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1:32 Laminar Flow Design Spitfire F/FR XIVe Hi-back conversion (for Tamiya's Spitfire Mk.VIII and IX kit)


Fran

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1:32 Spitfire F/FR XIVe

Hi-back Conversion

for Tamiya's Spitfire Mk.VIII and IX kit

 

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Laminar Flow Design, 1/32 scale

Catalogue n.º 32002

Price Tag - €83,49

Purchase directly at Laminar Flow Design website – here-

 

Laminar Flow Design is a new company from Belgium with a one man work behind, and Its starting with two conversion in 1:32, and this one is the 32-002.

You can see Brett`s full review of the XIVe conversion for the Tamiya Spitfire XVI, here.

Today we are checking the second conversion in their catalogue. We can said the second conversion release as the 32-001 and 32-002 were release at the same time

 

The Spitfire Mk XIV is a beautifull aircraft.. I truly honest don’t know which one of more gracious… if the high-back one (of this conversion) and the very elegant Mk XIV low-back. To not chose, I got the other conversion, the 32-001.

 

This conversion set came in a rather small cardboard box, with a “box-art” with a drawing of the aircraft silhouette.

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All the contents arrived perfectly safe and intact.

Inside, just 93 (ninety three)  3D printed resin parts. Die-cut masking sheets and instructions.

 Looking at the box, I wonder: how the h… all fits in there?

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And the answer is simply: a fantastic planning 3D print, to reduce space and to protect all the fragile parts.

To do that, the owner, producer got a system that is totally new to me… the printing cage around the parts.

This set comes with four resin printing cages and inside of those cage, all the parts.

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At this stage you should and oddly enough, we must read the instructions as it gives some good advices how to cut the cages and to free the 3D parts.

 

The instructions advise the modeller to cut the four pillars at the base of each cage, then work inward as required.

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It is also recommended that a razor saw or a new scalpel blade should be used to free the parts.

To really check this conversion we need to start cutting…

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And it´s quite a mess! :D

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 Some parts are not easy to free, so you a new scalpel, a very good cutter and patience and time.

 

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Once the parts have been free, you can appreciate the quality of this conversion, at its all splendour.

 The printing quality is top noch. The surface is very smoth with no printing line visible whatsoever.

  It’s at equal stage as the Tamiya surface detail of the donor kit with all the panel line, rivets, rib tape, fasteners, you name it! Brilliant work and printed in high resolution.

The Mk VIII/IX are quite different from the Mk XIV but this conversion covers it all, at least from the outside.

 Starting with the most impressive part! The beautiful griffon nose.

A single printing piece, as it’s a gorgeous piece of 3D resin!! Simply fabulous! Bye bye seam line in the upper nose!! I will have a smooth nose with no effort!!

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The carburate intake is also in a single piece totally hollow.

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Another big difference is the propeller.

 

The propeller cone and propeller itself (yup, a new propeller is needed) is quite easy to make as all the blades have connections/intakes points, so there`s no room to error! Nice touch! 

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Checking the tail, you get two styles of fin and rudder - larger and even larger one.

Why? A standard rudder for early MK XIV and a broad rudder for Late Mk XIV;

 

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Speaking of two, you also get two wing radiators. The inside mesh is also reproduce in a very fine detail. In fact the 3D printing of this set is top quality! Great work Laminar Flow Design.

 

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A full exhaust set all hollow, and all individual… Could be a bit boring to make but the final result should be fantastic!

 

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One thing that I was worry about is the F/FR MK XIVc/e has different hatchs, but Laminar flow solve that with resin template that fit right to the kit donor fuselage. There is little chance of miss the lines.

 

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 All the small detail necessary to make the F/FR are present, again with a perfect printing detail. All the detail are clear and present. It`s amazing how 3D printing have been coming to this in a few years.

 

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The tail wheels have a totally new wheel well with doors cast in place.

 

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Going to wings, new panels and rounded fairing (late type) and conical fairing (early type) are given!

 

 

Next, the vinyl masks.

 

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So you got 4 vinyl adhesives die-cut masks with insignia  letters and even a panther for three option:

1.    Spitifre F Mk XIVc RB 169, MN-F 350th Squadron (Belgian), 1944, Lympne.

2.   Spitifre FR Mk XIVe RM807, L 430th Squadron (RCAF), 1945

3.   Spitifre F Mk XIVe RM908 “UM-G”, 152th Squadron FAR, 1945, Burma.

I specially enjoy this last one!

 

The instructions are in A5 format with 12 pages.

They are clearly laid out and include text and photographic assembly steps.

 The instructions are very well need as it has lots of tips and serious warnings and steps that you should consider to get it done.

 The first chapter is “working with 3D printing” with very good tips.

 The second chapter is preparing work, or in another words, cutting!!

Although this is a very well taught conversion, the cutting the plastic parts of the donor kit are always a bit stressful (at least for me). This particularly case, the nose looks quite easy, but the tail, even cutting for the correct place and looks straightforward, care must be taken as the plastic parts will be very thing and can break. Cautions and patience are needed.

 The surgery is minimal but is always a surgery! 😊

 The hatches is also challenging but with the resin templates, a good measuring and the work can be done eithout too much work.

The final chapter before painting is general assembly that is basically where the all this 93 resin parts go.

 And its quite clear and intuitive the parts place but the instructions very comprehensive and very clear.

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Conclusion:

 

I really love this conversion and Laminar Flow Design made a terrific work giving us, 1:32 modellers this fantastic conversion.

The quality of the 3D parts is astonishing with the surface detail matching the high quality of the donor kit, the Tamiya 1:32 Spitfire. The bar has quite high and these 3D parts don’t disappoint.

Its not a beginner conversion, at all, so a few model kits (and some resin) under the belt would serve you good when you start building this conversion.

 

The only thing that this conversion doesn’t give is the interior parts for the Mk XIV but once again Laminar Flow Desing came to the rescue and are already working on that. With the interior detail, a perfect 1:32 Mk XIVe high-back can be obtain.

 

I love this conversion so much that I bought the low-back conversion!

 

Very Very Highly recommend

My trully Thanks to Laminar Flow Design for the review sample.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Fran, great review on the high back conversion. 

I was fortunate enough to be able to get the low back (bubble top) version when it first came out. I'm partway through the assembly at the moment. 

One thing on the template for the wing tanks. For some reason, when I used them I ended up with curved rather than straight panel lines. I ended up filling them in and re-doing them using a straight edge.

Other than that, the fit has been excellent. It's very well thought out. 

Now to convince Matthieu to do an F2G Corsair conversion. 

 

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1 hour ago, Martinnfb said:

"Out of stock" is the common theme with this company. 

It`s a one man show, that release small quantaties each times...

 

BUT 

5th November, a new batch will be on sale again

 

Here´s Laminar Flow Design statement on facebook:

 

 

"Sunday 5th of November 13:00 UTC

LFD32-001 Spitfire XIV low back limited restock 20sets
LFD32-002 Spitfire XIV high back limited restock 20sets
LFD32-004 Spitfire FRIX release 15sets
LFD32-006 Spitfire XIV cockpit parts release 56sets
And it’s time to announce the next product release.
While one printer was prototyping, I put others to good use to resplenish on Spitfire XIV conversions.
So here’s the good news, but note it’s not really a full batch, and be sure to check in on time if you absolutely want one.
The cockpit parts will include double handles and levers just in case the carpet monster is hungry. Note there is one throttle unit provided, with separate controls (2 pictured to illustrate the difference after assembly)"
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