air warning symbol showing against the Balkankreuz. 4 – The standard oxygen (right) and electrical sockets, on all Bf109G-6 aircraft. Mike: I'm thinking that we'll probably see a G-14 boxing of with the same fuselage at some point in the future. From a modeling perspective it's much easier to fill and sand unwanted detail rather than have to scribe it yourself. Matt: Spinner looks pretty good accuracy wise, profile shape appears to improve on Hasegawa’s. The openings for the props feature the correct ‘teardrop’ shape, but to achieve this Revell have split the spinner into front and rear, away from panel lines and in a place that’ll be difficult to clean up as the props go into place before the spinner is joined. Mike: "You spin me right round baby, like a record baby, right round, round...." Sorry, I have a soft spot for '80's new wave and just couldn't resist! Back to our normally scheduled programming. The spinner is indeed a mixed bag. On the positive side, the shape is much better than either the Hasegawa or the Trumpeter kits. The downside as you mentioned is that they've engineered it to go together where there is no natural "join" line. Note that Hasegawa and Trumpeter both supply the part as a spinner and a base plate, as it was on the real thing. This simplifies assembly and particularly painting. The spinner was often adorned with markings, from sometimes simply being painted 1/3 white and ranging from spirals to multi-colored segments. Masking and painting the fully assembled spinner and propeller assembly will present more of a challenge on this kit than the competition. Note that the overall length is still just a tad shorter than the EagleParts spinner. Jerry Crandall based his spinner on an actual 109 spinner in his possession. The Revell is devoid of any rivet detail also which was usually prominent, especially on lighter colored spinners. Mike: Lengthwise the Hasegawa ® and the Revell (L) blades are nearly identical. Note that that the Hasegawa is a little beefier at the base and the contour a bit more pronounced. Matt: : Here’s the real thing. Propellers are notoriously difficult to get right, I would say the real shape is somewhere between Revell and Hasegawa’s efforts? Be very careful cutting them from the sprue, as they tend to take a ‘bite’ out if carelessly removed. Mike: After comparison with the genuine article I'd agree with your assessment. The Revell appears a bit too narrow at the base while the contour on the Hasegawa is bit overdone. Matt: Upper part of cowl, two parts to represent either single piece pressing or inserts for the gun troughs. Matt: Common aspect to take note of with this kit is care needed to remove parts from sprue. Gates are often fine, but placed on mating surfaces so need to be carefully removed and prepared. Mike: Two starboard side cowl panels (part 42 here) are provided in the kit, with and without the compressor bulge, a nice touch. Note that the compressor bulge was not unique to the G-5 (pressurized cockpit) variant. Many Erla production G-6s displayed this feature as well. Matt: Just noticed that Revell have missed the inertia starter crank hole (just behind the little hatch on the right front cowl). Missing on both alternate parts. Mike: The pre-release buzz about the Beule being under-sized appears to be true. They definitely appear to be anemic when viewed on the sprue. While I'm sure after-market fixes for this are already in the works, I'm kind of the opinion that I shouldn't have to buy an after-market part for something like this. Obviously resin has advantages when it comes to finely cast detail and under-cuts. It certainly lends itself it well to cockpits, exhausts, wheels, etc. and I'm fine with spending the extra money for those items. However when I'm forced to buy a replacement for part that could have been easily and accurately produced in plastic it's definitely money I part with grudgingly. Matt: The Hasegawa Beule do not fit the Revell fuselage profile, if presented to the fuselage they are forced too far upward and leave a large gap between them and the turbo intake. Application of some judicious force may get them to fit, they certainly look fuller to my eye, but Revell may have caught some of the profile more accurately – jury’s still out for me. Mike: The exhaust stacks are not particularly impressive, this is certainly not unique to this kit though. Due to the design of the kit, the exhaust stacks must be installed before the cowl panels are installed, complicating painting and weathering. Early reports from builders state that the Quickboost exhausts designed for the Hasegawa kit will not fit. I'm sure Quickboost will have something out in the not too distant future though. Matt: Revell have provided two types of ‘tall’ rudder. Parts M122/M123 are for the more common (on G-6s that is) rounded fabric covered rudder, whilst parts M125/M126 make a pointed wooden rudder more often seen on G-10/K-4 aircraft. There are, not unsurprisingly, several subtle variations of the tall tail and rudder. The rudder with rounded transition (above left) is a bit of a hybrid, incorporating features of the very earliest tall tail (essentially an extended standard tail and retaining the trim tab of the early tail) with features (twin trim tabs above and below the inset Flettner tab) of later versions. This kit should allow you to build about 5 og the six known Bf109 tails! If you are interested in the dfferent rudders, these are covered in some detail at the 109 Lair (http://109lair.hobbyvista.com/index1024.htm go to Technical reference-Structures-Empennage-Tall Tails). Mike: Have to say that I'm really impressed at the lengths Revell has gone to cover every variation of the G-6 production. Hasegawa kits provide you with one style tail, one style canopy, etc., forcing you to swap parts between kits if you want to do a standard tail