F-16C Texas ANG
The Lone Star Gunfighters
Kinetic Gold Series, 1/48 scale
S u m m a r y
|Kinetic Gold Series Item No. K48146 - F-16C Texas ANG The Lone Star Gunfighters
|Contents and Media:
|Around 536 parts in grey plastic; 26 parts in clear; markings for three aircraft.
plus shipping available online from Lucky Model
|No parts at all in common with Kinetic's earlier generation of F-16 kits; crisp and fine surface textures; high level of detail in cockpit, wheel wells, includes parts for P&W and GE nozzles / MCID and NSI intakes; perfectly printed Cartograf decal sheets; full weapons fit; lots of useful options; clear instructions.
|BYO harness straps; some ejector pin circles.
This is a lovely kit. The model scores big in every category - its restrained surface textures, high level of detail, useful options, full ordnance fitout and gorgeous Cartograf-printed decal sheest. The inclusion of parts for P&W and GE nozzles plus MCID and NSI intakes makes this a very versatile choice for anyone building a Block 30 or later F-16C. At just USD$39.99 it represents outstanding value for money too.
by Brett Green
The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon is a single-engine multirole fighter aircraft originally developed by General Dynamics for the United States Air Force. Designed as an air superiority day fighter, it evolved into a successful all-weather multirole aircraft. More than 4,600 F-16s have been built since production was approved in 1976. In 1993, General Dynamics sold its aircraft manufacturing business to the Lockheed Corporation, which in turn became part of Lockheed Martin after a 1995 merger with Martin Marietta.
Although no longer being purchased by the U.S. Air Force, improved versions are being built for export customers.
The Fighting Falcon's key features include a frameless bubble canopy for good visibility, side-mounted control stick to ease control while manoeuvring, an ejection seat reclined 30 degrees from vertical to reduce the effect of g-forces on the pilot, and the first use of a relaxed static stability/fly-by-wire flight control system.
The F-16 has an internal M61 Vulcan cannon and 11 locations for mounting weapons and other mission equipment.
In addition to active duty in the U.S. Air Force, Air Force Reserve Command, and Air National Guard units, the aircraft is also used by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds aerial demonstration team, and as an adversary/aggressor aircraft by the United States Navy. The F-16 has also been procured to serve in the air forces of 25 other nations. As of 2015, it was the world's most numerous fixed-wing aircraft in military service.
The F-16C (single seat) and F-16D (two seat) variants entered production in 1984. The first C/D version was the Block 25 with improved cockpit avionics and radar which added all-weather capability with beyond-visual-range (BVR) AIM-7 and AIM-120 air-air missiles. Block 30/32, 40/42, and 50/52 were later C/D versions.
The F-16C/D had a unit cost of US$18.8 million in 1998. Operational cost per flight hour has been estimated at $7,000 to $22,470 or $24,000, depending on calculation method.
Background text courtesy of Wikipedia
Kinetic released a family of 1:48 scale F-16 kits in September 2008, debuting with their F-16A MLU Block 15 and a F-16DG/DJ Block 50 USAF Viper 2-in-1.
In mid-2019, Kinetic released their F-16I Sufa kit, which addressed a couple of the issues noted with the initial release including the angle of nose droop.
In 2022, Kinetic launched all-new 1:48 scale F-16C and F-16A kits in its Gold series. These kits have no common parts with the earlier Kinetic F-16 kits at all and have addressed all of the issues noted from the original family.
Over 2023 several more versions have been released including a two-seater F-16D
This latest variation on the theme is an F-16C Block 30 in the striking markings of the Texas Air National Guard.
This kit contains parts in common with 2022's Gold Series F-16C kits, but with the addition of Sprue J that supplies the MCID intake and GE engine and nozzle parts. These will allow you to build an accurate F-16C Block 30.
Even better news is that the parts for the NSI intake and P&W exhaust nozzles are still in the box. This makes the package very versatile if you want to finish the kit as a different Block and your own choice of after market decals.
This Texas ANG kit comprises around 536 parts in grey plastic, 26 parts in clear and markings for three aircraft.
Although the parts count looks high, many of these are spares and options - around 250 parts are dedicated to ordnance alone - so you will only be using a relatively modest number of parts. Your spares box will thank you though!
Let's take a look at the new Sprue J.
This has appeared in the F-16D kit before, but it is the first time it has been offered in a single-seater.
Moulding quality is very good but there are four small ejector pin circles recessed into the inside of the nozzles. You'll be hard pressed to see these when the model is assembled though.
Surface textures are world-class - very fine and crisp panel lines supplemented with appropriate recessed rivets.
The cockpit is nicely fitted out with a detailed tub, integral side consoles and an instrument panel with raised screens, bezels and switches.
Optional overlay decals are offered for the panels and consoles.
The pilot's ACES II ejection seat looks great, although you'll have to BYO harness straps.
The nose may be posed swung to the side to display the radar bay.
Undercarriage bay detail is also well done with separate forward and aft bulkheads plus raised hydraulic lines and cables.
The rear engine pipe includes separate fan and flame holder parts as well as a crisp five-piece nozzle, detailed inside and out.
Undercarriage legs are well done. The wheels are not bulged or flattened, so you can choose whether to take to the bottom of the tyres with a sanding stick. Undercarriage parts are different for the Block 25 and Block 42, so take care to make sure you use the correct parts for your option. Both styles of main undercarriage doors have nicely rendered interior detail. There are a couple of faint ejector pin marks on the inside of the Block 42 undercarriage doors.
Alternative tabs are provided for dropped or raised flaps. You'll need to cut two tabs from each flap. The instructions are quite clear about this.
The elevators may be posed to taste and the rudder is a separate part.
Trailing surfaces are moulded with anti-static wicks. You might prefer to cut these off and replace them with fine wire or stretched sprue after the model is mostly complete (I can see myself knocking some of these off during assembly and painting).
Clear parts are thin and free from distortion. The canopy may be posed open or closed.
A vast selection of new underwing ordnance is on the sprues. These include:
Three marking options are offered:
F-16C Block 30, 457th Fighter Wing Texas ANG, 2007, finished in two-tone grey with striking red, white and blue "Lone Star" paint scheme.
F-16C Block 30, 182nd Fighter Squasron, 2001, finished in a mock SEA green and tan paint scheme.
F-16C Block 30, 301st Fighter Wing 2022, finished in a stealthy Have Glass overall metallic dark grey finish.
The decals are designed by Fightertown Decals in co-operation with Bullseye Decals and printed perfectly by Cartograf.
A separate decal sheet for ordnance data is also included.
Instructions are supplied in a 24 page booklet across 26 steps plus weapons assembly and placement guides.
Four-view illustrations of each marking scheme is included.
This is a lovely kit.
The model scores big in every category - its restrained surface textures, high level of detail, useful options, full ordnance fitout and gorgeous Cartograf-printed decal sheest.
The inclusion of parts for P&W and GE nozzles plus MCID and NSI intakes makes this a very versatile choice for anyone building a Block 30 or later F-16C.
At just USD$39.99 it represents outstanding value for money too.
Thanks to Lucky Model for the samples
Review Text and Images Copyright © 2023 by Brett Green
Page Created 1 January, 2024
1 January, 2024
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