The S.B.S. Model seats arrive in neat zip-lock bags and are sold in pairs, each cast on a fairly substantial resin plinth that ensures accurate casting, and also probably helps protect the parts in transit - all the sample seats arrived in perfect condition, despite the cardboard box in which they were all packed having been somewhat crushed in the mail. The sets are accompanied by bi-lingual Hungarian/English safety instructions.
The casting throughout on the samples is faultless, with no bubbles or other flaws, and some very delicate details captured in the good quality grey resin. What impresses immediately is the overall delicacy of the resin seats - the sides and backs are realistically thin and make most styrene kit versions look like they're moulded in concrete! Do note, the true to scale thinness of the seats means they will require some care when removing them from their casting plinths and cleaning them up - anyone who's too heavy handed is likely to crush them.
The range to date includes:
48006 1/48 Mitsubishi A6M Zero seats with harness (x2)
48007 1/48 Bf-109 A, B, C, D, E Seat with harness (x2)
48008 1/48 Bf-109 A, B, C, D, E Seat (x2)
48009 1/48 Macchi Mc-202 - 205 Seat (x2)
As you can see above, some of the seats in the range are available plain or with a cast-on harness. In fact, the latter is something of a misnomer, as they only have lap-belts - there no shoulder harness provided. On the first such seat I examined I thought this was an oversight, but it's true of both the "with harness" seats sets, so it must be intentional. I must admit that I can't see the logic of doing this - true, full-size practice is often to hang the shoulder belts out of the cockpit or over the back of the seat to make the pilot's ingress easier (which would hard or impossible to cast in resin), but I think most modellers will expect the seats to have shoulder harnesses depicted in a similar style to the lap belts. As it is, you'll need to provide these straps yourself - just as with the plain seats.
The belts that are included are very well modelled and cast, draped and turned realistically and with fine buckle details. They should look excellent with careful painting.
The seats are beautifully modelled and cast and pretty good value in their dual packs, but I can't help feeling that S.B.S. Model should consider adding shoulder belts to their "with harness" versions to be more in tune with most modellers' expectations. Regardless of that, the seats will make a significant improvement to kit cockpits and are certainly worth looking out for.
Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Highs: Excellent detail and casting. Lows: No shoulder harnesses.Verdict: S.B.S. Model's seats are excellent quality and will make fine additions to 1/48 scale cockpits.
About Rowan Baylis (Merlin) FROM: NO REGIONAL SELECTED, UNITED KINGDOM
I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...