27 May 2011
Chris Clifford details some of the most exciting new military model kits releases from HobbyBoss, Italeri, Revell, Airfix, Academy, Dragon, ICM plus useful tools from The Airbrush Company and Iwata. ...
Chris Clifford details some of the most exciting new military model kits releases from HobbyBoss, Italeri, Revell, Airfix, Academy, Dragon, ICM plus useful tools from The Airbrush Company and Iwata.
HobbyBoss – Spitfire Mk.Vb (83205) – 1/32 scale – £39.99
Until now, anyone wanting a half-decent Mk.Vb Spit in this scale had to make do with the ancient Hasegawa offering. But this new kit from HobbyBoss has superlative detail in every crevice and should build into a show-stopper. There’s a detailed engine and cannons, etched-brass seat straps, rubber tyres and two decal options, one being for famous Polish ace Jan Zumbach whose aircraft all sported Donald Duck nose art.
Italeri – Mirage F.1C (2695) – 1/48 scale – £27.50
A beautiful 10-aircraft decal sheet is the crowning glory of this re-release, whose earlier boxings have been fetching high prices on auction sites. Most French Air Force markings are for older schemes with attractive unit insignia, but Greek, Spanish and Jordanian airframes are also catered for. The moulding, from the old Esci kit, is still good with engraved panel lines, and there are also French bombs, Matra missiles and countermeasure pods included.
Revell – BAe Hawk T.1A (04284) – 1/32 scale – £19.99
A 1/32 scale Hawk has been on modellers’ wish-lists for years…and now it’s a reality. Revell’s new kit has glorious detail, and while just Red Arrows markings are included, there are already after-market decals available so RAF trainers from a wide time-span can be built. The cockpit is excellent, and there are even rocket packs under the ejection seats – a feature seldom seen with other kits of any scale.
Airfix – Spitfire Mkl.XII (A05117) – 1/48 scale – £15.99
Normally modellers have had to convert other marks of Spitfire to make a Griffon-engined Mk.XII, but no longer, as Airfix’s new model is a dedicated version, and of high quality. Excellent detail is provided not just in the cockpit, but on the outer airframe and in the under-carriage bays. Two RAF decal choices are included, and there’s some clever moulding which enables the canopy to be posed open over the rear glazing.
Academy – F-16A/C (1688) – 1/48 scale – £11.99
Although this is billed as an A/C package, just one decal option is included. But, it is a stunner! The markings are for the C-Model ‘candy stripe’ red and white-tailed commander’s aircraft, of the 86th Tactical Fighter Wing, then based at Ramstein, Germany. Academy’s typical high-quality moulding is in evidence, and weapons include Sidewinder and Maverick missiles (with triple launchers), Mk.83 bombs and GAU-5 cannon pods.
Dragon – Sd.Kfz.10/5 fur 2cm FlaK 38 (6676) – 1/35 scale – £44.99
While the actual vehicle is diminutive, Dragon’s anti-aircraft half-track is packed with detail, such as a well-rendered gun, individual track links, a large selection of etched-brass parts and six markings options. Its trademark flatbed gates can be posed open or closed, there’s a newly tooled engine and the driver’s compartment is most convincing.
ICM – USAAF Pilots and Ground Personnel 1941-1945 (48083) – 1/48 scale – £4.99
US Army Air Corps aircraft are ever popular, and these superb figures will bring authenticity to any diorama scene. Idea for posing with P-51s, P-47s and other subjects, ICM’s neat little set offers two mechanics (one looking busier than the other!), two seated and standing pilots and an officer in non-flying gear. The moulding is admirable for styrene figures, and these will benefit from careful painting.
Hobby Spray Booth with Turntable Plate (E-SB-88) – £149.99
Airbrushing almost always ensures superior results when finishing models, but as with any spraying of paint, there are health issues to consider. This splendid fan-assisted spray booth from The Airbrush Company will prevent harmful atomised paint and thinner particles from being inhaled. The vapours are filtered through the booth and expelled outdoors (through a vent or window), which will also help avoid a smelly modelling room! It’s light and portable, yet sturdy. The rotating turntable makes it easy to apply paint to your chosen model, without touching freshly-painted areas.
Iwata – Revolution BR Airbrush (IW-RV-BR) – £83
If you’re looking for an entry-level airbrush, Iwata’s Revolution arguably offers the best performance and quality in its price range. Features include gravity-feed paint cup, dual action, ergonomic handle design, spray widths down to 0.3mm and replaceable internal Teflon™ needle packing for use with solvent-based paints.