1⁄48Focke-Wulf Fw 190D - Eduard Review-Build #2
OverviewThe chance to build Eduard's new Fw 190D-9 was just too good to miss and, for an added twist, Jean-Luc and I decided on a two-part Dual-Build showing some of the alternative parts in the kit and finished in different colour schemes. Jean-Luc would build his Dora "closed up", while I would take advantage of Eduard's option to display the gun-covers open.
Well, that was the plan. When the kit arrived and I compared the parts with my references (principally Vol. 1 of Jerry Crandall's study of the aircraft published by Eagle Editions, and the Vol. 1 JaPo book) it was clear that there were a few points that Eduard had missed. Looking around the Internet, I soon found that other modellers had reached a similar conclusion. Some of them were full of doom and gloom, but I saw it as the perfect opportunity to take our Dual-Build one stage further; while Jean-Luc would build his Dora straight from the box (see his superb Part 1 Build), I'd tackle the problems and omissions that I'd found and offer simple solutions.
The kit's cockpit is nicely fitted out. Eduard offer a choice of etched or plastic instrument panels and I used the latter.The configuration of the instruments on the lower section doesn't actually tally with my references - I think the etched version is correct, with a slightly different layout and raised bezels (the plastic panel with inset instruments seems a better match for earlier A-series '190s).
I thinned the seat somewhat for a better appearance and replaced the control runs and throttle damper because the moulded versions are just faintly depicted on the floor. The etched seat harness is nicely done, so I couldn't resist adding little fuse wire loops to attach it.
The next stage is the firewall and engine. It's actually only the rear section of the engine, but it's nicely detailed and looks very effective viewed through the open cowl and wheel well. Everything fitted together well enough at this point, and I left the guns (Parts W12 and W20) out until after the sub-assembly was installed. I removed a moulded-on cable and replaced it with a more prominent one that I could see in photos of the full-sized aircraft.
The first problem came when I test-fitted the engine section, I found that it just wouldn't fit over/around the exhaust "boxes" (Parts Y17 and 29). Even with the openings eased a bit, there was a major gap under the nose. Extra filing soon fixed the problem, but I recommend that you check the fit early, before doing a lot of work on the engine, and certainly before joining it to the firewall. With the fuselage together, I've also found a little sanding on the top of Part W1 helped the gun-troughs fit neatly. In fact, if in any doubt, you could trim the top down heavily, because it's all tucked out of sight.
I was building my Dora with the wing-root gun bays open, and Eduard provide alternative parts for this option. With the gun bays and spar in place, I found the wing halves a very tight fit, so I sanded the rear face of the spar and the front of the bays - with that done, the wings clipped together very neatly. The kit's gun barrels pass through the wheel wells and protrude from the leading edge. This makes sanding trickier and is asking for them to get damaged during assembly, so I trimmed them off to add later.
The undercarriage is nicely detailed and Eduard provide a choice of mainwheels. These do look a bit thin compared with photos, but I left well alone, just adding brake lines for a bit of extra interest.
The rest of the assembly was trouble-free and the overall fit was excellent.
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