Special Hobby 1/48 D.558-1 Skystreak
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Short run with resin and photo etch parts|
Showing that I don't always pay attention, this kit was released in 2008 and while I knew of the 1/72 kit, completely missed the 1/48 version. I have always liked the Skystreak and when Anigrand released this kit well over a decade ago, I quickly built it.
This kit is very typical of Special Hobby offerings of the time with resin and photo etch parts. All the fairly large pieces have ejector towers you will have to remove. Not surprisingly, the majority of the p.e. bits are in the cockpit in terms of the control wheel, seat harness, rudder pedals and instrument panel. Others are used for oleo scissors.
Resin is used for the cockpit tub, which is also the intake. The nose wheel, main wheels and inserts as well as the tail bumper and a section of the nose gear are also provided in resin. There are two canopies included; an early full bubble and a later more heavily reinforced version.
Once the cockpit/intake section is fully built up, the nose gear well (four pieces) is constructed and attached to a rear bulkhead. Special Hobby wants you to fully build the nose gear well which includes the nose gear leg before cementing the assembly in place. This is then glued to the cockpit section and installed into the forward fuselage. Thanks to the rather short wheelbase, you need to pack as much weight as you can under the cockpit section in front of the nose well. There is no exhaust pipe provided.
When you close the halves, there is an opening where the wing attaches. This is a single lower piece into which you put gear well sections and then attach the upper halves. Before gluing the wing in place, I'd attach the tail planes and see if you need more weight as there is some room to put it if needed. Once then attaches the main gear and wheels along with all the bits for the gear doors. These have separate tiny hinges to be glued in place.
The last steps are the pitot tubes on the wing tips, the scabbed on air brakes and your choice of canopy. The instructions in this step hint at three markings options, but there are only two. One has the pre-1947 insignia and the early canopy while the other does not. Decals are nicely printed.
Undoubtedly not on everyone's want list, but a kit that will add some interest to your collection, especially if you like prototype and/or research planes.
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