G-6 with an Erla canopy, no need for that with Revell. Matt: There’s also everything you need to make a G-14 in the box... just needs some markings..... Matt: The ETC 501 fuel tank rack fairing looks too wide and doesn’t have the distinctive ‘teardrop’ shape of the originals I have seen. Mike: Agreed, on the plus side the holes are actually holes rather than depressions in the plastic as observed on the competition. Wings: Matt: How do the wings measure up..? (Again, all measurements in millimetres) Here’s the drawing used for measurements. Measuring the wing has been difficult (for me). The factory drawings give both the ‘flat’ dimensions and those when the dihedral is taken into account. I couldn’t measure the wings with dihedral as I’ve not built it that far yet. However if we take Revell’s figure of 310mm we’re within 1mm of the drawings. The ‘flattened’ measurements make the Revell kit a mere 0.73mm too wide. Everything else looks pretty good as you can see. Matt: Wings have a rather overdone moulding of the tape used to seal join between main wing and removable tip. Could do with sanding down and the panel line removing as this was what the tape was there to cover... Mike: Revell has elected to mold the wheel bumps in place. This approach as two advantages, first it looks better when viewed from above. Hasegawa and Trumpeter provide this as a separate part and anyone who's ever been through the process knows that getting them to blend properly with the wing surface can be a pain. Secondly, when viewed from the wheel well underneath the bulge is much more realistically scaled. If Revell decides to a G-2 or G-10 variant this part can be replaced to correctly portray the wing bulge, or lack thereof. Matt: Second only kit I’ve seen to mould the lightening holes in gear well open.... well done Revell! Mike: Agreed! This is really well done. With the other kits you're looking at a resin replacement or drilling them out yourself. The whole wheel well and strut bay are very nicely done and will look great right out of the box. Matt: Ailerons feature large disks that represent doped on patches of fabric (covering drainage holes?). These are, to my eye, overdone and need sanding/scraping down – you’ll have to be careful not to erase the other details that are nicely rendered (if also a little overdone). Mike: I've looked at a lot of pictures of 109's over the years and this a feature I never noticed. I'll definitely be hitting them with some sandpaper although this is a chore I could do without. On the plus side, separately molded ailerons are a nice feature. Matt: The landing flaps are a clever design that can be assembled and carefully clipped into position after the wing is assembled. The radiator flaps can also be added at the end of the build if need be and though I haven’t tried them properly feature a quite prototypical attachment method. The radiator baths are fully boxed in (make sure you look at the instruction sheet corrections to find the two parts missed off the instructions) and the faces are at least as good as those in the Hasegawa kit and will furnish a passable enough effect. Matt: Elevators, along with ailerons feature these disks that represent doped fabric. Need toning down without losing other details (even if that is a little out of scale). Take a magnifier and see the ‘pinked’ edges of the tapes! Undercarriage: Matt: Undercarriage looks good on the sprue and features a considerably more prototypical attachment method; hopefully this isn’t prototypically weak... Mike: The attachment method is definitely more realistic than Hasegawa. My concern is will it be significantly more fiddly? Hasegawa uses a simple "peg in the hole" mounting point that typically gives you a solid joint and the correct angle and splay for the landing gear. Hopefully this works as well. Note that the fork for the tail wheel strut is actually molded as a fork. Nice! Mike: The gear door detail is adequate, a set is for portraying the gear in the retracted position is included as well. The ejector pin marks on the upper portion look a little nasty. Matt: Revell deserve kudos for the wheels and tyres. They are superb and probably represent about the best achievable without resorting to resin. Mike: Absolutely, these are the nicest wheels I've ever seen on an injection molded kit. Clear Parts: Matt: Clear parts very well moulded, clear and on the whole distortion free. Parts for the early and ‘Erla Haube’ clear vision canopy. Note that the instructions appear to add the armourglass (O55) to the outside of the windscreen. This is wrong, it MUST be on inside. Also all Bf109Gs incorporated armourglass, so it isn’t an optional part. Gun sights are just passable – at least you can tell the difference between the ReVi C12 (early) and ReVi 16 (late). Moulding the fuel line in clear was a clever touch, makes replicating the sight glass a breeze – just be careful cutting the part from the sprue! Mike: Once again Revell has done a great job here providing both the standard and Erla canopy options. The separately molded fuel line is another great idea, this should make painting and detailing much easier. NOTE: There is discrepancy between the Sprue P in my kit and Matt's. Matt reports that his has only one Erla hood and no windscreen while mine has a windscreen, head armour, FuG16 perspex, and two Erla style canopies on it. No idea why at this point. Instructions: Mike: Instructions are presented in a standard A4 sized 13 page booklet. I'm a little baffled as to why Revell did not include the alphabetic designator for the sprues in the assembly sequence. You're given the part number and forced to determine what sprue it's on by looking at the actual sprues or referring to the diagram in the instruction booklet. How hard is it put "M8" on the instructions rather than just "8"? Color call outs are given as standard paint colors, no specific paint brand references are given. Not really a problem for the experienced modeler but it does help someone who might be new to the hobby. Matt: Corrections to the instructions Stage 1 Note alternative foot boards are provided. The one illustrated (M8) is the earlier more ‘traditional’ metal one, whilst the other (I7) is a later variant using non-strategic wood and fitted to G-6 through K-4s (though not exclusively). Stage 2&3 All my refs tell me this is wrong way round. 