After so much waiting the new Mi-24 by Zvezda is finally in my hands. Probably one of the most awaited models in the 72nd scale, this impressive offering has no less than 284 parts and allows you to build the most accurate “Crocodile” in the scale to date.
One of the perks you get with the kit is the complete engine/gearbox setup that allows you to build your Hind all opened up (you’d still need to make the compartment plumbing yourself or wait for Eduard’s go at it though). Pick a V version with the YakB-12,7 Gatling gun, or a GSh-23-2 armed VP. Hang some serious firepower under the wings, pop the two pilots in the cockpits and let it rip!
The HobbyBoss effort has been on the market for some time already and it really retired the previous kits in the scale. A detailed cockpit, a pretty serious and well-detailed arsenal that could actually fill the pylons of 4 Hinds, better shapes, more adequate rotor heads, engraved panel lines and decent surface details. Most modelers also notice it’s a good fitter, so for about 10 euros it came as a notable bang for the buck.
The few issues noted on The Net are the overrepresented raised lines on the main rotor, the single-detail canopy (common for both cockpits) and the seam line going down the middle of it. But it still started a new era for the fans of the feared “Crocodile” – the biggest, toughest, most popular attack helicopter in the world.
Much-smaller than it’s Soviet counterpart below, the FLAK-38 is represented by fewer parts. The crew consists of an aimer/gunner and a loader.
Details are well-represented on the gun – even bolt heads on both sides of the armored shield are represented. Please note that transport trailer and ammo boxes are not included.
The flash hider is a bit too bulky, but should be easy to replace with a self-made cooking-foil detail. My main concern is that the sprue gate that is located on the barrel is almost as thick, so care should be taken when separating that detail. It could also use some seam-line cleaning, esp. on the small shield just in front of the breech.
The gun comes on two green sprues. There are two seated soldiers comprising the crew (aiming the gun in azimuth and elevation, respectively) – no loaders are present.
You can assemble the gun with or without crew. If you are using the aimers you will notice the seats are molded to their backs (all handcranks are separate details). There’s a pair of extra seats should you decide to skip the crew.
Details on the gun itself are pretti decent for a snap-fitter. The only visible ejector pin marks are on the single-detail gun carriage, but these can be quickly removed.
The famous German MG 34 infantry machine gun and its role in WW2 combat needs no introduction. Zvezda of Russia allows wargamers and modelers alike to add TWO machinegun teams to their colletion with this set.
There are two identical sprues with a MG, a shooter, a spotter, a base and a flag plate on each. I personally am fond of the quality of the sets, and consider the details adequate for the scale. There’s a noticeable seamline down the middle of each figure, but that should clean with a pass or two of the modelling knife.
Russian kit manufacturer Zvezda has literally exploded with news during the past year. They’ve announced a massive ammount of kits in various scales – from 1/350 ships through a number of 1/72 war gaming (snap fit) sets to 1/48 aircraft and 1/35 figure sets and armor kits.
I am going to have a look at three WW2 72nd scale sets tonight that are intended to be used with Zvezda’s own board gaming system “Art of tactic”:
There has always been something magnetic about this US amphibious vehicle. When the kit was recently presented to me I decided it deserves some attention, as it’s a whole bunch of firsts in a single package. Let’s see…
Spue A has the cupola (actually two – one of each pre- and post modernization), armament and smoke grenade launchers, the front fenders, and the old suspension. Two options are presented for the in-the-water propulsion system – propeller boxes can be shown opened or closed with two pairs of separate details. You can make up the relative sizes of the parts – the grid on the cutting mat is 1 cm square.
Another “quick build” – OOB, with only the most needed corrections made to the kit, no preview and WIP images, and no work on other models “in between”.
I only replaced the styrene pitot tube with a home-fabricated detail, made from a 0,6mm syringe needle and 0,4 copper wire inserted into it.
The model is not bad per se, it’s just engineered in a way that makes it preferrable to build it “all opened up”. Wing should be in takeoff/landing position – otherwise gaps ensue, and the bump in front of the wing is smaller than it should be, and I found mine to be asymmetrical as well. Airbrake is intended to be posed open – you will need to remove some material from its edges to display it closed. Same applies to the canopy, which is wider the cockpit opening. I am also not a big fan of the way Academy suggests that you glue the Sidewinders to their rails, same applies to the wing pylons. There’s probably more.
I’ve used the Italeri 1/72 Ju-87D-5/7 kit (1070) to build a Bulgarian Stuka from the WW2 period. The Bulgarian Air Force had 12 Ju-87 R-2s (delivered 1942) and 40 D-5s (1944). Doras actively participated in the war against Germany, attacking the retreating Army Group E forces. Stuka’s surgical strike capability helped encircled Bulgarian forces escape the German “pockets”. After the war ended the Ju-87 were still in use for some time, later being replaced by Il-2 M-3s and Il-10s.
Nearly as old as the Hellcat below this little fella has suffered less. My experiments were limited to scratch-built cannon barrels (needle + thin copper wire, using the kit fairings), radiator back and flap.
Just like the Bad Kitty the kit was a victim of my metalizing experiments and suffered several stripping procedures (one of which was the reason for the complete discoloration of the cockpit). Due to overspray (I used the UHU Tack “sausages” too sparingly) camo was removed and painted again using straight Revell 83 and 16.