Welcome to the IPMS/USA Reviews site!

Introduction: The primary organization of the IPMS/USA Review website is by IPMS/USA National Contest Class. Within each Class there are sub-menus by kits, decals, books, etc. The Miscellaneous Class is for items that are not class specific or that cross two or more classes.

IPMS/USA Members: We encourage you to submit reviews, both here and to the Journal. To volunteer for membership in the IPMS/USA "Reviewers Corps" and submit your own reviews, please read the Guidelines For Submitting Product Reviews.

Manufacturers, publishers, and other industry members: IPMS/USA is pleased to offer your company the opportunity for product reviews. All product reviews are performed by IPMS/USA members, and are posted in the publicly-accessible section of our website. With very few exceptions, we perform full build reviews of new kit releases, aftermarket products, and supplies. If you would care to provide product samples for review, please contact John Noack, IPMS/USA 1st VP.

To learn more about IPMS/USA, please see our About Us page.

Review Author
Gary Telecsan
Published on
Company
Pro Art Models
Scale
1/35
MSRP
$21.00
  • Product #PAU-35044 with jigs, $21.00
  • Product #PAU-35044B without jigs, $7.89

PSP, or pierced/perforated steel planking, was used from shortly before WWII onwards as a means to create a hard surface for military operations where one wasn’t provided by nature. The planks, made of steel or (later) aluminum, were made in several styles, were generally about 10 feet long by 38 inches wide, and weighed about 66 pounds each (steel). The most common hole pattern was 3 wide by 29 long. They are also known as Marston mats after a town in North Carolina where they were manufactured in some quantity. They were used extensively in Vietnam, and are readily available today to civilians as used or new government surplus.

PSP makes the ideal base for a model alone or in a diorama. Several styles of resin bases featuring PSP have been available for years, but this is the first photo etched alternative of which I am aware.

Review Author
Ed Kinney
Published on
Company
HK Models Co.
Scale
1/32
MSRP
$174.95

As those of you who know me, my scale of choice for a long time now has been 1/32nd (aka Braille scale!). Needless to say, I’ve been ecstatic with the explosion of offerings from numerous manufactures. This is one I have been patiently waiting for for the last two years- Hong Kong Models B-25J.

The one pictured here, the glass nose “J” model, and I find it absolutely outstanding. The engraved detail is actually exquisite, the clear parts are like crystal, and the attention to detail is near phenomenal. (Are you getting the message that I REALLY like what I am seeing?). Included with the more than 11 excellent gray sprues was a basic decal sheet and a set of photoetch. The etched parts include seat belts.

Review Author
John Kelly
Published on
Company
Airfix
Scale
1/72
MSRP
$15.99

For some reason, I decided a few years ago to build a collection of 1/72 Harriers. At that time I counted 24 separate and distinct sub-varieties and markings/nationalities. There would be more if I wanted to include all the two-seaters. So far, I have completed about 18 of them, from the first P.1127 prototype through the Kestrel and first- and second-generation Harriers. The kits range from the awful (Matchbox GR.1, which I could not bring myself to build) to the barely acceptable (Hasegawa GR.1/AV-8A) into the pretty good (Airfix/Heller AV-8B, Italeri AV-8B) to the really nice (ESCI AV-8A, Hasegawa AV-8B/GR.5 and AV-8B+). When I started the collection, there was no such airplane as the GR.9, so when it entered service I resigned myself to modifying a Hasegawa kit. With the release of this all-new mold from Airfix, I could now build it out-of-the-box without a lot of troublesome carving of small plastic pieces.

Book Author(s)
Joachim Baschin
Review Author
Ben Guenther
Published on
Company
Nuts and Bolts Verlag GbR
MSRP
$36.50

Armies cannot conduct military operations without supplies; the German Army had no problems with their supply trucks in the European areas, but found their trucks useless during the Russian spring and autumn “mud” period on the Eastern Front. A quick solution was to equip the rear wheel drive trucks with a tracked running gear. The 3 ton truck was the most widely used in the German Army, so these would be the basis for the fabrication. Four different tracked trucks were built: Opel, Ford, Klockner-Humboldt, and a heavy 4.5 ton truck by Mercedes-Benz. The official designation was Gleisketten-Lastkraftwagen or more often seen as Gleisketten-LKW offen (tracked lorry open) Sd.Kfz 3. The troops referred to all of them as “Maultier,” or mule in German, as it excelled in moving through mud – slow but steady.

Review Author
Robert Folden
Published on
Company
Eduard
Scale
1/700
MSRP
$27.00

Over the past year or so, we have seen a new supply of USS Arizona kits in all scales, from Trumpeter, Dragon, and Hobby Boss. A popular scale seems to be 1/700 scale, where we have also seen a kit of the USS Pennsylvania. While both ships had generally the same look up till Pearl Harbor, the Penn later underwent extensive changes. My great uncle had the privilege of serving his country with the United States Navy, and was assigned to the USS Pennsylvania. On December 7th, he was at Pearl Harbor while the Penn was in drydock. He survived Pearl and continued on the Penn through the entire war, and was still with her up until she was scuttled after being used as a target ship for nuclear tests. (My uncle was actually part of the skeleton/scuttling crew and was the fourth to last person to set foot on the mighty ship.) With my family’s ties to the Pennsylvania class, I naturally purchased all of the recent model releases.