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Hawk 75 Conversion

Cutting Edge 1/32 Hawk 75 Conversion First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review April 2005 Manufacturer Cutting Edge
Subject Hawk 75 Conversion Scale 1/32
Kit Number CEC32151 Primary Media Resin
Pros Nice backdate for the Trumpeter 1/32 P-40B Cons  
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) OOP

First Look

Hawk 75 Conversion
Hawk 75 Conversion
Hawk 75 Conversion
Hawk 75 Conversion

Curtiss developed a new fighter concept to follow the P-3A Hawk biplane fighter using some of the advanced developed for the A-8 Shrike. The resulting aircraft was designated Hawk 75 and it featured an all-metal fuselage and wing, retractable landing gear, and fully enclosed cockpit. The early Hawk 75 was powered by the Wright R1670 and while of interest to the US Army, it was inferior in performance to the Seversky (later Republic) P-35.

Curtiss replaced the Wright R1670 with the Pratt and Whitney R1830-13 Twin Wasp which also powered the P-35. The resulting combination was purchased by the USAAC and designated P-36. The P-36C was a follow-on version featuring the R-1830-17 and four machine guns, whilst the P-36G adopted the four-gun configuration with the Wright R-1820.

France was the first export customer odering 100 H.75 fighters while Britain would order the aircraft as the Mohawk for India and Middle East duties. On 8 September 1939, the H.75 had its first encounters with the Bf 109D and until the fall of France, the two aircraft were deemed equally matched. The undelivered H.75s were sent to Britain to join their fleet of Mohawks.

The Conversion

Cutting Edge has released an impressive conversion to create the R1820 powered Hawk 75. This conversion backdates the Trumpeter 1/32 P-40B kit by replacing the inline engine cowling with the appropriate radial engine, adding the enclosed retractable tail wheel and slightly different cockpit shape, including the rounded windscreen. The inboard section of the lower wing is also replaced to make the correction of other subtle differences between the Hawk and P-40B. This set was designed for use with either of the previously released P-40B resin cockpit correction sets (CEC32137 or CEC32145).

The conversion entails the removal of three sections out of each P-40B fuselage half, with the cuts made along existing panel lines. The corresponding resin parts are installed in their places.

A complete Williams Brothers 1/32 Wright R-1820 engine is included in the kit, so detailing the engine will only require ignition wires.

You'll also notice in the accompanying photos the replacement rear side windows and windscreen, all cast in their amazing clear resin. This should be a straightforward conversion for the skilled modeler. Cutting Edge has also released two decal sheets for this conversion reviewed elsewhere in Cybermodeler. These are CED32063 and CED32064.

My sincere thanks to Meteor Productions for this review sample!

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