login   |    register
World War II
Discuss WWII and the era directly before and after the war from 1935-1949.
Hosted by Rowan Baylis
REVIEW
1:48 P-61A Black Widow
Merlin
Staff MemberSenior Editor
AEROSCALE
#017
Visit this Community
United Kingdom
Joined: June 11, 2003
KitMaker: 17,297 posts
Armorama: 902 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 08, 2012 - 02:35 AM UTC
GWH have released a new version of their quarterscale Black Widow, and taken the opportunity to address some of the problems associated with the original kit.

Link to Item



If you have comments or questions please post them here.

Thanks!
vanize
Visit this Community
Texas, United States
Joined: January 30, 2006
KitMaker: 1,952 posts
Armorama: 627 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 08, 2012 - 04:41 AM UTC
thanks for the review of the updated areas on the new edition of this kit. I suspect I'll buy a copy of version - partly because i want a decent P-61, and partly to reward Great Wall for listening to the feedback and making corrections where they could.
BlackWidow
Visit this Community
European Union
Joined: August 09, 2009
KitMaker: 1,358 posts
Armorama: 149 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 08, 2012 - 05:51 AM UTC
Thanks for the review, Rowan! When GWH announced a Glasnose P-61, I knew I had to get one, as Monogram doesn't offer this option in its kit. So as soon as my online dealer has the kit in stock, I'll buy one.
PS: I've seen Jean-Luc's Black Widow live already and it looks fantastic indeed!

Happy modelling!
Torsten
AussieReg
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
#007
Visit this Community
Victoria, Australia
Joined: June 09, 2009
KitMaker: 6,606 posts
Armorama: 171 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 08, 2012 - 05:42 PM UTC
Great review Rowan, and as you stated, kudos to GWH for their rapid response to the community feedback. This one is on the wish-list now !

Cheers, D (already salivating slightly in anticipation)
Tomcat31
#042
Visit this Community
England - North East, United Kingdom
Joined: November 18, 2006
KitMaker: 2,828 posts
Armorama: 45 posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 - 06:58 AM UTC
I concur with the kudos to GWH by listening to the modelling community, but I'm pretty sure this still won't please everyone still either way this is now on my wish list as well.
GastonMarty
Visit this Community
Quebec, Canada
Joined: April 19, 2008
KitMaker: 591 posts
Armorama: 69 posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 - 09:33 AM UTC

Well... Let me put it this way: The main canopy still has one windscreen about 20% larger than the other windscreen in all dimensions (and about 40% larger in surface!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!), an error I would have been very surprised to see in an egg-plane caricature...



That being said, this canopy still has a less bothersome overall appearance than the horribly squashed Monogram canopy(despite the fact that the two windscreens on the Monogram kit are the same size!), and they did fix the rear secondary canopy to the point it is almost as good as the near-perfect Monogram rear canopy now (the GW's rear canopy cross-section is still much too square throughout, but the framing is now much better, and slightly more accurate than Monogram despite this).

As far as these "fixes" making this a worthwhile kit, I give it a massive fail: The two windscreens being at least the same size was really the minimum we had every right to expect.

The best you could do here is a maintenance scene diorama, with a heavily folded-over tarp covering the top portion of the main canopy completely to conceal the kit's grotesque error. The nose still is too square, and is still too deep, but at least that is somewhat workable...



Really? Isn't there something better to build in your stash? How about going out for a bike ride?

To me this is essentially a non-model. Save your money for a worthwhile upcoming kit from yet another start-up Chinese company: One is now doing a Tu-2 in 1/48th! The glass on that looks like it might be a trifle tall (but too tall is trimmable, unlike too short!) and compared to this at least that seems like a REAL model, which GW's P-61 emphatically is NOT...

Gaston
Keeperofsouls2099
Visit this Community
Florida, United States
Joined: January 14, 2009
KitMaker: 2,798 posts
Armorama: 3 posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 - 11:47 AM UTC
Wow let's shake a box and watch perfection pour out can someone tell me where to get one of these kits that you wouldn't even have to put glue on
SunburntPenguin
Visit this Community
Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Joined: March 15, 2011
KitMaker: 121 posts
Armorama: 6 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 10, 2012 - 02:23 PM UTC
Looks like a perfectly acceptable and reasonablly detailed kit of a P-61 to me.

Gaston while you continue to carry on with your pet rants about this kit, let's not forget that GWH took the time to listen to the modelling community and fixed up some of the errors from their first run of this kit.

Once again, Gaston, you seem caught up in demanding 100% exacting accuracy from kit manufacturers. By all means modify the daylights out of the kit to suit your needs, but for the majority of us here, we don't demand 100% accuracy with kits.

It is a hobby that is meant to be enjoyed after all.

At the end of the day, ask yourself this, do you see any other aircraft when you see this kit? if the answer is yes, then I suggest you get your eyes tested, as all I see is a P-61 and not something else.
Tailor
Visit this Community
Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Joined: May 26, 2008
KitMaker: 1,168 posts
Armorama: 256 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 10, 2012 - 11:38 PM UTC
Hey, who said modelling was supposed to be fun? This is dead serious!

Guido
SunburntPenguin
Visit this Community
Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Joined: March 15, 2011
KitMaker: 121 posts
Armorama: 6 posts
Posted: Friday, May 11, 2012 - 08:20 PM UTC
Guido, very true, but the impossible search for 100% accuracy is a bit of a funny thing.

At the end of the day, it looks like a P-61 and you can't mistake it for anything but that!
Tailor
Visit this Community
Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Joined: May 26, 2008
KitMaker: 1,168 posts
Armorama: 256 posts
Posted: Saturday, May 12, 2012 - 03:15 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Hey, who said modelling was supposed to be fun? This is dead serious!



