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Su-30MK Flanker C

Kitty Hawk Models 1/48 Su-30MK Flanker C Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review July 2020 Manufacturer Kitty Hawk Models
Subject Su-30MK Flanker C Scale 1/48
Kit Number 80169 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros Many possibilities Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $TBA

First Look

Su-30MK Flanker C
Su-30MK Flanker C
Su-30MK Flanker C
Su-30MK Flanker C
Su-30MK Flanker C

The Su-30 (NATO Codename: Flanker) is a multi-role combat capable version of the Su-27UB two-seat trainer. Like many two-seat combat aircraft around the world, the Su-30 provides another set of eyes in the cockpit providing a more robust combat capability. As the Su-30 continued to be modernized and tailored to the requirements of different client nations, some aircraft received capabilities found in the Su-35 including advanced radar and thrust-vectoring engine nozzles. One design feature that appeared with the advanced Su-30 series was the canards originally developed with the highly maneuverable Su-37 prototypes to offset the increased weight of advanced avionics in the nose. One feature that came and went from the airframe was the canard system ahead of the wings. The Su-30s that received the upgraded avionics suite also received the canards to offset the heavier electronics in the nose. These canards also appeared on the early Su-35 airframes equipped with the same avionics. Before the Su-35 went into full production, additional improvements were into a new radar system that also weighed considerably less and this radar was adopted for the Su-35S which also eliminated the need for the canards.

It has been interesting to read many of the posts online claiming Kitty Hawk/Panda Hobby are no longer in business. As Mark Twain once wrote: "The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated." If you prefer Monty Python and the Holy Grail: "I'm not dead yet...I'm getting better!" The Wuhan virus basically shut down the planet, and production ceased for many companies including Kitty Hawk/Panda Hobby, but throughout their shut-down, the owner continued designing future projects. Once the shut-down was lifted, they began to produce new kits and five of those have come across the pond. Surely five new kits is a reliable sign of life!

We looked at the Panda Hobby German self-propelled howitzer a few days ago, so next up is this new-tool kit, the Su-30MK. This is one of three Flanker variants in this batch, which follow the Su-35S kit released three years ago. While some of these parts trees are used in the other two new Flanker kits, none of these trees are out of the Su-35 kit. Molded in gray styrene, this kit is presented on ten parts trees plus two trees of clear parts and one small fret of photo-etched details. Unlike the Su-27 and Su-27UB kits, this release does not have any weapons sprues included.

Among the features and options in this kit:

  • Nicely detailed front and rear cockpits
  • Nicely detailed K-36D ejection seats which provide photo-etched crew restraints
  • Positionable canopy
  • Detailed AL-31F engines
  • Positionable ventral intake shutters
  • Intake ducts to the engine faces
  • Starboard gun bay with positionable access panel
  • Detailed forward avionics bay
  • Positionable avionics bay/radar access
  • Nice phased array radar antenna
  • Positionable dorsal speed brake
  • Detailed landing gear and wheel wells
  • Positionable leading and trailing edge flaps
  • Positionable stabilators
  • Positionable air refueling probe
  • Positionable radome
  • Positionable parachute door
  • Wingtip Sorbitsya pods

Weapons included:

  • GSh-30 internal cannon in gun bay

Markings are provided for six subjects:

  • Su-30SMK, bort 501, Sukhoi test/demo aircraft
  • Su-30SMK, bort 502, Sukhoi test/demo aircraft
  • Su-30SMV, bort 0564, Venezuelan Air Force
  • J-11BS, bort 12, PLAAF
  • Su-30M2, bort 504, Sukhoi test/demo aircraft w/mural of Pavel Sukhoi on port vertical stab
  • Su-30M2, bort 20, Russian test aircraft

Notes:

  • Out of the box, this kit will build into a number of nice examples
  • Using aftermarket thrust-vectoring nozzles, you can also expand the subject possibilities
  • There have been some aftermarket canard conversions that could be adapted to this kit to render examples like the Indian AF Su-30SMI
  • There are two clear trees included, one out of the Su-27UB kit for the long canopy and the other out of the single-seat kit for the windscreen

I dry-fitted the fuselage halves and the fit is exquisite. The layout of the kit is very straightforward, but the proof will be in the building. I'll be doing a quick-build of one of these three Flanker kits so we can see if this beauty builds as nice as it looks. Stay tuned!

