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Hobby Boss 1/48 P-61A

Hobby Boss 1/48 P-61A


I went searching for a new addition to my stash and since I don't have the room for the 1/32 Hobby Boss P-61 I thought I would build another 48 scale one. I didn't want to tackle the Revell one which has been one of the mainstays of this plane since I was 10 years of age, a very, very, long time ago, at least in my mind. The GWH and LR P-61 kits are loaded with details and some even say plenty of issues in their own rights.
I chose the new HB 1/48 P-61 mostly out of curiosity and the price wasn't bad either $29.00 from Free Time Hobbies. With shipping it came out to around $35.00 which is still less than what you may find it at other places.

In two days it was sitting on the table. I found a nice looking kit inside and I began the usual process of looking things over and to make sure every thing was there.
The kit comes with 9 sprues of traditional gray plastic and one clear one. It has a nice texture and the panel lines and rivet detail are nicely subtle. The glazing on the clear sprue is crystal clear and the framework stands out nicely The nose piece is clear on top and frosted on the underside.

Going through the instruction booklet I noticed that it is a fairly simple looking build only having detail in the office. However, the detail is sort of chunky but not too bad. I think it may do well with some interior pe, color etch, etc.

A couple of the noticeable things were the lack of any exhaust stubs and that the cowls have molded in cowl flaps which are closed so I guess that would be a moot point. The decals for the instrument panels are not that detailed, with heavy lines and serious non scale appearance it cries out for some pe there. The gun bays are closed so there are no gun display options there and the top turret is one of those just glue me here and that's where I will stay or not. There are bombs, bazooka rocket launchers and external fuel tanks.

As for any moving parts there are only a couple as the flaps and such are molded in. I don't usually build any of my kits with them movable so that is not anything I personally care about anyway. This kit does not have any of the highly detailed features that you may have with more expensive kits but as it looks sitting here in the box but I would voice my opinion as to say that it is a fine representation of the P-61A.

The standard instruction booklet

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Revell Panavia Tornado IDS 1:48

Revell Panavia Tornado IDS 1:48


Originally conceived as the MRA (Multi Role Aircraft), later changed to the MRCA (Multi Role Combat Aircraft), the Tornado was to become an aircraft capable of replacing several different aircraft in service with several NATO countries. Germany, Italy, Canada, Belgium and the Netherlands formed the initial working group in 1968 with the United Kingdom joining soon after. Canada and Belgium were the first countries to leave the consortium due to political wrangling and conflicting specifications and requirements, followed by the Netherlands in 1970.

The requirements that emerged from the three remaining partners were for an aircraft to be designed that would excel in the low-level strike role. Two design concepts were presented, the single seat Panavia 100 (favoured by Germany) and the two seat Panavia 200 (favoured by the RAF). Briefly known as the Panther, the three nation consortium selected the Panavia 200 for their new low-level strike aircraft. As the design evolved, the Tornado’s multirole capabilities led to it being produced in three main variants: Tornado IDS (Interdictor/Strike), Tornado ECR (Electronic Combat/Reconnaissance) and Tornado ADV (Air Defence Variant), the most extensively modified from the base Tornado airframe.

The first prototype aircraft took flight in 1974, with the first production aircraft being delivered to the RAF and Luftwaffe in 1979. Production ended in 1998 with the last of 992 airframes being delivered to Saudi Arabia. The Tornado was considered by several countries during this time, including Australia, Canada, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea, with no other successful foreign sales.

As with most aircraft operated by the world’s air forces today, the Tornado has under gone several life extension and upgrade programs to maintain its viability as a frontline aircraft. It is projected that the Tornado will remain in service until 2025, 50 years after the prototype’s first flight.


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Romainian Lancer 1:48 Conversion

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HPH Models LA-7

History :

The La-7 was a further development in the Lavochkin line of aircraft dating back to the LaGG-1 in 1938. The LaGG-1 was followed by the LaGG-3 and with a change of engines from in line to radial became the La-5. By 1943 the La-5 had become the mainstay of the Soviet air force but Semyon Lavochkin, the head designer, felt it could be further improved upon. At this point in the war supplies of light alloy metals had become more stable and as a result Lavochkin began replacing some of the wooden parts of the La-5 with light alloy parts. This included the wing spars. Other streamlining changes were made as well increasing performance further. A more powerful engine and heavier armament made the aircraft a potent weapon which was not only faster than the Fw 190, its main competitor, but it was more maneuverable. The La-7 first flew in November of 1943 and entered service the following spring. The La-7 earned itself a superb combat record by the end of the war having been flown by the top two Soviet aces. The La-7 was the only Soviet aircraft to shoot down an Me 262. Total production of the La-7 amounted to 5,753 aircraft, some of which soldiered on after the war.

The Kit:

The HpH Models kit comes in a sturdy top opening tray type corrugated box with color profiles of the two sets of markings supplied in the kit. Inside the box is compartmented and each compartment contains parts that are wrapped in bubble wrap. The smaller parts are enclosed in zip lock bags which are also wrapped in bubble wrap. Also in zip lock bags are photo etch, decals and laser cut microfiber seat harness. Like other HpH kits the box also contains a Belgium chocolate. Also included in the box is a CD with the assembly instructions. If you haven't guessed already this is a mostly resin kit and a pricey one at that but if you have to ask you probably can't afford it. Actually it's about the same price as one of the premium Tamiya kits if you spend money on any after market stuff for it. With this kit there really isn't anything else needed but don't expect it to be as easy to build or fit as well as that same Tamiya kit. But then Tamiya doesn't make 1/32 La-7.

The kit is molded in gray resin and though I haven't looked it over with a magnifier I have yet to find any visible air bubbles, short shots or other molding defects. While some of the parts have some fairly large pour blocks the actual contact point between the part and the block are quite thin and a light scribe with an x-acto knife should allow them to snap right off. Lets start with the fuselage halves shown below. Each half has a pour block across the top edge. Again the connection point is quite thin and should be easy to remove. Both the cowling opening and the cockpit opening are flashed over with thin resin. The halves appear reasonably straight and flat but without cleaning them up first it's not possible to fit them together. There is some bow towards the tail but these castings are as thin or thinner than most injection molded kit so I don't see it being an issue. The exterior surface is very smooth and features finely engraved panel lines as well as rivets and fasteners. There is not an overabundance of either as parts of the plane were still made with wood. The inside of the vertical tail features structural detail as this will be seen through the tail wheel opening. The fuselage halves do have several alignment pins which are not common on most resin kits.



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Zoukei Mura Pro Zetsu Nippers

This is now my favorite tool to cut parts free from the sprue…

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