Aires 1/32 MiG-23ML Flogger G Cockpit Set First Look
|Date of Review||January 2011||Manufacturer||Aires|
|Subject||MiG-23ML Flogger G Cockpit Set||Scale||1/32|
|Kit Number||2134||Primary Media||Resin & Photo-Etch|
|Pros||The best MiG-23 cockpit set produced in any scale||Cons||Nothing noted|
|Skill Level||Intermediate||MSRP (USD)||$37.50|
I had the pleasure of using Aires' MiG-23 wheel well set in my MiG-23 build (look here) and was instantly impressed with how the main wheel wells literally snap into place (not to mention the terrific detail that these parts have). After trying to use another company's MiG-23 cockpit in the build, I went back to the Trumpeter stock cockpit as Aires had not released this cockpit set at the time.
Well if you've been waiting for a better cockpit solution for your Trumpeter kit, your wait is over. This set is designed for the MiG-23ML Flogger G and captures the unique details of that cockpit. Cast in gray resin, tis set provides a completely new cockpit for the Trumpeter kit plus some details not found in the stock kit. In addition, one fret of photo-etched details are provided along with a sheet of clear acetate with the flight instruments printed on them.
The set starts off with a new cockpit tub and this one is the best I've seen so far. The lower panels and rear bulkhead are integral as are the forward footwell bulkhead. The upper sides of the cockpit tub are cast separately and nicely capture the detail there including the unique slide throttle mechanism. The unique throttle handle is there with the control stick molded in tan resin. The only thing missing there is the unique gate lever that you squeeze to advance the throttle into afterburner (though I'm sure that is somewhere among those photo-etched parts).
The KM-1M ejection seat is nicely done though you'll note that the seat belts/shoulder harness are provided as photo-etch so you can pose the straps as you'd like. The seat has the leg stirrups in-place while the arm guards are rendered as photo-etch.
What's different in this set is the attention to the canopy. Two resin parts are provided for the lower canopy frame, a photo-etched part provides the inside of the overhead periscope frame, and three resin parts are provided for the rear canopy frame and stowed canopy curtain.
If you're doing the MiG-23M Flogger B, the vast majority of these details apply to that aircraft as well. Only a few instruments are different as well as a switchbox or two, these can be easily adjusted or ignored if you want a nice set to install in your own MiG-23M. My MiG-23M and MiG-23ML are almost done, but I'll be using some of these parts in both builds and I'll be using the full cockpit for the MiG-23MLD and a modified cockpit for the MiG-27M project.
If you've been looked for the best MiG-23 cockpit for your Trumpeter kit, here is the best MiG-23 cockpit set produced in any scale (except perhaps 1:1).
Definitely recommended for experienced modelers!