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MiG-3 Early Version


Trumpeter, 1/48 scale

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Trumpeter 02830 - Soviet MiG-3 Early Version
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: 74 parts in grey coloured plastic; 6 parts in clear; markings for three aircraft.
Price: Around USD$24.95, available from specialist hobby retailers worldwide.
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: High quality injection plastic mouldings including very finely recessed panel lines and subtle rivet lines; nicely detailed; separate ailerons and flaps; optional rockets; high quality clear parts; simple parts breakdown; very good decals.
Disadvantages: Underdone detailed instrument panel and seat pan.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended

Reviewed by Brett Green

Trumpeter's 1/48 scale MiG-3 is available online from Squadron.com



When I received an email early last week to say that Trumpeter's new MiG-3 early version was on its way for review, I assumed that this was a warmed over re-release of the 1/32 scale kit from several years ago.

I was wrong.

Trumpeter has delivered an all-new early version MiG-3 in 1/48 scale.

Trumpeter's 1/48 scale MiG-3 early version comprises 74 parts in light grey coloured plastic; 6 parts in clear; and markings for three aircraft.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:


The plastic parts are produced to a very high standard.

The plastic is shiny and smooth. The surfaces of this largely wooden aircraft are faithfully reproduced - large areas of smooth skin supplemented where appropriate with crisp, consistent and finely recessed panel lines, vents and fasteners. Selected rows of rivet lines are also moulded to the metallic areas. These are very subtle on the wings and the fuselage - shallow yet crispy moulded. The rivets on the gear doors are deeper though, and might benefit from a coat of Mr Surfacer to bring them into line with the rest of the kit. Fabric texture on the elevators is quite pronounced, but will easily be tamed with some light sanding. To my eye, the texture of the elevators looks good straight from the box.

There are no sink marks or other imperfections in visible locations on any of the parts, even traditionally problematic areas such as the gear doors. This unavoidable problem is bypassed inside the fuselage by providing separate cockpit sidewalls.

The cockpit walls, floor and seat back are nicely done and should look great after careful painting. The instrument panel is unconvincing though, and the seat pan is too shallow with overly thick edges. These issues may be ignored or a number of solutions might be adopted, including using Cutting Edge's gorgeous resin cockpit (item number CEC48195 designed for the ICM kit), or adding an Eduard "Zoom" instrument panel and a Good Stuff replacement seat.

The undercarriage doors, gear legs and wheels are all very well detailed.



Rockets are included as an option. The rocket rack mounting holes in the lower wings are open. As a result you will need to fill these if you are not planning to install the ordnance.

This is a long-run injection moulded kit, so full locating holes and pins are present to assist alignment. Kit engineering is thoughtful and, with less than 80 parts, should result in a fast, painless build. I liked the approach to the wing root intakes, which are supplied as separate parts permitting authentically deep ducting without interior join seams.

The flaps and ailerons are provided as separate parts which may be posed according to the modeller's preference.

The clear parts are thin and free of distortion. The windscreen and sliding section are separate, so the canopy may easily be displayed open. A small section of the upper cowl is moulded to the lip of the windscreen, making it easier to obtain a clean join in this area. Navigation lights are included as small clear parts too.



Markings for three aircraft are provided on a glossy decal sheet marked, somewhat enigmatically, as options A and B. Two summer schemes plus one winter whitewash finish are included.



The decals are nicely in register and the colours appear vibrant and opaque (the distortion of the colour in the image above is not on the sheet, but due to image compression).





I had not heard anything about Trumpeter's 1/48 scale MiG-3 Early Version before it landed on my doorstep earlier in the week, but word of this well kept secret deserves to be spread.

Trumpeter's 1/48 scale MiG-3 is a nicely detailed kit that will suit even beginner modellers, yet should deliver an impressive and attractive result straight from the box.

With a small amount of extra work in the cockpit, it will also be easy to kick this kit up a notch.

Highly Recommended.

Thanks to J.B. Wholesalers for the sample

Review Text Copyright 2007 by Brett Green
Page Created 03 October, 2007
Last updated 24 December, 2007

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