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Review: Mirage-Hobby 1/350 HMS Spiraea

Model Builder International - Sun, 03/17/2019 - 17:27
Review: Mirage-Hobby 1/350 HMS Spiraea

History

The Flower-class corvette was a British class of 267 corvettes used during World War II, specifically with the Allied navies as anti-submarine convoy escorts during the Battle of the Atlantic. Royal Navy ships of this class were named after flowers, hence the name of the class.

The majority served during World War II with the Royal Navy (RN) and Royal Canadian Navy (RCN). Several ships built largely in Canada were transferred from the RN to the United States Navy (USN) under the lend-lease programme, seeing service in both navies. Some corvettes transferred to the USN were manned by the US Coast Guard. The vessels serving with the US Navy were known as Temptress and Action-class patrol gunboats. Other Flower-class corvettes served with the Free French Naval Forces, the Royal Netherlands Navy, the Royal Norwegian Navy, the Royal Indian Navy, the Royal Hellenic Navy, the Royal New Zealand Navy, the Royal Yugoslav Navy, and, immediately post-war, the South African Navy.

After World War II many surplus Flower-class vessels saw worldwide use in other navies, as well as civilian use. HMCS Sackville is the only member of the class to be preserved as a museum ship.

The months leading up to World War II saw the RN return to the concept of a small escort warship being used in the shipping protection role. The Flower class was based on the design of Southern Pride, a whaler, and were labeled “corvettes”.

There are two distinct groups of vessels in this class: the original Flower-class, 225 vessels ordered during the 1939 and 1940 building programmes; and the modified Flower-class, which followed with a further 69 vessels ordered from 1940 onward. The modified Flowers were slightly larger and somewhat better armed.

The modified Flowers saw the forecastle extended aft past the bridge to the aft end of the funnel, a variation known as the “long forecastle” design. Apart from providing a very useful space where the whole crew could gather out of the weather, the added weight improved the ships’ stability and speed and was retroactively applied to a number of the original Flower-class vessels during the mid and later years of the war.

The original Flowers had a mast located immediately forward the bridge, a notable exception to naval practice at that time. The modified Flowers saw the mast returned to the normal position immediately aft of the bridge; however, this does not seem to have been done in all of the modified builds or conversions of the original vessels.

Kit History

In plastic, I can only see 2 companies who have made 1/350 scale Flower Class ships Mirage-Hobby and Iron Shipwrights. The 3 kits by Iron Shipwrights are in resin and from the 2000s although they do cover both the long and short forecastle versions. Mirage-Hobby does 4 ships, all long forecastle versions and they date from 2013/4.

Inside the box:

  • 3 sprues with 190 parts
  • 1 PE sheet with 9 parts
  • 1 decal sheet
  • 1 double-sided colour sheet of instructions
  • 1 colour painting guide

The box is a solid cardboard box and all the sprues inside are in a single plastic bag. The PE fret and decals are in a resealable bag that is stapled to the front of the instructions and placed in the bottom of the box.

The plastic parts look good although the sprue attachment points look a little large on some of the smaller parts. You might need to take extra care in removing those parts. The PE parts look to be mostly railings.

The instructions are pretty straight forward but could do with being a bit larger. You might want to either take a photo of them or scan them and print out an enlarged copy. The instructions give you some background to the ship as well as information on the 2 colour schemes shown. The build is shown in 26 steps and they seem pretty clear, although as mentioned, you might have to look at some steps very closely to see exactly where things go. The placement of the PE parts is given as part of these 26 steps. There are 2 painting schemes with oith showing port and starboard views in colour. There isn’t a top view, but the colours used are explained in the text. A top view might have been nice to show that most of the decks are green and only wooden covers would be wood colour.

I’m not going to go through all 26 steps in a bulleted list, but the general scheme is to first build the hull and decks and then work from the fat to the forecastle adding all the small parts.  You might want to save the PE to the end and perhaps paint the main hull and deck before you start adding all the small pieces.

Conclusion
This looks to be a competitively priced very nice kit of the Flower Class. It’s not a huge parts count and the PE supplies just the most noticeable items. It’s a perfect introduction to 1/350 shipbuilding.

Many thanks to Mirage-Hobby for supplying a review sample.

