Building 1/144 can be great fun, but sometimes older kits need a little boost to bring them up to the standards we’ve come to expect from newer (but more expensive) kits. A case in point is the LS 1/144 F-15, which has a couple of things which could use improvement.
The wheels on the LS kit are correctly sized in diameter, but they look like ATV tires. They’re too wide, and the sidewalls are rounded. So the Res-Im tires are a pretty good improvement. There’s a comparison photo below.
I started out to do this review on the Minicraft F-15, but the tires are molded onto the landing gear legs. Too difficult for me, especially in this small scale. See the picture below to see the Minicraft LG.
Once I had the F-15 almost complete, painted, decals installed, I was ready to do the landing gear. I usually save the gear until late in the build to prevent damage to the parts when I handle the plane for decals.
The resin parts took Tamiya flat white well for the hubs, and Floquil Grimy black worked well for the tires. I painted the hubs and most of the wheels, then removed the parts from the pour sprue. I used a fine-tooth small saw to remove the wheels from the sprue, then sanded excess off with a sanding stick. I then finished the tires with Grimy Black.
Installation was pretty easy, all things considered. I had already installed the landing gear legs and let them set overnight to solidify the glue joints. I then put a small drop of gel-type CA on the gear attachment point and installed the wheel. A quick dot of accelerator, and it was done. The choice of the LS kit here was good, because they used a flat disc to attach their wheels, and they worked super with the Res-Im product.
The last things I had to do was put the wheel well doors on and attach the canopy. This is where I found another problem with the LS kit. The instructions show the forward main gear doors open. Nope, they’re closed when the wheels are down. I had to cut the doors down a little to get them to fit. The canopy was OK.
Recommended. Check your kit to be sure you can use this upgrade, but if it’s going to work, it’ll work well.
Thanks to Res-Im for providing the parts to improve my Eagle, and to IPMS USA for letting me review it.