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Book Author(s)
Andreas Rupprecht
Review Author
Paul R. Brown
Published on
Company
Harpia Publishing
MSRP
$64.95

This is the author’s seventh book for Harpia Publications on Chinese military aviation and complements several of his earlier volumes by providing a more in-depth look at the Su-27/J-11 “Flanker” aircraft in Chinese service, including China’s acquisition, development, and operational use of the aircraft.

Since the first satellite images of the prototype Su-27 were released, the aircraft has evolved into one of the most capable and versatile fourth-generation aircraft. Over the years there have multiple variants developed by the Russians – Su-27, Su-30, Su-33, Su-34, and Su-35. It is often overlooked that the Chinese aviation industry has also developed several variants of its own, some paralleling those of Russia, but others being specifically tailored to China’s needs.

Review Author
Rod Lees
Published on
Company
Detail & Wonder
Scale
1/48
MSRP
$33.79

Detail and Wonder is a new aftermarket company; they currently list The F-35 (Tamiya), F-4 (Meng), and recently the F-16 heavyweight (for later F-16C variants, Tamiya and by default, Kinetic) as target improvements for their products, producing landing gear with integral Wheels/tires/struts, Exhaust Nozzles, and some intake/exhaust FOD (Foreign Object Damage) prevention plugs. The subject of this review is the F-35A landing gear set; IPMS USA appreciates D&W providing us this set for review!

The packaging is frugal but effective; no parts breakage was noted on my set, and opening them revealed three strut assemblies encased in protective foam inserts to prevent movement and crushing.Included in the box are two main gear struts, two main gear brake and oleo assemblies, a nose gear in two parts, and a Photoetch fret (with floating parts internal to the fret and retained by adhesive protective cover plastic… no attachments to cut or clean up! YAY!)

Review Author
Andy Taylor
Published on
Company
Hauler
Scale
1/48
MSRP
$8.55

Hauler is well known for its detail sets to accompany new releases. The hedgerow cutter for Tamiya’s 1/48 M8 Howitzer Motor Carrier is no exception. This easy, five-piece PE set (the fret measures 1.25”x 1”) adds great detail with minimal effort (great for PE neophytes such as me). That is not to belay the extra detail that this accessory adds to your M8 to break through the Norman bocage.

The bends are easy 90o angles, one per piece. Assembly is simply cut the piece out, sand, bend, and glue (or solder), and can be complete in a few minutes. One of the best aspects of PE is that it can be “damaged” and/or have manufacturing deficiencies built into it; something that is much harder to do in other mediums.

This is an easy-to-use PE that adds another level of detail to an already impressive kit. It is also highly recommended for those wanting to learn PE skills.

Review Author
Andy Taylor
Published on
Company
Hauler
Scale
1/48
MSRP
$26.31

This Hauler detail set will take the Tamiya 1/48 US Howitzer Motor Carrier (HMC) to the next level. The 3” x 5.55”x1” deep box is chock full of two PE frets (2.5”x2” with Parts Nos. 1-30, and 1.5” x 1.5” containing Parts Nos. 1-6 for grills, baskets, and tool clamps) and four resin plugs with Parts Nos. 1-25. The parts arrived safely, with the exception of the two M1 carbines (Part No. 24) that were either short shot or broken in transit.

While the base Tamiya kit is great out of the box, there is always room for more detail, and this Hauler kit does not disappoint, especially in the interior as this is an open top combat vehicle.

Review Author
Andy Taylor
Published on
Company
Hauler
Scale
1/48
MSRP
$10.45

Hauler continues to produce high detail PE sets for mainstream models. The U.S. Howitzer Motor Carriage M8 - Grills and Basket set complements the recent Tamiya 1/48 M8 HMC.

Tamiya kits are known for their ease of building and detail. There are some tradeoffs that come with that philosophy, particularly with engine screens and lightweight metal baskets. This PE set fills that void and takes the Tamiya kit to the next level. This PE set contains four engine screens, the rear turret basket and, not mentioned in the packaging or instructions, 24 tool straps (Part Nos. 6), all in a small 1.5” x 1.5” fret.

The only bends required are simple 90o angles for the basket (the tool clamps take a bit more effort but have the strap and buckle assembly that really is crisp). An advantage to PE for the screens and basket is the ability to add damage and imperfections to replicate armored vehicles operating in the field.