HobbyBoss 1/48 Ta-152C-1
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
The Focke-Wulf Ta 152 was a World War II German
high-altitude fighter-interceptor. The Ta 152 was a development of the
Focke-Wulf Fw 190 aircraft, but the prefix was changed from "Fw" to "Ta" to
recognize the contributions of Kurt Tank who headed the design team. The number
152 was chosen in the German air ministry's list of numbers allocated to German
aircraft companies, and was not related to the designer's previous projects or
achievements. It was intended to be made in at least three versions—the Ta 152H
("high-altitude fighter"), the Ta 152C designed for slightly lower-altitude
operations and ground-attack using a different engine and smaller wing, and the
Ta 152E fighter-reconnaissance aircraft with the engine of the H model and the
wing of the C model.
The first Ta 152H entered service with the Luftwaffe in January 1945. While total production—including prototypes and pre-production aircraft—has been incorrectly estimated in one source at approximately 220 units, only some 43 production aircraft were ever delivered before the end of the European conflict. These were too few to allow the Ta 152 to make a significant impact on the air war. It is highly doubtful if any C-1 variants saw combat as the type was just starting to leave production lines when the war ended. This kit is a prototype, the v6.
This is not the first injected styrene Ta-152C to be produced in 1/48 scale. In the late 1980s or early 1990s, Trimaster released one that had a resin wing. It was both expensive and the resin was not very good as the fit was terrible according to those who built one. This same kit but without the photo etch and resin bits was released later by DML and yet again by Dragon. Dragon re-issued this kit not more than a year ago. Now we have a second boxing from Hobby Boss of the initial production version.
The molding on this one is exactly what one would expect from a new mold kit. Crisp and clean engraved panel lines along with none of the depressed rivet detail that infuriates some modelers. The kit has a well appointed cockpit with raised detailing and decals for the instrument panels and consoles. Part of the photo etch fret (most of it actually) is used for belts, rudder pedals and the like. The area behind the cockpit also gets a photo etched pieces. A two piece canopy allows interior detailing to be viewed.
This kit includes an open accessory section that can be viewed through the wheel wells, just like on the real plane. There are two upper engine cowlings with the lone difference being the size of the bulge next to the supercharger intake. The C-1 version gets the larger of the two. Another option is to have open or closed cowl flaps.
Separate ailerons and flaps and rudder are included and while it would have been nice to have the elevators separate as well, these are molded in the neutral position. Complete wing cannon are provided, though little will be seen when done. Finally, a bit of an oddity is that the exhaust are split into upper and lower halves. Not sure why, but there it is.
Markings are provided for one aircraft, the prototype v6 as shown on the box art and coded VH+EY. THe aircraft is in RLM 83/75/76, with the center section of the lower wing in unpainted aluminum. Hobby Boss as a full color painting and markings guide that offer colors in many brands of paints and also their RLM equivalents. Decals are very well done and my experience with them has always been positive.
My thanks to Squadron Products for the preview kit. Get yours today at your local retailer or on-line store.
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