2 (C2&3) is the MG151 cover, 3 (M4&5) is the MK108 cover. MG151 was standard fit. Apparently WNF delivered large numbers of G-6s equipped with MK108 this was designated by the modification identifier /U4. Stage 12 Gives the flat (K22) or battery box (M23) rear cockpit hatches. My understanding is that the battery box cover only featured on G-14 and G-10 aircraft (battery moved due to the MW50 fit). However, never say never with Luftwaffe aircraft – sometimes parts used because they were to hand... but as a rule I would have thought both aircraft options would have the flat cover. Stage 14 The instructions indicate using part K69 to cover the rear wheel well. This part will not allow you ti fit the tail wheel leg’s oleo scissor link. Instead you need to use part M70. Stage 30 At this stage you will need to fit 2 parts that are marked as ‘not for use’ on the sprue map. These parts form the sloping interior face of the radiator bath. The right underwing part (C84) should have part B84A attached and the left underwing (C92) should have part A26 attached. Stage 20 Early (188) or late (42) right hand cowl side. These parts are differentiated by the small lump in front of the beule (has been moulded onto fuselage unlike Hasegawa’s option of creating an optional beule). This was originally a Bf109G-5 feature, covering the compressor needed for cockpit pressurisation. So the part could be seen on G-5s – introduced in May/June 1943, G-6s (seen on the AWM G-6 in Australia and the G-6 in Finland – though removed at some point on that machine) and G-14s. So not a ‘late’ feature as such. Stage 22 As above. Stage 30 Nice touch reversing part (95) for a non FuG 16 equipped aircraft. Stage 59a/b 60a/b These two stages deal with the wheels and tyres. The options are treaded or smooth tyre and plain or ribbed wheel. Whilst it is likely (I don’t know when the smooth tyre was introduced) that treaded was early and smooth appeared later, I am certain that various combinations of tyre and hub could be seen. If possible, check the machine you are modelling and use the corresponding parts. Stage 67 Part 26 was most probably not fitted to the Bf109G-6 (see early/late below). Stage 68 The instructions, to my eye, are telling you to put armour glass on outside of windscreen. Also shown as an option – this isn't the case, as integral armoured windscreen was fitted to all G and K aircraft. No G or K carried external armour glass, this was a feature of E and F machines. Stage 68 Only a small correction, all the aircraft I have found in my references show the canopy retaining wire attached at the mid way point along the tubular canopy hinge/locking bar (part M25), as opposed to the far left as Revell depict it. Decals: Mike: The decals look a tad thick on the sheet but the printing is sharp and register is good. I've never used Revell decals so unfortunately I can't comment on how well they perform. Decals are provided for two aircraft. The first is a late production aircraft featured on the box art. Hauptmann Franz Dörr was the Gruppenkommandeur of III./JG 5 who was operating out of Norway at the time. A colorful and somewhat unique aircraft owing to the fact that it still bore a full array markings at this late stage of the war, including the JG 5 "Eismeer" badge, Gruppenkommandeur chevrons, and Luftsieg tallies on the rudder. By 1945, most units had dispensed with anything other than regulation mandated markings. The second machine is the aircraft of Hauptmann Karl Rammelt, the Gruppenkommandeur of II./JG 51 operating out of Rumania in April of 1944. Another colorful aircraft featuring the buzzard head emblem of JG 51 on the port cowling and the emblem of II. Gruppe on the starboard. The Hauptmann's personal emblem, a morning star, is painted under the canopy. Gruppenkommandeur chevrons and Luftsieg tallies on the white rudder make for a striking aircraft. This aircraft is pictured in Luftwaffe Colours, Vol. 4, Section 4 "The Mediterranean 1943-45". In their color profile they portray this aircraft with the R-6 under-wing cannons installed (not included in this kit) and they suggest that the front half of the spinner was probably white. Matt: Both machines' painting guides have you put a MW50 triangle (decal 50) on the rear right hand side filler port. This is in fact the primer fuel fill, which I don't think had a fuel type symbol. As both these machines are G-6s neither should have MW50 and therefore no filler (though there could be GM1 which used same filler just behind pit on right..?). A little pickier is that the pair of decals 54 and 61. These allege to be compressed air filler points for the MG151 engine cannon. The MG151 didn't use compressed air to fire. It was all electric. This port was used for either any of the MG17 armed aircraft (109G-4 and earlier), early MG131 armed aircraft (apparently early MG 131 was air or electrically primed) and the MK108 cannon armed version (denoted by the /U4 suffix). So you really need to know what aircraft you’re modelling to know whether to retain the port and apply the decal. Either way, the text shouldn’t say MG151. Some comments on Early vs. Late production: The two schemes in the kit are picked up at various points in the instructions using parts for either ‘early’ or ‘late’ aircraft. The optional parts offered do not however simply relate to an early or late machine. Stage 2&3 The