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Signal Sea Fury / Miss Merced Unlimited Racer

 

Fisher Model & Pattern, 1/32 scale

 

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Fisher Model & Pattern Kit No. 3205 - Signal Sea Fury / Miss Merced Unlimited Racer
Scale: 1/32
Contents and Media: 72 parts in pale grey-green resin; three parts in cast brass; two vacform parts; one photo-etched fret; one clear sheet of plastic; printed acetate sheet (instruments); markings for one aircraft.
Price: USD $195.00 plus postage and handling available online from Fisher Model and Pattern website
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Beautifully detailed; excellent surface features including crisply engraved panel lines where appropriate; separate control surfaces; perfectly cast; clever engineering; minimal preparation of resin parts; simple parts breakdown; detailed instructions; beautiful decals
Disadvantages:  
Recommendation: Highly Recommended

Reviewed by Brett Green


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F i r s t L o o k

 

Fisher Model & Pattern has been casting high quality 1/24 and 1/32 scale car models for some time now, but they made their first splash in the aircraft modelling market during 2003 with an impressive 1/32 scale F9F-5 Panther. This was followed up a little over a year later with a 1/32 scale F9F-8 Cougar, and then a "Twogar" kit, all produced to the same high standard.

In late 2006, Fisher released a truly spectacular 1/32 scale Hawker Sea Fury FB.11.

Now Fisher Model & Pattern has released a civilian variation on the theme - the Signal Sea Fury / Miss Merced Unlimited Racer. This may seem to be an unusual choice, but in the kit instructions Paul Fisher explains his close encounter with this very aircraft and its pilot, Mike Carroll, back in 1966. The experience left quite an impression on the ten-year-old Paul Fisher, and now he has grasped the opportunity to pay resin tribute to the man and his amazing machine.

Fisher Models' new 1/32 scale Sea Fury Racer comprises 72 parts beautifully cast in pale grey-green coloured resin; two vacform parts; one photo-etched fret; printed acetate sheet (instruments) and markings for the racer aircraft. The contents of the stout box are arranged into separate bags sorted by sub-assembly, then lovingly wrapped in tissue paper before final packing.

The first part to grab our attention is the one-piece main fuselage. This is a remarkable hollow casting. There is a slight casting scar on the bottom of the part, but there is no casting block even though this is one large piece of resin. This part is subtly different to the fuselage of the military Sea Fury kit.

 

  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Fisher Model 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer Review by Brett Green: Image
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There are no casting blocks on any of the main parts. Most are almost ready to use straight from the box. Smaller parts are cast onto strips.

Surface detail is tastefully restrained, taking the form of recessed panel lines. These are quite crisp and very fine indeed, as is appropriate for the type. There is nary a rivet in sight.

The wing is all new, and even simpler to assemble than its predecessor. This short racer wing is supplied as a full-span, single piece with beautiful detail cast into the deep wheel well - simply amazing. The fine vents on the bottom of the wings in front of the wheel wells are impressive too. The trailing edges are authentically sharp. Ailerons are provided as separate parts, and the deep recessed in the wings will ensure that they may be deflected to the modeller's desires without any trouble.

The cockpit is a detailed model in its own right. The cockpit tub is cleverly cast with much of the detail already in place, while the seat is presented with its unique post-war cushion. In fact, the new cockpit has been carefully designed to replicate the lightweight racer cockpit, stripped of its military accoutrements. The harness and instrument panel are supplied as photo-etched parts, and the acetate instrument sheets will add a further air of authenticity to the front office.

 

 

I recommend that you read the instructions carefully before assembling the cockpit, as it will require a very specific method for installing in the one-piece hollow fuselage.

The nose assembly includes a two-part engine, which will be totally hidden by the close-cowled opening and the gigantic spinner. This has not prevented Fisher from casting fine cooling fins and crisp plumbing onto the engine.

The exhaust stacks are all hollowed out.

A chunky jig is supplied for aligning the pitch of the five-blade propeller - a thoughtful touch.

The landing gear for this large model is supplied in cast brass. These parts will require a little cleanup, but noticeably less than the parts included with the original issue. These luxurious metal parts will be well worth the minor effort in terms of detail and robustness.

 

 

The miniscule canopy is a combination of a grey resin frame and a small clear vacform part.

Kit engineering has been cleverly designed to ensure excellent alignment, and for very simple assembly. I have test-fitted the wings and tail planes to the fuselage, and all looks positive, but it appears that some filler will be needed at the wing root and the trailing join between the wing and fuselage. Note that the parts are only being held together in the photo below with two blobs of Blu-Tack though, so the final fit will be closer than this.

 

 

Control surfaces are all cast separately except the rudder. The flaps are fixed in the closed position.

The spectacular flame markings are supplied as decals. The paint job might be more complicated than the assembly, especially if the modeller chooses to depict the early paintwork with flames on the wing root area. Fisher Model offers some good advice about the sequence and techniques required to achieve a stunning finish.

 

 

The decals on my sample are perfectly in register and the colours look great.

 

 

Conclusion

 

This kit is even simpler in engineering and parts breakdown than the earlier version, making it a fairly straightforward assembly prospect even for modellers with little or no experience building resin kits.

This Rolls-Royce elegance is matched by a Rolls-Royce price tag, but I can't help concluding that this kit is still good value considering the marvelous hand-cast contents of the box. I can only imagine the premium that this kit will command on Ebay in a couple of years' time.

Fisher Model & Pattern's 1/32 scale Sea Fury Unlimited Racer is a every bit as impressive as its military predecessor, and the flame paint job on the fuselage will certainly make it stand out on your display shelves or the competition table.

Highly Recommended

Thanks to Paul Fisher for the sample


Fisher Models are available from their website


Images and Text Copyright 2008 by Brett Green
except title image from Fisher Models' website
Page Created 1 April, 2008
Last updated 1 April, 2008

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