The kit is available form their online store for about $18.00

Paul Tosney – Editor
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Trumpeter Apr 2019 Releases

Model Builder International - Sat, 03/16/2019 - 14:50
Trumpeter April 2019 Releases

MiG-31BM. w/KH-47M2
Item No.: 01697 Scale: 1:32

MAZ7313 Truck
Item No.: 01050 Scale: 1:35

Russian 9K720 “Iskander” SS-26
Item No.: 01051 Scale: 1:35

Russian TOS-1 Multiple Rocket Launcher Mod.1989
Item No.: 09560 Scale: 1:35

Schleswig – Holstein Battleship 1908
Item No.: 05355 Scale: 1:350

 

Paul Tosney – Editor
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GREENSTRAWBERRY LANDING AND POSITIONING LIGHTS PE SET

SciFiantasy - Sat, 03/16/2019 - 00:06
In this article, we will take a look at the last set of pe for the Bandai 1/72 scale PG Millennium Falcon. This set is not part of the Fruit Pack as the previous three sets of pe were. The kit number for this pe set is 00618-1/72. The standard […]
Categories: News

GREENSTRAWBERRY MILLENNIUM FALCON COCKPIT AND GUN WELLS

SciFiantasy - Thu, 03/14/2019 - 16:27
In this article, we will take a look at the last pe set in the Fruit Pack for the Millennium Falcon in 1:72 scale from Greenstrawberry. This kit was made for the 1:72 scale Bandai Millennium Falcon Perfect Grade Kit. The third kit in the Fruit Pack is YT-1300 Millennium […]
Categories: News

HobbyBoss Apr 2019 Releases

Model Builder International - Wed, 03/13/2019 - 19:37
HobbyBoss Apr 2019 Releases

1:48 “Persian Cat” F-14A TomCat – IRIAF ITEM No.: 81771

1:35 German Panzer Tank Crew (Normandy 1944) ITEM No.: 84401

1:35 German Officer ITEM No.: 84406

1:35 Russian Tank Crew ITEM No.: 84411

1:35 Soviet BT-2 Tank(medium) ITEM No.: 84515

Paul Tosney – Editor

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MAKING YOUR OWN FLEX-FILE AND STRIPS

SciFiantasy - Wed, 03/13/2019 - 17:41
One of the questions I get asked by newcomers to the hobby is; “What tools and supplies do I need?” That, of course, could lead to a whole book on basic tools and their uses. Now the usual answer is some hobby type knife usually the #11 X-ACTO, a cutter […]
Categories: News

Review: Youfeng 1/700 Chinese 053H3 Jiangwei Frigate

Model Builder International - Wed, 03/13/2019 - 17:39
Review: Youfeng 1/700 Chinese 053H3 Jiangwei II Frigate

First – if you want to buy this kit it’s available at our shop and there’s a 10% off coupon code in the video above.

History
The Type 053H3 (NATO codename Jiangwei II) were Chinese frigates that entered service with the People’s Liberation Army Navy Surface Force in the 1990s and 2000s. The class comprised 10 vessels, all of which remain in active service. They were a follow-on of the Type 053H2G Jiangwei I class. The Zulfiquar-class frigate used by the Pakistan Navy was based on the Type 053H3

A limited, mid-life upgrade was observed for the 053H3 starting in 2015. Visible differences include the replacement of the ESM/EW suite/radars to similar systems from the Type 054, replacement of the HQ-7 with the HHQ-10 short-range air defense missile and replacement of the 4 x Type 76A 37mm guns with a new 2 x 30mm CIWS similar to the Gryazev-Shipunov AO-18K.

In plastic, I can only see 2 other kits from Dreammodel in this scale. It looks like one kit is for the ships as built and another kit as they were after the mid-life update. I might be wrong on that though as the images for both ships seem to be from before the mid-life update.

Inside the box:

  • Approx 82 resin parts
  • 1 solid resin waterline hull
  • 1 PE sheet with about 168 parts
  • 1 decal sheet
  • 1 double-sided colour sheet of instructions
  • Available from our own shop. (See the video for money off coupon)

The box is a very solid cardboard box and everything is inside plastic bags and everything is then wrapped up in bubble wrap. The resin looks to be nicely detailed and comes in many small plastic bags. The PE fret is quite extensive.

