Kinetic, 1/48 scale
S u m m a r y
||Kinetic Model Kits Item No. K48110 - NF-5A/F-5A/SF-5A/ Freedom Fighter
|Contents and Media:
||159 parts in grey plastic; 12 parts in clear; 11 parts on one photo-etched fret; markings for six aircraft plus generic numbers.
plus shipping available online from Lucky Model
||High quality moulding; well detailed; finely recessed panel lines; canopy may be posed open; boarding ladder supplied; straightforward parts breakdown; plenty of ordnance options; spectacular decals and marking options designed by Crossdelta and printed by Cartograf.
||No harness straps.
Kinetic's 1/48 scale F-5A Freedom Fighter is a very nice model with subtle surface textures. This is a welcome re-release with new decals.
by Brett Green
First flying in 1959 and entering service in the 1960s, the F-5 Freedom Fighter was designed as a lightweight, low-cost jet fighter and ground attack aircraft.
The F-5 Freedom Fighter was exported widely via the U.S. Military Assistance Programme (MAP) to countries including Iran, South Koream the Philippines, Turkey, Greece and Taiwan. It was a fast and capable aircraft with a top speed of Mach 1.4, but was ideal for small air forces as it was cheap and easy to maintain.
Canada undertook local production of the Freedom Fighter as the CF-5A. In addition to local use, Canada sold the CF-5A to the Royal Netherlands Air Force.
Although AFV Club released a very well detailed F-5E around a decade ago, the story of the F-5A in 1/48 scale has not been so bright. Hawk offered a very basic kit dating from the 1960s (later reboxed by Testor); Fujimi had an undersized and underdetailed F-5A in the 1970s; and in 2004 Classic Airframes released an F-5A. Although this kit featured a beautifully detailed resin cockpit, it presented all the usual challenges of a limited-run kit and is long out of production.
Kinetic originally released its 1/48 scale F-5A Freedom Fighter in 2012 and it now returns with a new decal sheet.
Kinetic's 1/48 scale NF-5A Freedom Fighter comprises 159 parts in grey plastic; 12 parts in clear; 11 parts on one photo-etched fret and markings for a whopping 16 aircraft from six air forces.
Kinetic's 1/48 scale NF-5A Freedom Fighter features crisp, consistent panel detail and selected rows of rivets. These are all very subtle and represent Kinetic's best efforts to date. The sprue attachment pints are also quite fine, so removal and cleanup of parts should not present any problems.
The kit fuselage is broken down into forward and rear sections, so more variants are obviously planned. In particular, some of the sprues are already marked F-5A/B, so expect to see a two-seater sometime in the future.
Cockpit detail is adequate, but no harness straps are supplied for the seat. However, it has been Kinetic's habit to release color photo-etched frets shortly after a kit's release. This will spruce up the front office for super-detailers, and will likely include harness straps, side consoles and a replacement instrument panel.
I like that the mount for the open canopy is moulded directly to the top of the ejector seat rails. This will ensure a positive and strong fit for the canopy. If you want to display the canopy closed, the instructions advise where to cut off these mounts.
Apart from the split fuselage halves, parts breakdown is conventional.
The flaps and leading edge slats are all provided separately and may be posed dropped if desired.
Plenty of option are offered including the refuelling probe, photo-etched slime lights and other unique attributes of the CF-5A, a boarding ladder, open or closed side fuselage vents, alternate bottom fuselage sections and more.
In addition to the slime lights, the small photo-etched fret supplies a couple of airframe detail parts.
The characteristic Coke bottle wingtip tanks look good, and a useful selection of optional ordnance is supplied.
These include two styles of drop tank (four drop tanks in total), two rocket launchers, two AIM-9B missiles, two AIM-9J missiles and two MK82 iron bombs.
The canopy and windscreen are separate parts.
The clear parts are well moulded and quite thin.
Markings are supplied for six colourful and varied Spanish, Dutch and Norwegian subjects plus generic numbers to expand your possibilities.
The decals are perfectly printed by Cartograf.
Artwork was designed by Crossdelta.
Stencil markings are included.
Kinetic's 1/48 scale F-5A Freedom Fighter is a very nice model with subtle surface textures. This is a welcome re-release with new decals
Thanks to Lucky Model for the sample
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Page Created 23 April, 2021
23 April, 2021
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