A decent Hawker Tempest in 48th scale has been on my "want's" list for some time now and like a knight on a white horse Eduard have come to my rescue! Eduard have taken the unusual step of releasing the kit in two forms, the standard kit and the "Profipack" version. The "profipack" version is the subject of this review as I suspect that more sales will be generated by this kit. I don't have absolute in depth knowledge of the prototype so therefore the review will concentrate on examining the contents of the box as a MODEL.
The Main Components:
The kit comprises of four sprues moulded in light grey plastic, 1 bag of resin cockpit pieces, 1 photo etch sheet, 1 photo instrument sheet and a single piece canopy. The main sprues contain the fuselage halves, tailplane, one piece lower wing and the two upper wings. The parts feature finely engraved panel lines which I have not checked for accuracy as I don't believe in looking for trouble, nor have I checked the outline against a set of plans. The model when built looks every inch a Tempest which is close enough for me, if I checked it and found it was out it probably would never get built, so what I don't know can't harm me! Also on the main sprue are cockpit parts which are replaced by resin ones in this kit.
The second set of sprues contain the smaller parts, including the wheels, spinner, prop blades, exhausts etc, some of these parts are replaced by resin items. Again the detail on them is on a par with the currant standard. Eduard supply resin replacement parts for the cockpit and the detailing in the side walls and cockpit floor is definitely better than the plastic parts, the floor especially has much greater depth. The resin wheels have a slight bulge and crisper detail on the hubs although the seat isn't very much different. The etched set has mostly cockpit details on it with some nice belts and instrument panel face for the acetate photo instruments.
Click here to see the:
Standard Box Art & Decals
Cockpit & Underside Photo
Painting & Marking Sheets & Sprue Layout
The final part is the canopy and the is the part which lets the model down, the part is VERY clear but unfortunately very thick. It is moulded in one piece and will be nigh on impossible to separate cleanly. The two options would be to use the canopy as it is as because of it's clarity a good portion of the cockpit would be visible or use the "push" method to mould a replacement using the kit one as a master. Those of you with vac form machines/experience would have no trouble anyway. I looked at the Squadron canopy for the Typhoon at the UK Nats at it would appear to be of the wrong shape and size compared to the Eduard offering, so no help there, why o why did Eduard not offer a vacform canopy with this kit? A pair of vacform canopies would have solved the problem (I like to have a back up just in case!) and gained a 10 out of 10.
The decal sheet by Propagteam is quite astounding! in perfect register and colour one wonders what has been left to the decal manufacturers! The sheet offers four options: NV724, JF-E of 3 Sqdn. RAF 1945, EG743, US-H, "Thelma II" of 56 Sqdn. RAF, Holland, Dec., 1944., NV994, a TT5 of the Armament Practice Station, Sylt Germany, 1953 in bare metal finish with yellow/black striped underside and SN330 of 3 Sqdn RAF Wunsdorf, Germany 1945 again in bare metal finish.
Without a shadow of a doubt this is Eduards best kit yet, but for the canopy it would have gained a 10 out of 10 as it is this kit represents astounding value for money. My heartfelt thanks to Eduard for producing an excellent kit.
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