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Blackburn Skua Mk.II
"Norwegian Campaign"

 

Special Hobby, 1/48

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: SH48046 - Blackburn Skua Mk.II "Norwegian Campaign"
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: 97 parts in grey styrene, 6 parts in clear injection plastic, 38 parts in cream colored resin; 1 photo-etched fret; printed acetate film for the instrument panel. Instructions and decal sheet for three aircraft.
Price: USD$40.50 available online from Squadron.com
GBP20.99 available online from Hannants
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Crisp and consistent recessed panel lines; subtle fabric texture, extensive detail; high quality markings
Disadvantages: No bomb; experience required with limited run kits
Recommendation: Highly Recommended for experienced modellers

 

Reviewed by Brett Green


Special Hobby's 1/48 scale Skua Mk.II  is available online from Squadron 

 

FirstLook

 

The Blackburn Skua was an idiosyncratic aircraft. Designed for the British Fleet Air Arm to perform as both fighter and dive bomber, it performed neither task particularly well.

Nevertheless, the Skua raked up a number of important milestones including being the first British aircraft to claim an aerial victory in World War Two. Skuas were also responsible for the destruction of the first Axis capital ship of the war.

Special Hobby's 1/48 scale Blackburn Skua Mk.II is typical of recent releases from this Czech company. The plastic is smooth with a satin texture. Sprue attachment points are admirably narrow. Surface detail comprises crisply engraved panel lines combined with impressively restrained fabric textuie on control surfaces.

The kit comprises 97 parts in grey styrene, 6 parts in clear injection plastic, 38 parts in cream colored resin, 1 photo-etched fret and a printed acetate film for the instrument panel. Markings for three aircraft are also provided.

 

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

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Resin parts are cleanly cast and well detailed. These cover the engine, wheel wells and the optional Vickers gun. In fact, 22 of these resin parts are individual exhaust stubs.

It is nice to see that the casting blocks for the wheel wells are attached to the side via side strips. This should make clean up and installation much easier than with a traditional block above the wheel well.

 

 

It is also pleasing to see the canopy with its separate pilot's sliding section, and the independent clear part for the rear gunner's clamshell. Clear covers for the landing lights in the wing leading edges are also supplied.

The transparencies are thin and very clear.

 

 

There are no locating pins on major parts, so some extra care will be required during assembly to ensure perfect alignment. The wings have been designed with the upper halves overlapping a lower centre section, so that join should be strong and positive. Horizontal tailplanes will be a good bond too, as they are supplied full span, and attach securely to a flat section on the empennage.

The pipes from the collector ring to the engine cylinders are provided as 22 individual resin parts. Combined with the cowl brace and the machine guns, this assembly will require a delicate touch and patience. However, the extra effort should result in an impressively authentic front end for your Skua.

No ordnance is provided, but the centreline bomb sling is present if you can source your own British 500lb bomb.

 



Markings:

Markings are supplied for three aircraft, all finished in the early FAA scheme of Mixed Grey and Dark Slate Grey upper surfaces over Sky Grey lowers, with the bottom of the wings painted black (starboard) and white (port).

Claudio Narduzzi has supplied the following information about the three aircraft covered in this kit:

  • L2940 - force-landed on a frozen lake after shooting down a He 111 on 26 April 1940, Maj. Partridge/Lt. Bostock, 800 Sqn.

  • L2991:Q - hit by return fire, force-landed on 26 April 1940, Lt. Filmer / PO Baldwin (killed), 803 Sqn.

  • L2963:F - shot down after dive-bombing Scharnhorst in Bergen Harbour on 13 June 1940, Lt. Filmer/Mid. McKee, 803 Sqn.

The latter may have had the black/white undersides overpainted in Sky Grey.

L2940 is the aircraft recovered in the seventies (Operation Skua) and is now on display at the Fleet Air Arm Museum Yeovilton.
 

 

 

Decals are well printed, thin and in perfect register.

 

Conclusion

 

Special Hobby's 1/48 scale Blackburn Skua Mk.II is a well detailed kit featuring fine surface detail and very nice decal options.

Being limited run, some extra time and care will be required when preparing and assembling the plastic and resin parts. Even so, if you have built any limited run kits before, this should not present any nasty surprises.

Highly Recommended.

Thanks to MPM / Special Hobby for the review sample.


MPM kits are available worldwide through hobby retailers worldwide and at Squadron.com


Review and Images Copyright 2007 by Brett Green
Page Created 31 May, 2007
Last updated 24 December, 2007

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