AModel 1/144 Canberra B(I).8
|PRICE:||$15.45 from www.scale-model-kits.com|
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Treat this as short run|
Rather than go into the history of the Canberra (of which most are aware, here is a bit on the B(I).8 derivative. It was a third-generation Canberra derived from B.6 as an interdictor. It had a teardrop canopy shifted to the port site of the fuselage for the pilot, with navigator inside the fuselage on starboard. There were provisions for a ventral pack with 4 x 20 mm Hispano cannon (which most aircraft carried), and one external hardpoint under each wing for up to 1,000 lb (454 kg) of bombs or unguided rockets. The aircraft did have the LABS (Low-Altitude Bombing System) for delivery of nuclear bombs if that option was required. The first flight of this version was 23 July 1954. 72 were built including 17 for export. The very similar B(I).58 was a tropicalized version for the Indian Air Force of which 71 were constructed for India.
Typical of AModel kits, this one is molded in a light grey plastic. The sprue lines are rather thick, but the gates themselves are pretty small. They do tend to blend into the part so one will need to sand these sections once the bit is removed.
For those who are looking at the box art and wondering if this isn't a PR.9, it isn't. I don't know why the art person has done that, but for the Canberra kit's I've seen from AModel, he's botched the box art on them all. The kit has the proper gun pack, the proper wings with tanks and the nose on this one is clear plastic to take care of the various windows needed for the bombardier/navigator. The interior consists of two seat shapes, and in this scale, that is adequate. The wings and center fuselage are single constructs, with the nose and tail section butting in place. These butt joins may well be the greatest area for error, especially on this aircraft where the canopy is off to one side and not down the centerline. The kit will need at least 10 grams of nose weight so don't forget to add it when constructing the interior. Molding is fairly good, though on my sample, both lower wing tank pieces were quite lumpy with sink areas. The landing gear and doors are also adequate for this scale. Test fitting shows that the lower wing section will need to be sanded to be flush with the upper when glued together.
AModel kits are not Tamiya (Thank you, Mr. Obvious), and are best treated like short run kits. They do require some modeling skills, but are not beyond the capabilities of most modelers. It is great to see these being produced as it seems like 1/144 is one of the up and coming scales.
October 2009Thanks towww.scale-model-kits.com for the preview sample. Get yours at a discount.
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