Many 1/72nd modelers have been chomping at the bit for Eduard to release its new tooled 1/72nd MiG-15 after the initial MiG-15 tooling was severely damaged. Now, we finally have the definitive 1/72nd MiG-15 and MiG-15bis! This review is for the MiG-15 Profipack. The sturdy, top-opening box includes three sprues of grey plastic, one clear sprue, a small photo-etch fret, canopy masks, and decals for five early MiG-15s. The parts are crisply molded with recessed panel lines, and the clear parts are very clear and fairly thin, with only a little distortion on the main canopy.
Upon initial inspection, it may seem like you can build any mainline MiG-15 variant, ie early MiG-15 and MiG-15bis. However, there are some key differences between the MiG-15 and MiG-15bis. Here are a list of parts that cover both variants (MiG-15/MiG-15bis):
- Intake splitter landing light/Underwing landing light
- Early wheels/Late wheels
- Three types of drop tanks
- MiG-15 gun parts/MiG-15bis gun parts
- Four 100kg bombs with four pylons
However, you cannot build a MiG-15bis from this boxing. Here’s why. The MiG-15 had much smaller airbrakes and also only had one “inspection window” below the engine. This kit accurately represents these aspects of the MiG-15. On the flip side, the MiG-15bis has larger airbrakes and two “inspection windows” under the engine. As a side note, the Eduard MiG-15bis kit accurately represents the MiG-15bis features. Be sure to check your references as there are more differences between early MiG-15s and MiG-15bis, and even within each of those variants there were differences.
In my opinion, Eduard is now the premier 1/72nd injection molded aircraft manufacturer. This kit was a dream to build. The detail is exquisite; even without the PE instrument panels there are optional parts with that raised detail (smooth parts for the PE—so no sanding required). This is also the first 1/72nd MiG-15 kit to accurately depict the curved sidewalls of the cockpit. They are curved this way because it follows the shape of the intake.
The instructions are clear and tell you which versions require the small notch to be cut out on the left, inboard wing strake. I used a 1/16” drill bit to notch it out. I only encountered two small hiccups during the build. The cockpit sidewalls will need to be sanded down at the top and bottom where they meet the fuselage. Not doing this will result in a nasty gap at the top of the fuselage seam. The other area that requires a little attention is the wing-to-fuselage join. The tabs on the wings will need to be sanded down on all sides a little bit in order to get a smooth joint. These two “issues” are real simple fixes and will result in little to no filler being used. I added metal gun barrels and pitot tube from Master Model. The rest of the build went flawlessly.
Paint and Markings
To paraphrase Henry Ford, you can have your early MiG-15 in any color you want…as long as it’s natural metal. I primered my kit with Ammo acrylic black primer and then sanded the surface smooth. Next, I used a couple different shades of Vallejo Model Air Metallics. The kit includes markings for five aircraft: Chinese, North Korea, Soviet Union, Poland, and Romania. The decals are thin and crisply printed. They reacted well to Microsol/Microset, and I chose to model the Polish MiG-15 in a fairly clean look. I only added some grey panel line washes from Ammo’s Panel Line Wash products. I also used a little of Ammo’s weathering products to dirty up the undercarriage.
The 1/72nd community (and all modelers really) now finally have the definitive 1/72nd MiG-15! This is a great kit that appears to accurately capture all of the fine details of the MiG-15. Although this review was for the Profipack, the standard kit parts like the cockpit have enough detail to stand on their own (but the PE is definitely a nice touch). If you have any interest in the MiG-15, you will want to get one of these kits.
My sincere thanks go to Eduard and IPMS USA for allowing me to build and review this kit.