P-61 A photo etched detail sets
Eduard has released no less than four photo etched sets (five with the zoom set) for the 1:48 scale Great Wall Hobby kit released last year. Saying that the inclusion of the metal parts in the plastic model will enhance its level of detail would be an understatement. In fact the kit gets a complete overhaul inside and the weight of the additional parts alone could well maintain the finished model on its tricycle landing gear without the need for some extra ballast! The total count of parts on the four frets is around 630 so one should be ready for some very long building session if the plan is to include everything provided by Eduard.
These specific photo etched sets have been designed under the direction of Lubos Zach which seems to be a real P-61 specialist, and you can get more information about the development of this product in the January 2012 issue of the Eduard Newsletter (direct download link here
). Rather than do just one set which would have limited the number of parts, Eduard decided to split everything so to be able to include the most possible detail. Here is what is provided in each set:
49590 - P-61A Front Interior S.A. - 22,45€
This set consists of two PE frets. One is composed of 53 pre painted and sometimes self adhesive parts and the other 65 parts for a total of 118. The set is destined to enhance the level of detail of the pilot cockpit and features new sidewalls, instrument panels, various consoles and equipment, boxes, radios, placards, seat belts, levers, rudder pedals, etc... The crew access hatch has not been forgotten and the metal parts will add all the detail which was missing in the kit.
49590 - P-61A Rear Interior S.A. - 22,45€
This second set also consists of two PE frets. The first one, pre painted and self adhesive hold 33 parts and the other one 96 parts for a total of 129. Destined to enhance the level of detail of the rear interior of the P-61, it comprises several parts for the sidewalls, a new floor, seat belts and a complete and very detailed radio and radar rack. This set does not only add more detail, it also corrects some errors of the kit sometimes.
48726 - P-61A Exterior - 22,95€
The exterior set is composed of two photo etched frets which hold a total of 197 parts (113 84). Several areas will benefit from the extra parts such as the engines (ignition wires), the cowlings (cowling flaps), the nose radar, the wing leading edges air intakes, the gun compartment, the underside of the engine nacelles, etc... Several access hatches are provided as well which have to be glued on the surface of the model's wings and fuselage. One noticeable inclusion are corrected "spoilerons". The ones provided in the kit are wrong and the Eduard ones have the correct design. One will just have to take into account that only one "spoileron" can be displayed in the up position on the finished model because they were connected to the steering wheel of the pilot. If you want to know how these spoilerons operated, you can watch an interesting vintage P-61 presentation video on YouTube at 06:10 of the 27:34 video (just type "P-61" in the search bar, it's the movie called "Flying The P-61 Series Airplane (1944)" in the list).
48725 - P-61A Undercarriage - 29,95€
The P-61A Undercarriage set is the most complex of all. It comprises 157 (108 49 ) parts spread over two photo etched metal sheets. Part 1 is particularly huge and features complete new inner structures for both the front gear bay and the main gear bay. The instructions for this set are more important than usual and are spread over 8 A5 sized pages. For sure fitting all the PE parts won't be an easy task and not much will be visible of the original kit parts once the job is done (see accompanying pictures in the Eduard Newsletter article). However, the result should be spectacular, especially of the model is placed on a mirror base!
While the Great Wall Hobby P-61 kit can be built into a decent model out of the box (see build article here
), the inclusion of all the Eduard photo etched sets will transform the model into a real contest winner. However, the sheer mass of metal to be handled will stretch the modeler's skills to its limits so I can only recommend the Eduard P-61A sets to people with some serious experience with PE parts. Appropriate bending tools are recommended as well of course.
Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AeroScale