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1:32 Me262B-1a/U-1 Upgrades RB Productions Available from RB Productions RB-C32005 Radar Antennas and Pitot Tube (€24,99) RB-C32006 Main wheels Tube (€12,50) RB-C32007 Bomb & Drop Tank Racks (€12,50) RB-M32007 Canopy masks (€7,49) RB-P320061 Luftwaffe seatbelts (standard) beige (€6,00) Introduction Did we really need a new Me262 nightfighter? Trumpeter released theirs in 2008, following their first Me262A-1a kit back in 2005. The engineering of these kits and the accuracy did not leave much to demand. To my eye the only thing these kits need is a little toning down of the somewhat heavy panel lines and rivets and some attention in various areas, like the wheelbays, cockpit and gunbays. Revell surprises friend and foe by doing their take on the subject. When I first saw a testshot of their version I can remember asking the poor Revell guys 5 times whether they were sure this wasn’t a build up Trumpeter kit to satisfy the curious modellers’ impatience. I had to look really hard and then details gave away this was indeed the new Revell kit. More elegant antenna’s, finer surface detail, no matt grid on the canopy frame, etc… A little birdy told me Radu Brinzan himself was involved with the Revell kit engineering and research, which is always a good sign. That’s one reason to buy the Revell kit. Another reason is the prize. Around € 45,00. Whereas the Trumpeter kit can set you back at least €70,00. Oh! And ofcourse. The Trumpeter kit has vinyl tyres. We don’t want those. But what do we need to take the Revell kit to a whole new level? Seatbelts, after market antenna, cockpit upgrade, detailed wheels and perhaps some more interior details in the gunbay, gearbay, etc… For all these desires both Eduard and RB Productions have you covered. Eduard recently released a whole string of upgrades for this kit. I can recommend their interior and exterior set. But their seatbelt set (pre coloured photo etch) I would skip and opt for an RB Production set or HGW set. Which ever you prefer. Radar Antennas and pitot tube As said: the plastic antennas in the Revell kit are an improvement over the plastic ones’ in the Trumpeter kit. Thinner and more delicate in detail. Master barrels already made a superb brass enhancement for these. To use them you had to cut off the antennas from the main arms. Then you needed to drill a small hole in the main arms to accommodate the brass antennas. I have a feeling these brass parts in this set are the same as Master released for the Trumpeter kit, BUT in this set you also get study resin main arms to replace the Revell plastic part. On top of this you get a very nicely made brass pitot tube and both fuselage antennas for the radio. Here's a look at the Revell part: This is a photo of the Master set designed for the Trumpeter kit: Very well packed resin part: More lovely packing: As a dry fit I insterted the antenna’s into the horizontal base tubes and the fit is amazing. It’s so tight, you don’t have to spend any time or effort in aligning the antennas. With an element so prominent in view as the antler antenna, you’d do yourself short not to invest in this after market. Fuselage antenna: Pitot tube: Main wheels Where the Trumpeter kit offered you vinyl tyres, the Revell kit has pretty well detailed plastic ones. BUT the diamond pattern and the fact they come in to separate halves, might make it tricky to ensure the pattern to blend in nicely. The plastic detail is nice, but can’t beat the crispness of resin. Also: no lettering is seen on them. So…. RB Productions has these great resin wheels. The casting stub is really small, so no annoying resin removal drama here. As a comparison I grabbed the Eduard resin wheels for the Trumpeter kit out of my stash. As you can see: similar diamond pattern. But the Eduard wheels need some more cleanup. Both the resin wheels offer lettering, but I think the RB Production wheels are a little but more delicate if you look at the pattern. The Eduard set however includes the nose wheel and paint masks. The small parts you see on my finger are the brake line attachments. The brake lines themselves should be sourced from lead wire. Really liking this set. Here we have the Revell plastic parts: Nice, but not THAT crisp and no lettering. Lovely seamless pattern: Hubba hubba: Brake line connections: A comparison: Eduard top, RB bottom: Eduard left, RB right: RB left, Eduard right: Bomb & Drop tank racks Also called Viking ships because of their shape. These resin parts are direct replacements for the Revell plastic parts. They even have locator pins that mate with the holes in the fuselage. The rivet detail on the sides is nicely done as is the detail on the flat surface. The 8 small parts you see are the braces that keep the payload or drop tanks steady. Canopy masks Here’s a set of vinyl canopy masks. To be honest I prefer kabuki (paper) maskes, since vinyl tends to let go in difficult corners and bulges. However; these masks actually have the inner larger surfaces separated. This should prevent this annoying problem. These larger areas should be masked with liquid mask. Again: I compared this set to the Eduard (also new and designed for the Revell kit) masks. I did this because I was wondering if the Eduard set also only included the outside masks and not the inside. This was the case. I like to mask my windows inside and outside. Especially with a large side hinging canopy like this where the inside framing is prominent. Ah well.. you can’t win them all! I removed the outer waste material to show the masks better: Luftwaffe seatbelts (standard) beige The RB Production strap-them-yourself seatbelts were (as far as I know) the forst on the market of this kind. I can spend an entire evening fiddling with the small buckles and paper straps, but the result is always worth it. RB Production was followed by HGW seatbelts (which also show printed stitching and lettering) and Eduard (which are similar to HGW seatbelts). I have always been a fan of the RB Production seatbelts. Why? Because the soak up my washes. This really brings them to life and let’s you blend them in with the rest of the cockpit. Also: Not much cutting is needed as you can see. When ordering this set, don’t forget to add two sets to the basket! You’re building a two seater! Our sincere thanks to RB Productions for these samples. To purchase directly, click THIS link. Jeroen Peters
Just started on this last night. I had originally intended to do this one "buttoned up", but the cannon isn't half bad and with a bit of plumbing and wiring I think it might look impressive to leave the cannon bay open. Test fitting of the kit implies excellent fit. [/url]