Eduard 1/48 Fw 190D-11/D-13 Kit First Look
by Michael Benolkin
|Date of Review||June 2010||Manufacturer||Eduard|
|Kit Number||8185||Primary Media||Styrene, photo-etch|
|Pros||Two complete kits in the box, beautiful detailing||Cons||See text|
|Skill Level||Experienced||MSRP (USD)||$79.95|
The Fw 190D series was a development of the successful Fw 190A/F series powered by the air-cooled BMW 801 radial engine. To answer a requirement for a high altitude interceptor, Kurt Tank realized that the radial engine was going to have cooling problems operating at combat power in thin air. The answer was to adapt a liquid-cooled engine and his first choice was the Daimler Benz DB603, but was forced to use the Jumo 213 instead. While retaining the appearance of an air-cooled engine (and a long one at that), the new cowling housed the V-12 engine with a round radiator occupying the entire face of the cowling intake.
The first full-production of the 'Dora' series was the Fw 190D-9, armed with a pair of MG131 13mm machine guns above the engine and two MG151 20mm cannons in the wing roots. The D-11 was powered by the Jumo 213E, the same engine as the Ta 152. The D-11 and D-13 had their nose-mounted machine guns deleted which resulted in a flat hood ahead of the windscreen. The D-11 retained the 20mm guns in the wing roots and had 30mm guns outboard of the wheel wells. The D-13 was not armed with the 30mm guns but may have the 20mm Motorkanone firing through the propeller hub. The D-13 also introduced hydraulically boosted ailerons that were also applied to the Ta 152.
Eduard is back with its second installment in the Dora series in 1/48th scale. Where the first release had an MSRP of under $40.00, this release comes in with an MSRP of under $80.00. Why double the price? There are two kits in this box! The images to the left do not show the duplicate sprues in the box, but both sprue trees are identical.
Like most kits in Eduard's line-up, this kit is molded in brownish-gray styrene and presented on five parts trees, plus an additional tree of clear parts. In contrast, Tamiya's 1/48 Fw 190A-3 kit only has three parts trees (plus a clear tree) and each of these three parts trees are only 2/3 the size of the Eduard trees. In other words, the Eduard kit provides quite a bit more detail than Tamiya.
By definition, the kit comes with two sets of Eduard photo-etch featuring their excellent color printing process creating lots of details in fine print right on the parts.
One thing you'll note when comparing this kit to the previous Fw 190A and Fw 190F releases, this kit has fewer parts trees. One reason for this is that the kit doesn't have an engine sitting inside the nose that you wouldn't otherwise see with the model assembled. Unlike the radial-engined variants where the cylinders are visible around the large spinner, all you see down the face of this cowling is radiator. Perhaps there will be a version of this kit released with a Jumo engine in the future, but that wound come at a higher price.
The second reason you have fewer trees in this kit is that the Dora didn't carry a wide range of external stores. The aircraft has a centerline pylon which typically carried an external tank or a bomb, both of which are in this kit.
One other thing to note is the fatal flaw of most Fw 190D kits in every scale - the main wheel wells. Most kits have the main wheel wells boxed in like most every other fighter, but the Fw 190D series had the forward portion of the main wheel wells open so you could see up into the rear of the cowling. Actually, it was to allow more air to move through the cowling at low airspeeds, especially with the landing gear down. If the modeler corrected these kits to open up the main wheel wells, you'd then have the problem of having everyone see up into the empty cavity of the model's nose...
Eduard has done their great usual job of engineering this kit. While they didn't waste effort on the engine since the cowling is closed up, they did engineer the details between the firewall and the rear of the engine so you can see up through the underside of the aircraft at the rear of the engine, supercharger, and motor mounts. Very nicely done.
Among the features of this kit:
- Detailed cockpit w/color photo-etched parts
- Detailed rear engine bay w/Jumo engine details
- Positionable gun doors for the wing root bays and MG151s
- Positionable ailerons
- Positionable rudder
- Choice of open or closed cowl flaps
- Choice of spinner
- Choice of blown or flat canopy
- Positionable canopy
- Optional drop tank on centerline station
- Paint masks
Markings are provided for five aircraft:
- Fw 190D-11, W.Nr. 2200xx, Red 4, JV 44, Sachsenberg Schwarm, München-Riem, May 1945, as flown by Lt. Karl-Heinz Hofmann
- Fw 190D-11, W.Nr. 2200xx, White 58, Bad Wörishofen, March 1945
- Fw 190D-11, W.Nr. 220014, White 61, Bad Wörishofen, April 1945
- Fw 190D-13, W.Nr. 836016, V./EJG 2, Pilsen-Bory, Czechoslovakia, May 1945
- Fw 190D-13, W.Nr. 836017, Yellow 10, Stab./JG 26, Flensburg-Weiche, Germany, May 1945
The decals are nicely printed with all of the distinctive markings, national markings (including politically correct and complete versions of the swastika), and a VERY complete set of maintenance stenciling. Two sheets of the yellow-tape masks are included as well.
I can see why Eduard was so confident with the production of this kit. Once you see what comes in this box, you'll want several of these kits! I really hope that Ta 152 is still on their to-do list!
My sincere thanks to Eduard for this review sample!