First, thanks to Dragon Models USA and particularly Alain for providing IPMS/USA this review sample! Your support as a major model distributor is greatly appreciated.
Dragon’s TU-95MS is a re-release of the original Dragon TU-95 kit from the late 1989/90 time period; decals are upgraded, but otherwise it’s the same kit. Fit is good with the exception of the nacelle assemblies; you will have to spend a bit of time getting the aft portion lined up with the front. Markings are included for two recent (circa 2010 or so) Bear airframes.
Basic airframe assembly is simple; liquid cement, a bit of a swipe with a sanding stick and the seams disappear. The cockpit has no interior, and it could not be seen even if you were to detail it out. I had to use a bit of filler around the clear canopy/windshield part, as there was some shrinkage on one side of the clear skirt. This is good, as I found it easier to fill the seams, sand everything down, and use a Sharpie ® to make windows and the windscreen. Same for the tail gunner enclosure; the whole tail gun section is clear, and the intent is to mask the windows and do any filling/sanding away from them. (Anyone who can mask 1/32 inch windows successfully has my vote as a truly masochistic modeler!)
The wheels are easy to paint, even in this scale, as the hubs are well defined. (Yes, I noticed in my picture I missed a couple of places) The main gear is robust enough to handle the load, but the nose gear requires care in removal from the tree and installation in the nose well. Speaking of wells, there are gear wells, but the gear doors are about three feet thick if scaled up. It’s ok, they won’t break off as easily.
Included are external racks for the AS-12 Missiles (take a MiG-21 and hang it from the wing) and two external pods. I will assume these are ECM gear, or chaff rocket launchers, don’t know anything about them.
About 6 hours was required for this build; I had a bunch of other deadline items to clear, so I didn’t really spend a lot of time painting the prop tips or putting on the deicing boots on the front of the blades (those are some SERIOUSLY small decals). It still looks good after all these years; Thanks once again to Dragon Models USA and Cybermodels for re-releasing this kit and for this review sample and to IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review it!