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de Havilland Vampire F.3


Czech Master Resin, 1/72 scale

S u m m a r y :

Catalogue Number:

212

Scale:

1/72

Contents & Media

48 x cream resin airframe parts, 7 x black resin undercarriage parts, 1 x clear resin nose transparency, 1 x Eduard coloured photo-etch (PE) fret of 33 parts,  2 x vac-from acetate canopies & 1 x  Eduard pre-cut mask, decals for 9 aircraft

Price:

Available online from Hannants for £31.28, West Coast Hobbys for Cn$49.00, and various other CMR stockists.

Review Type:

First Look

Advantages:

Highly detailed and very comprehensive kit.

Disadvantages:

Conclusions:

Suited to modellers with some resin and multi-media experience.  A superb kit.

 

Reviewed by Mark Davies


HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron.com

 

Background

 

The Vampire was Britain’s second production jet fighter. It came into service just a little too late to see action in WW2, but became a huge export success serving in a variety of roles and versions.

The Vampire MK I had an endurance of only around 45 minutes. The F.3 was the second operational version of the Vampire, and developed to improve on this limited endurance. This was achieved by the adoption of a long-range wing with more internal tankage and the ability to carry drop-tanks. These changes extended endurance up to 3 hour and 20 minutes depending on mission profile.

However the drop-tanks were found to cause some stability problems. This led to a change in tailplane design from the Mk I. The fin shape was made rounded, and increased in chord by 4.5”, and the horizontal stabiliser was reduced in chord by 1.5” and lowered slightly. Bullet-shaped fairings were also added to smooth out buffeting around the junction of the vertical and horizontal tail surfaces. The opportunity was taken to fit the more powerful Goblin 2 that increased static thrust by 200 lbs. Compared to the Goblin .1

In all 202 Vampire F.3’s were built.

 

 

FirstLook

 

I’m unaware of the Vampire F.3 being offered in 1/72 scale previously. It seems CMR will offer all of the major operational versions of the Vampire family, and so this is a very welcome kit.

The kit comes packaged in CMR’s now standard sturdy top opening box. The parts and decals are in heat sealed plastic bags, which in turn are sealed in a further bag with the instructions and photo-walkaround. The straightforward instructions consist of double-sided A4 pages (see here). The parts map and constructional illustrations are very clear and easy to follow. More double-sided pages give comprehensive colours and markings plans. Colour notes and other written instructions are in English. Five more double-sided pages provide an excellent photo walkaround focused on various detail aspects of the aircraft.

 

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The kit’s resin parts are in CMR’s usual cream resin, and very nicely moulded with minimal presence of pinholes. A little flash is evident in a couple of places, but this can be removed easily and in seconds. There is a choice of fuselages to accommodate the RCAF version with a clear panel just forward of the windscreen (provided as a clear resin part that will benefit from a little polishing and some Future/Clear).

This clear panel was associated with the Canadian direction finding (DF) equipment fitted. I don’t not know why it was transparent, although I have seen DF loops enclosed by transparent teardrop fairings on some WW2 bomber photos.  Perhaps what was needed was a plastic type material conducive to the passage of radio waves was needed, and clear perspex fitted the bill. (Does anyone know more? If so you might care to email me please at: mark_davies@orcon.net.nz, thanks)

The undercarriage is in a black resin that provides greater strength than the cream resin for fine weight-bearing parts.

The kit is awash with detail. Considerable attention to detail has been paid to the cockpit, wheel wells and flap bays. Detail levels are further enhanced by the pre-coloured Eduard PE set provided.

 

 

Two copies of the canopy provide for insurance or practice when cutting out. They come with An Eduard pre-cut mask which simply serves to make life easy when it comes to painting.

 

 

Decals are typical of CMR, being well registered and suggest good opacity. Based on past experience they should be very good to use; but like most Czech decals they will be quite thin and need to be floated into position, as they tend to adhere extremely well once there is no fluid under them. Markings for three RAF, four RCAF and one Norwegian AF schemes are included.

 

 

All have silver airframes, but most still have some distinct splashes of colour through squadron bars, hi-viz and other markings.

 

 

Conclusion

 

This is a superbly executed kit. Despite its tiny details and twin-boom layout it should go together in a straightforward manner. Highly recommended.

Thanks to Czech Master Resin for this review sample.


CMR Models are available online from Hannants in the UK,
Red Roo Models in Australia and quality specialist model retailers worldwide.


Text Copyright 2010 by Mark Davies
This Page Created on 14 February, 2010
Last updated 15 February, 2010

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