F-104A / TF-104 (2 in 1)
Kinetic, 1/48 scale
S u m m a r y
||Kinetic Item No. K48089 - F-104A / TF-104 (2 in 1) ROCAF Starfighter
|Contents and Media:
||235 parts in grey plastic; 35 parts in clear; photo-etched fret with 24 parts; markings for seven ROCAF aircraft.
plus shipping available online from Lucky Model
||Crisp and fine surface textures; high level of detail in cockpit, wheel wells, engine nozzle, avionics and radar bay; perfectly printed decal sheet; full weapons fit; clear instructions; great value for money.
Kinetic's initial 1:48 scale F-104G Starfighter from 2019 was certainly worthy of the Gold Class label. This was followed by a 2-in-1 kit that added the option of the two-seater TF-104G. Now Kinetic has released a box that offers the option of either the F-104A single seater or TF-104G two-seate in ROCAF (Taiwanese) service. The model scores big points in every category - its surface textures, high level of detail including fully equipped radar and avionics bays, poseable control surfaces and speed brakes, and a lovely Cartograf-printed decal sheet. I've built two of these kits and I was greatly impressed with fit, fidelity and detail. Kinetic's new 1:48 scale ROCAF F-104A / TF-104 will be warmly welcomed by all Century Series fans.
by Brett Green
The Lockheed F-104 Starfighter is an American single-engine, supersonic air superiority fighter which was extensively deployed as a fighter-bomber during the Cold War.
Created as a day fighter by Lockheed as one of the "Century Series" of fighter aircraft for the United States Air Force (USAF), it was developed into an all-weather multirole aircraft in the early 1960s and produced by several other nations, seeing widespread service outside the United States.
A combat-capable trainer version of the F-104, the TF-104G was a two-seater Starfighter that had no cannon or centerline pylon, and reduced internal fuel.
The ROCAF operated a total of 282 aircraft funded by the Military Assistance Program (MAP); a mixture of new-build and surplus F-104A, -B, -D, -G, -J, -DJ, RF-104G, and TF-104G were used. The Starfighter was phased out of Taiwanese service by 1997
Kinetic released their excellent 1/48 scale F-104G Starfighter in 2019. It looked great in the box and I can confirm that it was equally nice to build (see my single-seather Kinetic F-104G Starfighter elsewhere on HyperScale).
Now Kinetic has added an F-104A / TF-104G (2 in 1) in ROCAF service to their Starfighter family.
The model supplies all the parts necessary to build either a single-seat F-104G or a two-seater TF-104G.
This new kit comprises 236 parts in grey plastic, 35 parts in clear, photo-etched fret with 24 parts and markings for four German aircraft.
Two full fuselage sprues are included.
One contains parts for the F-104A and the other has the parts for the TF-104G.
The clear sprue also contains parts for the single seat and two-seat canopies.
Surface textures are world-class - fine and crisp panel lines supplemented with appropriate recessed rivets. Please note that the main surfaces of the wings do not have rows of rivets, which will please most modellers.
Kinetic supplies a pair of Lockheed C-2 and Martin-Baker GA-7A ejection seats. Photo-etched harness straps are included for both.
The rest of the cockpit is nicely fitted out with a detailed tub, integral side consoles and an instrument panel with raised bezels and switches.
The nose radar module is fully fitted out and the nose cone may be posed open to display the detail. The avionics bay behind the cockpit is similarly detailed and a separate poseable hatch is included.
Undercarriage bay detail is also well done with separate side and top panels plus plenty of detail by way of raised hydraulic lines and cables.
The rear engine pipe includes separate fan and flame holder parts as well as a crisp one-piece nozzle.
Undercarriage legs are well done. The wheels are bulged and flattened, with a choice of styles for the nose wheel. The bulged and early style non-bulged main undercarriage covers, as well as the narrow main wheels are included on the sprues, suggesting that we will see different versions from Kinetic in the future. The forward main undercarriage doors may be depicted closed or partially open.
Fuselage speed brakes are separate parts that may be posed open or closed. Flaps, ailerons, leading edge slats and the rudder are all separate parts that may be posed to taste.
Clear parts are thin and free from distortion. The windscreen is a separate part and the canopies may be fixed in the open or closed position.
A nice selection of underwing and wing tip drop tanks as well as a choice of under wing and fuselage mounted rockets.
Seven varied marking options are offered with single and two-seaters in various solid colour and camouflage options.
Your choices are even wider than that though, as Kinetic has supplied a number jungle in common sizes and three colours for different aircraft.
The decals are designed by PMA and printed perfectly by Cartograf.
Instructions are supplied in a 32 page booklet. The instructions are split into single-seater and two-seater sections, with a black and white marking guide for the seven marking options. Four-view illustrations of all marking schemes are included.
The instructions cross-reference AMMO MIG, Vallejo, Mr Color, Tamiya and Humbrol paint numbers.
Kinetic's initial 1:48 scale F-104G Starfighter from 2019 was certainly worthy of the Gold Class label.
This was followed by a 2-in-1 kit that added the option of the two-seater TF-104G. Now Kinetic has released a box that offers the option of either the F-104A single seater or TF-104G two-seate in ROCAF (Taiwanese) service.
The model scores big points in every category - its surface textures, high level of detail including fully equipped radar and avionics bays, poseable control surfaces and speed brakes, and a lovely Cartograf-printed decal sheet.
I've built two of Kinetic's Starfighter family and I was impressed with fit, fidelity and detail. You can see these builds by following the links:
Kinetic's new 1:48 scale ROCAF F-104A / TF-104 will be warmly welcomed by all Century Series fans
At less than USD$40.00, it represents great value for money too.
* Historical summary courtesy of Wikipedia
Thanks to Lucky Model for the samples
Review Text and Images Copyright © 2023 by Brett Green
Page Created 19 January, 2023
20 January, 2023
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