I'm a big Spitfire fan and I was really excited to review this new item from 3D-Kits. The decal sheet provides marking for four Spitfires. You get two identical sprues containing all the parts needed to convert two Spitfire Mk I's to Mk II standards. This set reminds me of the old Airform conversion set for 1/72 Spitfires from the mid-seventies, but much better. The parts are flash free and very nicely molded. A new seat, control column, Rotol propeller, blunt spinner and teardrop shaped Coffman starter fairing complete the conversion parts. This conversion is intended for Airfix (old and new tool), and Tamiya Spitfire kits. Although it may also fit the aging Hasegawa, Heller, and Revell kits as well (I don't have these kits handy and could not verify). The new parts are direct replacements for kit parts. However I found that the new seat will require a little adjustment to fit the Airfix kit to get an acceptable result. The decals options are as follows:
Editor's note: The kit's title is "Natural Metal"; however the author opted to use a different scheme for reasons explained in his text.
The P-40 history is covered in plenty of detail. The P-40N was the last and most produced version of this iconic fighter. In 1943 the 49th Fighter Group was stationed in the Southwest Pacific. They had been flying the P-40E, but they were getting very war weary. Enter the P-40N. The N model was assigned to the flight leads. One of those was Lt. Sammy Pierce. At that time he had three kills from flying the P-40Es. In keeping with his practice of naming his aircraft after a feature film, the P-40N was emblazoned with “Kay The Strawberry Blonde”. The crew chief side had “The Hialeah Wolf” on the right side.
Editor's note: This review contains an embedded review of: Bronco Models 1/35th scale Sherman T51 Workable Track Set Kit: AB3542 MSRP: $19.95.
Dragon Models Ltd. has blessed the Allied WW2 armor modeler with yet another version of the Sherman tank. This time around the modeler is presented with the 105mm howitzer version of the M4. This vehicle consisted of a 105mm gun, mounted in the so called “high bustle” turret, atop a “large hatch” (47 degree) M4 hull. The kit consists of 11 sprues of injection molded parts, slightly more than 450 parts, together with a fret of photo etched brass parts, a pair of DS 100 rubber tracks, and a short length of metal cable, and decals for three vehicles. Perhaps 100 parts are “surplus to needs”, and care needs to be taken when figuring out which parts go with which variant.
Classic Airframes created quite a stir when they released their TA-4J in 1/48 scale. At long last, decal manufactures had a great excuse to make some of the very colorful markings found on the two-seat Skyhawk! Afterburner Decals wasted no time, and quickly released this sheet. Now, we all know that Hasegawa very soon after released their version of the TA-4J, but fear not as even though this sheet was printed for the Classic Airframes kit, they fit the Hasegawa kit just fine. For those that have noticed, the Classic Airframes kit looks to be a modification of the Hasegawa A-4 kit, thus both TA-4J kits are virtually identical in size and shape. In fact, for this review, I used a Hasegawa kit.
Frank Kurtis founded the Kurtis Kraft Company in the late 1930’s. They designed and built race cars and in a twenty year period they built over 1,100 midget racers. 500 were built ready to race and another 600 were sold as kits. The midget racers came with different engines, most notably the Offenhauser and the Edelbrock V860. The Kurtis midget racers won several events all over the country for decades. Some are even still running today in vintage race events. Revell has released a brand new 1/25th scale model of the Kurtis Kraft Midget Racer. This model represents the midget racer as seen during the ‘50’s and onward into the ‘60’s. This kit is all new tooling and Revell makes great use of slide mold technology to give us a beautiful rendition of this small racer. Revell has released 2 versions of the midget racer: One with the Offenhauser engine that has a choice of carbs or fuel injectors and the other with the Edelbrock V-8/60 engine.