The Panzerspahwagen Sd. Kfz. 232 was one of many various types of vehicles with eight-wheel drive and eight-wheel steering used by armored reconnaissance units of the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS. These armored vehicles were used in many campaigns in Africa and Europe during World War 2. The Sd. Kfz. 232 was noted for its medium range wireless set and frame antenna. This type of antenna was used until 1942 when it was replaced by a single pole antenna. Sd. Kfz. 232s were usually armed with a 2cm KwK 30 L/55 auto cannon capable of firing at a rate of 280 rounds a minute and a 7.92mm machine gun, both mounted in a single turret. A crew of four was typical. The commander and gunner sat in the turret, the driver sat at the front, and a secondary driver was emplaced in the rear of the hull. Powered by a 155 hp 8-cyl gasoline engine with a range of 186 miles and a top speed of 53 mph, it is easy to see why it was one of Rommel’s best long-range recon vehicles.
Lifelike Decals has long been known for their high quality, limited edition decal releases. The decals come in the customary clear plastic zip bag, and inside you will find two full color, single sided pages with color callouts, decal placement guides, references, and a ton of historical information on each aircraft covered. Not to mention the decals themselves. This release contains one standard size decal sheet with markings for five WWII Imperial Japanese Army Ki-84 Hayate “Frank” fighters. Decals are perfectly printed, clear, and in register.
**Just a note to the buyer – when you’re doing a search to purchase these, you may see some decals labeled for the “Japanese Edition” and some for the “English Edition”. The difference here is the language of the instructions. If you don’t read Japanese and are interested in getting the wealth of historical data written about each aircraft, be sure to look for the English one!
The August offering from Model Art Modeling Magazine starts off with 44 pages of photos and text (in Japanese, with an occasional English subtitle) dedicated to the F6F Hellcat, with reviews of Eduard, Hobby Boss, and Monogram kits, among others, from 1/144th scale up to 1/48th. A wealth of close-up photos showing trouble spots and finished kits is available for aficionados of this aircraft.
Next comes 5 pages of information about Japanese Navy destroyers, illustrating differences from 1933 through 1945 with photos of 1/700 kits for illustration. This is followed by several pages of walk-around detail shots of a JASDF H-21, very useful for modelers of this subject. This appears to be a monthly feature, the H-21 being August.
This special Summer edition from Model Art Modeling Magazine is primarily dedicated to the IJN Myoko-class Heavy Cruiser. Fully 99 pages of the total 136 are devoted to photos, history, and kit reviews. Included is a magnificent set of 1/350th scale plans for the Myoko, and builds in 1/350th are reviewed for Myoko, Haguro and Nachi illustrating not only differences in sisters in the same class, but changes and upgrade through the years. A 1/700th review of a build of 4 cruisers is included with photo coverage and a number of pages devoted to the aircraft carried by this class from pre-war through to the end. There is also pull-out art work, and wartime photos to match kits reviewed.
The new kit section reviews CVE-73, a Japanese carrier, and the Revell SS Oriana in some detail.
The J-20 is a prototype of the Chinese fifth-generation fighter. It is called a stealth fighter, and it has many of the characteristics of a truly stealthy aircraft, including occluded intakes, an internal armament store, and radar-absorbent outer skin. As it is now configured, most experts say it isn’t truly stealthy as the engine exhausts are not low-observable technology for either IR or radar. There is speculation that new engines and exhausts will be added after the airframe has moved further toward production.
The prototype flew in January of 2011. Dragon’s kit is now available 6 months later. That’s fast work.
At first look, this is a simple kit, but the box art states that it’s for skilled modelers, age 14 and over. It’s nicely molded in flash-free gray plastic with 3 sprues of parts, the canopy, and a tiny decal sheet.