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Handley Page Halifax B.III

 

Fonderie Miniatures

 

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Stock No. FN6042
Scale: 1/48 scale
Contents and Media: 150 parts in low-pressure injection moulded plastic on 11 sprues; 27 parts in high-quality resin; 33 parts in white metal; 13 clear vacform parts on two sheets; 16 injection moulded clear parts; small photo-etched fret; markings for three aircraft.
Price: USD$89.96 from Squadron.com
Review Type: First Look
Advantages: Important subject not previously available in 1/48 scale; effective use of multi-media; excellent resin details; recessed panel lines and nice fabric representation on plastic parts; ordnance supplied; spare vacform parts included; three interesting marking options
Disadvantages: Modelling skills required; flash on many parts; some sink marks.
Recommendation: Recommended to experienced modellers.

 

Reviewed by Brett Green


Fonderie Miniatures' 1/48 scale Halifax B.III is available online at Squadron.com
 

FirstLook

 

The Halifax was a crucial part of Bomber Command's night bombing strategy in WWII, but it is often overshadowed by the legendary Lancaster. It has been underrepresented in plastic too, with only the ancient Airfix offering and the long unavailable Matchbox kits in 1/72 scale.

Finally we have an option to build the Halifax in 1/48 scale.

Fonderie Miniature's 1/48 scale Halifax B.III comprises 150 parts in low-pressure injection moulded plastic, plus resin cockpit, engines, intake scoops, "hedgehog" exhausts, and other details; and white-metal landing gear legs, seats, gun barrels and other details. A small fret of photo-etched parts is also supplied.

 

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:


The white plastic parts appear to be the best FM effort yet. Surface detail is by way of finely engraved panel lines and raised fabric detail. Unlike earlier kits, the surface of the plastic is quite smooth and the panel line detail is very consistent - impressive on such a big model. Flash is present around most of the main plastic parts, but it is quite fine and will be easy to remove before assembly. There are also some prominently raised ejector pins to remove from the interior of the larger parts, and a few sink marks - notably around the forward fuselage - that will need to be filled and sanded.

Resin detail is excellent. The engines are especially nice, and have already been partially assembled - both banks of cylinders are joined for all four engines. I also like the cleverly cast, one piece rear turret interior and the hedgehog exhausts.

 

 

The very chunky white metal landing gear will ensure adequate strength for this area of the model. Other white metal details include seats with textured cushions, tail gear and machine gun barrels.

 

 

The canopy, nose and turrets are supplied as vacform parts. Traditionally, FM's clear vacformed parts have been pebbly in texture, but these parts are perfectly smooth with raised frame detail. Spares are provided for all vacform parts - just as well because one of my nose cones was damaged in transit. In fact, three rear turrets are supplied!

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:


Engineering is good, with the wings reinforced by two long spars. This will ensure a secure connection and the correct dihedral. The big tailplanes are secured with locating tabs too. Flaps are provided separately so they may be depicted dropped if desired. All other control surface are moulded in neutral positions.

Three interesting decal options are included, with nose art and colourful tail markings..

 

 

Instructions are typical Fonderie Miniature fare - three folded black and white A4 pages, with one sheet dedicated to construction, one sheet to camouflage and the final sheet to background.

 

 

Conclusion

 

At last, a 1/48 scale Halifax!

Okay, size might not be everything. Even so, it certainly doesn't hurt, especially if you want to make a big impact on your model display shelves.

You couldn't make a much bigger impact than Fonderie Miniature's brand new 1/48 scale Handley Page Halifax.

If you look past the flash, the number of parts and its sheer size, there is nothing especially scary or complicated about this kit. It is quite conventional, with adequate provision to ensure the big wings and tailplanes are supported, and plenty of detail supplied in the box.

However, as is the case with earlier Fonderie Miniature releases, modelling skills are required - this is certainly not a "shake and bake" proposition. Patience, planning, parts-cleanup and plenty of test-fitting will be the best formula for approaching this model.

The included resin and metal pieces will lift the finished product to a very high standard if adequate preparation and effort is applied. You will not have to spend a cent (or should that be a centime?) on aftermarket accessories to deliver a big and spectacular Halifax.

Recommended.

Thanks to Squadron.com for the review sample


Review and Images Copyright 2005 by Brett Green
Page Created 04 May, 2005
Last updated 03 May, 2005

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