Rumors have been circulating over the past several months that Fine Molds would enter the 1/350 ship model market with a new offering of a Fubuki class destroyer. These appear to be confirmed by the fact that several on-line retailers now offer pre-orders on the Fubuki class DD Ayanami. If potential buyers are curious as to what the quality of this new vessel will be like, they need only take a look at either of these new accessory sets now offered by Fine Molds.
Anyone who knows me will tell you my favorite airplane is the Curtiss P-40 and I have a closet full of kits to prove it. One of them is a 1/72 scale Academy kit that I had allotted to the maybe-someday-stack because of conspicuous problems with the way Academy molded the P-40’s fuselage quarter windows. Well, now Aires has (or ‘have’, if you are reading this review in Canada or the UK) added a set of accurate P-40 well bays to their line of resin detail parts, and they’ve brought to my attention another problem area that needs addressing. The kit’s wheel bays are just as inaccurate as the shape of the quarter windows. Fortunately, Aires has done a nice job of solving that problem for me and has led me to move the kit to a higher position in the stack.
Construction started with the stand and a visit from Murphy. Following the kit instructions, I drilled out holes #3 and #6 and cemented in part Z1. The instructions label the base as Z2 but it is marked Z1, not a big deal, it is obvious what’s what. When I tried to set the lower hull on the stand it did not fit. The pedestals should be installed in holes #4 and #5, NOT holes #3 and #6 (so much for starting with something easy).
Construction was straightforward with no real problems. Some areas that could be better are listed here:
When I first “signed up” to do a review of these decals, I wasn’t familiar with the company, or what would be on the sheet. I was interested in the Ki-43 markings, as I find myself building mostly Japanese aircraft recently. When the package arrived, I was very pleasantly surprised at what I saw!
PT Decals sheet #48002 covers some captured WWII Axis aircraft in French service. The decal sheet itself is very well done with markings for all the aircraft listed below. The decals are all in perfect register, and appear to be of the highest quality on the market today. The lower right of the sheet reads “Pierre Tilley / Dutch Decal 2010; Produced in the EEC”
Included with the decals is a very nice, full color fold out with profiles of each of the aircraft represented on the decal sheet (see the accompanying photos to get a better idea of how great this set of decals really is!)
Quickboost has found another item which will enhance a small, but noticeable, part on Trumpeter’s P-40 Warhawk. This particular part is the engine exhaust which is on both front sides of the fuselage.
The Trumpeter part comes in two pieces and needs to be glued. When gluing the parts together, you will notice that the outer edge of each exhaust pipe doesn’t quite fit together and therefore needs to be compressed carefully so as not crush them. After that, it has to be cleaned up as careful as possible so as not to make one shorter than the other.
I would think the reason Trumpeter uses two pieces for each side is because each half can be made like a half pipe then joined together so as to have a hollow center. If this wasn’t done that way, then it would probably have to have been one solid piece, which the builder would have to drill out the center on a curved piece of plastic for each exhaust pipe on each side.