Trumpeter 1/72 Mikoyan MiG-31B/BM Foxhound Kit First Look
|Date of Review||March 2017||Manufacturer||Trumpeter|
|Kit Number||1680||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Nice detailing||Cons||See text|
|Skill Level||Experienced||MSRP (USD)||$69.95|
The Mikoyan OKB revised the MiG-25 airframe to create a 'Super Foxbat' capable of engaging a wider range of airborne threats. Unlike the MiG-25 however, the new design would not need the high-speed dash capability since the B-70 Valkyrie was never put into production. The new airframe would eventually be designated MiG-31 is crewed by a pilot and a weapons officer. The rear cockpit in early MiG-31s had a similar radar console layout as the AWG-9 in the F-14. In fact, the new R-33 (AA-9 Amos) missiles were mounted under the fuselage similar to the F-14 as well. In addition to the four R-33 missiles, the MiG-31 was able to operate the other common weapons in the fleet including the legacy R-40 (AA-6 Acrid) missiles of the MiG-25 as well as the R-60 (AA-8 Aphid), R-73 (AA-11 Archer) and R-77 (AA-12 Adder).
Here's the latest kit from Trumpeter in 1/72 - the MiG-31B/BM Foxhound kit. This kit provides the airframe options to build the MiG-31B or the upgraded MiG-31BM, both of which had air refueling capability. Molded in light gray styrene, this kit is presented on 17 parts trees plus three trees of clear parts. The kit features finely scribed details on the exterior surfaces and appears to be very straightforward assembly (no over-engineering or excessive quantities of small parts). Among the features and options:
- Nice front and rear cockpit details
- K-36D seats need crew restraints
- Choice of MiG-31B or MiG-31BM front canopies
- Canopies are designed to be displayed open
- Intake ducts all the way to the engine compressor faces
- Upper wing halves are integral with the upper fuselage half for better fit/easier assembly
- Positionable stabilators
- Positionable speed brakes
The kit includes a nice array of external stores:
- 2 x R-33 (AA-9 Amos)
- 2 x R-40R (SAH AA-6 Acrid)
- 2 x R-40T (IR AA-6 Acrid)
- 2 x R-73 (AA-11 Archer)
- 2 x R-77 (AA-12 Adder)
- 2 x external tanks
The box art depicts a MiG-31B following the refueling basket and loaded with four R-60 (AA-8 Aphid) mounted on APU-60-2 twin-rail launchers mounted on the inboard pylons. The R-60 was the standard short-range dogfight missile for the MiG-31B and was replaced by the R-73 on the MiG-31BM. Ironically, the R-60s were not included in the kit.
The kit provides markings options for two examples:
- MiG-31B, Bort 74, 786 IAP, 3 AD, PVO Moscow MD
- MiG-31BM, Bort 34, Russan VVS
In addition to the two subjects above, the decals also provide generic red and blue number sets to replicate other bort numbers as well as a nice set of airframe stencils.
Aside from the minor points above, this looks like a straightforward build and will make into a nice model of this formidable interceptor.
My sincere thanks to MegaHobby for this review sample.