21st Century Toys 1/18 MiG-15bis Fagot 'USSR' Kit First Look
|Date of Review||December 2006||Manufacturer||21st Century Toys|
|Kit Number||N/A||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Excellent desk or 'hanging' model for the adult or young aspiring aviator. Nice finish and detailing||Cons|
|Skill Level||Novice||MSRP (USD)||Out of Production|
Those of you who've been keeping up on the latest cool releases from 21st Century Toys know that their primary focus had been on World War II subjects, the P-51, Bf 109, F4U, P-40, Fw 190D-9, P-38, TBF, and more.
More recently, they broke from their WWII streak and released that magnificent F-104 Starfighter. So what could they do next to get peoples' attention? The Korean War!
We previewed the MiG-15 and F-86 at the Chicago Hobby Show back in October and they looked pretty nice then. Well the MiG-15 (NATO codenamed 'Fagot') is now being released as we speak and we've got one in the Cybermodeler labs for a closer look. This one is finished in Soviet Air Foce colors. For a look at a Chinese MiG-15 from 21st Century Toys, click here. The North Korean Air Force release can be seen here.
The aircraft is packaged in the standard rugged box and carrier tray. The fuselage, wings, horizontal stabs, external tanks, and pilot figure are all wired into place to ensure safe transport. A bag of parts are taped to the underside of the tray containing an additional set of tanks, pilot parachute, O2 mask, pilot stand, and underwing antennae.
As I've learned from previous experience, the quickest way to gratification is to use wire cutters to clear the transport wires out of the way and carefully remove the parts from the carrier. I had absolutely no damage on my example.
Assembly is straightforward - plug the wings and horizontal stabs into the fuselage. Lower the landing gear and rest the aircraft on its gear. Ponder which of the two external tank options you want for your MiG.
The MiG-15 carried several types of external fuel tanks to help extend the range of this fuel-hungry early jet fighter. The early MiGs carried slipper tanks that literally mounted directly to the underside of the wing as a conformal tank. A pair of these are provided in the parts bag. The more commonly recognized jettisonable tanks were carried on underwing pylons and are the tanks I've selected for this aircraft. Take note of the Left and Right notation on the tanks.
Now that the aircraft is together, what can it do? The features of this release include:
- Sliding canopy
- Removable ventral gun pack
- Jettisonable external fuel tanks
- Movable flaps
- Movable ailerons, elevators, and rudder
- Movable speed brakes
- Retractable landing gear
- Pilot figure
A note on the pilot figure - this is one of the first figures that effortlessly drops into the pilot's seat without dislocating a shoulder or hip. I don't know if this is due to a redesign of the cockpit or the figure, but kudos in any case!
This release is painted up as Soviet Air Force White 384, an aircraft that has been featured in several kit releases as well. This is the aircraft that was reportedly flown by Colonel Yevgeni Pepelyayev out of an airbase in China against US combat aircraft. According to one online biography, Pepelyayev scored 19 kills, 14 of which were F-86 Sabres!
Despite seeing lots of cool stuff come from 21st Century in the past, and that goes double for the F-104, this MiG-15 is probably the best engineered, best finished subject to date. They've really raised the bar on their on their detailing and paint finish as well.
You can find these at any one of the retailers listed on the 21st Century Toys website.
My sincere thanks to 21st Century Toys for this review sample!