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Vulcan Kit

Anigrand Craftswork 1/144 Vulcan B.2 Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review March 2009 Manufacturer Anigrand Craftswork
Subject Vulcan B.2 Scale 1/144
Kit Number 4028 Primary Media Resin
Pros There are four models in this release; nice options for the Vulcan Cons Fragile landing gear
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) $102.00

First Look

Vulcan Kit
Vulcan Kit
Vulcan Kit
Vulcan Kit
Vulcan Kit
Vulcan Kit
Vulcan Kit

The Vulcan was a strategic bomber developed by Avro as part of the V bomber force for the Royal Air Force. The Vulcan, along with the Vickers Valiant and Handley Page Victor, made up a new generation of bombers that could strike targets deep within the former Soviet Union. All three of the V-bombers were subsonic designs, but their large delta wings allowed them impressive take-off and climb-out performance as well as range, altitude, and payload capabilities.

First developed in the late 1940s, the Vulcan first flew in 1952 and entered service in 1956. The Vulcan would soldier on as a key part of Britain's nuclear deterrence until its retirement in 1984. While the Vulcan remained on the front lines of the cold war, the only combat the type would see was during the Falklands War as it was pressed to take the Port Stanley airfield out of action through conventional bombing. The Vulcan would also become the worlds largest and longest range Wild Weasel as the aircraft was specially armed with the AGM-45 Shrike anti-radiation missiles to attack selected Argentine radar sites.

As with many of the Anigrand Craftswork 1/144 scale releases, this kit is actually four kits in one box. The four subjects in this box are:

  1. Avro Vulcan B.2
  2. Avro 707
  3. Saunders Roe SR.A/1
  4. de Havilland DH.108

The first image illustrates the usual fine job of packaging of each kit and clear parts to get you a complete and undamaged model. Each bag contains one kit, and each bag is heat-sealed into separate compartments to keep parts from shifting around during shipment and potentially damaging one another.

The next image is of the main parts of the Vulcan. The kit is beautifully hollow cast and has nice detailing in the castings. Assembly is straightforward and I was impressed that the top and bottom fuselage halves fit so well together that I initially thought they were one solid part coming out of the bag. The wings have lower inserts to facilitate the scale depth main wheel wells.

The bomb bay has two options - closed conventional bomb bay doors or recessed fairing for the Blue Steel missile that is also included in this kit. No bomb bay is provided so you don't have the option to pose the bomb bay open unless you care to do some scratchbuilding. The main concern I have for this model is the landing gear - they are scale sized which will make them a bit fragile for the weight of the completed model.

The next kit in this set is the Avro 707 that was developed to explore delta-wing design in the late 1940s whilst the Vulcan was in its early stages of development. The wings and fuselage are cast as a single part with only the vertical stabilizer, landing gear and canopy being required to complete this model.

The third kit is the de Havilland DH.108 Swallow (bottom image) which bears a strong resemblance to the Me 163. Developed to explore the realm of tailless flight, three test aircraft were built and all three eventually crashed. Like the Avro 707 kit, the wings and fuselage are cast as a single part with only the vertical stabilizer, landing gear and canopy being installed to complete this aircraft.

The final kit in this set is the Saunders Roe SR.A/1 flying boat fighter. Proposed in 1944 as a jet-powered solution for air combat in the Pacific, the SR.A/1 first flew in 1947 and while it had good performance, its operational requirement was fulfilled with available aircraft carriers to launch and recover its aircraft at sea. The kit is molded in left/right fuselage halves with plug-in wings and horizontal stabilizers.

The kit provides two sheets of decals to provide sufficient markings for all four aircraft.

There are some interesting subjects in this box and clearly the most impressive of the lot is also the headliner - the Vulcan B.2. Even in 1/144 scale, this isn't a small model but it will certainly occupy less shelf space than its larger Airfix cousin.

My sincere thanks to the US importer, Nostalgic Plastic for this review sample!