Eduard 1/48 Kittyhawk Mk.III Detail Set
|Date of Review||June 2007|
|Subject||Kittyhawk Mk.III Detail Set|
|Pros||Essential update for the Hasegawa kit|
Eduard from the Czech Republic is easily the most prolific producer of aftermarket details. Period. Their series of photo-etched detail sets have brought additional fidelity to otherwise bland subjects, and have taken even the best-produced models and kicked them up a notch or two with details that cannot be produced with injection-molded plastic.
When Eduard first introduced the acetate-printed instrument faces that go behind their photo-etched instrument panels, this raised the bar on model cockpit reality as you could almost read the time on the aircraft clock. How could they top that?
It took a number of years, but the answer is color photo-etch. Somehow Eduard has developed a process for printing color directly on their photo-etched parts such that now you not only can read the instrument faces, you can now see the color warning arcs around airspeed indicators and color reference circles around Luftwaffe flight and engine instruments.
In this release, Eduard has produced a set of photo-etched details for the Hasegawa 1/48 (P-40) Kittyhawk Mk.III kit. This set provides a nice dress-up of the interior and exterior of the kit.
This set consists of two frets of photo-etched details, one of is printed in color. You can browse through the high resolution images to the right (click on one to see the large image) to see how fine the color printing has become. You can also see how this set will add some eye-catching detail to the Hasegawa kit.
The set starts off with a new photo-etched pilot's seat and a nice set of seat belts and shoulder harnesses printed in color. Two different instrument panel configurations are provided depending on the aircraft you're representing. The set also provides replacement left and right sidewalls with photo-etched cranks, throttle quadrant, switch boxes, etc. With the color photo-etch, this will really stand out after it is all assembled. As an option, you can modify the existing styrene side walls with selected details to achieve the look you want.
Moving outside the aircraft, this set provides the photo-etched screens for either side of the nose just aft of the spinner, screens for the oil and coolant radiator intakes, structureal detail updates inside the main wheel wells, and a nice set of cowl flaps.
The set is rounded out with detailing for the main landing gear struts (including brake lines), trim tab hinges, ring and bead gun sight, fins and fuse for the bomb, and anti-sway mounts for the centerline rack.
While this set will really set off the detail in the P-40 kit, this detail set is not for the beginning modeler. You will need to be able to remove the photo-etch parts from their frets (simple once you know how) and then be able to apply these details using cyano adhesives without gluing yourself to the kit parts. It isn't difficult, or else these sets wouldn't be so popular.
You should be able to find this detail set at your local hobby retailer or one of the many online hobby shops. Trust me, this is worth looking for!
Recommended for experienced modelers!
My sincere thanks to Eduard for this review sample!