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  1. Capt. Claude J. Crenshaw, 369th FS, 359th FG, 8th AF, East Wretham, United Kingdom, September 1944 Eduard Kit, OOB. Painted with Ammo Acrylic Silver and Gunze Super Metallic SM01,weathered with pigments and oils. It's a really nice kit, with a couple of niggly bits, and just watch the parts off the sprue. I had a few parts that had fallen off the G sprue, and all the canopies had fallen off, and had to contact Eduard who sent the missing part quickly (i completed the model by borrowing from another kit, but the replacements have arrived so Kudos to Eduard). Built thread available here Peter
  2. Started this today After 4 hours work Peter
  3. I have taken this Eduard weekend edition kit as far as I wish. The purpose of the build was to try an idea I had to emulate the uneven surfaces seen on stressed skin aircraft, and chose this particular aircraft as I'd already built an Eduard Hellcat and knew how it went together, but this overall Glossy Sea Blue aircraft would particularly benefit from something to add visual appeal to an otherwise featureless finish. If interested in the experiment itself, here is the Work in Progress thread: The kit is close to being Out-Of-the-Box, but did receive Airscale cockpit instrument decals to improve the panel, and substantial improvements to the cockpit purely from adding an Ultracast resin seat with seatbelts, new wheels and Ultracast's much improved Hamilton Standard propeller. In addition, Master brass barrels were added. All paints are Colourcoats enamels, and the antenna is Infini Model 40 denier (0.068mm) lycra rigging line. The base is Eduard's injection moulded Essex class aircraft carrier deck section, although strictly speaking the aircraft was from USS Enterprise CV-6, a Yorktown class. If anyone made it this far and is remotely curious to see how ACUS34 - ANA623 Glossy Sea Blue compares to our parallel paints ACUS07 - ANA606 Semi-Gloss Sea Blue and ACUS33 - ANA607 Non-Specular Sea Blue, often all claiming to be matched simultaneously and/or referenced to FSx5042 which matches none of them, here's the GSB Hellcat and my earlier "by the book" tricolor F6F-3 together: Thanks for looking in!
  4. Started this last weekend, with a couple of extras Montex Masks Eduard Cockpit Etch Eduard Belts Assembled the cockpit, and weathered it down Peter
  5. I have finally completed the Eduard Fokker D.VII started in the WW1 Group Build. There is a long and boring WIP so I’ll not waste your time with the details. This is my first ever WW1 biplane build and I rather enjoyed it. Due to the colours it’s a bit of a difficult beast to photograph so my apologies for the picture quality. ....and there’s no show without Punch! (Or Righ in this case!) Thanks to everyone who chipped in with support and advice during the build, it was most appreciated. Duncan B
  6. 1:48 Tempest Mk.V Series 1 Eduard Catalogue # 82121 Available SOON from Eduard In March of 1940, Hawker initiated a number of design studies aimed at improving the Typhoon. Among these studies were ways of improving the Typhoon's high-altitude performance. These involved the use of a new wing design that featured a thinner wing section and a reduced wing area. The new wing had an elliptical planform and showed a great potential for increasing performance at altitude while reducing the tendency of the original Typhoon wing to buffet at speeds around 500 mph. The maximum depth of the new wing occurred further back, at 37,5 % chord, while the thickness/chord ratio reduced to 14,5 % at the root tapering to 10 % at the tip. This meant that the new wing was five inches thinner at the root than the original Typhoon wing. The thin wing meant that alternative space for fuel had to be found and this was achieved by moving the engine 21 inches forward and inserting a 76-gallon tank between the firewall and the oil tank. The redesign also included a new undercarriage and the latest of the Sabre engine, the Mark IV. In order to save development time, Sidney Camm decided to mate the new wing to a modified Typhoon airframe which retained the Sabre powerplant. The RAF ordered two prototypes under Specification F.10/41 18 November of 1941 and the project quickly became known as the Typhoon II. Hawker´s biggest problem with the new fighter was the engine. Upon entering service in 1944, the Tempest was used as a low-level interceptor, particularly against the V-1 flying bomb threat, and as a ground attack platform, in which it supported major events such as Operation Market Garden. Later, it successfully targeted the rail infrastructure in Germany and Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground, as well as countering such attacks by German fighters. The Tempest was effective in the low-level interception role, including against newly developed jet-propelled aircraft such as the Messerschmitt Me 262. The further-developed Tempest Mk.II did not enter service until after the end of hostilities. Extract courtesy of Wikipedia and hawkertempest.se The kit It was certainly a last minute rush for Eduard to prepare their new-tool Tempest Mk.V in readiness for limited sales at Scale Model World, Telford, this year. An announce was made on social media, informing of a limited number of kits (200 pcs) that would be available for sale over that weekend. Along with the kits, Eduard would also offer the first sets of their own aftermarket for it too. When the show opened, the queue to pick these up was long! My sample was ready to pick up at the show later that day, so as this is a brand-new release (no relation to any previous kit), I thought I’d tend to a review straight away. This kit is a ProfiPACK edition, and a full-release version, including both photo-etch and masks. The kit itself is packed into the size of box that we’ve seen with many of their 1:48 fighter releases, with a superb image of Wing Commander Roland Beamont’s Tempest having just tipped a V-1 flying bomb off target. Of course, Beamont’s machine would haveto be included with a release such as this, with him being synonymous with the type and his actions in destroying the vengeance weapons. Inside, there are four medium grey styrene sprues, with the fuselage sprue being packed separately to the other five which share the same resealable sleeve. A circular, clear sprue is supplied in a zip-lock bag. Underneath the plastic lies a colour-printed PE fret in a small sleeve, plus a set of masks. To complete the contents, a 20-page A4 manual is included. Sprue A We start with the clear sprue, and as with a lot of Eduard’s releases over the years, this one is produced as a quirky, circular shape, moulded with crystal clear clarity. Here you will (obviously) find the windscreen with integral fuselage fairing, and the rear, sliding hood. Another fourteen parts occupy this sprue, of which thirteen are slated for use. These parts include the compass, rear fuselage lights, wingtip light, cockpit lights, gun sight, and lower wing lights. Sprue B Here we have the wing panels. The lower wing is moulded as a full-span unit, with integral main gear openings. Note that the ailerons are moulded separately, and Eduard has thankfully chosen to mould the gun fairings separately to the wing, unlike on their Spitfire series of kits. This means that there are now no awkward seams to align and remove on the new Tempest kit. Surface details really are very, very nice, with finely recessed panel lines, subtle recessed rivets and fasteners, as well as access panel details. Shell ejection chutes are moulded open, and recesses are moulded into which the lower landing light covers will sit, so these aren’t fixed from the inside. The upper wing panels exhibit the same standard of detail, with well-defined gun blisters and surrounding access panels with their Dzuz fasteners. Tabs protrude from the wing joint, providing a solid connection point to the recesses inside the interior wing fairing of the fuselage halves. Flip the upper panels over and you’ll see the moulded details of the main gear bay ceilings. Again, this detail is sharp and looks excellent. Notice the main gear lock which is also moulded in situ. Sprue C Eduard has moulded the fuselage as a full-length unit, minus the rudder. Recesses exist for fitting the rob of exhaust manifolds, with no separate box needing to be glued from within. Fine panel lines and Dzuz fasteners adorn the cowl area. Note that the upper turtle deck is separately moulded to the fuselage, meaning that there are no tricky seams to remove when the fuselage is closed up. The rest of the fuselage not only has the same superbly recessed panel lines and rivets, but also key rows of raised rivets on the overlapping panels on the rear fuselage. I’m very pleased to see the inclusion of these. If you look at the tail joint line, you’ll see no fishplate detail. This release includes them as PE parts, which will certainly looks sharp when installed. Internally, there is moulded cockpit wall detail which will supplement the cockpit tub, when installed. This detail consists of formers, electrical boxes etc. Detail is also provided in the tail wheel well area. Sprue D Look at all those parts! Rockets, two styles of when and different spoked hubs…WAIT! There is actually very little you will use on this sprue for this initial release, and certainly notthose rockets! The only parts that you will use here are the balloon-style tyres with the four and five spoke hub options, a tailwheel, and the two frame cockpit tub sides. Those frames are pretty fragile, so care needs to be exercised when removing them from the sprues. These frames contain the basic panels upon which you will add the consoles, trim wheel, throttle quadrant etc. Optional decals are supplied for some of the console detail etc. Eduard has supplied the wheels as halves and with separate hub details. The wheels themselves aren’t weighted, and you may wish to use their resin alternatives, although these can be made to look very nice, and then also have the DUNLOP name emblazoned on them. Sprue E Many of the Tempest’s cockpit parts are to be found here, such as the floor with integral foot boards, rudder bar and separate pedals (PE alternatives are supplied for the latter), control yoke with spade grip, three-part seat with quilted back rest, consoles, etc. There are actually THREE instrument panel options provided. One of them is for a three-piece plastic item with gauge details into which you can add instrument decals. Another option is also for a three-part unit, but with blank faces upon which you can use full decals. The last option is contains a single piece central unit onto which the various colour PE parts can be installed. As this is a ProfiPACK, I assume most will make use of the latter option. You will also find the undercarriage struts here, with some superb linkage details, as well as the retract mechanism with their hydraulics cylinders. Eduard has broken down the intake unit into seven parts, all to be found on this sprue, including the large chin radiator unit, with its fine grille details. Other parts on this sprue include the main gear well walls and rib details, tail wheel bay unit and strut, tailwheel doors and closing mechanism, single-piece leading edge insert with gun barrel fairings and hollow ends, rudder control horn, pitot, main gear retract indicators, and exhaust stubs etc. The latter are nicely moulded but lack any hollow ends, unlike their Brassin option which is will be available soon. Sprue F Our last sprue contains key areas of the Tempest airframe. Two propellers are supplied, but only one is to be used in this initial release. These are moulded as single-piece units and integral hubs. Two spinner options are provided, but one only for use with this kit. Here you will see the two-part stabilisers with separate elevators. Whilst these plug in, it will be easy to alter these so you can pose them dynamically. As with the other main airframe components, you’ll note the fine panel lining and subtle rivet lines. A key fuselage piece is the upper cockpit/turtle deck and canopy retract unit. Here you will see that the windscreen recesses nicely