SB2C-1C Helldiver Wheel Bays

Published on
Review Author(s)
Scale
1/48
MSRP
$16.50
Product / Stock #
4489
Base Kit
Monogram or Accurate Miniatures 1/48 SB2C Helldiver
Company: Aires Hobby Models - Website: Visit Site
Provided by: Aires Hobby Models - Website: Visit Site
Parts Packaging

Aires has been on the scene for some time now, producing some amazing details in resin and photo etch metal. Among aftermarket aficionados, Aires is the top of the pack for the level of detail and quality of casting. This set for the Monogram Promodeler or Accurate Miniatures 1/48 SB2C Helldiver is no exception.

In the Box

The details for this set come in a small bag stapled to the instructions and card backing. Parts are very finely cast and consist of two resin main gear wells and a smaller tree of parts for gun barrels and actuation rods. The large, one-piece landing gear wells are perfectly cast, and feature more refined detail than what comes in the kit. Instructions are clear and easy to follow.

Installation

To start, you will need the following tools:

  • Razor saw
  • Nippers/sprue cutters
  • Dremel with cutting tips
  • File
  • Superglue

Start by cutting out as much of the molded landing gear bay as possible with the plastic nippers. Next, follow up by using either a round or triangular cutting tip in a Dremel and grinding out the remainder of the landing gear bay. Also use the razor saw and cut off the minor pour plug from the resin parts. Once you have the majority of the kit’s landing gear bay gone, switch to the round cutting tip and slowly grind out the kit’s wing from the inside, making the wing a little thinner. Unlike some other Aires sets, this one doesn’t require a lot of thinning, as I only removed about 1/32 to 1/16 or less from the thickness of the wing. Test fit the parts and, once you are satisfied with the fit, you can move on to the next step.

I suggest installing these with the wing halves glued together and the fuselage sides readily available to check the fit of the new landing gear bays. With the wings glued together, you can then slide the resin bays through the open end of the wings. Now, test fit the wing to the fuselage, sliding and adjusting the resin landing gear bay until everything is lined up to your satisfaction. Carefully hold onto the wing and apply some super glue between the resin bay part and wing to hold it in place.

Conclusion

Overall, I would recommend this set if you want to add just a bit more detail to your Helldiver. The set is marked for a SB2C-1C; however these landing gear bays are fine for any of the –4’s as well. Only if you are doing a very early SB2C-1 would you not be able to use these as is, for the early –1 carried two 50 cal machine guns vs. the single 20mm cannon. Thanks to the large space in the wing, installing these are fairly pain-free, as long as you don’t mind grinding plastic to remove the kit’s molded-on detail. They will look nice, and I may use another set on future Helldiver kits.

Thanks to Aires for the sample and IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review it.

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