have released a highly detailed Brassin set for their new 1:48 Hawker Tempest
to allow you to open up the cannon bays in the wings and install guns and ammunition feeds.
The set arrives in a compact flip-top cardboard box that's padded with plenty of soft foam for protection. The conversion features a blend of resin and etched brass parts as follows:
24 x grey resin parts
26 x etched brass parts
The casting is essentially perfect in the sample set, with some quite superb detail on the resin components. The cannon bodies and the ammunition feeds are really excellent, and the covers are cast beautifully thin.
The bays themselves each comprise a one-piece resin casting for the walls, plus a photo-etched base. The way the castings for the bays are attached to their blocks is very neat, with a series of small feeds that make it much easier to remove the parts quickly and accurately.
There's a little bit of folding required for some of the etched pieces, but the parts aren't particularly small. So, on paper at least, constructing the bays doesn't look particularly complex for anyone experienced with resin and etched upgrades. Where a good deal of care will be required is in opening up the kit's wings to accept the bays, because the surgery requires removing quite a substantial chunk from the top surfaces which could leave them prone to damage until the parts are cemented together.
don't indicate that you'll need to thin the inside of the wings to accept the completed bays, but I wouldn't take that entirely for granted - particularly to get a realistic thickness where the rear of each bay forms the trailing edge of the wing.
provide a comprehensive set of instructions spread across four sides of A4 folded to make a little pamphlet. The assembly is broken down into eight logical stages that are clearly illustrated. Where the instructions fall down, though, is that there's no key to the icons. At first I thought I simply must have missed it, but rechecking shows it's definitely not there. Modellers who've used a few Eduard
sets probably won't even notice this oversight, but newcomers may struggle. (If you are in doubt as to the meaning of the symbols, check out the .pdf instructions for other etched upgrades on the Eduard
website to see a key explaining the icons they use as standard.) Colour matches are given for GUnze Sangyo paints.
Hawker Tempest gun bays should look fantastic when installed. It's not a set that I'd recommend for anyone without a fair bit of experience modifying kits, because you will find it almost impossible to disguise any damage to the wings if things go wrong, but if you're confident tackling the upgrade the resulting "eye candy" should be a show-stopper.
The price seems fair for a conversion of this quality and, of course, you could always spread it across two kits, opening up one wing on each.
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