two types of cannon and their breech covers could be seen on various aircraft. The MG151 remained a standard weapon all the way through Bf109G-6 production. The MK108 was introduced some way into production and was limited to specific batches of aircraft. Stage 12 The rear bulkhead (M23) is of the type fitted to Bf109G-14 (and G-10) aircraft with MW50 installations, whilst this is a late Bf109 feature it is not a feature of the Bf109G-6. Neither of these aircraft are G-14s. Dorr's a/c whilst looking much like a G-14 is, according to its Werk Nummer411960, an Erla built Bf109G-6. Stage 20/22 See this stage in the corrections above. But to summarise on the right hand cowling, the extra bulged (J42&47) and standard beule (R188&189) could be seen on all but the earliest Bf109G-6 aircraft. So this is a feature of certain production blocks rather than early or late aircraft. Stage 67 Part M26 looks like the canopy de-icing air blower found on several (Erla?) Bf109 G10 aircraft. It can be seen on the preserved machine at the Planes of Fame museum. This fitting is probably not relevant to the Bf109G-6 at all. Conclusions: Matt: My conclusion from an in the box and preliminary assembly and a bit of dry fitting is that the kit is superior to Hasegawa’s in terms of detail and finesse (though not everywhere – solid nose air scoops being one retrograde feature). We know in the box reviews cannot tell us how the thing will build, but there is greater complexity in the way Revell have broken parts down compared to Hasegawa and Trumpeter and this could make it a more demanding build than the other two. As it stands I like the kit, think it’s certainly within the accuracy tolerances I work to and am champing at the bit to get on with building it. Mike: For the most part it appears that the Revell Bf 109G-6 is an upgrade over the Hasegawa kit. It certainly raises the bar as far as flexibility to build specific configurations, although I would have liked to seen the W.Gr. 210 rocket launchers and the MG 151 wing gondolas included. Perhaps Revell will include these in a later release. My concern as well is that the engineering of the kit may cause some construction headaches, if you've built the Hasegawa kit you know that it goes together exceptionally well and this may help keep it relevant if the Revell kits turns out be a little fiddly to build. We've pointed out some inaccuracies and things we didn't like in the kit. However we'd be remiss if we didn't point out that this kit should build up into a good looking model of the Bf 109G-6 at a very reasonable price that will satisfy most people who build it right out of the box. If you're a Bf 109 fanatic who's looking to take it to the next level the kit should provide a solid starting point as well. I too am ready to quit writing about it and ready to get down to snipping some sprues. We hope you'll look in on the Group Review/Build that we'll be kicking at the Large Scale Modeller forums where we'll be joined by a few other members of the staff in a step by step build review of the kit. Highly Recommended Matt Low and Mike Offutt References: Soviet Bf109G nose. Blue print, measurements taken from captured aircraft. Bf 109F/G fuselage Messerschmitt factory drawing 8-109.142 Rumpf Bf109F/G Wing Messerschmitt factory drawing Baumuster :109G, Blatt:13, Flugel Bf109F/G Tail/rudder factory drawing Seitenleitwerk 109F Messerschmitt Bf109 Recognition Manual - A Guide to Variants, Weapons and Equipment, Marco Fernandez-Sommerau, Classic Publications Messerschmitt Bf109 F, G and K series, Jochaen Prien & Peter Rodeike, Schiffer Military History Bf109G-6. Modeller's Eye Series, Koichiro Abe, Model Graphix Messerschmitt Bf109 G-1 through K-4, Engines and Fittings, Jean-Claude Mermet (self published) The Messerschmitt Bf 109, Part 2: "F" to "K" Variants, Lynn Ritger, SAM Publications Luftwaffe Colours, "Jagdwaffe" Vol. 4, Section 4 "The Mediterranean 1943-45" Jean-Louis Roba and Martin Pegg, Classic Publications
  17. Ok these aren't mine, they are Keith's; or as I call him, dad. I pretty much got my interest in aviation, history, model kits and strange colour schemes from dad. First is his Buchon he built well before there was a resin conversion of them. The basis of the kit is the Matchbox 109E fuselage with the Revell 109G wings. The nose was made from balsa wood along with auto body filler. The prop was made from the kit prop, with a scratch built extra blade and spinner. I think this model was built when I was in either prep or kindergarden, making it 25 years old. Second is the captured Spitfire Mk Vb that had a DB engine fitted. The kit is the old Revell Spitfire Mk 1 with the engine, prop and spinner from the 109G used for the Buchon. This kit is about 33 years old, making it older than me! Dad doesn't build anymore, his interest is in the historical stuff these days.
  18. 1/32 Heinkel He111 H-6 Revell Catalogue # 4386 Introduction The He111 H-6 is the follow-up to Revell's initial release of Heinkel's twin engined bomber, the P-1 (kit #4696). As is fairly standard practice, we get the more obscure / less popular variant of any new aircraft first, before we get the one we have all been waiting for (the same applies in the world of armour by the way). Perhaps the only surprise here is that we have the H-6 so soon after the P-1, when we are still waiting for the A-4 boxing of the Ju88 (the Junkers preceding the Heinkel by over a year I think). This is a seriously large kit The main difference between the P and early members of the H series was the power plant: the DB601 of the P being substituted for the Jumo 211 series (Daimler Benz's engine being prioritised for use in the Messerschmitt Bf109). The P and H look very similar, but can be distinguished by different engine cowlings: the P has the supercharger intake on the port side of each engine nacelle, whereas