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  1. 1:32 Dottie Mae (P-47D Thunderbolt) Limited Edition Eduard 'EduArt release' Catalogue # 11103 Available from Eduard and other good hobby retailers The P-47 Thunderbolt, designed by Russian expatriate Alexander Kartweli of Republic Aviation, and first flown in 1941 was quite an oddity among the sleek, lightweight fighters now possessed by both the Allied and Axis forces at that time. The ‘Jug’ as it became known, was the heaviest and largest single-engine fighter of its day, and with that came a price tag to match. Powered by the Pratt & Whitney R-2800 ‘Double Wasp’ engine, rated at 2000BHP, any disadvantages borne from the P-47’s physical attributes were overcome in order to make the P-47 Thunderbolt the most numerous fighter built in American history. After some initial technical difficulties and compromises, the ‘Jug’ was eventually fitted with a universal wing, allowing it to carry external fuel stores and bombs simultaneously. The high backed ‘razor’ spine of the earlier machines was also cut down to produce a fuselage allowing a bubble-canopy, giving the pilots a much better field of view. To counter resulting stability problems with the modified fuselage, a dorsal fin was added, fore of the vertical tail-plane. Carrying a powerful battery of eight Browning .50 calibre MG’s, the Jug could also carry those bombs and rockets, making it a deadly adversary late in WW2, when they roamed free, at low level, over occupied territory, destroying ground based targets. Serving with distinction both in European and Pacific theatres of war, the Thunderbolt served with the US until the late 1940’s. Other countries to use the type included the Soviet Union, United Kingdom, France, Republic of China, with the Peruvian Air Force using the type, up until its ultimate retirement from service in 1966. Whilst I haven’t built much Hasegawa over the last 10 years, there have been a couple of releases that I either missed, or had them and subsequently gave them away in a moment of weakness. One of these was the P-47D in its ‘Tarheel Hal’ incarnation, and I’ve regretted it ever since. When it leaked out that Eduard would release this as a limited edition, complete with their own resin and photo-etch, then I knew I had to take a look at this one again. I’ve long been a fan of Romain Hugault’s gorgeous aviation artwork, so for Eduard to ask him to collaborate on this release was a stroke of genius. If you’ve never seen Romain’s work before, check it out on his FaceBook page at https://www.facebook.com/romainhugault . To cap it off, a poster of the box art is supplied in the kit, carefully rolled up. The original kit was released in 2007 (08077) and has now seen four more subsequent releases (08174, 08187, 08202 and 08218 ) prior to this one. Packaged into a sumptuous, but slightly oversize box with Romain’s quite sexy Dottie Mae painting adorning the box, this kit comprises TWENTY sprues of light grey plastic, ONE clear sprue and THREE flexible sprues of polythene caps. FOUR of the smaller grey plastic sprues aren’t actually used for this release, comprising alternate props and undercarriage bay sections for the wing. A number of these sprues are fairly small and it’s common to see a number of them lined together on the same runner. A small number of other parts won’t be required for this release, with additional parts being supplied in both resin and photo-etch. Eduard purchases the sprues directly from Japan, and as a result, they are packaged all together in one single bag. I do find this a little frustrating with such a high value kit, but Eduard aren’t entirely to blame for that. The polycaps are packed into another, small packet. Thankfully, this kit exhibits no damage from being packaged this way. The outward appearance of this kit is very typical of Hasegawa releases in both style and execution, the exterior being devoid of rivets, with the exception of a small number of beautifully reproduced slotted fasteners where appropriate. Panel lines, access ports and other engraved details are of the highest standard in being crisp, even and of scale appearance. The control surfaces of this kit are moulded in situ meaning you will need to do a little surgery if you want to pose them dynamically. Their representation is very good, with them actually appearing to be separate despite the integral moulding. Rivet detail, where applicable in these areas, is recessed and very subtle. The cockpit is very well appointed, straight out of box, but this is an area of course where Eduard intervenes with their photo-etch expertise. This area is constructed as a module, complete with excellent side wall detail, suitably detailed instrument panel with raised instrument detail, rudder pedal assembly and other equipment. Of course, this doesn’t mean that things can’t be improved upon, and Eduard’s colour-printed PE parts come to the fore here, helping elevate the detail stakes further. Some kit parts are augmented further with colour PE, such as the throttle quadrant. Whilst the kit seat has no belts, Eduard has fixed this by not only the inclusion of a set of colour photo-etch belts, but also with the addition of a much more refined PE seat itself. Full colour reference is also provided for the cockpit, helping you with the painting stage. It goes without saying that there will be a certain amount of surgery needed to fit Eduard’s parts, including some destruction for things like the instrument panel. Here, all raised detail needs to be removed before the multi-layer colour PE instrument panel is fitted. This cockpit module fits into an innovative wing spar which both helps place the cockpit at the right altitude and position, and also gives the wings themselves a positive location with the correct dihedral and rigidity needed