u m m a r y
||720005 - Boeing XF8B-1
|Contents and Media:
||30 parts in light grey plastic on
two sprues, 9 parts in resin, 8 photo etched parts on one fret, printed
instruments on clear acetate; 2
vac-formed canopies, Decals for one aircraft and 2 double sided A4
sheets with history, parts plan, build instructions and colour and
USD$30.46 from Squadron.com
||Fascinating subject, well moulded
plastic parts; excellent use of multimedia (resin and photo-etch);
nicely detailed; good representation of 3,000 hp Corncob engine with all
28 cylinders present!.
||A little flash to clean up on
plastic parts; some tiny (and I mean tiny) pin holes in a few
resin parts; some uneven panel lines; no sidewall detail in cockpit.
Reviewed by Brett Green
Valom's 1/72 scale
is available online from Squadron.com
If good looks alone determined success, the XF8B should surely have
The XF8B-1 was a big aircraft, as dictated by its long-range mission,
and its B-29-like fin branded it unmistakably as a product of Boeing.
The long cowl housed the amazing 28 cylinder Pratt & Whitney XR-4360.10
"Corncob" powerplant, generating 3,000 hp and driving a six-bladed,
contra-rotating propeller assembly. But 1945 saw the dawn of the jet age
and the XF8B, along with its Corncob-powered counterparts including the
F2G Corsair, was consigned to the trivia pages of history.
Fortunately, Valom of the Czech Republic is proving itself to be a
devoted trivia fan. With previous releases including the Blackburn
Firebrand TF..Mk.II, Polikarpov TIS and Sukhoi Su-6, Valom has now added
two 1/72 scale Boeing XF8B-1 kits to its range of esoteric yet somehow
Valom offers a Navy and a USAAF version of the XF8B. This review
examines the Army Air Force version.
Valom's 1/72 scale XF8B-1 comprises 30 parts in light grey plastic,
nine parts in resin, eight photo etched parts on one fret, printed
instruments on clear acetate and a vacuum formed canopy with a spare.
Packaging is excellent. All the parts are packed into a re-sealable
zip-lock bag, with the decals and photo-etched parts in a smaller
zip-lock bag and resin parts in two more bags with divided compartments.
Click the thumbnails below
to view larger images:
The plastic parts are well moulded, with generally crisp panel lines.
There are a few spots where the lines are a little uneven in depth, but
a few minutes with a scriber or the back of a hobby knife, followed by
sanding and polishing of the plastic, will address this minor issue. My
sample also has sink marks on the lower rear fuselage and wing root of
one fuselage half. These appear to be the result of raised detail on the
inside of the part. Once again, they will easily be fixed with some
putty and sanding.
The Corncob powerplant is worthy of mention. All 28 cylinders - four
rows of seven - are represented in styrene. No short-cuts with
unconvincing engine faces here.
The two rows of propeller blades are moulded separately, with the
props and spinner of each row being supplied as one piece each.
In common with Valom's earlier releases, the plastic parts do not
have locating pins, so take your time aligning the parts and
test-fitting before assembly. A few minutes preparation before glue can
save hours of filling and sanding after!
Resin parts include the long, hollow-cast cowl, two optional drop
tanks with separate sway braces and two sets of delicate exhaust
ejectors. All these parts are beautifully presented, but one of my
exhaust stacks and one drop tank have some tiny pin holes that will need
filling before assembly.
The canopy is supplied as a vacform part. This is very
clear and features sharp raised frames. A spare is included in case of a
mishap with the hobby knife.
The instrument panel, seat harness, rudder pedals, oleo
scissors and radiator grille are all supplied on a small photo-etched
fret. The instrument panel is supplemented with dials printed on a clear
acetate sheet. The rear bulkhead, floor and seat are plastic parts -
nicely done too. However, there is no sidewall detail whatsoever, nor is
there a forward firewall. Good luck finding reference photos! A few
strips of styrene for sidewall structure and some general shapes for the
throttle quadrant, oxygen regulator, map case, radio etc. will probably
be your best bet.
Decals comprise national markings only.
Move over Luft '46 - here come the Allies!
Valom's 1/72 scale XF8B-1 is a well detailed kit of an unusual but
very interesting subject. The model could be built as the prototype, but
imagine the possibilities for creating an F8B-1 ground-pounder in US Air
Force service over Korea!
As with most limited run kits, a bit of extra preparation will be
required, but Valom's XF8B-1 should be within the capabilities of most
modellers. Take your time cleaning up the parts and aligning the
assemblies before committing to glue, and Valom's XF8B-1 should
deliver a rewarding modelling experience.
Squadron.com for this review
Review and Images Copyright © 2004 by
Page Created 23 December, 2004
Last updated 23 December, 2004
Back to HyperScale Main Page
Back to Reviews Page