into this part. Another interesting design element is the main canopy interior frame that can of course be painted separately before installation, meaning that there is no actual interior masking to undertake. A single piece rear cockpit bulkhead and integral armoured headrest and forward cockpit bulkhead are moulded here too. Other parts found here are the single piece metal ailerons, fabric covered rudder with nicely depicted rib tapes, and detailed landing gear doors. Photo Etch There are quite a lot of parts on this small fret, with many of them printed in colour. Those parts pertain to the cockpit with the multi-part and multi-layer instrument panel and various levers with their coloured handles. A nicely shaded set of seatbelts is included here, as are a whole series of fishplate reinforcement parts. Production is typically Eduardin its quality with manufacture and printing being first-rate. Masks A set of kabuki tape masks is included for the canopy, wheel hubs and wing walkways. Strangely, no masks are supplied for the various airframe lights. Decals A single decal sheet is provided, catering to the SIX schemes in this release. Half of the sheet is dedicated to the various serials and codes, as well as the national insignia, whilst the other half caters to the many stencils for the airframe. Not all of these will be used, such as the drop tank decals. Printing is thin, has minimal carrier film, and has solid colour. Registration is also perfect. The six schemes included are: EJN766, No.486 (RNZAF) Squadron, RAF Station Castle Camp, Great Britain, April 1944 JN751, Wing Commander Roland P. Beamont, DSO, DFC & Bar, CO of No.150 Wing, RAF Station Bradwell Bay, Great Britain, April 1944 JN755, No.3 Squadron, Newchurch, Great Britain, May 1944 JN751, Wing Commander Roland P. Beamont, DSO, DFC & Bar, CO of No.150 Wing, RAF Newchurch, Great Britain, June 1944 JN763, No.486 (RNZAF) Squadron, Newchurch, Great Britain, June 1944 JN765, Mo.3 Squadron, Newchurch, Great Britain, June 1944 Instructions Starting with a rather comprehensive history of the Tempest, this A4 colour manual then provides a parts map of the sprues with shaded areas for unused elements, followed by the construction of the Tempest in black/white/shaded illustration. Paint references are given throughout and correspond to Gunze and Mission Models colour codes. The last pages are given over to the six schemes, with the very last page containing a stencil placement illustration. Conclusion This is certainly a very welcome release, and of course one in Eduard’s modern tooling standard. This very much puts Eduard’s 20yr old release out to pasture, and it’s not hard to see why. Beautifully detailed cockpit and gear bays, and modern renditions of the various surface textures, this really is one to pick up if you have a hankering to build a Tempest and missed out on the now discontinued original Tempest release. Just a great, great kit! Watch out for the release date and you won’t be disappointed. My sincere thanks to Eduardfor the sample reviewed here. Check out their social media and website for more information on release date for the Tempest.
  7. Grunhertz


    so this one's finished and I have to say hats of to Eduard for this, its a great kit, the Paint is Gunze Mr Hobby Aqueous and with help from Sean at TopNotch's Masks the markings are out of the box, and I loved every minute of it. and then onto the next
  8. Eduard's boxing of the Hasegawa Hawker Typhoon, with Resin 4 blade prop, and elevators. Painted with Tamiya acrylics throughout, weathered lightly with some oils and pastels. Lost one rocket, so it's being re-armed 🙂 Peter
  9. Thoroughly pissed off the with SE5a so started something different as a break. Started over the long weekend - the Eduard rebox or the Hasegawa Typhoon 1B with lots of etch Work commences with replacing most of the plastic cockpit with Etch 🙂 Peter
  10. Well I like an out of the box build just to clense the pallet, and 109's and 190's are my go to out of the box build, Eduards 1/32 109 E's are a simple enough build if a little quirky and have one or two accuracy issues. 1 being slightly large slats, 2 being a strange bulge behind the cockpit that is only noticeable if you build with a solid demarcation camo. the build will be totally out of the box and this is not the first i have built, it has still thrown me a couple of curve balls. 1, the oil cooler needs narrowing down to stop throwing out the fit of the fuselage, 2, no matter how hard you try to get it straight the lower instrument panel lined up it doesn't sit straight and fouls the sidewalls of the cockpit 3, the sidewall fit isn't particularly positive, and fouls the firewall if you dont dry fit. I got round this by fixing the fuselage halves together then fitting the firewall. from this you can then fit the side walls i then put the lower instrument panel in along with its mount. I then glued the cockpit floor in trapping the panel mount in place. I haven't put the seat in yet as that comes next once the belts have been assembled.
  11. Grunhertz


    This is the Eduard Bf109 G6 that I've built for Sean at top notch. Half painted with his masks and the other half blank so that the masks can be applied showing how easy they are to use. It will be on the top notch table at Southern expo. The eduard kit is a peach and one of these days I'm just going to build one for the fun of it. The first one I did for the weekend in a weekend build and then this one.
  12. Eduard's boxing of the Lovely Tasca / Asuka Sherman. When it came out it was by far and away the cheapest way to get a Tasca Sherman, so I got a couple Started by making up the lower hull, and adding some Mr Surfacer 1000 to add more cast texture as it's a bit soft While I was at it, added the texture to the turret as well Peter
  13. This is one I should have photographed from the beginning but somehow just built instead. On the 12th of July 1940, this Arado built He111H-3 of III Gruppe / Kampfgeschwader 26 departed Stavanger Sola and headed south west to bomb targets in the Firth of Forth area (that's the big river estuary near Edinburgh for non-British). Making landfall at Leuchars (which was possibly the actual intended target?) in Fife, it was intercepted by Spitfires from 603Sqn at 12:55hrs at 10,000ft and driven north. The Heinkel reached Aberdeen at jettisoned its bomb load over the harbour area. These mostly landed on Hall Russell's ship yard and around the Footdee part of the city, killing several dozen civilians. The Neptune Bar (a grotty hole of a place, truth be told) was also hit! Pursued still by the Spitfires and probably surprised by a barrage of anti-aircraft fire from trawlers in the harbour and, I believe, guns at the Torry Battery site? Either way the aircraft was shot down in flames (there were many eye witnesses) and crashed into the newly completed ice rink building in the Garthdee area of the city - right beside what is now "Anderson Drive". One of the crew had evidently tried to bail out but his body was still half in the aircraft. Several crew members died, and were buried with military honours at the old Kirk cemetery which is about a mile north of Aberdeen's Dyce airport runway. In the Luftwaffe Crash Archive book Volume 1 by Nigel Parker, there are several more photographs included. The aircraft is wrecked, but there is just enough to confirm what seems to be a typical RLM70/71 over 65 scheme, with the fuselage demarkation in the higher position seen on reference photos (i.e. from leading edge of tailplane straight to trailing edge of wing). A photo of the underside of one of the wings loaded on to a wagon to remove from the crash site shows the letter "T" in black beside the cross, thus informing that this particular aircraft had the full 1H FT under the wings, not just a large "F" under each wing as is often seen. Knowing that, and that it was from III Gruppe, I knew it was very likely 70/71 over 65, with full lettering underneath, that the KG.26 emblem would be a black lion on a yellow field and that the propeller spinners and letter "F" on the fuselage sides were RLM04. I did look for a while but never did find a photograph of the whole aircraft intact. Be that as it may, I have gone with what I do know to be true on 12th July 1940. If someone does produce a picture that proves me wrong, I can build it again maybe The model itself is the old Revell 1/48 Heinkel He111H-6 kit which lived in my stash for many years. I understand this was one of the last toolings Monogram made and it has nice detail and nicely recessed panel lines. There were some moulding defects on the wing surfaces which needed some levelling, plus the usual sink marks in places and the fuselage was warped. This kit has a reputation for being a dog to build. Expectations suitably low, I found it better than I had prepared myself for it to be! It has an Eduard PE set inside it dressing up the cockpit a bit. With so much glazing the cockpit on this does matter so I felt it was worth putting in a little bit of effort there. The rest is just OOB though. It's quite well known that the Revell H-6 isn't actually a H-6. I don't pretend to be very interested in German stuff generally but I believe the H-6 should have had broader chord propellers etc. Hence, what's in the box is really a H-4. Having little inclination to go OTT on research which invariably leads to wholesale disappointment with kits like this, I did try to find out what the differences were between a H-3 and a H-4. I can't tell the difference. I have seen photographs captioned as H-3s with and without the foward cabin windows glazed, and with and without the front of the gondola thing glazed. As I've no photographs of the specific subject aircraft intact, I decided I was bored with abortive searches and decided to build a model I forgot to take any photographs along the way which is a pity. The cockpit is painted RLM66, and everything else inside is RLM02. The engine nacelles were a bit of a pain but a combination of trimming the wing fairings on the nacelles, and ramming some packing in between the top of the wheel wells and the bottom of the upper wing skin to spread them apart almost 1mm improved the fit hugely. They still needed a fair bit of time with filler and sanding sticks. Actually, most of the major joins needed filler, sanding and Olfa cutter remedial work! To make things easier, I also bought an Eduard canopy mask set. It must have been a Friday afternoon job there though as a significant percentage of the individual masks were not for this kit and ended up being Tamiya tape cut with a scalpel - exactly what I hoped to avoid (because I hate masking glazings). I enjoy playing with different toning effects. I know there are some I simply do not like, but I am always happy to try different things to see if I like each model better than the last. Sometimes it pays off, sometimes it doesn't. This one went ok I think? Now, here's where it becomes embarrassing. I *thought* I had this memorised and plowed on with decals and even posted this damned photo online, only for my buddy Stew to contact me quietly and very diplomatically point out that I was an absolute idiot for not having Luftwaffe Crash Archive Volume 1 open when I painted and applied the decals. Remember that demarkation line above and the 1H FT under the wings? Yep, got the BOTH wrong! Argh! I could have left it at that point, but I'm me and frankly I'd sooner jump up and down on it that finish it with such a stupid mistake, let alone two such stupid mistakes! That then escalated a bit. Moving the demarkation upwards with carefully de-tacked Tamiya tape still pulled off all the lettering. The big "F" letters under the wings from the same decal sheet however were ab-so-flippin-lutely welded on. Typical! Still, it's all done now though and I'm down to daft fiddly bits and some weathering to finish. The KG.26 emblems are on their way from a major US retailer. Occassionally we feel guilty taking a Friday off order processing. It took this outfit (which shall remain nameless - so don't ask) almost two weeks to get round to lifting the decal sheet off the shelf to post it.