Here is a list of paints Kitty Hawk identifies for use with this kit and their equivalent colors from other brands. Also included are the 'standard' colors for the Su-27 camouflage:

 
AMMO
AV
GSI
HAT
LC
MIS
MRP
TAM
TES
XTRA
Su-27 Blue
 
71.337
 
A095
C095
 
 
197
 
 
 
Su-27 Pale Blue
 
71.334
 
A328
C328
 
 
196
 
 
 
Su-27 Light Gray
 
71.335
 
A038
C038
 
 
198
 
 
 
Cockpit Gray-Blue
 
 
C392
 
 
MMP096
049
 
 
 
Brass
0197
71.067
C219
 
 
MMC002
150
 
1782
 
Black
0032
70.950
C002
H002
N002
A125
C125
LC002
MMP047
005
LP01
X01
1747
 
Red
0049
71.269
C003
H003
N003
A276
C276
LC006
MMP003
002
LP07
X07
1705
 
Royal Blue
0103
71.004
C005
H005
N005
A220
C220
LC010
MMP048
384
LP06
X03
2031
 
Silver
0195
71.062
C008
H008
N008
A003
C003
LC074
MMM006
128
LP11
X11
 
X038
Steel
0191
71.065
C028
H018
N018
 
 
MMM002
030
X10
1780
X502
Sky Blue
 
71.089
C034
H025
N025
 
LC058
 
 
X14
 
 
Light Gull Gray
0241
71.121
C373
H051
N051
A048
C048
UA025
MMP063
098
 
1730
 
Aircraft Gray
 
 
C073
H057
N057
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Interior Green
0220
71.137
C027
H058
N058
A211
C211
UA004
MMP059
131
 
1715
X117
XA1117
Air Superiority Blue
 
71.332
C074
N017
A155
C155
UA037
 
240
 
 
 
Burnt Iron
0187
71.073
C061
H076
N076
A106
C106
 
MMM01
147
LP54
XF84
 
X508
Tire Black
0033
71.315
C137
H077
N077
 
UA733
MMP040
 
LP65
XF85
 
 
Olive Green
0084
71.093
C054
H080
N080
A152
C152
UA303
MMP034
078
XF58
 
 
Dark Gray 2
0235
71.308
C032
H083
N083
 
 
 
 
XF75
 
 
Clear Red
 
70.934
C047
H090
N090
 
 
 
266
LP72
X27
 
 
Clear Green
 
 
C138
H094
N094
 
 
 
268
X25
 
 
Smoke Gray
0095
 
C101
H095
N095
 
 
 
 
LP67
X19
 
 
Russian Green
 
71.022
C136
 
 
 
 
XF05
 
 
Gunship Gray
0204
71.097
C305
H305
A031
C031
UA022
MMP084
040
AS27
1723
 
Gray
0211
71.275
C306
H306
A054
C054
UA094
MMP118
039
AS28
XF18:1+
XF53:3
1725
 
White
 
71.279
C316
H316
A049
C049
 
MMP104
099
AS20
XF02
1745
X141
XA1141
Light Gray
0212
 
C324
H324
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dark Gray
0205
71.051
C331
H331
A144
C144
 
 
113
XF54
2059
X004
XA1004
Medium Sea Gray
0246
71.307
C335
H335
A141
C141
UA028
MP094
112
AS11
XF83
2058
X003
XA1003
Light Gray
0209
71.276
C338
H338
A050
C050
UA023
MMP116
364
 
1732
X139
XA1139
Black Gray
0218
71.055
C116
H416
A040
C040
UA133
MMP089
059
 
2079
X203
XA1203

My sincere thanks to Kitty Hawk Models for this review sample!