Eduard, 1/48 scale
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||Eduard Kit No. 84133 - F6F-5N Nightfighter Weekend Edition
|Contents and Media:
||125 grey coloured plastic parts; 17 clear parts; 15 parts in grey coloured resin; decal sheet covering two markings options
USD$24.95 plus shipping available online from Eduard's website
USD$23.99 plus shipping available online from Squadron
£19.50 EU price (£16.25 Export Price) plus shipping available from Hannants
||High level of detail; excellent surface texture (combination of recessed panel lines, lapped fuselage panels and fabric control surfaces); straightforward parts breakdown; separate control surfaces; ample options including centreline fuel tank, rockets and bombs; excellent clear parts with different sliding sections for open and closed options; perfect moulding; excellent quality decals.
||Eduard's 1/48 scale F6F-5N Nightfighter Weekend Edition is well detailed, features excellent surface texture and offers plenty of useful options to the modeller. The bonus inclusion of the resin parts makes it even better value. Highly Recommended
Eduard's 1/48 scale F6F Hellcat Weekend Edition is available online from Squadron.com
The Grumman F6F Hellcat was designed as a stop-gap upgrade of the lightweight F4F Wildcat, almost as an insurance policy in the event that the F4U Corsair, then under development, did not live up to expectations.
Despite the clear family resemblance to the earlier Wildcat, the Hellcat was an all-new aircraft. The resulting naval fighter was stocky in profile, large, powerfully armed and armoured, and heavy. The Hellcat secured its place in history with a remarkable kill ratio of 19:1.
A number of 1/48 scale Hellcat kits have been available for some time now. The old Monogram kit was a typical product of the 1960s with gimmicky moving parts, accuracy problems and poor detail. The ARII / Otaki offering from the 1970s was much better, but was let down by a low level of interior detail. Hasegawa's F6F family dates from the mid-1990s, but it is still a nice model - well detailed with petitely recessed panel lines. Perhaps the most frequent criticism levelled at that kit is the slighty squashed and undersized shape of the lower cowl intake - the Hellcat's distinctive "grin".
Eduard entered the fray with a brand new 1/48 scale F6F-3 Hellcat kit in February 2008 - time flies, doesn't it - to be followed up with their FAA Hellcat Mk.I and Mk.II, the Royal Class packaging and a standalone F6F-5N Night Fighter ProfiPACK in 2010..
Eduard has now added an F6F-5N to their 1/48 scale Weekend Edition range. These kits traditionally do not include photo-etch or masks, but they do benefit from a much lower price.
Eduard's 1/48 scale F6F-5N Nightfighter Weekend Edition comprises 108 grey coloured injection moulded plastic parts; 17 clear parts; 15 parts in grey coloured resin and a decal sheet covering two markings options.
This time around, the plastic parts are grey. I know that it makes no difference when building the kit, but this shade always looks classier to my eye!
Note that this model features a specific and accurate wing and fuselage for the F6F-5 variant. You won't need to fit inserts or fill panel lines with this model.
Surface texture on Eduard's latest releases has been superb, and all of their Hellcats meet their very high standards. In addition to crisp, finely recessed panel lines and selected rows of rivets, the Hellcat fuselage employs a subtle lapped panel effect. This really works well.
The fabric ribs on the control surfaces are also very convincing.
The plastic detail in the cockpit is good even without photo-etch, but for the PE junkie there is a small photo-etched upgrade available too. Straight from the box though, you should still get a very nice result from the dial decals. Decals are also supplied for the harness straps.
The engine is a simple assembly with only five plastic parts, but detail is barely compromised. Pushrods are moulded in place.
It is not usual to find resin parts in a Weekend Edition kit, but these are very welcome. The resin parts are specific to the night fighter version. They include the radome, two "T" shaped aerials, machine guns with flame dampers and shrouded exhausts.
The delicate antenna post on the fin is a separate part that may be installed following construction and painting. This is a thoughtful touch that will avoid the almost inevitable damage to a post moulded in place on the top of the fin.
The canopy parts are crystal clear and thin. Separate parts are supplied to permit the sliding canopy to be displayed open or closed.
Control surfaces are all supplied separately. These are tabbed to assist precise alignment in the neutral position. It appears that the ailerons and elevators may easily be repositioned after slicing the tabs off.
Two marking options are included on the decal sheet. Both are overall Gloss Sea Blue with one featuring a white centreline tank.
The decals, printed by Eduard, are glossy and look great on the sheet.
Eduard's 1/48 scale F6F-5N Nightfighter Weekend Edition is well detailed, features excellent surface texture and offers plenty of useful options to the modeller. The bonus inclusion of the resin parts makes it even better value.
Thanks to Eduard for the sample
Review Text and Images Copyright © 2016 by Brett Green
Page Created 16 January, 2017
17 January, 2017
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