  14. hi finished at last! this is Eduards new tool FW 190 in 1/48 Scale with Brassin Cockpit, fuselage guns and cockpit, this kit has been a first for me with the amount of resin involved and i have enjoyed it immensely. just not too often, My thanks go to James Hatch and Eduard for the review kit
  15. So I've decided to start this at last as some of you will remember I reviewed it here And I'm going to be adding a few of the extras the brassin pit and engine with nose guns. Nothing to see at the mo as I'm busy chopping resin and a bit of base coating at the moment. I'll be doing a JG 2 bird and using Sean from top notch masks for the camo and Balkankreuz.
  16. Riders in the sky 1944 B-24 Liberator limited edition 1/72 Scale part No. #2121 Operational history LB-30A (YB-24) in RAF service The first British Liberators had been ordered by the Anglo-French Purchasing Board in 1940. After the Fall of France the French orders were in most cases transferred to Britain. The RAF found, as did the US, that global war increased the need for air transports and early type bombers and seaplanes were converted or completed as cargo carriers and transports. LB-30As were assigned to transatlantic flights by RAF Ferry Command, between Canada and Prestwick, Scotland. The first Liberators in British service were ex-USAAF YB-24s converted to Liberator GR Is (USAAF designation: LB-30A). The aircraft were all modified for logistic use in Montreal. Changes included the removal of all armament, provision for passenger seating, a revised cabin oxygen and heating system. Ferry Command's Atlantic Return Ferry Service flew civilian ferry pilots, who had delivered aircraft to the UK, back to North America. The most important role, however, for the first batch of the Liberator GR Is was in service with RAF Coastal Command on anti-submarine patrols in the Battle of the Atlantic. Later in 1941, the first Liberators entered RAF service. This model introduced self-sealing fuel tanks, a 2 ft 7 in (79 cm) plug in the forward fuselage to create more space for crew members and, more vitally, ever more equipment such as ASV MkII radar (anticipated early in the Liberator's development when Reuben Fleet told the engineering team he had a gut feeling the nose was too short). The Mark II was the first Liberator to be equipped with powered turrets, one plane having them installed before leaving San Diego, the remainder having them installed in the field: four Browning Boulton Paul A-type Mk IV with 600 rounds of .303 in the dorsal position; and a Boulton Paul E-type Mk II with 2200 rounds in the tail (later increased to 2500 rounds), supplemented by pairs of guns at the waist position, a single gun in the nose and another in the belly, for a total of fourteen guns. The offensive armament was slightly raised to 64,250 pounds, the maximum altitude lifted from 21,200 to 24,000 feet but the maximum speed was reduced to 263 mph, largely as a result of increased drag. The Liberator II (referred to as the LB-30A by the USAAF) were divided between Coastal Command, Bomber Command, and British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC). Both BOAC and the RAF used converted Liberator IIs as unarmed long-range cargo carriers. These aircraft flew between Britain and Egypt (with an extensive detour around Spain over the Atlantic), and they were used in the evacuation of Java in the East Indies. BOAC also flew trans-Atlantic services and other various long-range air transportation routes. Two RAF bomber squadrons with Liberators were deployed to the Middle East in early 1942. While RAF Bomber Command did not use B-24s as strategic bombers over mainland North West Europe, No. 223 Squadron RAF, one of Bomber Command's 100 (Bomber Support) Group squadrons, used 20 Liberator VIs to carry electronic jamming equipment to counter German radar. In October 1944, two RAF Liberator squadrons (357 and 358) were deployed to Jessore India in support of British SAS, American OSS and French SIS underground operations throughout SE Asia. The aircraft were stripped of most armaments to allow for fuel for up to 26-hour return flights such as Jessore to Singapore. Libe rators were also used as anti-submarine patrol aircraft by RAF Coastal Command. RAF Liberators were also operated as bombers from India by SEAC and would have been a part of Tiger Force if the war had continued. Many of the surviving Liberators originated in this Command. The Liberators made a significant contribution to Allied victory in the Battle of the Atlantic against German U-boats. Aircraft had the ability to undertake surprise air attacks against surfaced submarines. Liberators assigned to the RAF's Coastal Command in 1941, offensively to patrol against submarines in the eastern Atlantic Ocean, produced immediate results. The introduction of Very Long Range (VLR) Liberators vastly increased the reach of Britain's maritime reconnaissance force, closing the Mid Atlantic Gap where a lack of air cover had allowed U-boats to operate without risk of aerial attack. For 12 months, No. 120 Squadron RAF of Coastal Command with its handful of worn and modified early model Liberators supplied the only air cover for convoys in the Atlantic Gap, the Liberator being the only aeroplane with sufficient range. The VLR Liberators sacrificed some armor and often gun turrets to save weight, while carrying extra aviation gasoline in their bomb-bay tanks. Liberators were equipped with ASV (Air to Surface Vessel) Mark II radar, which together with the Leigh light, gave them the ability to hunt U-boats by day and by night. These Liberators operated from both sides of the Atlantic with the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Army Air Forces Antisubmarine Command and later, the US Navy conducting patrols along all three American coasts and the Canal Zone. The RAF and later American patrols ranged from the east, based in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Iceland and beginning in mid-1943 from the Azores. This role was dangerous, especially after many U-boats were armed with extra anti-aircraft guns, some adopting the policy of staying on the surface to fight, rather than submerging and risking being sunk by aerial weapons such as rockets, gunfire, torpedoes and depth charges from the bombers. American Liberators flew from Nova Scotia, Greenland, the Azores, Bermuda, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Panama, Trinidad, Ascension Island and from wherever else they could fly far out over the Atlantic. The rather sudden and decisive turning of the Battle of the Atlantic in favour of the Allies in May 1943 was the result of many factors. The gradual arrival of many more VLR and in October, PB4Y navalised Liberators for anti-submarine missions over the Mid-Atlantic gap ("black pit") and the Bay of Biscay was an important contribution to the Allies' greater success. Liberators were credited in full or in part with sinking 93 U-boats. The B-24 was vital for missions of a radius less than 1,000 mi (1,600 km), in both the Atlantic and Pacific theatres where U.S. Navy PB4Y-1s and USAAF SB-24s took a heavy toll of enemy submarines and surface combatants and shipping. My thanks to wikipedia for the text The Kit, This isn’t the first time Eduard have packaged other people’s plastic in their own box with extras and Eduard have used Airfix, Gavia, Academy, Minicraft and Hasegawa in previous boxings of their limited edition kits. And in some cases in the UK they come out cheaper than the originals without the bells and whistles. I got my Eduard crusader for £38.00 when the Hasegawa crusader retails at about £45.00. If you look at the Hasegawa B24d (if you can find one) you are looking at £70.00 Plus and if you want a coastal command one £75.00 and the Eduard kit I have found with some shopping around at £86.00, Either way it’s something that a lot of people will think twice about before spending . So is this boxing worth a £11.00 more? Let’s have a look inside the box. Firstly this is easily the biggest box I’ve ever seen a world war two bomber in; so first impressions are you get quite a lot. There is a picture of a b24 somewhere having attacked a merchant ship with Bombay doors open and radome lowered, and it looks remarkably good, on the side we have 8 of the 13 various colour schemes supplied. Inside there 9 grey and 1 clear sprue made by Hasegawa as well as 4 poly caps for the props. Then there is another grey and clear sprue made by Eduard containing the parts to build a coastal command liberator. A full set of glazing masks are included and 2 Photo etched frets with 1 painted and one just in brass. Finally there is a decal sheet with markings for 13 different aircraft and a 24 page instruction booklet. With that you may be forgiven for thinking that’s enough but no, then we have a reference book on the Coastal command liberators (printed in Czech, an English translation is available on the Eduard website in .pdf) and an A2 poster of the box art. Sprue A (Hasegawa) On here there are the rear fuselage halves, (Hasegawa are famous for splitting the fuselage somewhere with their tooling, my hope is that they have done it along a panel line) and internal bulkheads and floors. There are also the bomb bay interiors on here. This is typical modern Hasegawa tooling. With nice finely recessed panel lines and some rivet or fastener detail (nowhere near the number of rivets on the real aircraft but if you tried it at this scale it would look overdone. The bulkheads and floors have good detail but will be perfectly acceptable through the glazing. The cockpit floor has moulded on rudder pedals and centre console. The floors and bulkheads have semi-circular pins moulded on so that you can get them the right way round Sprue B and C The wings are next with sprue B taking care of the top half and sprue C the bottom. Tooling here is blemish free with no flash or sink marks evident. Undercarriage bays are moulded separately with the inner part of the bay included in the moulding of the wing. There are guide rails for spars to get a perfect fit to the fuselage (I would probably Paint both separately then attach the wings after painting). The recessed detail is consistent with the fuselage and is certainly more than acceptable in