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1:32 Seatbelts for B-17, Ju 88A-4 and F4U-1 Corsair

James H

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1:32 Micro-Fibre Textile Seatbelt Sets
Catalogue # see article for prices and code.
Available from HGW





HGW have sent us some of their latest seatbelt sets for recent kit releases, produced from their now famous micro-fibre textile. All of these sets pertain to 1:32 scale releases. These latest releases are:

  • 132534, B-17 Flying Fortress, 499 Kč
  • 132530, Junkers Ju 88A-4, 279 Kč
  • 132527, F4U-1 Corsair (for Tamiya kit), 229 Kč


B-17 Flying Fortress:




A BIG kit of a BIG bomber is going to require some serious detail sets if you want to do something other than an OOB build. And let's face it, if you're going to put money into a kit which is that big, then it makes sense to sprinkle a little extra love into some of those interior areas. HGW know that too, and as a result, have released this rather spiffy set designed to cater to the comfort of your bomber crew.

As with other HGW seatbelt sets, this is packages into a stiff, narrow wallet with some attractive artwork. The belt parts sit in the front of the wallet, whilst the resin parts and instructions are to the rear.




This particular HGW set is certainly an epic in itself, as it contains not only seatbelts, but also seat and backrest cushions, and decals to suit also. First though, let's look at the belts themselves. As with all new releases of HGW sets, this one has the various micro-fibre textile parts laser cut into the main sheet. Provided are belts for the pilot and co-pilot alone, but are certainly not going to be short of parts to assemble. The full colour-printed textile sheet contains no less than FIFTY-TWO precisely printed and detailed seatbelt parts.


This textile sheet has a paper backing, and you'll remove this as you snip the individual parts from the sheet. Printed onto the sheet are various stitching patterns and also some text. While it's quite hard to make it out to the naked eye, it is unmistakably writing! Most parts are olive drab, whilst the lap belts have a leather colour material. An added bonus to the inking process is the very mild way the laser heat has affected the edges, giving a very unique, natural shading which looks superb. As this is not there by design, it certainly can't be faulted.




Before you assemble these parts with CA, you must remove the backing paper and scrunch the parts into a small ball until you feel it become very pliable. At this point, you open them out and you should find they are easy to manipulate into a natural looking drape. When everything has been assembled, you can gloss varnish the parts before applying your favourite wash, followed by matting them and then dry-brushing.


If you like a good parts count to your project, then the PE fret will now disappoint. Beautifully produced by Eduard, and with THIRTY-NINE parts, this fret has excellent detail and small connecting tags meaning easy parts removal.






Two pale grey resin blocks are packaged into the back of this set, and each contains a padded seat and back cushion parts. HGW have made these look highly realistic with both the material creases and texture. The photo of these parts on the card insert show them painted in yellow, with what is probably an oil wash. In the front of the package is also a small decal set which needs to be applied to the cushions; one per back cushion and one for each seat. The latter can't even be seen on the photo, but at least you know it's there.




A single instruction sheet is included, with a colour code being used to identify the different PE and textile parts. Construction is shown via a number of clear, line drawings, and assembly should prove to be no problem, even for the relatively inexperienced modeller.


Junkers Ju 88A-4



We don't have any resin parts with this release, but what we do have are belts for ALL FOUR crew positions. These are the pilot, rear gunner, engineer and gondola gunner.


A single, large piece of micro-fibre textile is superbly colour printed, and contains FORTY-ONE individual laser-cut parts. Printing detail is excellent, with a combination of both printed and laser etched stitching, and some rather neat data/manufacturer plates and serial numbers.




The photo etch fret containts FORTY-EIGHT neatly produced and detailed parts which have small attachment gates, meaning easy and clean part removal.


Constructional images are broken down into easy to follow diagrams, with it being easy to locate which style of belt needs to be fitted to the various crew locations.




F4U-1 Corsair




Obviously, a smaller set this time, comprising THIRTEEN textile parts which are superbly printed and laser cut, with that distinctive and attractive heat affected edge which produces warm, rich shading. All stitching is laser engraved and will only really show up when you give the belts a wash treatment.




The photo etch fret contains THIRTEEN more parts, again professionally produced by those wonderful guys at Eduard.

Assembly again looks a breeze, with a card insert breaking the various assemblies down into easy to follow drawings. All parts, textile and PE, are colour coded for easy reference.




For the B-17, One of the criticisms of the HK Models kit has been the seatbelts, and this set goes 100% of the way to rodressing that issue. Even if the kit belts had been high standard, you would have had to go a long way to beat the appearance of the parts included in this set. If cockpits are one area that you like to lavish attention on, then please consider this release. Put it together properly and weather it, and it should be eye-wateringly superb.


Both the Junkers Ju 88A-4 and Corsair sets are also up to HGW's impeccable high standards, and can't fail to impress once assembled and installed. I also find all of these sets to be very reasonably priced, and as with the B-17, the latter sets should also be able to be tackled by someone new to this aspect ogf upgrading their model.


Very highly recommended


James H


Our sincere thanks to HGW Models for the review sample shown here. To purchase directly, click THIS link.




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