In 1940, the British Air Commission (BAC) approached U.S. aircraft manufacturers about purchasing aircraft, particularly fighters. Curtiss presented their model 81 and planned P-46 which the BAC later ordered 480 model 81s and 960 P-46s. Lockheed presented their YP-38 prototype. North American Aviation (NAA), who as of yet had little experience with fighters, drew up a proposal for a fighter that they insisted was to be at least as good as the P-46. The BAC required assurance for NAA’s claims and that each aircraft be less than $40,000 each. Eventually the BAC ordered 400 of NAA’s fighters, even before a design was presented. The company's lead structures engineer recalled that Edgar Schmued had given the subject of a single seat fighter a great deal of thought in the previous years, called the P-51. NAA’s design team and Schmued were determined that the aircraft would be cutting edge. By the end of 1940, the first prototype, called NA-73X or XP-51, was ready for flight.
ICM has released another combo aviation kit, this one including the ubiquitous Tiger Moth training aircraft and their RAF cadets figure set.
The DH. 82A Tiger Moth is perhaps one of the most common light aircraft in the world to this day and really needs no introduction. First beginning production in 1931, it served as the main basic training aircraft for the Royal Air Force well into the 1950s, and was exported to more than 25 other air forces during that time. Now in demand in commercial venues, it continues to fly all over the world to this day.
This is actually the second iteration of this famous aircraft in 1/32nd scale, the first being the venerable Matchbox variant, which came out in the 1970s. This version featured a host of special features, including floats and the Canadian enclosed cockpit variants. Although ICM’s kit doesn’t feature all of these options, it has much more refined details as befits a kit of the 21st century.
I was in college when Revell first released their 1/32nd scale rendition of the AH-1G Cobra Helicopter gunship, at that time being actively used in the Vietnam conflict. I am forced to admit that I was enamored with the sleek and deadly look of this machine, and the fact that Revell had released it in my favorite scale only made it more desirable.
This set supplies drop-in replacement wheels for 1/72 F-16 C/D Block 40 and later kits.
As you would expect from Brengun, the wheels are very finely cast featuring realistic tread pattern, raised lettering and other markings on the sidewalls and sharply detailed brake pads and wheel hubs. I compared them to the wheels of a Tamiya F-16CJ kit and as shown in the photos, the detail on the Brengun parts is a vast improvement over the kit wheels. Each tire also has a flat spot to simulate the weight of the aircraft on the tires, however, it is not overdone so that the tires look flat.
I painted the wheels Tamiya NATO Black and the rims/brake pads Tamiya Flat White, with a black wash to bring out the details. I used a white colored pencil to highlight lettering and markings on the sidewalls.
The wheels have round mounting holes on the back side, so they should be adaptable to just about any 1/72 F-16C/D Block 40 and later kit.
Italeri offers us a reissue of a kit first released in 1977 by ESCI. The B.M.W. 320 ran in a new group 5 class introduced in 1976. Regarded by driving enthusiasts as one of the best cars ever made, the three series was a natural for conversion to racing. Group five rules allowed wider body width which in turn allowed wider tires. This car ran a two-liter turbo charged engine making 300 horsepower. In this boxing you get the number 57 car driven by Markus Hottinger at the Deutsche Rennsport Meisterschaft (DRM) Norisring circuit, Nuremberg in 1978.