Bronco 1/72 Blohm und Voss BV P.178 Nachtjäger
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
The Blohm & Voss P.178 was an experimental jet-powered dive bomber designed during World War II by Blohm & Voss. The bomber had an unusual, asymmetric configuration.
This asymmetrically-designed dive bomber had one Junkers Jumo 004B turbojet located under the wing to the starboard side of the fuselage. The pilot sat in a cockpit in the forward fuselage, with a large fuel tank located to the rear of the cockpit. Beneath the fuel tank, there was a deep recess in which an SC 500 bomb could be carried within the fuselage, or an SC 1000 bomb which would protrude slightly out of the fuselage. Two solid-fuel auxiliary rockets extended from the rear, used for take-off. Two 15 mm (.60 in) MG 151 cannons were located in the nose.
This is the fourth (or is it fifth or sixth) boxing of this aircraft by Bronco. There are five grey sprues attached in two major sections along with a clear sprue. Typical of current 1/72 aircraft kits, the interior is well done, but Spartan, with a tub, seat, control stick, rudder pedals and an instrument panel. This sits atop the nose gear well piece. The instructions show 10 grams of weight being needed, but finding room for it will take a bit of work and most will pack weight behind the cockpit.
The wings are two upper and lower halves and there is some wheel well detail provided. Main gear is properly beefy with a separate oleo scissor and retraction strut. Same goes for the nose gear. The model can be built gear up and separate gear door sections are provided for that option.
The nose is separate from the rest of the fuselage, and in this case, that is a good thing as this kit provides a more square nose from the earlier boxings. There is a small bomb bay area in the back with a separate door that effectively seals off this area. A four piece engine will fit under the right wing and both wings have large tabs that go into slots in the fuselage.
Where this kit differs is that it is the night fighter variant so there are different sprues placed in the kit for this variant. It includes a new nose, a large external tank, a ventral gun pack and some other bits and pieces. Other than that, everything is pretty much the same. One of the last steps is attaching the forward fuselage piece, but I'd do that prior to gluing the wings in case the seam needs attention. Both a single piece and multiple section cockpit covering is provided.
Bronco instructions are superbly done with some color coding and 3D drawings to help install parts. There are fictitious markings for four aircraft. You have a variety of schemes from which to choose. First is yellow 11 in overall RLM 76 with large patches of RLM 75 on the upper surface. This has the fuel tank on the centerline and two oblique cannon. Next is red 11 with the same set up but with a black under surface and smaller upper splotches. In a light green over RLM 76 and yellow fuselage band and lower nose is V680, undoubtedly a prototype. No oblique cannon on this, but a ventral canon pack. The last is an ROA plane in RLM 76 with RLM 81/82 upper wings/tail planes and large black and red fuselage band. This is also equipped with the ventral canon pack. In line with other kits in this series, you are given a large standard decal sheet with a smaller one that contains the special markings applicable to this boxing.
Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. Get this one at your favorite retailer.
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