Kitech 1/48 Ju-88A-4
The Junkers Ju 88 was a World War II German Luftwaffe twin-engine, multi-role aircraft. Designed by Hugo Junkers' company through the services of two American aviation engineers in the mid-1930s, it suffered from a number of technical problems during the later stages of its development and early operational roles, but became one of the most versatile combat aircraft of the war. Affectionately known as "The Maid of all Work" (a feminine version of "jack of all trades"), the Ju 88 proved to be suited to almost any role. Like a number of other Luftwaffe bombers, it was used successfully as a bomber, dive bomber, night fighter, torpedo bomber, reconnaissance aircraft, heavy fighter, and even as a flying bomb during the closing stages of conflict.
You get a nice sturdy box with artwork very reminiscent of the original Hobbycraft Ju88A-4 kit from the mid-1980s. Upon opening the box we find three sprues in a dark green/brown color and a fourth sprue that is clear and sports the canopy and gondola parts. The clear parts have heavier framing detail and look in dire need of a polishing and Future dip. The main canopy is in four pieces and the odd thing to note here is that the rear-mounted guns have no holes in the canopy…you’ll need to drill holes for them! At least the framing is crisp though.
The three main sprues have little to no flash. The plastic seems a bit brittle and the panel lines, although recessed, are uneven and both depth and fidelity. Only panel lines are depicted. There are no access panels or other details, scribed or raised, on the parts of the kit. There are no extra parts here…what you get is everything needed to construct an A-4 bomber variant. The cockpit is barely useable as the seats are out of scale and completely inaccurate for a Ju88. The radio and instrument panels are vaguely detailed and are, again, not accurate for any Ju88 that I am aware of. The main gear bays are not detailed at all and have a strange assembly layout in that they are molded separate from the wing. The main wheels are two-piece and are not correct for a Ju88 along with seeming a bit clunky in appearance as is the tail wheel. The bomb racks are undetailed and lack proper sway braces/bomb mounts. Bomb shape and detail is nondescript.
Instructions are on a single large sheet and are not bad actually. Decals consist of a single aircraft and are not very sharp…think Hobbycraft circa 1990. They do provide swastikas though. Color callouts are bland (blue, dark green, etc.) and have no FS numbers or brand names (Tamiya, Humbrol, Testors, etc.). So, do your homework here!
I compared this kit very briefly to my Hobbycraft and Dragon/DML A-4 kits and it appears to be a bit of a cross between them. It’s a better starting point than the Hobbycraft kit in many respects but honestly that’s not saying too much. I have spoken with one gentleman who has built this kit and he reported to me that the fit was, overall, not terribly bad. I’d pass on this one unless you are on a budget or have lots of spare Ju88 decals that need a canvas to be placed on.
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