Tamiya 1/48 Ta 183 Huckebein w/Kettenkraftrad Kit First Look
|Date of Review||January 2008||Manufacturer||Tamiya|
|Subject||Ta 183 Huckebein w/Kettenkraftrad||Scale||1/48|
|Kit Number||89586||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Beautifully detailed kit of this Luft '46 subject!||Cons||One-piece windscreen/canopy|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$61.95|
One of the next-generation fighters on Kurt Tank's drawing board was the Ta 183 which employed guns and air-to-air guided missiles against its targets. Fate would intercede and draw the war to an end before the Ta 183 would fly, but much of the engineering in this aircraft as well as those from Messerschmitt, Junkers, Arado, etc., would allow the victors to make major strides in the development of their own jet aircraft.
One good example is the data captured from the Messerschmitt plants was given to North American for evaluation, and the data would transform the straight-wing FJ Fury into the swept-wing FJ-4 and it's Air Force counterpart, the F-86 Sabre.
The Soviet Union did not leave Germany empty-handed either. A complete set of plans for the Ta 183 (and others) was reportedly found in the Air Ministry after the Soviets captured Berlin, and these plans were whisked away to Moscow. Shortly thereafter, Kurt Tank was offered an opportunity to build the Ta 183 for the Soviet Union, but he would decline and flee to Argentina where he did build a variant of the Ta 183 for the Argentine Air Force.
Here is the kit that started off a new hobby company - AMtech. This would be the only completely new-tool release they'd produce before they went out of business. Tamiya acquired a number of the remaining bag-shots of the kit and released this interesting boxing that combines the complete AMtech kit along with Tamiya's own Kettenkraftrad kit.
As previously released, this kit is molded in medium gray styrene and presented on five parts trees, plus a single clear canopy. As mentioned above, the kit also includes one additional tree molded in light gray styrene for the Kettenkraftrad.
The kit offers your choice of Jumo or Heinkel jet engine exhaust nozzles, optional external fuel tank, and four air-to-air missiles. The only down side that I can find in this kit is the one-piece canopy, which prevents you from showing off the nicely detailed cockpit. (NOTE: Squadron released a vacuformed replacement canopy for this kit to solve the problem.)
You'll notice on the light gray sprue that on the left end, the kit has a nice multi-part driver figure for the Kettenkraftrad. On the right side is a new-tool part that includes a new pilot's figure for the Ta 183 as well as a new nosewheel strut. What's wrong with the kit strut? Not a thing, but in order to hook up the tow bar from the Kettenkraftrad to the Ta 183, the end caps of the nosewheel axle needed to be hollow so that tabs on the towbar could snap into place. If you are not going to attach the tow bar, you can use either nosegear strut.
Tamiya provided markings for a notional Black 13 and a complete set of national markings including the swastikas.
This has always been a nice kit and I'm glad to see it available one last time. Bundling this kit up with the Kettenkraftrad as a tow vehicle is a nice touch.