this scale. Sprue D and E Sprue D contains the rest of the airframe; tail plane and fins with the same consistent detail as on the wings and fuselage, and its here that parts not used start appearing so watch those instructions! Also on this sprue we have a blanking plate for the ventral turret/radome, the central beam for the bomb bay a main spar to fix the wings in place, main undercarriage wheel wells and Bomb bay doors (both open and closed). Sprue E comes from Hasegawa’s Coastal command boxing. But the only part that is used here will be the radome (with Eduard taking care of the rest). Sprues F and G (Clear) Sprue F contains the clear sections for the flight deck including the cockpit glazing and astrodome on the nose, various windows and the bomb aimers and nose gunner glazing then there are most of the turret parts that are unused as the RAF used different turrets so Eduard have taken care of this. Sprue G has the forward fuselage section again completely moulded in clear (if you wanted to with Eduard’s extra Phot etched components and you are more careful than me with the glue, you could leave the whole nose section unpainted to show off the interior). I like this approach as you don’t have fit issues with the glazing but you do have to be careful with glue fumes and fogging up. The clear parts themselves are perfectly clear and the detail is bang on with the rest of the kit. Sprue N (4 Pieces) Engine parts make up these sprues (for the parts we are going to use anyway, the engines are a two piece assembly featuring all 14 cylinders and a crank case and reduction casing the bolt detail and cylinder detail is looking pretty good, these parts mount onto nacelles and are then covered by separate cowlings and ring round the front of the engine. If you want to build this with the cowlings off and super detail the engine you have a good starting point here and a trip to IWM Duxford to have a look at their B24 will give you some great references. Also on here is the turbocharger assembly which is part of a two piece assembly with the lower nacelle (more on this later) finally there are the wide chord props for some of the versions of the kit these props are nicely detailed with hub fastenings moulded in nicely, and a .5 calibre machine gun which are about as good as they are going to get in 1/72 scale. What is evident is that the Hasegawa kit is a very nice starting point. Sprue Q (2 pieces) Various parts on here; starting with the lower Nacelle with the exhaust outlet and I for one would have liked to see this as one piece as it will make adding aftermarket exhausts easier to fit, More machine guns of which a lot won’t be used but again they are nicely moulded as well as gun mounts. There are control yokes that won’t be used if you use the PE ones supplied but to my mind these are totally acceptable and probably a lot less fiddly. Added to this main wheels are included here and joy of joy’s the tires and wheels are separate; making painting and weathering a breeze the tires have a substantial flat moulded onto them. The wheels are a two piece assembly and detail on here is really nice. Flight deck seats are fitted and these look pretty good but will benefit from carful painting. Finally on here are the bomb racks which are acceptable for the scale. Sprue R This is the last of the Hasegawa sprues and there are some last detail parts on here these include the undercarriage legs which are nicely done with the detail evident and are really substantial. The same applies to the nose wheel leg which has a built in mudguard but again fixes firmly and will be nice and strong particularly as you will have to put some weight in the nose. Also there are the other undercarriage struts and a tail skid the nose wheel is again a three piece section meaning easy painting. Various antenna which some of which will be replaced by etch parts. Undercarriage doors are on here as well as the instrument panel which while nice is not a patch on the etched panel supplied by Eduard. Sprue A (Eduard, Clear sprue) Turret parts mainly on this sprue for the english turrets fitted to Coastal command liberators and a lens for the Leigh Light fitted to some versions these parts are crystal clear and crisply moulded. All these parts are the parts that will bring this kit to life and making it a real Coastal Command Liberator. This makes the real difference between this and the Hasegawa Coastal Command boxing. There are also windows for the waist positions for specific versions. Unfortunately some of these parts had come of the sprue in transit but they aren’t damaged. Sprue B (Eduard) On here are the final parts for the kit moulded in Eduard’s usual grey plastic and showing the crisp moulding we have come to expect from Eduard. Firstly there is the chin radome fitted to some versions as well as the stub wings for the rocket rails. You are really going to have to study the instructions carefully as different versions have significant differences so be careful. There a lot more machine guns struts and turret parts and various struts. Then there are needle blade propellers for the other variants that don’t use the wide chord type. The Leigh Light housing for the wing is on here too. And finally rockets of which there are eight nicely moulded Photo Etch Two frets here and the first one is painted and the second is plain brass. So on the painted one there is a two part instrument panel which really is going to make a difference, my advice; take plenty of photographs as you are building this as there is going to be so much inside that won’t be easy to see form the inside. Seatbelts are also on here which look great in 1/72 and will make all of the difference to the cockpit, generally that tends to be all I buy for my models because they just look so much better. The panel is painted in a strange green (to me anyway and I will be following the paint mix instructions supplied by Eduard for the interior colours which calls for a mix of zinc chromate type one with 10% flat black added, I would also suggest that you mix from the Gunze range to ensure you get the match. There are various gunsights and antenna rails on here as well as other boxes for the cockpit and interior. Finally there are 2 control yokes in black that will net to be mounted onto some plastic rod. On the second fret there are some antennas, particularly the Yagi? Antenna for the nose this is really crisp and looks great. Decals These are printed and produced by Eduard, (their decals are a rival for anyone’s now and work faultlessly) and have markings for 13 (yes 13) different options. The colours look spot on to my eye and they’re in perfect register with great colour density and a full set of stencils. Options are: A. GR Mk. V BZ721 No. 224 Sqdn St. Eval July 1943 B. GR Mk. V BZ723 No. 311 Sqdn Tain Oct 1944 C. GR Mk. V BZ774 No.311 Sqdn Beaulieu Autumn 1943 D. GR Mk. V BZ779 No.311 Sqdn Beaulieu Oct 1943 E. GR Mk. V BZ786 No.311 Sqdn Beaulieu Autumn 1943 F. GR Mk.V BZ896 No.311 Sqdn Beaulieu Dec 1943 G. GR Mk.V FL961 No.311 Sqdn Predannack June 1944 H. GR Mk.V FL949 No.311 Sqdn Tain Oct 1944 I. GR Mk.III FL936 No.160 Sqdn Ceylon Autumn 1943 J. GR Mk.V BZ832 No.200 Sqdn Gambia August 1943 K. GR Mk.V BZ832 No. 354 Sqdn 1944 L. GR Mk.V BZ755 No.10 (BR) Sqdn RCAF Gander Canada Autumn 1943 M. GR Mk.V BZ 755 North West Air Command Canada Summer 1946 It’s no surprise to see so many 311 Sqdn aircraft as this was mainly a Czech squadron but you are certainly spoilt for choice here. Instructions 24 pages in Eduard’s traditional style which allow for each of the different aircraft fit outs to be fitted as you go so you are going to have to make up your mind which version you are going to make quite early on but that said the instructions are east to follow and in my opinion some of the best instructions out there. Colour call outs are in the Gunze range but also call out the colour at the same time as the paint number. The first page starts with a sprue map and then the construction sequence follows pretty much the same sequence as many aircraft: Interior fuselage, wings engines landing gear Then we have paint instructions and a stencil map. Great stuff Extras Eduard have published a book of 76 pages all in Czech (go to www.Eduard.com for the English translation) the main point is here the reference material including photographs and colour profiles for the aircraft and to my mind really makes a difference And finally there is the picture an A2 print of a 311 Sqdn Aircraft taken from the box art and this just looks lovely (going to be looking for a frame soon) Conclusion Well I asked if this kit was worth £11.00 more than the Hasegawa kit and my answer is a resounding yes. If you are a four engine heavy fan or a Coastal Command fan then buying this would be a no brainer. If you are a collector then a no brainer and if you just want to build a fantastic kit (me) then this kit is worth every penny If my bench wasn’t full of three builds at the moment then this would have been on the bench already and you will see this model round the shows at the end of this year and next year because it just begs to be built and personally I can’t wait to get it on the bench would suggest a bit of practice with PE but apart from that go for it a brilliant kit. My verdict Very very highly recommended! My thanks to Eduard for the review sample If you want to get one then go to www.Eduard.com/store But wait there is more that Eduard have sent us, more photo etch and resin bits 672-183 B24 Bomb Bay Doors Cast in grey resin to replace the open doors of the kit these make a real difference. What you get is 4 resin doors which look like garage doors including the corrugations look great and will be a complete simple replacement and also come with 8 drive wheels for the doors juts to add that last bit of detail. Will be using these for sure highly recommended. 672-178 B24 Turbochargers These will not be a straight fit but they will be worth the work the detail on these is sublime and will be a real asset to the finish. The exhausts are nicely hollowed out and the details are just so crisp. Recommended but bring your rotary tool to the party. 73627 Liberator GR Mk.V upgrade A nice set this one, two frets of PE containing parts for the interior of the nose sections, rudder pedals, floor sections and replacement bulkheads. There are also ammunition boxes and ammunition runs for the waist and nose guns. Then there are extra detail parts for the cockpit that are printed in colour. Now the next shocker cooling jackets for the .5 calibre guns in the rear sections there are various panels for the waist sections including windows using two pieces of metal and a piece of film sandwiched between the parts. again there are ammunition runs and new mounts for them guns which are much more in keeping with the scale. The ammunition boxes are held up with PE brackets. This set will bring some of the more visible parts of the aircraft to light but as I mentioned before take plenty of photos as you are building. 672-177 B24 Bomb Bay rocket projector Ok and I wasn’t expecting this and to be honest I didn’t even know this existed, check your refences as not all aircraft carried it this is a set of anti-ship rockets carried in the bomb Bay (16 of them) 4 of which lower down after the bay doors are opened and the rest drop out before igniting. On here are 28 resin pieces that replace some of the Bomb Bay parts and then some photo etched parts to enhance the detail. This looks really complicated but well worth the effort. The detail is sublime and well done Eduard for coming up with it. This is a great kit out of the box but these extra parts make a great difference to an already fantastic Kit. I think you can tell this is something im really enthusiastic about. Well done Eduard