the H has it to starboard. There are of course other differences and things to look out for, and I shall try to cover these as we go through the review. The H served on all fronts where the Germans fought in WWII (although relatively few made it to North Africa); it saw action in anti-shipping operations (often armed with torpedoes), transport and supply, as well as its more traditional tactical bomber role. As such, the scope for the modeller is much larger than with the P. He111 P of KG55 (yes, that is Rudolf Hess). Note supercharger intakes on port side of nacelle – the key identifier of a P variant. Also note pointed shape of spinner, and 'fish tail' exhausts [KF] He111 H-6 – note supercharger intake on starboard of nacelle. Also note exhaust type with 'fins'. [KF] Overview This kit shares the vast majority of parts with its predecessor, so the engineering is virtually identical, and the instruction booklets are very similar. The main differences are as follows: new engine nacelles, spinner and prop blades new glazing and armament option for the front nose 'cone', or A-stand additional part for dorsal gun station, or B-stand new ventral gondola, or C-stand options for external bomb load, including both regular bombs and torpedoes markings for two aircraft Because of the similarity between the two kits, the overall assessment is similar: broadly accurate, great value built out of the box (OOTB), large scope for super detailing / use of aftermarket. For modellers who build largely OOTB, Revell offer some of the best bang for your buck out there; this is a truly imposing aircraft in 1/32 (quite a bit larger than their Ju88), and even relatively soon after its release, can be picked up in the UK for less than £45 inc shipping. If, on the other hand, you have the financially severe affliction known as 'aftermarket syndrome' or AMS, then there are already a whole host of detailing options available, with many more in the pipeline I am sure. First and foremost, the kit seems fairly accurate - dare I say 'it looks like a Heinkel 111'?? Joking aside, the plans I have used as a benchmark are from the Kagero Monograph series (see below for a complete list of references), and the kit matches up well. Are the plans themselves accurate - well to be honest who knows? I do know there are inconsistencies in some the details, but as with most review research, I find the more you find out, the more you are able to spot errors in various books, profiles and so on. It is worth pointing out that the Revell used the He111 (a P-2) at the Gardermoen Museum, Norway as the basis for their original kit, which was painstakingly restored by Guttorm Fjeldstad and his team. The defining feature of the 111 for me is the fully glazed nose, putting everything inside very much on display. And whilst this means that all the work you put in on the cockpit will indeed be seen, it also means that the detail needs to be there in the first place, and this is where the Revell kit does fall a little short. Whereas the cockpit of their Ju88 was actually rather good, this one is sparse in comparison. No doubt there will be another update set from Eduard for the H, as there was for the P-1, reviewed here. For those who will be going down the resin cockpit route (there are already two on the market), it is a shame that the main pilot's hatch window cannot slide open. The nose cone or A-stand drew some comments when the P-1 was first released, and when I look at the part in front of me against both plans and period photos, I do think the kit part is not bulbous enough. More on that later. Cockpit detail is a let down compared to their Ju88 kit – this is almost 1/72 scale in its rendition Going further aft, the internal detail in both the bomb bay and the radio operator's compartment is somewhat basic. The shortcomings of the bomb bay have to some extent been addressed by Eduard's bomb bay update set but according to some references the bomb bay itself extends about 5mm too far forward in the kit. It appears that Revell ignored the large bulkhead / main wing spar that separates bomb bay and cockpit. So, when using this set and posing bay doors open (I cannot think why you would use it with the doors closed), there will be a small gap to fill. Personally, I would be unlikely to rescribe panel lines etc with bay doors closed, and would only investigate filling the gap if using Eduard's set. I believe that the two windows either side over the wing are actually access panels, which opened out and down from the aircraft side; so these clear parts should probably be painted over, rather than masked clear. All the parts and layout for the internal bomb bays are included in this kit, even though at best only half of them will be used The internal spar structure around the waist windows, for instance is not correct; whether you can actually see any of this is another matter of course. Some of the internal flooring around the ventral gondola is also incorrectly positioned. And whilst I have seen one skillful and ambitious modeller completely rework this whole space, I think most people are likely to leave things as is. Where the rear portion of the C-stand blends with the fuselage bottom, there are two flat panes of glass; the fuselage contours around this area may not have been captured correctly, but for me this is very minor and certainly not material. Apart from the almost laughable molded on seatbelts in the cockpit, the only other howler that I can see are the MG15s. Whilst I would not expect much of the barrels - turned brass barrels from Master Model will be quite eye catching, especially for variants carrying larger numbers of guns – in over all they are not great48. Thankfully, Aires have already come to the rescue with armament sets for both P and H versions. I imagine some modellers will combine these with Master barrels - I plan to do