for a kit of this size. The design here is excellent. An insert fitting between the two fuselage halves is also included, complete with polycaps so that you may pug/un-plug the centre-line fuel tank. Should you wish to fit him, a pilot is also included, and this looks pretty reasonable, although it seems a shame to obscure much of the multimedia cockpit that is included. The Pratt & Whitney engine is moulded with the two rows of cylinders being separate parts. Each bank of cylinders is a single part too, with no unsightly seams needing to be exorcised around the circumference. A push rod ring and a small number of other parts complete this assembly. Eduard has included a PE ignition harness here. These are always a little tricky to fit, but when they are, brushing the PE with a little dilute white glue helps to make things look a little less flat. The supercharger fits to the engine bulkhead, and a four-piece cowl cover engine with a forward ring helping the alignment of the cowl parts. The radiator flap ring is supplied in both open and closed options. Four prop sets are included here, with two options being used for the three schemes included. The undercarriage is well presented with separate brake lines and excellent definition. No need to use the two-part, un-weighted plastic wheels either, and to remove the seams, thanks to the resin parts that come as standard in this new release. The undercarriage main bays are excellent, with crisp detail and some ancillary equipment in there. The outer, rear part of the well shape from the wing is separate, with their being two different types within the kit, despite only one of them being for this specific release. Inner undercarriage doors are also cleverly designed. These were quite chunky on the P-47, and Hasegawa have made these out of an inner and outer part so that no pin marks can be seen. Again, Eduard has included further PE detail to add to these, for further enhancement. Landing flaps can be modelled in either a raised or lowered position, with the hinges being individual parts and quite detailed and the placing of them being rigid and positive. More PE is used here for hinge plate detail, and to cover the flap ends which are moulded without any detail. Under-wing pylons are included so you may mount bombs or fuel tanks, and the latter are plugged onto these pylons by means of more polycaps. Check out the next review further down, for a Brassin alternative to the rocket launchers. External stores include an optional centreline drop tank, two wing mounted drop tanks and two bombs. All grey plastic parts are exceptionally moulded with no flash, poor seams or issues with ejector pin marks. The clear sprue holds two canopies. One of these is a single piece, closed option, while the two separate parts are for the open option. Landing and formation lights and gun-sight reflectors. Moulding is excellent with the parts being beautifully clear and well defined. Photo-etch parts Two frets are included here, with one of these being printed in colour. A number of parts here are for enhancing the cockpit, with a new seat, instrument panel, console detail, seatbelts rear canopy rail etc. whilst others are for the engine, wheel wells, and numerous small exterior details. As is typical of Eduard’s PE sets, these are beautifully made and the colour inking is very nice. Resin parts If you were expecting a wealth of resin in this release, then you might be disappointed. The only resin parts there are here are for the wheels. The main wheels have a separate outer hub, giving real depth to the inner details moulded on the main wheel. These parts, apart from replacing the crappy Hasegawa parts, are for me, a very nice addition to this kit. Tread detail is excellent, and thankfully, there is little clean-up to perform once you remove them from the casting block. Casting is also perfect, with no flaws. Masks A single, small sheet of kabuki masking is included, with parts for the canopy and the wheels. Simple, but a real time saver! As always, sharply cut. Eduard’s instruction manual is a 12 page A4 production with black and white drawings that have a little colour included to highlight where surgery is required, or where a resin/PE part is to be placed. All drawings are extremely clear and easy to follow, with good part notation and a sprue plan showing parts NOT to be used as shaded out portions. Paint codes are given for GSO Creos Aqueous paint, and Mr Color. The latter pages include full colour profiles for three schemes. These are: P-47D-28-RA, Lt. Larry A. Kuhl, 511th FS, 405th FG, 9th AF, Saint Dizier, December 1944 P-47D-26-RA, Lt. James R. Hopkins, 509th FS, 405th FG, 9th AF, Ophoven, Belgium, March 1945 P-47D-28-RA, Lt. Francis Norr, 510th FS, 405th FG, 9th AF, Saint Dizier, France, January 1945 A single sheet of decals is included for all three schemes. Printed by Cartograf, these are nice and thin, and printed in both solid and authentic colour with minimal carrier film. The decals also include a variety of stencils as well as several for the cockpit. Printing is in perfect register. Conclusion For Eduard, this was an inspired choice of collaborative release. In 1:32, this is simply the best, most accurate and P-47D kit that money can buy, and if you’ve never had the pleasure of seeing a Thunderbolt kit, then the size of this beast will surprise you. All of the Hasegawa P-47D releases are excellent, and Eduard’s new incarnation is no exception. Three great colour scheme on a fantastic kit, some lovely resin and PE parts and a Romain Hugault poster to adorn the man cave wall. Get this one whilst you can. I believe they are selling like the proverbial hot cakes at the moment! Highly recommended. My sincere thanks to Eduard for the review kit seen here. To buy this directly from Eduard, click THIS link.