  17. Loved building this Painted with tamiya acrylics rigged with AK rigging thread
  18. Focke Wulf FW190A-5 light Fighter Profipack History, When it comes to the European and Eastern front aircraft there are eight really well known fighters: The Spitfire, Hurricane, P47, P51, Yak series LaGG series, BF109 and last but by no means least the FW190. When you look at all of the above fighters they went through numerous development stages throughout the war and as such modellers love them. The FW190 started life in 1938 as a result of a technical requirement of the RLM and that is nearly where the story ends, the new fighter had a lot of flaws and was nearly cancelled there and then. The RLM decided to pursue an aircraft that they saw promise in particularly as it wasn’t to use the DB603 engine being used on the BF109 and was to use the BMW 801 series radial engine. By June 1941 most of the problems had been ironed out and the FW190A-1 was released for squadron use to say the aircraft was a shock when it appeared over the channel front and was superior to the Spitfire VB in service with the RAF at the time. The type went through various modifications were put in place culminating in the A-4 series as the most versatile of the first series of airframes. This type was used as a fighter and fighter bomber as well as a bomber interceptor. One of the problems with the first series of airframes that was never really solved was cooling for the engine, this was solved when the design team looked at the versatility of the type and decided to move the centre of gravity back slightly to improve the balance when using drop tanks and bombs this gave a visible change of a longer nose section which also improved the cooling no end. After that the type went from the A-5 to the A-9 with various changes to armament and wing configuration as well as more powerful engines and armoured panels for attacking the US bomber streams. The kit we are looking at now is the A-5 the first of the longer aircraft also an aircraft that only had 2 cannon and two machine guns unlike the other dedicated fighters that had 4 cannon and two machine guns. So what have Eduard done this time? Lets have a look The Kit This is the second Profipack boxing of the 190A since the new tool came out late last year to rave reviews (I have the A4 boxing on the bench at the moment with shed loads of resin and PE). There is a Royal class boxing is available containing the A2, 3, and 4. And there is an A3 boxing on the way in the Profipack and no doubt there will be others too looking at the sprues. The original boxing’s of the 190 A and D series were fine kits but were complicated with a full engine to be displayed as well as nose guns and wing gun panels open. This led to a complicated, some say tricky build and having built 6 of them I can testify that they took some practice and test fitting and I eventually got the hang of them and enjoyed building them. Eduard however listened to comments about the early kits and produced a somewhat different kit this time. Gone are the open engine and gun bays (don’t fret these are still available in resin) and the slightly thick fin of the previous kit, in its place we have an easier to build kit which does not sacrifice the detail. On first look you would be forgiven for thinking that some sprues have been reused from the earlier kit (I certainly thought so) but no this is all new tool. The box Eduard’s standard top, opening box is nice and sturdy and holds the contents well for the kit, on top with a picture of “Pipps” Priller carving through a formation of B17’s and Spitfires. On the sides are the various decal options in side view. Inside the box we have an A4 colour instruction sheet, four Grey and one clear sprues of plastic parts, the sprues are packed in separate bags one for the common sprues to all of the FW190’s and a separate for the unique to the A5 sprues. The clear sprue is again in a separate bag to prevent it getting scratched, a photoetched sheet containing about 40 parts, a set of masks for the canopy and tailwheel and finally two decal sheets. Rather than go through sprue A, B etc. I will take the sprues in a more logical order starting with…… Sprue R The fuselage and what has to be said here is full marks to Eduard rather than using inserts in their parts they will use different sprues for different variants and the difference here between this and the earlier kit is the lengthened nose section fitted from the A5 onwards and we have a fuselage with very little in mating parts; basically behind the cockpit up the fin and behind the wing underneath the plus of this is very little in the way of seams to clean up (god I hate cleaning seams). Panel lines are restrained as is the rivet detail which is probably as close as you will get to perfect in the scale. Cooling fins behind the exhausts are moulded shut. On the inside there are a couple of ejector pin marks that are hidden perfectly there is some cockpit framing moulded on the inside with locations in place for the canopy crank handle. Being Eduard the tooling is designed to accommodate the Brassin resin parts with the radio hatch as well as the engine cowlings being recessed on the inside to make cutting out a breeze. Sprue G The wings and again these are a different tooling to the 190 A4 wings due to the fact that this kit only has the inboard cannon. From the A6 onwards there was a different wing which was stronger to accommodate different heavier field modifications (rustatz). Again rivet and panel line detail is sublime, no sink marks or flash is evident moulded in here as well there are the lower cowlings. The lower wing is a completely different layout to the A4 tooling because of the nose extension. Again the flaps on the lower wing are recessed in case you want to fit aftermarket flaps and on some versions you will need to remove the centre section where the inner undercarriage doors fit. The inner gun bay doors are moulded onto the wings with cut outs for the doors in the fuselage. Sprue A This is the first of the common to all sprues in the box and there is a lot of similar parts here so check the instructions thoroughly there are no less than 3 different cooling fans, 3 different bomb racks 2 propellers and 2 cockpit tubs, 3 wing inserts and 2 different undercarriage legs so be careful. The detail here is sublime and has the part that was the source of so much trouble on the old kit; the main spar. The engine here will make you think is that it? It’s a flat panel with half a row of cylinders and crankcase but, by time you have the fan and propeller on you really can’t see much under there. And if you want more engine there is a resin replacement available. There is a bulkhead to go behind the engine and this really holds everything in place perfectly and builds a remarkably rigid structure for the fuselage. There is a 2 piece cowling ring with the annular oil cooler and armour ring both separate this allows for the A8 variants that have different thicknesses of armour. Finally there is a seat with separate seat pad (some had them some didn’t so check any references you may have). Sprue B Like Sprue A, lots of bits on here aren’t used; drop tanks, rudders control surfaces cowling parts and gun covers. Certainly Eduard have an A7,8,9 planned as well as an A3. Whatever parts you use you can be sure that they are superbly moulded and detailed (I have the etched undercarriage doors and to be honest I’m not sure whether I’d use them as the moulded ones are that good). Sprue C Lots of parts here that allow you to decide whether to use the etched parts or if you really aren’t bothered by etch moulded detail in the cockpit. Also on here there are various wheels exhausts, cockpit parts, wing internals and guns as far as the not used parts, there are nightfighter antenna and late model head armour. The moulded instrument panels are as sharp as injection moulding will allow but not to the same standard as resin parts but still more that good enough and in my mind probably better than using decals in this scale. Clear parts Eduard have repeated what they did with the previous tooling and to my mind are unique in the respect that they have separate canopies for open and closed with the open canopy being pinched in as it slid back on its rails. Again this sprue points towards lots of other variants with both blown canopies, different gunsights and two different windscreens and armoured panels for and A8/R2 Sturmbock version. Clarity is excellent and the parts are flawless. A nice touch on the clear parts is the heaver gauge plastic bag for the clear parts as well. Photo etch At first glance I would have said that this was nickel plated brass but now I’m certain that