this. It is worth pointing out that even though this is a very large aircraft, you will not necessarily need to upgrade the landing gear with any metal alternatives. The actual structure was a fairly complicated one, and in 1/32 plastic I think should have enough rigidity. SAC already have a set of metal gear out if you must (I have not seen these, but am not SAC's biggest fan), or you can play the waiting game and see if G-Factor bring out some (costly, but superb detail and strength). Surface detail is restrained, and molding is pretty good. The plastic is not the hardest, but certainly up to the job. The instructions will be familiar to many who made kits over a generation ago - they have changed little and are quite similar to Airfix's. I don't mind so much having what seems like a million assembly and sub-assembly stages, but Revell's refusal to number or letter sprues will mean part location is unduly tedious. The recycled paper feel of the P-1 instructions has been thankfully left behind in the H-6 I can report! Basically the original kit was pretty good, if not without certain weaknesses. Probably its biggest hindrance was that it was a P-1: not that many were built in the grand scheme of things, and markings options are rather limited. Although the boxing trumpeted 'Battle of Britain', most He111s in 1940 were in fact H models, and the Ps that were operated were more likely to be P-2 and P-4 (different engine nacelles, upgraded C-stand). So let's now look a little more closely at the new features in this kit... Engine Nacelles, Props & Exhausts As mentioned above, the H series used the Jumo 211 engine. The H-1 and H-2 used the Jumo 211A, the H-3, -4 and -5 the 211D, and the H-6 to H-20 variants used the Jumo 211F. Early Hs are seen with slightly different engine nacelles: the oil cooler intake on top of the nacelle is much slimmer, resulting in a smoother appearance; the supercharger intake lacks the tubular cowling that runs the most of the length of the nacelle. I had thought this feature was limited to H-1s and -2s, but at least one RAF Intelligence Report on a crashed He111 lists a H-3 with these early engine cowls and being powered by the Jumo 211D. The lack of a definitive reference on the 111 means this is just one of a number questions that seems to have no conclusive answer. Being a H-6, this kit has the correct later style cowlings with deeper oil cooler, and extended supercharger intake. The early style cowling of the H – note shortened supercharger intake and rather flat area over oil cooler [CA] A nice shot of a main production H-6 showing wider VS11 props, larger and more bulbous spinners; also note exhaust type [KF] Whereas here we see an earlier H (possibly H-3 to early production H-6) with thinner VDM props [AD] The props used changed during H-6 production: early examples had the slim VDM blades, which has been also used on all previous P and H models; the majority of H-6s used the wider VS11 blades. Unless viewed at a very shallow angle, the two types are fairly easy to distinguish. If the engines are running such that the blades can't be seen, another thing to look out for is the spinner hub: the VDM blades were matched with smaller but rather pointed hubs, whereas the VS11 blades had a larger more bulbous hub. Head on shot showing the shape of the VS11 props; also note single external rack under port side, internal bay on starboard [KG] The kit props – there are already aftermarket ones available if you are not happy with the shape of these Kit spinners look good to me I have identified four main types of exhausts used on the P and early to mid Hs. Early Ps have separate but rounded exhaust tubes, as supplied in the P-1 kit. Secondly, there are for want of a better description 'fishtail' exhausts with flame dampeners which can be seen on both Ps and Hs, up to and including the H-6, and it is these which are included in the kit. The real things are quite complicated affairs, so I am not surprised that Revell's depiction is a rather crude affair. From the references and pictures I have looked at, this type seems particularly common, and can be seen on both Ps and Hs, from pre Battle of Britain, through to North Africa and the war on the Eastern Front. The third type is much simpler, and consists of a single tube; there appear to have been variations of these. The final type you will see looks from a distance (or in a low resolution WWII pic) similar to the fish tail type. On closer inspection, each exhaust outlet has a number of cooling fins. To date I have only seen these on H-6s, and not on earlier variants. The kit exhausts are, I think, meant to be the fish tail type, but are not really that close; I would use resin ones from CMK Ventral Gondola / C-stand For those who wish to model their subjects as accurately as possible, this was probably the single most limiting factor in the original P kit. The first P and Hs had a C-stand with only a rear-facing MG15, three small windows along each side, and a solid front section which was quite gently curved. This is what came with the P-1 kit. The original C-stand (as featured on P-1 kit) found on early Ps and Hs; note solid front section and only a rear gun station [AD] The same basic structure continued up until the H-5, but with the addition of forward facing gun station. This was due to the urgent need for more defensive firepower against fighters, but also used in an offensive capacity against ground targets and shipping. The same basic profile remained, as did the three side windows, but the solid front was replaced with a glazed section. Despite looking at many photos, I am unsure whether this upgrade was uniform, or whether slight variations in the replacement window configuration existed. Plans showing the upgraded early P / H C-stand with new forward gun station (above) and revised structure of C-stand for H-5 