The Revell Kit
This isn’t a new-tool Republic P-47N Thunderbolt, but a re-release of an earlier tooling dating back to 1996 (check out the date stamp on the inner surface of the main wing). What you get is a very well-tooled model that is standing up pretty well to the years. I loved this kit when it came out – even did a build for TMMI way back then, nearly 20 years ago! Revell has included new decals for a brightly coloured post-war SAR machine based at Goose Bay, Labrador in 1948. Read on to find out more about what’s actually included…
Box and contents
Some nice, striking box art covers the large box and I have to say that this version, the PBY-5A with tricycle undercarriage was always the more popular kit – the one I built, released all those years ago was the PBY-5 without the main gear units and an all-black aircraft from the “Black Cats”. The new post-war Search and Rescue (SAR) scheme is great to see this time around and increases the possibilities for your model over and above the more common wartime aircraft also featured on the new decal sheet.
So what’s inside…?
The grey sprues are packaged well and no damage is apparent. Taking the main components first, they are well tooled, recessed panel line detail is apparent as is the nice fabric-effect on sections of the wing. No distortion was apparent and a dry fit of the fuselage halves join looks like it’s going to offer a good fit.
The cockpit looks busy enough with good levels of detail to the seats, bulkheads and separate instrument panel – decals are also included for this. The moulded raised detail is ok and once you paint and weather these they should look good and just about visible through the cockpit windows.
Weapons and stores
You can see for yourself that Revell has included some limited depth charge stores for under the wings and these are well tooled. Quite nice MGs for the rear fuselage blister windows are also included.
The wheels bays and main gear units are central features of any PBY-5A Catalina model, being completely exposed (main gear units) although the nose gear doors partially close around the nose gear when lowered so less will be seen here. Another nice touch are the bulged tyres supplied, again, a very noticeable feature of the Cat when stationary on its undercarriage.
The clear parts look clear and no defects apparent.
Instructions and decals
This model is very straightforward to build and the only real thing that you need to remember to do is add plenty of nose weight to prevent your model tail-sitting and there’s ample space for that in the forward fuselage/hull.
The decals look to be good quality – certainly good subject choices; stencil detail is also provided and is almost always well worth adding, especially in 1:48 scale to add additional interest to your completed model. All the colours are in register and colour density looks impressive and carrier film limited, so I wouldn’t expect any problems with application.
The Catalina is a very popular type and despite its age, the markings alone should ensure that this re-release sells well and be popular with modellers, especially with those that have an interest in all things amphibian, WWII and American. For your money this Revell package is well worth a look.
Recommended for all scale modellers.
SMN Quick summary Star rating out of 5
|FEATURE||STAR RATING (out of five)|
|Quality of moulding||****|
|Level of detail||***|