Wingman Models 1/48 Latin American Kfirs Kit First Look
|Date of Review||November 2013||Manufacturer||Wingman Models|
|Subject||Latin American Kfirs||Scale||1/48|
|Kit Number||48001||Primary Media||Styrene, Resin, Photo-Etch, Turned Brass|
|Pros||First kit of the advanced Kfir in any scale||Cons||Framed windscreen must be reshaped and polished to render C10/C12 version|
|Skill Level||Intermediate||MSRP (USD)||$99.95|
As the Israeli Air Force transitioned the tactical strike role from the Kfir to the F-16, surplus Kfirs were offered to international customers. Columbia and Ecuador acquired the Kfir C2 and TC2 and these were upgraded to C7 and TC7 configurations. Both air forces have opted to acquire more or upgrade existing Kfirs to the C10 configuration which includes a new nose housing the EL/M-2032 multi-mode radar developed for the Lavi fighter, a new one-piece wraparound windscreen, air refueling capability, and other updated. Some of these aircraft are upgraded to the C12 configuration which is the same as C10 except for the radar, the existing C7 nose is retained and updated.
Wingman Models is a new kit company and they've started off taking sprue shots from the Kinetic Models Kfir C2/C7 kit and upgrading the kit with resin, photo-etched, and turned brass parts to create an AMS modeler's dream. As with the Wingman Models Kfir C2/C7 kit, this kit is based upon the Kinetic Models Kfir reviewed previously (look here) and adds additional resin parts to render the Kfir C10/C12 variants. Let's take a closer look:
This kit is molded in light gray styrene and presented up six parts trees plus one tree of clear parts. The kit also includes a nice selection of resin parts, one fret of photo-etched parts, and turned brass parts. One additional tree of nose parts are included but these are not used as Kinetic updated the noses for this release and provided a new tree.
Among the features of the kit:
- Nicely detailed resin cockpit with your choice of C2, C7, or C10/12 instrument panels
- Choice of early or late resin Martin Baker ejection seats w/photo-etch pull handles
- Positionable canopy
- Resin wheels
- C2, C7, and C10 nose options are included
- Positionable dorsal and ventral speed brakes
- Positionable elevons
- Nice intake ducts
- Resin J79 afterburner nozzle
- Turned brass pitot and angle of attack probes/sensors
- Nice set of paint masks included
Among the stores in this release:
- 2 x Supersonic Fuel Tanks
- 2 x Subsonic Fuel Tanks
This release has 13 colorful marking options:
- Kfir C2, 3042, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 1989
- Kfir C2, 3042, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 1995
- Kfir C7, 3042, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2000
- Kfir C7, 3043, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2006
- Kfir C7, 3049, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2008
- Kfir C7, 3044, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2008
- Kfir C7, 3040, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2008
- Kfir C12, 3054, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2008
- Kfir C12, 3041, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2011
- Kfir C10, 3040, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2013
- Kfir C12, 3053, 111 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Columbiana, 2009
- Kfir C2, 905, 2113 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Ecuarodiana, 1998
- Kfir C10, 915, 2113 Squadron, Fuerza Aerea Ecuarodiana, 2000
These decals are nicely done and include a nice suite of airframe stenciling and weapons markings. Painting instructions are provided using FS equivalents. With the numbers and markings provided, you could replicate just about any Kfir C2/C7/C10/C12 in FAC or FAE service if you don't care for any of these 13 options.
The only down side to this kit is the C10/C12 windscreen - in order to have the frameless wraparound windscreen used on the upgraded Kfir, you need to take the C2/C7 framed windscreen and modify it. This involves removing the frames, reshaping the contour to a smooth wraparound profile, then polishing out all of the scratches that were required to modify the part. Of course this isn't a problem if you opt to build the older C2 or C7 in FAC or FAE service.
Other than the C10/C12 windscreen, this is an impressive release from Wingman Models and has taken the already nice Kinetic kit and turned it into an AMS modeler's perfect kit.
My sincere thanks to Wingman Models for this review sample!