onwards (below) [KA] Either way, the majority of P and early H models seem to have had this modification, and until Revell release an earlier H (or indeed later P), or we get help from the aftermarket world, a lot of 111s are sadly out of reach. Just a note if you want to make an H with the initial C-stand: although unlikely, it was not impossible: I have clear photographic evidence of at least one H-3 with this early type gondola, although it is just one in literally hundreds of examples I have looked at. The C-stand we have in the kit was introduced on the H-5. Although the same basic shape and size, close inspection reveals that it is actually completely different. The three side windows are gone (but there is one each side further towards the front of the gondola), and both gun stations have been re-worked with very different glazing. The armament was either two MG15s, or commonly a MGFF cannon in the front position. The kit instructions suggest the MGFF, but this is a case of check your references as some planes had a MG15 here; overall this new area looks pretty good to me. Dorsal gun / B-stand The dorsal position featured a revolving cradle type seat for the gunner - it wasn't really a turret as such - and a perspex cowling which slid forward to facilitate a wider arc of fire or emergency exit. This rather basic arrangement remained the same from the first P and H-1s through to the H-10, with the only addition being an additional pull down hood from the P-4 and H-4 onwards. One of Rommel's transports – not a great shot, but you can clearly see the three-part hood does indeed fold up and back. The kit part is moulded in the extended position.[bundesarchiv] This hood was formed of three overlapping parts, and looked rather like a sea shell when pulled down. Revell provides this new part (#270) and it should look just fine when down; but I think that the three layers folded underneath each other when the hood was raised, so merely pivoting the same part backwards is not correct. Finding a clear picture of the hood raised has been surprisingly tricky - the best side on view I could find still does not provide conclusive evidence. Irrespective of this, the part's inclusion is a welcome addition. Nose cone / A-stand Some Ps and Hs had an additional MG15 mounted in the glazing between the cone of the A-stand and the seats in the cockpit. It was designed to provide additional defence from frontal attacks. No such mount (or gun) is provided in this kit, but adding one yourself should be fairly straightforward. A-stand for MG15 – should be more bulbous, like in the P variant immediately below Note profile of A-stand [KF] A new nose cone (part #257) is provided for mounting another MGFF cannon - it was rather flatter than the cone for the MG15 when viewed from the side. The original part from the P-1 kit is still included which is good, as not all H-6s were fitted with this new weapon. However, as you can see from the pictures, it does look as though Revell got mixed up here: the later cone for the MGFF is more bulbous than the one for the MG15, when in fact it should be the other way around. Although we already have aftermarket barrels for the MGFF, we don't yet have any with the oversized flash suppressors, nor do we have a more detailed resin body for the cannon; the kit parts are fairly basic. The new A-stand part for MGFF – way to bulbous in my view The A-stand on this H certainly looks more restrained the kit part shown immediately above; also note what looks like twin ETC racks [KF] There are also parts for the remotely fired MG17 which was fitted to the tail cone of some H-6s (the tail MG started to be fitted to H-3 onwards I believe). The new cone is optional, and the gun is integrally moulded to one half of it (part #247). This addition is quite a neat way to 'spice up' your 111, although I would chose to cut away the gun and replace with a turned brass MG17. Bomb Load Early Heinkel 111s were fitted with internal bomb bays. Two side by side racks of vertical ESAC 250 / IX racks could carry up to eight SC250 bombs. The compartments could also be sub-divided to carry up to 32 50kg bombs, but it was a severe limitation that no heavier single piece of ordnance could be carried. The original P-1 kit is made out in the 8 x 250 configuration, and all of these parts are still present in the H-6 kit. In order to lift heavier individual bombs, external racks started to be fitted under the fuselage, over where the internal bays were. The first rack used was the PVC 1006. These are generally seen on the P-4, and the H-3 onwards. The maximum individual rating for these racks appears to have been 1800kg, but when fitted as a pair, loads would max out at one SC1800 and one SC1000, and this for only very short range missions. An alternative was for two torpedoes to be carried, which is one of the options provided in kit - more on that shortly. For even heavier ordnance, a different rack had to be used, the ETC2000. These are seen on some 111s from the H-5 onwards. The two racks are fairly similar, and very difficult to distinguish without a photo from the right angle and close study. The PVC1006 rack [KA] In overall outline the kit parts seem ok, but that's about it – resin replacement please! I am fairly sure the racks should not be joined together like this A common combination appears was a single PVC rack under the port side, with the internal ESAC racks being retained on the starboard side. I understand that sometimes one bank of the internal racks was replaced with an additional fuel tank, but how one can tell this from pictures I am not sure. Spot the difference?! [AE] Using the above, I reckon we have an ETC2000 under port, and PVC1006 under starboard, but it took a lot of staring! [AE] Despite the ETC2000 being mentioned in the introduction in the instructions, the racks in the kit look more