The instructions are pretty straight forward but there is no historical background to the ships that we see quite often in instructions. The images show you the unpainted kit with the PE in place. The resin parts are numbered as are the PE parts. There are close up views of certain areas where more detail would be useful. There is plenty of detail to allow you to build the kit.

There is one section of the instructions that shows you the changes to make to build a post-mid-life update ship. The decal sheet allows you to build any of the 10 ships. The ships are numbered 521-524, 527-528, and 564-567. The instructions show you where the decals are placed on both versions of the ships.

There isn’t a painting guide. You will have to choose your own colours although it does seem to be a pretty simple light grey superstructure with dark grey decks.

Conclusion
This looks to be pretty easily the best model of this ship on the market. The other kits by Dreammodel have about half the resin and PE parts count. You will end up with a very well detailed model of any ship of the JiamngweiII class.

Paul Tosney – Editor
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GREENSTRAWBERRY MILLENNIUM FALCON LANDING GEAR PE SET

SciFiantasy - Wed, 03/13/2019 - 17:28
In this article, we are going to take a look at the second set of PE in Fruit Pack for the Bandai 1:72 scale Perfect Grade Millennium Falcon. The Fruit Packs on Greenstrawberry or sets of PE bundled together with a discount. The second set in the Fruit Pack is YT-1300 […]
Categories: News

GREENSTRAWBERRY MILLENNIUM FALCON EXTERIOR PE SET

SciFiantasy - Tue, 03/12/2019 - 18:57
Today I took a look at the Greenstrawberry Exterior PE set for the 1:72 scale PG Millennium Flacon from Bandai. The set comes in a resealable plastic wrapping with a hard cardboard backing, 1 sheet of photoetch, and instructions. The directions come in a fold out booklet. At the top of […]
Categories: News

VELRATH’S VAMPIRE KICKSTARTER

SciFiantasy - Tue, 03/12/2019 - 10:19
Velrath’s Vampires Kickstarter is Now Live! To help back this Kickstarter or get more information please click the link below. https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/tombguardians/queen-of-the-damned-velraths-vampires?ref=nav_search&result=project&term=tomb%20guardians Help raise Velrath, Queen of the Damned, and her army of Vampire Heroes and Undead. Each 28 mm white metal miniature was sculpted by renowned artists Jason Wiebe, Bobby Jackson, […]
Categories: News

RIPLEY IN SPACE SUIT

SciFiantasy - Mon, 03/11/2019 - 21:45
Ellen Louise Ripley often referred to simply as Ripley, is a fictional character and the protagonist of the Alien film series played by American actress Sigourney Weaver. The character earned Weaver world recognition, and the role remains her most famous to date. Ridley Scott, director of the first film in […]
Categories: News

PAINT BE GONE

SciFiantasy - Mon, 03/11/2019 - 17:54
As I was browsing social media today I stumbled upon a product I have never seen before. The product is Paint Be Gone which is used for… you guessed it stripping your builds. I watched their video on their facebook page to get a look and it looks like a […]
Categories: News

Eduard Mar 2019 Releases

Model Builder International - Sun, 03/10/2019 - 21:04
Eduard Mar 2019 Releases

Bf 109G-10 WNF/ Diana Gigi 1/48
ProfiPACK edition kit of German WWII fighter aircraft Bf 109G-10 in 1/48 scale.

The kit is focused on 109s produced by Wiener Neustädter Flugzeugwerke / Diana.
The additional sprue with parts for Bf 109G-10 “Gigi” from JG 52 with early G-6 style tail unit as BFC bonus item.

plastic parts: Eduard
No. of decal options: 4+1
decals: Eduard
PE parts: yes, pre-painted
painting mask: yes
resin parts: no

Bf 109G-10 WNF/ Diana 1/48
ProfiPACK edition kit of German WWII fighter aircraft Bf 109G-10 in 1/48 scale.

The kit is focused on 109s produced by Wiener Neustädter Flugzeugwerke / Diana.
plastic parts: Eduard
No. of decal options: 4
decals: Eduard
PE parts: yes, pre-painted
painting mask: yes
resin parts: no

Fw 190A-8 1/72
ProfiPACK edition kit of German WWII fighter aircraft Fw 190A-8 in 1/72 scale.
plastic parts: Eduard
No. of decal options: 5
decals: Eduard
PE parts: yes, pre-painted,
painting mask: yes,
resin parts: no

MF 1/72
Limited Edition kit of MiG-21MF in Czech and Czechoslovak service in 72nd scale.