... strictly tounge in cheek!
He, who looketh for complete perfection in model kit, is doomed to stay completely unsatisfied!
Even the most recent 100$+ Tamiya Wunderkits get PE and Resin add-ons and replacements, because there is always some room for improvements. I wonder I have not heard a certain Candian whine about those imperfections.
Cheers,
Guido

Jessie_C
Visit this Community
British Columbia, Canada
Joined: September 03, 2009
KitMaker: 6,770 posts
Armorama: 47 posts
Posted: Saturday, May 12, 2012 - 03:37 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I wonder I have not heard a certain Candian whine about those imperfections.



Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Don't give him any ideas!
SunburntPenguin
Visit this Community
Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Joined: March 15, 2011
KitMaker: 121 posts
Armorama: 6 posts
Posted: Monday, May 14, 2012 - 06:07 PM UTC
He is too busy getting stuck into the "totally inadequate" Tamiya Il-2.

Anyone would think that manufacturer's have it in for him......
Tailor
Visit this Community
Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Joined: May 26, 2008
KitMaker: 1,168 posts
Armorama: 256 posts
Posted: Monday, May 14, 2012 - 06:59 PM UTC
True- I know for a fact that some makers do design their kits to acchieve maximum annoyance in certain modellers.
Randy1959
Visit this Community
United States
Joined: May 19, 2012
KitMaker: 3 posts
Armorama: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, May 18, 2012 - 07:44 PM UTC
Hi. Enjoyed reading the various posts concerning the GWH P-61s as I've always wanted a model of Moonhappy and been unsuccessful with the Monogram kit. (I guess my particular skills don't mesh with its particular problems.) I now have the GWH L4802 kit in hand and think I've got a better shot (with help from the aftermarket).

There is, however, an issue (have I come to the right place? LOL) ... I have never seen it mentioned on a modeling site that Moonhappy was the seventh A model delivered WITHOUT a turret (priority was given to B-29s) and yet this latest version of the GWH kit comes with one. Photos seem to show a turret, so what gives? There were at least two versions of a fixed gun installation that installed in the turret well that quite often gets mistaken for a turret. The Squadron P-61 In Action on page 30 shows one such mount (wrongly described as a GE A-4 turret) with the guns mounted evenly longitudinally but with a vertical offset between inboard and outboard guns though noticeably less than the turret. (Another version has a longitudinal stagger of a bit more than a fifty caliber cartridge length between inbd and otbd guns for straight ammo feed shown in Warbird Tech P-61 page 71.) Right next to that picture (in the In Action) is a picture of The Spook right after it crashed, showing one of these non-turrets with staggered guns and a smooth, one piece gun fairing ... THAT is what I'm looking for as THAT is what should be on Moonhappy. The only question is: was this gun installation longitudinally staggered or not. I don't think it was as the staggered ones seem to be on later aircraft. I don't exactly know the source of these gun mounts, but It seems (vaguely) that I recall the first ones were field developed and made and later kits were manufactured (these being the offset?). It also seems that these were used only in the Pacific. An advantage of these mounts was they were much lighter than turrets and could carry more ammo.

If anyone needs to burn some time waiting for paint to dry it's always fun to search for P-61 photos and identify turrets/non-turrets/staggered/not staggered ... for a few minutes, anyway - lol.
KosachevSergey
Visit this Community
Russia
Joined: February 12, 2009
KitMaker: 89 posts
Armorama: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, May 18, 2012 - 08:48 PM UTC
Yes you are absolutely correct, the turret that GWH made is inappropriate for the two aircraft they provided markings for. Both aircraft are from the 6th NFS and both had the upper guns in a solid mount with Hawaiian modification center covers over the guns, nearly all of the 548th and 6th NFS aircraft carried the fixed guns.
Here how it should look like:





BTW, I'm going to make such turret in resin .

Sergey.
Merlin
Staff MemberSenior Editor
AEROSCALE
#017
Visit this Community
United Kingdom
Joined: June 11, 2003
KitMaker: 17,297 posts
Armorama: 902 posts
Posted: Friday, May 18, 2012 - 09:24 PM UTC
Hi Randy and Sergey

Thank you very much for the extra information. I'm preparing a review of Microscale's recent P-61 decals which also feature these colour schemes, and the instructions make no mention of the modified gun mount so I'll make a point of including a heads-up.

All the best

Rowan
Randy1959
Visit this Community
United States
Joined: May 19, 2012
KitMaker: 3 posts
Armorama: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, May 18, 2012 - 11:09 PM UTC


yay !
Tailor
Visit this Community
Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Joined: May 26, 2008
KitMaker: 1,168 posts
Armorama: 256 posts
Posted: Sunday, May 20, 2012 - 07:25 PM UTC
It seems that we can't get it right. It's amazing: Whenever we think that something is "this way" it certain that some photo will turn up which proves it was "that way" as soon as the kit hits the market. I am the brink of thinking that there was never ever anything fielded "production style". It's frustrating, but in the end, we can't keep collecting and analysing photos for years before releasing a kit.
I guess our next kit will be as wrong.




Guido
AussieReg
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
#007
Visit this Community
Victoria, Australia
Joined: June 09, 2009
KitMaker: 6,606 posts
Armorama: 171 posts
Posted: Sunday, May 20, 2012 - 07:49 PM UTC

Quoted Text

It seems that we can't get it right.



On the contrary Guido, I think this means that we can't get it WRONG ! Given the number of field modifications and variants, I don't think the rivet-counters have much to stand behind.

Cheers, D