like twin PVC1006 to me, although detail is so vague it's hard to tell. The ordnance supplied is either two SD500 bombs, or two LT F5b torpedoes. The two racks are moulded together as one single part (#226), and different brackets / sway brace parts are used depending upon whether you opt for torpedoes or bombs. These torpedoes are huge in 1/32 – over 15cm long! Twin LT F5b torpedoes on what I think are PVC1006 racks [KF] I like the optionality here, and if you build out of the box then you'll be a fan of this. I have concerns that the detail of both the rack itself and the braces is not that great, which is ok as I think we might see some aftermarket help here soon enough. I also have doubts over the shape and configuration of the racks: both pictures I have studied and my references seem to indicate the two racks should not be joined together with a plate that will sit proud from the fuselage / internal bomb bay doors. At this time I am still trying to confirm if there were variations in the PVC1006, but I would advise treating this area with caution (or more likely patience) if you are concerned about accuracy. Much the same goes for the bombs and torpedoes, in terms of the fact that they will look fairly impressive from a distance just because of their size, but detail is a little lacking. There are already a couple of different aftermarket SC500s and also SC1000s around (CMK and MDC) for us to choose from. A resin torpedo is available from CMK; obviously you'd need two, and the rack is made for the Ju88 so totally unsuitable. Once again, patience or some fairly tasty scratchbuilding will be the order of the day if you want more than the kit offers. Markings There are two schemes for which markings are provided, although on of them is probably for two different aircraft: "5J+ER 7./KG 4 Stalingrad, Russia 1942" (and the same codes but with addition of a white stripe on the fuselage is denoted "Africa, August 1942") "1H+GK 2./KG 26 Norway, July 1942 flown by Lt. K Hennemann" "Vestigium Leonis" I do not know if the two KG 4 options are the same airframe - it is possible, but then again the same codes often adorned completely different aircraft at different times also. I have identified the Africa option, and confirm it as a H-6 with VS11 prop blades. There was a MGFF in the A-stand, and what looks like evidence of an additional MG15? The C-stand is not visible so one can only presume armament there was one MGFF and one MG15. Revell's instructions and correctly pick out the location of the white fuselage theatre band, and "ER" decals are provided for the wing leading edges. Close study of the photo leads me to belive an earlier theatre band may have been painted over, but I have not had this confirmed yet. There is no folding cover for the B-stand visible that I can see. Note, however, that the exhausts are not the same type as those supplied in the kit - they those with individual fillets on each exhaust port. The African incarnation of 5J+ER [KF] The KG 26 option is interesting: this is the torpedo-armed aircraft, and comes with ship kill markings. Whilst these are probably based on a photo, but I have not yet located it, so cannot comment on their accuracy, or any other features of the aircraft. As to this being the mount of Lt. Hennemann, he and his crew were lost in an attack on Convoy PQ17 on the 4th July 1942. I have found a number of different sources quoting this aircraft as WNr 7098, and being 1H+GH. I have been unable to find pictures of this machine either, to establish whether Revell got the codes wrong, or if Hennemann was not flying his usual mount that day? The KG 26 emblem of the lion with the famous "Vestigium Leonis" inscription is black lion on white shield background; both lion and background came in different colours according to which Staffel the aircraft was Being Revell, there are no swastikas. The decals look fine otherwise to me, but given the size of some of the markings, especially the underwing crosses, you may wish to have a look at masks?
  19. This is the Model of the Ural 4320 from (I think) Revell. The vehicle body and the engine was from Real Model (Resinparts). The Ural was a part of the "MAZ Tank Transporter" and I took this model from the transporter, because the front wheels brok because of the belgian highway. The next picture I will take of both models, MAZ and Ural. The kit from Revell was horrible and so I needed a canvas cover to hide the cracks at the cabine. On the left side you can see such a crack at the door. See you next time and happy modelling. Kai
  20. Here's my own Heinkel He 162, which hopefully will be finished before 2018! The kit has Eduard, Aires and CMK parts added, and a little scratch build work. The incorrect Aires radio set was removed from the pit and replaced with a more authentic German set.
  21. Hey all, This was one of my latest builds, First one to be completed with an airbrush, first WWI-aircraft and first one to get a diorama base. It was build in three days (excluding the diorama), the idea around this whole build was, no excuses, just finish it. It was build using the 1/48 Revell kit, which actually contains an Eduard mold. In the kit were decals for the Fokker Dr. I flown by Manfred von Richthofen, who should not be unknown with most of you guys. He flew various aircraft, as the Albatros D.V. and various Fokker Dr. I's and scored a total of 80 victories. The Revell kit states that he had flown 9 different Dr. I's and that this one was the one flown on the fatal flight where he was shot down by ground forces deep inside enemy territory on the 21st of April 1918. He was buried by english troops given full military honors. Enough about history, here are the pic's. The Dio is supposed to be a muddy airfield during late 1917/begin 1918. Enjoy! With regards, Ninetalis.
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