Dual Combo style boxing offers two kits – MiG-21MF Interceptor and MiG-21 Fighter-bomber.
Includes 100+ pages full-color book about MiG-21MF service in Czechoslovak, Czech and Slovak Air Forces (in Czech).
English translation to download in pdf format.
plastic parts: Eduard
No. of decal options: 39
decals: Cartograf
PE parts: yes, pre-painted
painting mask: yes
resin parts: no
extras: a photographic book

Hanriot HD.2 1/48
Weekend edition kit of French WWI Hanriot HD.2 floatplane in 1/48 scale.

plastic parts: Eduard
No. of decal options: 2
decals: Eduard
PE parts: no
painting mask:no
resin parts: no

Paul Tosney – Editor
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CLASSIC BATMAN FIGURE KIT FROM MOEBIUS MODELS

Scale Model News - Sun, 03/10/2019 - 06:49

THIS 1:8 SCALE BATMAN KIT FEATURES the iconic 1960s TV series original creation, as played by Adam West.Read more »
Categories: News

Italeri Mar 2019 Releases

Model Builder International - Thu, 03/07/2019 - 16:47
Italeri Mar 2019 Releases

1/24 AUDI QUATTRO RALLY
SUPER DECALS SHEET – COLOR INSTRUCTION SHEET

In 1980, during the Geneva Motor Show, the German car manufacturer presented to the public its new two-door coupé called Audi Quattro. Produced for all the ’80s the Italian name chosen by Audi (Quattro is the Italian word for “four”) ine was pointed out the main feature and the most important selling point : the four-wheel drive. It was the first time that the 4×4 solution was adopted on a coupé with the goal to achieve high numbers in terms of production and sales on the market. The Audi Quattro was able to release good driving performance, thanks to its frontal longitudinal engine, and very good reliability on all type of road conditions. From the mass production a dedicated car for competitions was developed on 1981 and it debuted in the World Rally Championship, achieving good results. The success of “Quattro” cars is still existing today in fact the name has become a real “brand” that identifies all the range of Audi’s four wheel drive production.

1/72 SM.81 PIPISTRELLO
SUPER DECALS SHEET FOR 5 VERSIONS – COLOR INSTRUCTION SHEET

The Savoia Marchetti SM 81 began service in the bombing units of the Regia Aeronautica (Italian Royal Air Force) around the middle of the 1930’s. It operated in the campaign in Ethiopia, in the Spanish Civil War and during World War II. It had three engines with low wings and a fixed undercarriage. It was propelled by 3 Alfa Romeo 125 RC 35 engines with 650 Hp each, or, successively, by more powerful Piaggio P. X RC.35 700 Hp engines which brought it to a maximum speed of 340 Km/h. Armed with 6 7.7 mm Breda-Safat machine guns, it had an offensive payload of 2,000 kg in bombs. At the time of its entrance in service, it was one of the most modern bombers in the world, but at the start of World War II, by then surpassed, it was predominantly used for night time missions. For this reason it was nicknamed “bat”. Nevertheless over 300 SM 81’s equipped the Regia Aeronautica squadrons on various fronts, from the Aegean Sea to North Africa.

1/24 MERCEDES BENZ 2238 6×4
SUPER DECALS FOR 2 VERSIONS

Mercedes Benz uses as their flagship the heavy duty long range truck 2238 6 x 4. The truck has both rear axles driven and a total of 375 horsepower. Il is the heaviest Mercedes long distance truck and established new dimensions in international long distance traffic. The new features of the engine OM422 allow a particularly economic driving. The gear changes are reduced to a minimum, thus guaranteeing very smooth driving.

1/35 RSO/03 with PAK 40
COLOR INSTRUCTION SHEET

In order to cope with the poor road conditions on the Eastern front, the Germans built tracked tractors to tow all types of vehicles and also serve to carry various loads from ammunition and food supplies. The official description of this vehicle was “Raupenschlepper-Ost” (tracked tractor-East).The RSO was built by the Austrian manufacturer Steyr-works. It had a commercial-type pressed steel cab and a wooden cargo body. The next versions, as the RSO/03 built by Klockner-Humbolt-Deutz AG, had a simpler, soft-top, slab-sided metal cab. It proved ideal for the mud and slush conditions of the Russian front. Thanks to its “off road” capabilities it was used as artillery and anti-tank gun as the largely used 75 mm. Pak 40 towing tractor.

