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Hellcat Mk.I / Mk.II
Dual Combo

Eduard, 1/72 scale

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Eduard Kit No. 7078 - Hellcat Mk.I / Mk.II Dual Combo
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: 162 olive coloured plastic parts; 16 clear parts; 1 x nickel plated photo etched frets; 1 x coloured photo etched fret; masking sheet for canopy and wheels; large decal sheet covering six markings options
Price: USD$39.95 plus shipping available online from Eduard's website
and specialist hobby retailers worldwide
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Includes two full kits; superb detail; excellent surface texture (combination of recessed panel lines, lapped fuselage panels and fabric control surfaces); straightforward parts breakdown; ample options including centreline fuel tank, bombs, rockets and three styles of engine cowling; excellent clear parts with different sliding sections for open and closed options; perfect moulding; excellent quality decals, top-opening box.
Disadvantages:  
Conclusion: Even more options result in a fabulous package for Hellcat and FAA fans - great value at a very reasonable price for two full kits.


Reviewed by Brett Green


Eduard's 1/72 scale Hellcat Mk.I / Mk.II Dual Combo is available online from Squadron.com
 

FirstLook

 

The Grumman F6F Hellcat was designed as a stop-gap upgrade of the lightweight F4F Wildcat, almost as an insurance policy in the event that the F4U Corsair, then under development, did not live up to expectations.

Despite the clear family resemblance to the earlier Wildcat, the Hellcat was an all-new aircraft. The resulting naval fighter was stocky in profile, large, powerfully armed and armoured, and heavy. The Hellcat secured its place in history with a remarkable kill ratio of 19:1.

Being without a robust, high performance naval fighter, the British Fleet Air Arm adopted the Hellcat from the end of 1943. In British service, the F6F-3 was the Hellcat Mk.I, and the F6F-5 was the Hellcat Mk.II.

A total of 1,182 Hellcats of all types eventually saw service with the Royal Navy.

 

 

Eduard entered the Hellcat market last year with their excellent F6F-3 and F6F-5 Hellcat kits. This new release covers both major British variants - the Hellat Mk.I and Mk.II - in a "Dual Combo" boxing.

You will be able to buuld one Mk.I and one Mk.II straight from the box.

Two complete fuselages are supplied.

Note that the wings for the Hellcat Mk.I and Mk.II are subtly different. Some panels have been deleted below the wings. Don't get these mixed up!

Two photo-etched frets are supplied covering coloured and nickel-plated details.

 

 

Different instrument panels are supplied for the Mk.I and Mk.II, as well as subtle sidewall and switch details.

This one comes in a top opening box too (hooray!). I know it sounds trivial, but the top opening box gives better access and is more sturdy than its side-opening counterpart.


 

Markings

Six marking options are included on the decal sheet:

  • Hellcat Mk.I JV132, Lt. Blythe Ritchie, 800 Sqn FAA, HMS Emperor, May 8, 1944 finished in US equivalents to Dark Slate Grey and Extra Dark Sea Grey with Sky lower surfaces.

  • Hellcat Mk.I JV131, 800 Sqn FAA, HMS Emperor, June, 1944 finished in US equivalents to Dark Slate Grey and Extra Dark Sea Grey with Sky lower surfaces, with invasion stripes for operations over Normandy.

  • Hellcat Mk.I FN430, 1844 Sqn FAA, P/O Hannay, HMS Indomitable, August 24, 1944 finished in US equivalents to Dark Slate Grey and Extra Dark Sea Grey with Sky lower surfaces and British Pacific Fleet markings

  • Hellcat Mk.II JX814, 1844 Sqn FAA, Sub-Lieutenant W.M.C. Foster, HMS Indomitable, Okinawa, April 12, 1945 finished in US equivalents to Dark Slate Grey and Extra Dark Sea Grey with Sky lower surfaces and large Pacific Fleet markings

  • Hellcat Mk.II JZ796, 808 Sqn FAA, Sub-Lieutenant Oscar Lorenzo, HMS Khedive and HMS Trincomalee, Ceylon, 1945 in overall Gloss Sea Blue

  • Hellcat Mk.II JZ935, 1839 Sqn FAA, HMS Indomitable, Sub-Lieutenant T.B. Speak, April 5th, 1945 in overall Gloss Sea Blue

The decals are opaque, with good colours and perfect register. My experience with Eduard decals has been very positive. They are thin and settle down well into panel lines and contours, responding well to Micro Set and Micro Sol.

 

 

As usual, Eduard has supplied self-adhesive die-cut masks for the canopy and wheels.


 

Recap

The main elements of the kit are otherwise the same as the excellent Eduard 1/72 scale F6F-3 and F6F-5 kits released recently.

For specific details, check out:



 

Conclusion

 

Eduard's Hellcat family already offered the best F6F kits available in 1/72.

The surface detail is as good as any I have ever seen in this scale. The overlapping fuselage panels are especially appropriate and beautifully executed. The addition of colour photo-etched detail parts for the cockpit and the engine crankcase are genuinely useful enhancements, especially in this scale where fine painting is more of a challenge.

There are few compromises when compared to Eduard's excellent 1/48 scale F6F Hellcats. The cockpit and engine feature the same level of detail; there are actually more options with the two styles of wheels in addition to the ordnance. The main difference is that the smaller kits do not have separate control surfaces.

Eduard is not new to 1/72 scale kits, but their F6F Hellcat family certainly sets a new standard. This new FAA Hellcat package, with its two full kit and plethora of options, just adds to the legend!

Highly Recommended.

Thanks to Eduard for the sample


Review Text and Images Copyright 2012 by Brett Green
Page Created 4 April, 2012
Last updated 4 April, 2012

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