this is the steel they use for the steel belts they produce. The steel material I prefer to brass it has less spring to it and forms to shape easier. What’s more here the paint seems to stick to this material better as well there are seat belts on here as well as instrument panels, rudder pedals and a morane antenna. I certainly couldn’t paint as well as that and usually end up buying at lease a Zoom set just for the Instrument panels and seatbelts. Masks Masks are supplied for the canopy as well as the tail wheel (mainwheels can be painted before the tires are fitted) the masks are made from Kabuki tape and will require the use of a liquid mask like Maskol or small pieces of tape. Just make sure you burnish the edges down with a toothpick or cotton bud Decals 2 sheets, one with markings and on this I have to say that for some time Eduard have been producing their own decal sheets having been using Cartograf, I don’t know if this was a price decision or other decision but they get no complaints from me, not too thick or thin they respond well to Microsol and are always in register with great colour density. Whats more a european company that supply whole Swastikas! Added to this there is a separate sheet for the stencils which have 2 copies of the smaller stencils because you just know you are going to get one wrong. Check your references for colours however as some had red walkway lines and some had black. Decal options are: 1. Black 13 Major Josef Priller JG26 Lille, France May 1943 2. White 4 Oblt. Walter Nowotny JG54 Orel, Russia Summer 1943 3. <o Oblt. Rolf Strohal JG1 Deelen, Holland April 1943 4. Major Hermann Graff JGr. Ost Toulouse, France April 1943 5. Red L 6/Schl.G1 Deblin – Irena, Poland January 1943 Instructions Standard Eduard Fare here nice clear drawings starting with a sprue map then going onto paints, cll outs are Gunze but also call out the appropriate colour in the instruction sequence and then the construction phases. Starting typically with the cockpit using all of the lovely PE bits with options for bomb controls either fitted or not fitted. Then the fuselage goes together trapping the cockpit tub and engine in place. From experience here (and I’m building the A4 as I type) glue the back edge of the fuselage together, and the upper instrument panel in place then slot the tub for the cockpit in then the front bulkhead then the engine and hey presto it all lines up without needing 10 pairs of hands to get everything lined up. The the wings and flying surfaces go in next followed by the landing gear. With the landing gear we have proof that Eduard listen to people; when the A4 was released photographs appeared everywhere showing the inner landing gear doors shut while the aircraft was on the ground while Eduard told you to leave them open. So a few things came up here firstly, if a bomb rack was fitted the doors were removed, otherwise the doors cycled so on the ground, unless the system was being worked on, the inner doors were shut on the ground. Eduard’s instructions give you the choice or gear doors raised or lowered, do bear in mind from the A6 onwards the cycle mechanism was removed and they just raised or lowered with the gear. Finally there are mask placement diagrams Conclusion Well the internet (particularly Facebook) has been full of the A4 and I haven’t seen a bad one yet and reports are Particularly from James on here that it is a shake and bake kit. And from my experiences even with putting a resin cockpit in they have certainly addressed the difficulties of assembly with the previous kits and the choices for markings are so varied that I can see loads of these being built (I now have 3 of the new tool kits) you don’t need loads of the aftermarket to produce a fantastic replica of a Butcher bird and I would suggest that this and other A series kits will be hard to beat Now how about a the full D series and TA152 H series to go with them? Verdict Very highly recommended and my thanks go to My long suffering bank manager and Duncan at BlackMike models for the review sample
  19. Some of you may remember the fantastic Eduard SE5a I built a few months ago. Well I'm hooked on their biplanes as a result and have the Albatros Dii and Dv in the stash I then picked this up at the shuttleworth show in Feb. So as a bit of light relief from the ever so tiresome decals on the lightning and inspired by Gareth (goon) I started this and I have to say I love Eduard' s biplane kits
  20. (Darren, you may need some tissues on standby)
  21. 1/48 Spitfire HF Mk.VIII ProfiPACK Eduard Catalogue # 8287 Available from Eduard for €37.45 The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft used by the Royal Air Force and other Allied countries before, during and after World War II. Many variants of the Spitfire were built, using several wing configurations, and it was produced in greater numbers than any other British aircraft. It was also the only British fighter produced continuously throughout the war. The Spitfire was designed as a short-range, high-performance interceptor aircraft by R. J. Mitchell, chief designer at Supermarine Aviation Works. Mitchell pushed the Spitfire's distinctive elliptical wing, designed by Beverley Shenstone, to have the thinnest possible cross-section, helping give the aircraft a higher top speed than several contemporary fighters, including the Hawker Hurricane. Mitchell continued to refine the design until his death in 1937, whereupon his colleague Joseph Smith took over as chief designer, overseeing the Spitfire's development through its multitude of variants. In September 1941, a hitherto unknown German radial engine fighter appeared in the west European sky. The new airplane was superior to British fighters, most distressingly to the Spitfire Mk.V. The German design was soon recognized as the Focke-Wulf Fw 190A. The first response to the new German weapon was the Spitfire Mk.VIII, but the design changes were so complex that initiating timely production was not possible. The only British fighter aircraft deemed suitable to oppose the Fw 190A were the Spitfire Mk. VII and VIII powered by the Merlin 61 engine. The Mk VIII was an adaptation of the Mk VII without the pressurised cabin and was intended to become the main production model of the Spitfire. When the "interim" Mk IX proved itself to be adequate for the RAF it was decided to use the shadow factory at Castle Bromwich to produce that version only. Apart from the lack of pressurisation, the Mk VIII differed little from the Mk VII. Some early production models had extended wingtips but the majority were fitted with the standard version. There were three sub-variants for low altitude (LF Mk VIII), medium altitude (F Mk VIII) and high altitude (HF Mk VIII) which were powered respectively by the Merlin 66, Merlin 63 and Merlin 70 engines. The kit This release is packaged into the standard size box that we see for many of Eduard’s 1/48 aircraft and has the familiar orange ProfiPACK band along the top edge. Eduard’s artworks seem to get better and better, with this having an image of the high-altitude Spit in overall grey, chasing a wounded Ju 188 above the clouds. The edges of the box show profiles for the FIVE schemes that are supplied with this release, and varied they are too. I know that whilst Supermarine test pilot Jeffrey Quill didn’t like the extended wing-tip version because it screwed with aileron performance, there is actually something quite alluring to the eye with this version, so I was pleased to be able to get my hands on this review copy. Inside this box we have four medium-grey sprues packed into two re-sealable clear sleeves, and a single clear sprue that resides within its own zip-lock wallet to protect it from scratches etc. Being a ProfiPACK release, we also have a fret of colour-printed PE, plus a small sheet of masks. To complete the contents, a 20-page A4 manual is included. No resin is included in this release. Sprue A Sprue F Sprue G Sprue H Sprue I Photo Etch Masks Decals Instructions Despite my kit being properly packed, it didn’t stop the clear hood becoming detached in the clear sleeve. No problem though as the delicate part was thankfully undamaged. I quite like the way that Eduard arrange these parts on the circular sprue. Clarity is superb, and the mouldings are realistically thin. As it comes, the model is designed to have the canopy posed in the open position, and separate parts are included to do that, but it you want to close up the office, then a part is supplied which has the hood and rear canopy moulded as one. To fit this, you will also have to undertake a very small amount of simple surgery to the fuselage halves. Nothing too difficult though. Unlike Eduard’s Bf 109 series where the cockpit wall detail is moulded in situ, the Spitfire kits have a separate cockpit tub that fits into the fuselage after paint and assembly, although I do tend to add the side walls into the fuselage first. This design allows the modeller to use the resin Brassin cockpit release as a drop-in item. If you don’t wish to go down that route, then the plastic kit parts are very, very presentable and offer the modeller an above standard level of detail right out of the box. As well as the detailed side walls that have superbly rendered airframe constructional details as well as separate detail elements such as undercarriage selector, throttle quadrant, trim wheels, oxygen tanks etc. Instead of looking directly into the bottom of the cockpit and seeing the inside wing plastic, this model of course has a fully detailed area which includes the actuators that the rudder pedals attach to, plus a myriad of other small details that mean this area is as busy as anywhere else in the pilot’s office. A seat with moulded rear cushion is supplies as a three-part assembly, and of course, colour-printed PE seatbelts are included with this release, as are numerous other cockpit parts, including armoured plates for the rear seat and head rest, spade grip trigger, etc. When it comes to the instrument panel, this ProfiPACK release has a layered, multi-part PE option that is colour-printed. These actually look very nice when installed, and an improvement on the already nice plastic parts. Should you want to use the plastic option, then a