Planet Models, 1/48
u m m a r y
104 - Curtiss
|Contents and Media:
55 pieces in
cream colored resin, 25 pieces in etched-metal, printed film instruments
and 2 clear vac-form canopies. Instructions, painting guide and decal
sheet. for 2 aircraft.
||FirstLook - In Box
engraved panel lines with finely detailed wheel wells. Minimal “flash”.
of cyanoacrylic (super / crazy) glue and /or two-part epoxy.
||Highly recommended for moderately
experienced modelers who would like to try an all resin kit.
Reviewed by Steven "Modeldad" Eisenman
Planet Models' 1/48 scale XP-40Q
online from Squadron
Keeping up with the
Well, maybe not the Jones, but rather keeping up
with the Mustangs and the T-bolts. The XP-40Q-2 basically was Curtiss’s
last attempt to create a modern high speed, high performance fighter out
of the venerable P-40 airframe.
The route to the XP-40Q-2 appears to have started
with a P-40K-10 (42-9987). It retained its cockpit and fuselage spine,
but had a redesigned nose to accept the Allison V-1710-121 engine with a
four bladed prop. The under-chin radiator was moved to the underside
between the wheel wells in a shallow, but wide configuration. This was
designated the XP-40Q.
A second P-40K (42-45722) was modified, having its
spine lowered and a bubble canopy installed. The radiator was kept
under the chin, but it was shallower than one on previous P-40s. There
were also additional intakes in the leading edge of the wings. Later
on, the wings were clipped, reducing the span by over two feet.
While the XP-40Q was the hottest Warhawk produced,
it could not keep up with the Mustangs and T-bolts in almost every
aspect, including armament; the P-40Q only had two .50 cal guns per
Having built a number of resin kits, including one of Plant Models’ most
intricate kits, the Do 22, I find that resin kits are not much more
difficult to build than limited run kits, and sometimes easier.
Looking at the parts in this ultimate version of
the P-40Q, it looks to be a relative straight forward assembly. The
parts themselves do not differ that much from what would find in an
injection molded P-40 kit. There are no burdensome pour plugs that must
be removed. Where there are plugs, removal of the cast part can be done
with a #11 blade or a few swipes with a fine-toothed razor saw. The
fuselage halves appear to line up very well, in a test fitting.
the thumbnails below to view larger images:
One of the problems with resin kits in the past has
been the trench like panel lines. While the panel lines in the Planet
Models P-40Q may not be as fine as those on the new Hasegawa P-40E, I
believe they are quite well done for a resin kit.
Details are rendered quite well. There are
individual, hollow exhausts, which must be removed with care. The
wheels have a beautifully molded block tread design. The wheel wells
have a nice depth and the rib detail of the inside of the upper wing is
molded in. The one detail that I cannot seem to figure out are the
trim-tab actuating arms on the tail-planes. I am unable to see them on
pictures of the actual aircraft.
You will most likely need to use brass rod or tube
as a support for the tail-planes. The kit only provided for a butt join
to the fuselage.
There has been a bit of discussion recently about
the sweep of the leading edge of the P-40’s main wing. According to a
recent posting by Dana Bell, the factory drawing shows a sweep of 1.5
degrees. While the leading edge of wing of this Planet models kit
appears to be quite perpendicular to the centerline, I put the wing on
the grid on my cutting board. The grid showed that the wings are not
perfectly perpendicular to the centerline. Doing the best free hand
measuring I could do, it appears that there is a one-sixteenth or so
difference between the horizontal line of the grid and the leading edge
at the tip. This would be about 3 scale inches. If the wing is, in
fact, 35.25 feet in span, then after doing some work on the old
calculator, it would appear that a sweep of 1.5 degrees would be
approximately 3.1725 inches off the perpendicular from the center line.
There are two very thin and clear vac-form
canopies. The canopy frames are not very distinct so care in masking
will be required. One of the canopies in my sample came with a small
crushed spot. Also, the canopies seem to be subject to a great deal of
static electricity and attracted all sorts of dust. So clean carefully
before you Future and attach the canopy.
There are markings for two aircraft, which are one
in the same. The P-40Q (42-45722) originally was finished in Olive Drab
over Neutral Gray with a shark mouth. Later the aircraft was stripped
of all paint except for the Olive Drab anti-glare panel.
So you have a choice to present this Warhawk in
full battle dress, or in natural metal.
I know what you are thinking: “Yes, it is a nice model of interesting
aircraft, but at nearly $70.00!!!” First lets state the obvious, there
is no way you could build more than two, due to marking limitations, and
most likely you’ll build only one. Second, resin kits are expensive. No
two ways about it. But for any one doing the Hawk family, this one
cannot be avoided. Regardless of the accuracy of any given kit, for all
practical purposes, fans of the Hawks can now assemble a collection
beginning with the P-36 and go through the entire P-40 alphabet to Q.
All things considered, I highly recommend this
One final question: I wonder if a P-40N nose cane
be mated to the Planet Models kit to produce the one P-40N customized
with a bubble canopy and lowered spine?
Thanks to MPM / Planet Models for the review sample.
and Planet Model
kits are available worldwide through hobby retailers
Review and Images Copyright © 2005 by
Page Created 29 June, 2005
Last updated 28 June, 2005
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