Scale Aircraft Conversions now has over thirty years of experience supplying resin and white metal parts to model builders, and their product listing continues to expand. This is the eleventh landing gear set from SAC that I have reviewed, and once again, they have provided an excellent metal option for kit-supplied landing gear. This set is intended for the 1/48 scale MiG-15 released by Tamiya (I have kits 89535 (silver color plated) and 89573 (clear edition) in my stash while other releases include the original 61043, 61080 (clear edition re-release), and 89729 with GAZ-67B)). The purpose of this replacement set is to provide stronger landing gear that is adjustable if necessary to obtain the proper angles. Even with no previous experience in using white metal parts, this set will provide an upgrade that most modelers will have no issue installing.
The beauty of the white metal used by Scale Aircraft Conversions for their gear is that it will hold up to the weight of larger aircraft, and the metal is soft enough to allow for some final positioning if that is needed to square up the gear. Scale Aircraft Conversions does not use lead in their white metal mix, so the builder does not have to be concerned with that hazard. If you look at the company’s web site, their intent is to provide stronger landing gear, not to make better-looking gear, if the kit is already accurate.
There are no directions contained within the set, you simply swap out the kit provided plastic parts with the new white metal items. It is easy enough to find the corresponding kit parts for the items included in this set. White metal can be cleaned like plastic with files and sanding sticks, or your abrasive of choice. Although paint will adhere to white metal alone, it is recommended that you prime the parts first, and the parts will need to be installed with your favorite CA glue or epoxy.
For my hits of this landing gear set, I will start by mentioning that the folks at SAC do a nice job with their level of detail, as it can be challenging to get reasonably crisp detail in white metal. The items in this set are mostly clean (the parts will only require some mold line removal) and should not be a challenge to install into their proper places on the Tamiya kit. For this review, I photographed the SAC parts next to the items that they will replace in the kit to allow the reader (and potential buyer) to see how they compare. I personally like the SAC gear having a single piece nosewheel fork as the Tamiya fork is in two pieces. Typical for SAC landing gear, I did not identify any misses for this set.
In conclusion, I would highly recommend this landing gear set from Scale Aircraft Conversions to anyone owning one of the 1/48 scale Tamiya MiG-15 model kits. The ease of installation should make the set user-friendly for nearly any model builder wanting to add landing gear with improved strength to their project.
I would like to thank the folks at Scale Aircraft Conversions for providing this detail set to the IPMS-USA for review. I always like to recognize the folks behind the scenes at the Review Corps, who keep things running smoothly for the reviewers and those reading our work, and finally I send my appreciation to all who take the time to read my comments.