1/72 B – 58 HUSTLER
SUPER DECALS SHEET FOR 6 VERSIONS

This 4-engined delta wing bomber came into service with the US Strategic Air Force at the beginning of the 60s and was, at that time, the pinnacle of technology. The B-58 could reach supersonic speeds even at full load and was specifically designed to carry nuclear weapons so as to provide a fast response to a Soviet attack, which, back in the Cold War of the 50s, was considered a constant threat.

1/72 M12 Gun Motor Carriage
COLOR INSTRUCTION SHEET

The self-propelled gun GMC M12 was used during the Second World War by the U.S. Army. It was developed on the hull of the M3 Lee / Grant tank on which was installed the original French GPF 155 mm gun. The main armament, the ammunitions and the gun crew were located in an open topped area at the back of the vehicle. Only the driver’s and the radio operator’s seats were protected. To absorb the effects of the recoil when using the artillery piece, the M-12 was equipped with a rear blade that was lowered and fixed into the ground.

Paul Tosney – Editor
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Read & Reviewed: Nuts & Bolts Vol.41 schwere Wehrmachtsclepper

Model Builder International - Fri, 03/01/2019 - 13:34
Nuts & Bolts Vol.41 schwere Wehrmachtsclepper

The Schwerer Wehrmachtschlepper (Heavy Military Tractor), or sWS, was a German World War II half-track vehicle used in various roles between 1943 and 1945. The unarmored models were used as supply vehicles and as tractors to haul artillery. Armored versions mounted anti-aircraft guns or a 10 barrel rocket launcher (Nebelwerfer). Less than a thousand were built before the end of the war, but production continued after the war of an improved model in the Tatra plant in Czechoslovakia.

On 7 May 1942 the development of a simple, low-speed, half-track, load-carrying vehicle for use on the Eastern Front was ordered. Büssing-NAG was selected to develop a new 5 t tractor to replace the earlier 5-tonne Sd.Kfz. 6 and 3-tonne Sd.Kfz. 11 half-tracks, as well as the various lesser-known vehicles of the same class. Production started in December 1943 at Büssing-NAG. Early examples used a truck-like, unarmored cabin similar to the earlier half-tracks it replaced, while later examples featured an armored cabin and engine compartment that looked similar to the Sd.Kfz. 251 armored personnel carrier. Like the earlier Demag-designed Sd.Kfz. 10, the sWS’s suspension system consisted of five double roadwheels per side, overlapping and interleaved, mounted on swing arms sprung by torsion bars. One idler wheel, mounted at the rear end of each track unit, was used to control track tension.

Tatra also joined in production, but together both factories produced only 825 vehicles in total. Tatra continued production of an improved vehicle after the war as the T809.

In addition to the basic cargo role, the vehicle was adapted as a mount both for the medium 3.7 cm FlaK 43 anti-aircraft gun and the quadruple 20mm flak gun. These mounts were placed at the center of the cargo area with a large gun shield. The sides of the cargo compartment folded down to give the crew more room to serve the weapons. Ammunition was carried at the rear of the cargo area. Another modification, intended to replace the 15 cm Panzerwerfer auf Sf (Sd.Kfz. 4/1), was the Panzerwerfer 42 auf sWS, a 10-barreled 15 cm (5.9 in) Nebelwerfer 42 rocket launcher placed over an armored ammunition storage compartment; it was built over the cargo area.

From the publisher’s website:

180 pages A4, glue-bound, approx. 268 photos, of these 91 contemporary photos from manuals, combat and war fronts in b/w, most of them previously unpublished; 119 colour photos of restored vehicles and their components in public and private collections, 58 colour photos of the four models from T.Greenland & V.Branigan, English / German captions, 40 pages English / German text with 25 tables, 35 pages of scale drawings of all versions and details in 1:35 scale from Lieven De Coninck, 18 camouflage schemes from Laurent Lecoq with tactical and units signs and 3 tables of organization of units (Kriegstärke-Nachweisungen KStN) having these vehicles in their arsenal, first published November 27th, 2018

  • Volume 41: Büssing’s schwerer Wehrmachtschlepper (sWS), armored and unarmored variants
  • Written by Dr. Nicolaus Hettler
  • Published on November 27, 2018
  • Softcover
  • German & English texts
  • 180 pages
  • 268 photos (91 contemporary photos from manuals, 119 color photos, 58 models)
  • 18 camouflage schemes, tactical markings, table of organization (KStN)
  • Available for €29.90 from the Nuts & Bolts website.

