Maquette 1/48 Yak-7B
KIT #: MQ 4802
PRICE: $6.00 on the sales table
DECALS: Three options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Reboxed ICM kit


The Soviet Air Force realized a real need for an advanced trainer for those pilots converting to the newer and much faster Yak-1. The result was the Yak-7. It was a superb conversion trainer and was basically a two-seat Yak-1. In fact, in many regards, the Yak-7 was a better handling aircraft. The fact that it had a similar performance to the Yak-1 didn't hurt either. Initial Yak-7UTI had the same Klimov engine, though it was speed controlled to keep engine coolant temperatures down in the hands of student pilots. The first one was flown in May 1941 and 186 were built by Factory 301 . They were all delivered in standard fighter colors of green-black uppers and light blue lowers.

Such was the performance of the aircraft that it was quickly modified to a single seat fighter. Basically, the back seat was taken out and the back canopy replaced with a wooden hatch. There were other improvements in the type including an increase in the amount of ammunition carried. These were basically single seat fighters, though looked similar to the trainers. They were quite successful and flown by quite a few Soviet aces.  


I was not at all surprised to see the ICM kit when I opened the box. In fact, the kit came with ICM Yak-7V instructions and a decal sheet for the Yak-7B. This is one of their earlier releases, so it was with no surprise that the plastic parts were sticking to the polybag due to all the mold release.

For a refresher on what is in the box, the amount of detail for the interior is exceptional and includes the framework on which you place the various consoles and switches. There is also a complete engine as with the Yak-9. Fortunately, it looks as if you can actually fit the cowling on and have the engine installed as well! You have a single option and that is a set of skis. I'm sure that will appeal to a number of modelers.

An improvement over the Yak-9 kit is the inclusion of clear wing tip lights, though it still has the multiple exhaust stacks as separate items. It won't be fun installing those! Rudder and ailerons are separate but not poseable unless you do some work with the sandpaper and filler. There are a number of 'don't use' parts shown in the instructions that you'll need to use for the single seat version. That includes the pilot's rear bulkhead and the gun sight. One will also need to include the landing gear doors in the open position as well as the retraction struts. Not used, unless you want an 'in flight' model are the closed gear doors.

Instructions are very good and include color callouts throughout the 9 step construction sequence. The color chart references Humbrol and Testors paints, a couple of good choices. Since the instructions are for a Yak-7V trainer, there is no information for the included decal sheet. There are markings for what appears to be four planes. A search of internet photos will show most of these having been built by other modelers, so it isn't impossible. The decals are VERY matte with lots of carrier film. However, they work just great when you put them on the kit. Solvaset works very well with these decals and they are properly opaque.

When you add what you get with the price that you pay for the kit, you will realize that these models are really a bargain. While not up to the same standards as Tamiya or Accurate Miniatures, they can be built into super models as long as you are willing to use some of those modeling skills!


While this isn't exactly what many would like, it is a very buildable kit and, since it is, as far as I know, the only injected Yak-7 kit around what you'll need for a full Yak collection.


Yakovley Aircraft since 1924, by Bill Gunston and Yefim Gordon, 1997, Naval Institute Press


Thanks to me for picking up the review kit.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note to Contributors.

Back to the Main Page

Back to the Review Index Page

Back to the Previews Index Page