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Mirage III BE Kit

PJ Production 1/72 AMD Mirage III BE/DS/D2Z/5BD Kit First Look

by Michael Benolkin

Date of Review February 2014 Manufacturer PJ Production
Subject AMD Mirage III BE/DS/D2Z/5BD Scale 1/72
Kit Number 721029 Primary Media Styrene, Resin, Photo Etch
Pros Very nice detailing Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (Euro) 29.80€

First Look

Mirage III BE Kit
Mirage III BE Kit
Mirage III BE Kit
Mirage III BE Kit

Marcel Bloch, famous French aircraft designer prior to the fall of France to Germany, adopted the covert name used by his brother in the underground and become Marcel Dassault. After producing a number of combat aircraft designs building on the captured knowledge of WW2 German aviation research, Dassault turned to the challenge of developing a Mach 2 interceptor that would keep France in step with aircraft developments in Britain, USSR and the United States.

The result of the Mach 2 design effort was the delta-winged Mirage III which first flew in 1956. Since that successful milestone, the Mirage has evolved into a capable fighter, fighter-bomber, reconnaissance aircraft, and more. The Mirage IIIC in particular was designed as an all-weather interceptor that could perform ground attack missions in daylight.

The Mirage III D series was the two-seat training version of the Mirage III E single-seat fighter-bomber. The Belgian Mirage III BE was the only one of the Mirage III B series to be built to the Mirage III D standards.

PJ Production has teamed up with High Planes Models to release several variants of the Mirage III BE/D series aircraft. Produced in high-pressure styrene molds, this kit is presented on four parts trees of gray styrene plus one tree of clear parts. Additional parts are also provided cast in tan resin with two reconnaissance noses cast in clear resin.

This release covers the two-seat training variants of the Mirage III E series including the Mirage III BE, Mirage III DS; Mirage D2Z; and, the Mirage 5 BD. The kit is very modular to allow for a variety of possibilities straight out of this box including some that are intended for other releases. Among the features and options in this kit:

  • Detailed cockpits
  • Detailed ejection seats
  • Choice of antenna configurations
  • Choice of external tanks
  • Choice of ventral parabrake housings
  • Optional photo-etched boarding ladders

The markings included in this kit are for :

  • Mirage V BD, BD05, 2 Sqn, Belgian AF, Florennes AB, 1985
  • Mirage III D2Z, 851, 85 Sqn, SAAF, Pietersburg AB, 1975
  • Mirage III BE, 2-ZN/271, ECT 02/002, French AF, Dijon, 1982
  • Mirage III DS, J-2012, Swiss AF, Peyerne AB, 1988

Paint instructions are given in Humbrol, Gunze/GSI, and Tamiya paints with references to FS595 where appropriate. The decal sheet also provides a nice assortment of maintenance stenciling.

This collaboration between High Planes Models and PJ Production has provided modelers with an excellent range of possibilities in the Mirage family. I've rated this kit as experienced skill level given the limited run approach will require some modeling skills to get everything assembled 'just right'. Now if only we had something similar in 1/48 scale...

You can order this kit from a number of companies listed on PJ Production's website or order the kit directly from them.

My sincere thanks to PJ Production for this review sample!