Book Author(s)
Dr. David Baker
Review Author
Dave Koukol
Published on
May 16, 2011
Company
Zenith Press
MSRP
$28.00

Possibly one of the world’s most recognizable flying machines, the NASA Space Shuttle was the first reusable piloted spacecraft, and to this day remains unrivaled in versatility and success in that role. Having its genesis in waning years of the Apollo Program, the Shuttle evolved throughout the early 70’s, dodging the lethal pens of budget-cutters, and matured into what now is the icon of American manned spaceflight. Now, 30 years after the maiden flight, the program draws to a close in 2011.

Dr. Baker skillfully and intimately captures the history and underlying technology of the Shuttle program and its family of 6 craft in this beautiful 196-page hard-backed edition. The volume is well-written by a man with first-hand experience in the program, and packed with over 250 photos and technical illustrations – a modeler’s dream!

Review Author
Dave Koukol
Published on
May 15, 2011
Company
Tamiya
Scale
1/32
MSRP
$168.00

Introduced in the latter half of 1944, the Mk. XVIe variant of Supermarine’s legendary design was optimized for low-altitude operations, featuring a Packard-built Merlin 266 powerplant, clipped wings, teardrop canopy, packing a pair each of 20mm cannon and 12.7mm machine guns, and toting either a pair of 250-lb bombs or a single 500-pounder. The Mk. XVI was the last Merlin-powered Spitfire variant to roll off the assembly line, and saw service with the RAF and a number of other nations into the 1950’s.

Review Author
Chris Durden
Published on
May 15, 2011
Company
Downtown Deco
Scale
1/35
MSRP
$49.95

Dioramas Plus was founded in 2008 and has been producing 1/35 bases and buildings for the diorama builder. These products are plaster cast and quite robust. When the box arrived I could tell that just walking it up my driveway tired the mailman out it was so heavy (OK, so maybe I exaggerate). Upon opening the box I found the content wrapped carefully in bubble wrap and an examination of the parts revealed no broken bits. You get 4 main cast pieces consisting of the walls and the street base; a thin wood laser cut sheet with window frames and a door, a clear sheet with holes and jagged edges for the window glass and a bag of loose bricks as well as some large debris piles cast as one piece. I was extremely impressed with the quality of the castings – the relief and detail is excellent and the damage convincing.

Review Author
Jim Pearsall
Published on
July 11, 2022
Company
Eduard
Scale
1/72
MSRP
$9.95

I was just getting to the paint job on my review of the Zvezda Mi-24V. I had already painted the sand color when the postman delivered a package which saved me hours of work and possibly saved my sanity also. The Eduard mask set is a really great time and labor saving addition to the project.

If you look at the mask layout, it becomes evident that there are only a couple of straight lines anywhere on the mask. The Hind’s canopies have a number of compound curves and squiggles, and masking these, even with Tamiya tape cut into ½ mm slices would be a difficult job.

The masks went on very nicely. I used tape instead of the liquid mask Eduard suggests, but the masks followed every curve in the canopy lines nicely. A quick shot with the airbrush, and the canopy was painted.

The wheel masks were also quite good, although I had to make a small cut in the main wheel outer mask as the Hind’s wheel is not perfectly flat.

Review Author
Jim Pearsall
Published on
May 15, 2011
Company
Zvezda
Scale
1/72
MSRP
$31.95

The Helicopter

The Mi-24 has been in service with the Soviet/Russian air forces since 1972. The design is interesting in that it has three engines; another tri-motor to add to the list. The 24 has undergone a number of redesigns, and the early versions had a much different cockpit setup. The Russian Air Force has announced that it will replace its 250 Mi-24s with newer more capable helicopters, starting in 2015.

The Mi-24 is nicknamed “crocodile” by the troops. The Mujahedeen in Afghanistan called it "Shaitan-Arba" (Satan's Chariot)". The Hind is unique in that it can carry 8 troops and weapons at the same time. Huey gunships had to have the seats removed to allow for ammunition and extra fuel storage. The crews didn’t think much of carrying the passengers, as they became a liability if the pilot had to do extreme maneuvers and return fire.