  2. Hello everyone. I just joined and would like to present my version of this kit: I plan to complete it in Gabreski's scheme from July 1944. I intend to add a lot of aftermarket to this big bird. As someone said, "Go big or go home." It is part of a year long buddy build on another forum. I added an Eduard external PE set, Qucikboost resin engine set, Quickboost resin gun tubes, MDC multimedia cockpit (resin and PE), Aires resin wheel bays, and BarracudaCast weighted resin main landing gear wheels. In hindsight, being what it is, this was a daunting task and it's taken almost all of this year to get to this point. There is light at the end of this tunnel too, so mojo is returning, the bench is clearing, and I can see clearly now... Anyhoo...these sets were added to the kit. Quickboost resin engine set Quickboost resin gun tubes MDC Cockpit I got the BarracudaCast wheels, Eduard external PE set, a nice reference book, and a set of nose art decals. I used all but the decals. And there is was also the Aires resin wheel bays (I'll let you guess where I may have gotten them from). So, like most aircraft builds, the office was the first order of business to complete - the cockpit. A resin and PE cockpit. Beautifully cast resin parts that are incredibly crisp and sharp in the details and PE detail for increased crispness. The first challenge was to find a set of instructions that I could read and see where all the parts were supposed to go. Enter email and a message to the folks at MDC - the seat was cracked and improperly cast AND I desperately needed clear color instructions if possible. They sent me a replacement seat at no additional cost - they are in the UK, and I am in the USA. They were also kind enough to send me the digital color instruction sheets. Now I was in business. CA glue of course, used sparingly until I had a few subparts that made a complete cockpit. I airbrushed Model Master acrylic Interior Green as a base coat and darkened it with many light coats of Tamiya XF-1 thinned about 90%. Details were added by handbrushing the radio sets and the various knobs and dials. Drybrushing and a dark brown oil wash completed the cockpit. Matt coated with Testors Dullcote. I think it was a wonderful kit, but it is not recommended for beginners, sorry. Here's how it turned out. First just painted with no finishing. And then in the finished state, another sub-assembly to put to the side for a bit. Then it was time to concentrate on the wheel bays. First clean them up and build them. Then fit them in the wings. This meant removing styrene of course. Yikes! I tried to be precise with the cuts, removing only what I thought was necessary. Many lessons learned here, not the least of which is to be very, even ultraprecise with your destruction of the styrene. Take your time. Lay it out and follow a plan. The old adage - measure twice, cut once rings very true here. At any rate, "Not...too...bad." I thought. So I did the same thing to the other side. Once both sides were fitted, each wheel bay could be painted and finished. Then put aside until final assembly. They are a nice tight fit at the fuselage, on both sides - excellent! Now they need to fit in the wings precisely. Not too awfully bad at all. But, my errant cutting is very obvious now and will need to be dealt with at a later time, once assembled (unfortunately). For now, this will have to do and I can see how the wing roots line up and maybe even button up the fuselage. Great! The wing roots look very tight and even along the entire length on both sides upper and lower surfaces - no filler, I'm thinking. I also know that the underside will be tougher to line up than the upper wing roots. Just the way it is with aftermarket resin and making it fit sometimes. One the bright side, the fuselage matches up nicely. You can see the nice detail in the base Hasegawa kit in a number of these shots. Nice kit right out of the box and somewhat of a sleeper. I made the decision to go whole hog on this build, but it is not needed to complete an awesome and highly detailed P-47. Time for a test fit of the cockpit. What do you think happened? I found it fit very nicely. I was very impressed by the fit. It was so well engineered that there were notches and angles in the resin castings to fit the inside of the styrene! Nice job MDC! And thank you. Looks great too and all the work that has gone into it to this point seems all well worth it. Painted the wheel wells XF-4 and picked out details. I think they look great! Then it was on to the engine. I love round engines. In real life, one of the things I have been is an A&P Mechanic (still certified), and I really enjoy working on and running round engines. In modeling them, i enjoy adding the bits that may not be part of the base engine, like ignition wires, or cross-over tubes. Sometimes the research takes you off on wonderful adventures of learning about radial engines. You can go crazy with details, so I moderated the desire for