decal is supplied for this too, in case you didn’t want to paint the small details. Of course, some decal setting solution is recommended! If you’ve never seen an Eduard Spitfire kit, then you are missing out. Those who have will agree when I say that the external details are exquisite, with delicately rendered panel line, port and rivet details. Note the breakdown of the fuselage too, allowing Eduard to tool different versions. The lower engine cowl is separate and supplied as halves, as it the upper. It’s actually here that causes the modeller a little bit of grief as removing the upper cowl seam is troublesome with the surrounding moulded details. Due to the undercuts though, this was a necessary evil. Thankfully, Eduard also sell a resin alternative, cast as a single piece and exhibiting the same finesse of detail. Sticking with the engine, a beautiful set of fishtail exhausts are to be used with this kit, with their stubs only slightly hollow. Again, resin alternatives are available separately, should you want to go the extra mile. More PE parts are included for the lower cowl intake. The fuselage rudder and wing fairing leading edges are separate parts to allow for different versions to be built, and if you look at the interior of the fuselage, you’ll note the radio/battery compartment door is moulded so it can be easily cut away to accommodate extra detail sets. Of course, it’s the Spitfire’s wing which is the real star of the show. An almost full span lower part and upper panels make up the bulk of this wing. Not quite full span as you have to fit the wingtips as separate parts, again helping Eduard to tool different versions of this aircraft. As this is the HF Mk.VIII, this time we get to use the extended, slightly pointy wingtips which give the aircraft the feeling of a little awkward grace, with the beautiful, elliptical lines slightly disturbed. I quite like this look and was hooked on it from the 1/32 Hasegawa Spitfire Mk.VI that I built as a kid. Ailerons are also separate, but landing flaps are integral and moulded closed. The design of this model again allows for Eduard’s own aftermarket sets to be added with minimal surgery. As with the fuselage, the surface details are first rate, with fine panel lines and rivets. Cannon stubs are moulded separately, as as the underwing radiators. The latter are made up from six parts each, and the wing has the correct intake and exit ramps moulded in situ. To ensure the wing maintains the correct dihedral and has some rigidity, a wing spar is included. The remaining control and flying surfaces are nicely recreated, with the ailerons having an accurate metal skin and rivet finish, and the rudder and full-span elevator being of fabric and tape appearance. When it comes to the main gear wells, the liners have been split into three parts in very much the same way that Tamiya moulded their 1/32 kit. The reason for this is because the walls aren’t vertical, and the alignment of the liner is skewed. The solution works very well, and the remainder of the detail in this area is moulded onto the lower side of the upper wing panels. Eduard do sell the bronze gear struts, and they are excellent, but the kit parts certainly do come up to muster. Both plastic and PE oleo scissors are supplied, and the wheels are moulded as halves, with separate hubs. Unfortunately, these aren’t weighted either, so you may opt for the resin alternative that is separately available. That powerful Merlin engine also demanded a four-blade prop, and this is moulded as a single piece, with a two-part spinner. A single colour PE fret is included and is nicely printed. Part connection tabs are thin and will be easy to cut through. Other parts on here include the inside handle for the sliding hood, numerous cockpit detail parts including the door release mechanism, and of course, the colour seatbelts. A set of wheel hub plates are included, but not for use with this release. Masks are included for the canopy, wingtip lights, and the various underside wing and fuse lights. Kabuki is Eduard’s material of choice and the set is finely cut and you can guarantee it will be a precise fit. Two decal sheets are included. The first one contains the numerous stencils that are dotted around the airframe. Both sheets are printed in-house by Eduard and are superbly thin, with minimal carrier film and perfect registration. The second sheet contains the various national markings, serials and codes etc. No, that orange in the roundel etc. is correct. Those are the SAAF markings! There are FIVE schemes possible with this release, and they are: JF364, No. 32 Squadron, Foggia, Italy, early 1944 JF476, No. 92 Squadron, Triolo, Sicily, November 1943 JF519, No. 1 Squadron SAAF, Trigno, Italy, February 1944 JF630, flown by F/O L. Cronin, No. 81 Squadron, Palel, India, March 1944 308th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, Castel Volturno, Italy, 1944 Instructions are supplied as a 20p-age, glossy A4 publication, with a parts map and the construction broken down into easy to follow line drawings with selective use of colour to highlight parts installation etc. Paint references are also supplied throughout, in both Gunze Aqueous and Mr Colour reference codes. The last pages are taken over with the five schemes, all printed in colour, and including a stencil map. Indications for scheme parts options are easy to see throughout the build. Conclusion This far, there have been almost 20 various releases of Eduard’s Spitfire family in the last 5yrs, and they show no signs of slowing down. It’s hardly surprising when you consider that this must be the best, most accurate and most catered-for 1/48 Spitfire kits on the market. Having built a couple in the past, I can say that these are amongst some of the most fun and satisfying model kits to have hit the market in recent years. This long-wing version really is a beauty and one that I’ve been personally wanting to see for a while. As I write, I have a box of resin and brass goodies coming, and you will see this in a forthcoming issue of Military Illustrated Modeller. Highly recommended My sincere thanks to Eduard for the review sample seen here. To purchase this directly, click THIS link.
  22. 1/48 ‘Mersu’ - Bf 109G in Finland Dual Combo Eduard Catalogue # 11114 Available from Eduard for 67,45€ The Messerschmitt Bf 109 is a German World War II fighter aircraft that was the backbone of the Luftwaffe's fighter force. The Bf 109 first saw operational service in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War and was still in service at the dawn of the jet age at the end of World War II in 1945. It was one of the most advanced fighters of the era, including such features as all-metal monocoque construction, a closed canopy, and retractable landing gear. It was powered by a liquid-cooled, inverted-V12 aero engine. From the end of 1941, the Bf 109 was steadily being supplemented by the Focke-Wulf Fw 190. Whilst the 109 was conceived as an interceptor, later models were developed to fulfil multiple tasks, serving as bomber escort, fighter-bomber, day-, night-, all-weather fighter, ground-attack aircraft, and as reconnaissance aircraft. It was supplied to and operated by several states during World War II and served with several countries for many years after the war. The Bf 109 is the most produced fighter aircraft in history, with a total of 33,984 airframes produced from 1936 up to April 1945. Ok, it's a G-4, but...... The G series, or "Gustav", was introduced in mid-1942. Its initial variants (G-1 through G-4) differed only in minor details from the Bf 109F, most notably in the more powerful 1475 PS (1,455 HP) DB 605 engine. Odd-numbered variants were built as high-altitude fighters with a pressurized cockpit and GM-1 boost, while even-numbered variants were not pressurized, air superiority fighters, and fighter-bombers. Bf 109s remained in foreign service for many years after World War II. The Swiss used their Bf 109Gs well into the 1950s. The Finnish Air Force did not retire their Bf 109Gs until March 1954. Romania used its Bf 109s until 1955. The Spanish Hispanos flew even longer. Some were still in service in the late 1960s. They appeared in films (notably Battle of Britain) playing the role of Bf 109Es. Some Hispano airframes were sold to museums, which rebuilt them as Bf 109s. Edit courtesy of Wikipedia The kit Since Eduard initially announced this release, it was one that I was pretty eager to get my hands upon. I’ve always liked to build the esoteric, or where I can’t, then something which sports colours that are most definitely out of the ordinary, and Eduard’s Mersu fits that bill perfectly. Just for info, Mersu is just the nickname given to the Bf 109G by its Finnish pilots. This kit is also a Dual Combo, containing two kits, as the name suggests. For this, Eduard has supplies sprues for a G-2 and a G-6 to be built. If the schemes made you want to build two G-2 models, for example, then a set of Overtrees can be bought quite cheaply. See links at end of article for G-2 and G-6 Overtrees options, plus extra PE sets. Eduard sure know how to produce an attractive box art and this one is certainly pretty colourful. The box size seems to be more or less the same as for a single kit, so one thing you’ll notice here is the weight and little space there is in the box with the way things are packed. All of the TWELVE mid-grey sprues are packaged into two re-sealable clear sleeves, with the clear parts having their own wallets to protect them. In the bottom of the box you will find TWO PE frets (one for G-2 and one for G-6), a single, large Cartograf-printed decal sheet, and a glossy 32-page A4 instruction manual. In this Limited Edition release, there are no resin parts provided. If you want to go that route, Eduard have just about everything to cater to your very whim. The instruction manual takes each of the two 109G variants in turn so that there is no confusion between the two sub-types. There are a small number of variations in the sub-types themselves without over-complicating things any more than is needed. When Eduard re-launched their G-6 kit in 2016, they did it with more than the obvious scale-correcting revisions. This time the wingtips were moulded as part of the upper