The texts are in English and German with the English texts on the left of the page and the German on the right. All images and photographs have captions in both languages. The English translation is excellent. Now, let’s take a look at the book to see what we get.

The various sections of the book are:

  • Development, page 5
  • technical description page 7
  • Variations page 16
  • production page 19
  • In service page 28
  • tables of organization and equipment, page 30
  • camouflage page 37
  • modeling page 37
  • acknowledgments page 39
  • bibliography page 40
  • contemporary photos page 41
  • drawings page 73
  • color profiles page 109
  • preserve vehicles and components, page 120
  • modeling page 168

The book starts with the reasons for the development of the vehicle and the need to reduce a large number of different towing vehicles in service with the Wehrmacht. There’s a good overview of the development of the vehicle and a thorough technical description. The 3 different variants that made it into production are covered as well as the infra-red searchlight version that was supposed to go into production but the war ended before that could happen. There also exists photos of a Flakvierling mounted on an unarmoured sWS, but this might have been a field modification as no documents can be found to support the production of such vehicles.

Production and manufacturers are listed along with a description of the problems caused by allied bombing and lack of raw materials. Postwar production is also covered. There’s a large section describing the sWS in service and how it was used by various engineering, artillery, and anit-aircraft units. There is also some brief info on camouflage and markings.

There’s a complete list of all the kits and aftermarket parts available for the sWS.

Then after the bibliography, there are the 91 contemporary photos that cover all the different variants of the sWS form the prototypes to the post-war production in Czechoslovakia. Then follows the 90 1/35 scale line drawings of every variant and that ends with drawings of the 4 types of road wheels used. Next follows the 18 color camouflage scheme profiles based on black and white images from the contemporary photos section of the book. Lastly, we come to 119 modern color photos of vehicles in museums. These photos show all the parts of the vehicle you never normally get to see.

The last section of the book is the models. It shows you 3 different Great Wall kits that were built and gives you some information about the kits themselves and what modifications were made, if any, to the kits.

Conclusion
Overall this is a definitive reference for the sWs and its variants. There is a wealth of information and photographs that will cover all your modeling needs and it will most likely be the only book you will ever need on this topic.

I have bought several books direct from the publisher at Nuts & Bolts.
Many thanks to Nuts & Bolts for supplying this review sample.

Paul Tosney – Editor
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1:16 SCALE RED BARON AND HIS DOG STOP-FRAME VIDEO

Scale Model News - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 05:15


HERE'S ANOTHER FINE VIDEO BY Tom Grigat. It's an interesting vid featuring figure work, a subject we haven't featured before.
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Categories: News

CLASSIC 1957 CHRYSLER 300C TO 1:25 SCALE FROM AMT

Scale Model News - Tue, 01/29/2019 - 11:27

IN REAL LIFE, THE 1957 CHRYSLER 300C came with long tail fins and a yawning chrome grille. And this 1:25 scale AMT kit models the original nicely.

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Categories: News

ROARING TIGER: 1:25 SCALE 'GET SMART' SUNBEAM SPORTS CAR FROM AMT

Scale Model News - Sun, 01/13/2019 - 17:14

THIS IS A REISSUE of an original, and very popular, AMT kit. It’s a 1:25 scale model of the Anglo-American Sunbeam Tiger, a V8 roadster built from 1964-67, by the British Rootes Group.
Read more »
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GERRY ANDERSON'S SPACE 1999 NUCLEAR WASTE DISPOSAL AREA DIORAMA KIT

Scale Model News - Wed, 01/02/2019 - 03:00

GERRY ANDERSON MOONBASE ALPHA FANS have the chance to make a realistic diorama with the MPC 1:48 scale Nuclear Waste Disposal Area 2 kit.  
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Categories: News