Dornier Do335B-6 Night Fighter Preview
HK Models, 1/32 scale
by Steven Budd
Eduard's Limited Edition 1/48 La-5
is available online from Squadron.com
Hong Kong Models (HKM) ongoing love affair with 1/32 continues unabated with the B-6 night fighter variant of their sumptuous Dornier 335 kit. The heavily armed B-2 Zerstorer version first appeared in 2014, later followed by the A. The runners from the former kit provide the guts of the forthcoming B-6. James Hatch has extensively reviewed and built these and I believe is on the cusp of nailing his third, the A-12 ‘Anteater’ together!
New sprues naturally compliment the B-2 parts, which include full radar arrays, exhaust flame dampers, underwing drop tanks, a revised spine and clear part over the radar operator’s position, as well as the necessary additional cockpit and associated appointments. Engineering and fit of the 335 has been widely praised, here and elsewhere, for outright precision and (as Jim has already twice demonstrated) will undoubtedly remain the case with the B-6. Surface detail is sublime, crisp and perfectly weighted.
Of the many things that have impressed me, the lack of sink marks is perhaps most prominent (if that’s not a contradiction in terms) and a devotion to quality is apparent with every sprue plucked from the large box. Speaking of the box, if like me, you’re a sucker for punchy, attention grabbing art work, then HKM’s night fighter will certainly have your peepers by the scruff, with its depiction of this nocturnal killer dramatically banking to port, above the cloud base; a ‘hunter’s moon’ hanging in the background.
On a different note, the logical assembly sequence puts me in mind of Accurate Miniatures, who based theirs on test builds of around 100 pre-production samples before finally settling on what they felt was the preferred completion route. Neil Yan’s development strategy clearly involves open consultation with Jim and others and no doubt underpins that over-arching sense of real modelling minds having shaped that all important assembly aspect.
If it’s options you like, then HKM has you covered, with two complete engines and removable panels to reveal them. Further posable panels and doors sit over the nose gun breeches and bomb bay, should you wish to have it all ‘hanging out’.
Cartograf decals will be provided for three aircraft, two marked as ‘What-if’ options: one in RLM76 with patches of RLM75, the second in RLM81, 82, with RLM76 Wellenmuster, with the last in overall khaki (Dornier Do 335 M17, W.Nr. 230017, CEV, Brétigny-sur-Orge, France, 1947). Two white metal weights and etched parts, including seat belts, round out the presentation.
This HKM incarnation of the fastest piston engined aircraft of World War II will, like its stablemates before it, be imposing in size, highly accurate and a pleasure to complete. My personal thanks to Jim here, for liaising with Neil to make the pre-production sample available to me - I much look forward to completing it for Airfix Model World in due course. Happy days.
Thanks to Neil Yan of HK Models for this test shot.
Text and Images Copyright © 2018 by Steven Budd
Page Created 15 May, 2018
20 May, 2018
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