uber-detailing with what would been seen through the cowling. This particular resin set by Quickboost has wonderful molded detail, as one would expect. This is how it finished up and awaited assembly. Some minor styrene modifications were required of course. Now it was time to play with the external PE set in preparation for buttoning up the fuselage. I then tackled the instrument panel. I was putting this off and putting this off. The MDC set comes with individual instrument decals. Nice details and multiples, but no direction whatsoever. Thank goodness for reference material. Here it is finished and ready to go into the cockpit. One over the top feature of this MDC kit are the individual instrument cans on the back of the IP that you have to glue in place, then drill out either one or two holes, and attach lead wire simulating instrument wiring. Like I said, over the top. The panel itself - the resin - was very thin and warped. Gluing on all those cans helped. Here are all the wires. Fun, fun, fun. At this point, I thought, "What have you gotten yourself into?" My enthusiasm was waning...my mojo! Not my mojo! Yes, I am man enough to say that I had to take a break. The intensity level of this build has now taken its toll. But fear not, I recover quickly. Just as a scale reference and one of the reasons for the sapped mojo. Cockpit sub-assembbly Looks pretty awesome in my book. I am happy with the way this is turning out. Things like test fitting the cockpit with the IP brings back my enthusiasm. So, let's put it together! And there's this really cool PE part that needs to be built and installed. It's really cool, and probably not accurate, also, it was too big..too long to be exact. It kept the canopy from closing fully during repeated test fits of the canopy. So, in the end, it was removed and the kit part used. I show you it here, just because I thought it looked great and I put a lot of effort into it. But, such is the life using aftermarket stuff. Truth is, it won't all fit or look right. This was the instruction: Finally! Some assembly and more visible forward progress. Minor filling needed only...phew! I put the four piece cowling together temporarily with tape, glued all the wings and stabilzers, clamped and rubberbanded, it was left to thoroughly cure for 48 hours or more. Once cured, I set about getting some primer down. Stuffed the holes with tissue - wheel bays, cockpit...etc. Gun tube holes I cut the tips off of toothpicks and stuffed them in the holes. Oh - did I say I was priming with flat black? Well, I did. It really helps with highlights and shadowing without spending hours pre-shading. 72 hours or more to cure. Enamel old school primer from the home and garden super center, in a rattle can. Put together the beautiful resin wheels from BaracudaCast. Then, all of a sudden, I had a bunch of sub-assemblies and other bits and bobs waiting for a painted plane. So, Ocean Gray 2 XF-82 top side and Medium Sea Gray 2 XF-83 under side. Hard edged camo on the wings and stabilizers. That will change. Free hand on the fuselage and softening the hard edges. Now we're finally getting somewhere! ID markings Chipping - I had used Ammo Mig Chipping Fluid prior to the camo colors Decals go on. A bit more chipping. And a bit of weathering on the prop Then a good couple thin coats of Alclad II Aqua Gloss - best stuff out there at the moment for a gloss varnish. Clay-based washes Looking the part a bit more now. External fuel tank - done Time to weather and detail. Getting dirty on a matt varnish with some pigments. Bit of dirt - as in mud too. And now you are all caught up. I know, a lengthy - but enjoyable I hope - build post. Next one will be the reveal. I hope you like it. I thank you very much for taking the time to look. Please comment, or not. I'm pretty thick skinned and never against learning something new that i can incorporate. Thanks again for looking. Scottsville Modeler
  3. Here is another stalled project that I am resurrecting... Originally I was planning to do this as an article for MIM, but it didn't quite make it! So I have dragged it into work for my lunch time project... I will be using the Trumpeter kit and it will be finished as P-47D #42-226628, Rozzie Geth II/Miss Fire, Col. Fred J. Christensen, Jr., 62nd FS, 56th FG. The kit comes with these markings included but the art is incorrect as Trumpeter has the background white instead of yellow... So I will either applying an yellow coat to the kit decal, or just buy the new book from Kagero P-47 Thunderbolts of the USAAF which has this scheme included in the decal sheet. So I will do a quick fire up of pic's and add comments to them shortly! A lot detail is hidden away once the fuse halfs are sandwiched together... You can leave it out... but I just used the bare bones to help everything line up... Nice clear cowl so you can display that huge Pratt & Whitney R-2800... but I will be painting it!
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