wing panels instead of being a separate component. The pitot, however, is still moulded to the wingtip. Care will be needed when handling the model during construction. Externally, the wings have some beautifully rendered detail with thin, sharp and even panel lines, rivets and port access details etc. The rivets themselves look good to the eye and don’t look over-emphasized. Slats are separate parts, as are the landing flaps and ailerons. Recesses are moulded into the lower wings in order to accommodate the radiator intake grilles. For the G-2 machine, no upper wing blisters exist, but correctly on the G-6 version, the small kidney-like bulges are included and look very good in shape and size to my own reference. On all control surfaces (ailerons, elevators and rudder) the fabric and tape depiction is quite measured in appearance. All of these parts are also moulded as single pieces, which makes sense in this scale, with trailing edges being suitably thin. Of course, the real differences you will see between the two sub-types are in the appearance of the fuselage, and Eduard supply one fuselage for each of those types. This of course means that you can’t build two G-2 or two G-6 models. You will need those Overtrees I was telling you about. The G-2 fuselage of course doesn’t have the characteristic gun cowl bulges that the G-6 had, and of course, the G-2 didn’t have the tall wooden fin and rudder ensemble, as evidenced on the sprue (despite there being parts for the latter moulded here). The G-6 fuselage halves, as well as recesses to add the bulged cowl parts, also has a cut-down fin which can accommodate both the early and late fin versions, plus the associated rudder option too. Another change externally is that the G-6 has the upper cowl moulded separately whereas the G-2 simply has the gun troughs that install from within the fuselage. Both kits have separate exhausts which must be installed from within, and there are two exhaust options; one with and without flash plates. If you wish to fit exhausts with a PE plate, then that options is available. As with the wings, the exterior of the fuselage is rendered with superbly fine panel lines, port access, fasteners and rivets. The wing root is atypical ‘G’ minus the small knuckle joint bulge that Eduard erroneously added to their now scrapped 2014 G-6 release. There are two supercharger intake options, depending on which machine you will build. Although Eduard do produce a superb resin cockpit for the G-6, there isn’t one yet available for the G-2. This really doesn’t matter though as the stock parts more than make the grade, with what builds up into a busy and complete pilot’s office. The kit parts include a clear fuel flow line and pretty complete sidewall and cockpit floor details. With this release, however, those details are supplemented with both additional details, refined details and replacement details, including rudder pedals, and a colour-printed instrument panel amongst other parts. The PE also has a set of seatbelts which are totally omitted from the standard release. This kit is supplied with a pretty comprehensive clear sprue that contains three windscreen options, three Erla canopy options and two regular hood options and rear fixed canopy. Out of these though, two windscreen options, one standard hood and one Erla is up for use, and you’ll need to crosscheck the specific machine options for the parts you’ll need to fit. I’m quite a fan of the appearance of the Erla hoods and when I build this for Tamiya magazine, both machines will be fitted with these. I think I would quite like to have seen some resin wheels in this release as the standard kit parts aren’t as nice, nor are they weighted. Generally, the undercarriage parts are excellent in depiction with nicely defined main gear struts with integral compression scissor. A brake line should ideally be added for extra realism. Should you buy the Brassin alternative, this detail is added, and supplied with resin gear doors, but I do think the standard kit parts should suffice under normal circumstances. There are a lot of parts on these sprues that aren’t scheduled for use with this release, including propeller options, centreline bomb racks and munitions, cowl bulges, rudders, fuel tanks etc, but the instructions will clearly show you what can be consigned to the spares box. Sprue A & K Sprue H (x2) Sprue I (x2) Sprue J (x2) Sprue N & K (x2) Sprue S Sprue T Photo Etch Two frets are included here, with numerous colour-printed parts. Whilst these mostly concern the cockpit with the instrument panel, console details, seatbelts and rudder pedals etc. other parts are included for external details, such as panel detail and radiator grilles. Production is excellent, as we have come to expect from one of our hobby’s premier aftermarket manufacturers. Masks A single sheet here contains the masks for two standard canopy versions and one Erla, as the latter was never fitted to the G-2. Masks are also provided for the tailwheel hubs, but strangely enough, not the main wheel hubs. The familiar Kabuki tape is used to produce these, and they are sharply cut, with references in the instructions as to the position of each mask. Decals A single, large sheet is provided here, and printed by Cartograf. As my version is sold in what is generally thought as the free world, swastika decals are supplied, as well as options which contain the markings in two parts, as you would expect as the sole option if you live in a country such as Germany (despite the Finnish swastika not being a symbol of a banned political party). Thanks Eduard for the extra options! This very comprehensive decal sheet contains markings for all of the TEN scheme options available here as well as stencils and cockpit decals in case you don’t wish to use the colour PE parts. All printing is first rate with nice thin inking, solid and authentic colour, minimal carrier films and perfect registration. A good example of just how good these decals are is to look at the blue and white chequers of one scheme, complete with semi-obliterated serial number. These really are excellent. The supplied schemes are: Bf 109G-2, MT-219, flown by lentomestari (Warrant Officer) Yrjö Turkka, 1/LeLv 34, Utti, Finland, June 1943 Bf 109G-2, MT-222, flown by lentomestari (Warrant Officer) Ilmari Juutilainen, 1/LeLv 34, Malmi, Finland, May 1943 Bf 109G-2, MT-225, flown by luutnantti (Lieutenant) Lauri Nissinen, 1/HLeLv 24, Suulajärvi, Finland, April 1944 Bf 109G-2, MT-230, flown by kapteeni (Captain) Jaakko Puolakkainen, 2/HLeLv 28, Värtsilä, Finland, August 1944 Bf 109G-6, MT-423, flown by ylikersantti (Staff Sergeant) Hemmo Leino, 1/HLeLv 34, Kymi, Finland, June 1944 Bf 109G-6, MT-437, flown by ylikersantti (Staff Sergeant) Leo Ahokas, 3/HLeLv 24, Lappeenranta, Finland, June 1944 Bf 109G-6, MT-449, flown by luutnantti (Lieutenant) Olavi Puro, 2/HLeLv 24, Lappeenranta, Finland, June 1944 Bf 109G-6, MT-477, flown by luutnantti (Lieutenant) Mikko Pasila, 1/HLeLv 24, Utti, Finland, September 1944 Bf 109G-6, MT-477, HLeLv 31, Utti, Finland, summer 1948 Bf 109G-6, MT-508, flown by luutnantti (Lieutenant) Arvo Arima, HLeLv 31, Air Race, Utti, Finland, June 1950 AND....if you are a member of the Bunny Fighter Club and order their special version of this kit, then you also get this great scheme! Instructions Eduard’s instructions are clear, concise, thoughtfully laid out in terms of variant assembly, and also very attractive. Starting with a potted history of the type, and then a parts map, each G version is shown is illustrated with zero ambiguity when it comes to parts options, and the modeller shouldn’t experience any confusion if following the drawings properly. Annotation is made throughout for any specifics related to the ten different aircraft. Paint references are given for Gunze Aqueous and Mr. Color paint types. The last pages of the instructions are given up to the individual colour scheme profiles and a stencil guide. Conclusion In my mind, there is little doubt that Eduard’s 1/48 Bf 109 range is just about the best you can buy, with the kits being proven in terms of accuracy and engineering. Ok, there was 109G-6-gate in 2014 when the new tool G-6 was found to be over-scale, but that was withdrawn from the market and the kit re-tooled for 2016, and we see an example of it here in the Mersu release. You’ll see many builds of the G-series online and in magazines, and they do indeed create a stunning little reproduction. Eduard is of course always looking for new angles for its kits, and the Mersu package is a stunner. Two excellent model kits and some of the more unusual schemes that the Gustav wore whilst under Finnish service. If the 109 is an interest for you then this really is a kit that you should consider adding to your stash as it won’t be around forever. If you want to make more use of the supplied decals (and why not!), then these kits are also available as Overtrees options: Extra Sprues 82116X – Bf 109G-2 Overtrees – LINK 82111X – Bf 109G-6 Overtrees – LINK Lept (PE sets) 82116-LEPT – Bf 109G-2 – LINK 82111-LEPT1 – Bf 109G-6 - LINK VERY highly recommended My sincere thanks to Eduard for providing this review kit. To purchase directly, click THIS link.
  23. I hope I'm in. I can not post in time, becouse of the forum shotdown. Here is the start.
  24. Ok after many discussions with a potential sponsor we are now in a position to announce that we will be running our weekend in a weekend group build. So here goes. A 9 day window over the Xmas break starting the Saturday before Xmas on the 23rd December and finishing on Sunday 31st December. You will have 48 hours to build an eduard weekend kit. Full rules will follow when we set up the forum in the next few days. The build will be sponsored and judged by Eduard with prizes from Eduard tiered in both scales. The build will be open to members only Do dust off or buy yourself an eduard weekend kit and have a go look forward to seeing you there. Darren Grunhertz
  25. Hi everyone My contribution to this group build is the Eduard 8434 F6F-5 Hellcat. Normally I need around 3-4 months to finish a model so I have no clue how to do it in 48 hours… I plan to start this evening. Cheers Mats
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