P-51 Mustang Tyres and Main Wheel Hubs
BarracudaCast, 1/32 scale
u m m a r y
|Catalogue Number and Description:
BarracudaCast Item Nos.
BR32029 P-51 Mustang Diamond Tread Tires
BR32030 P-51 Mustang Oval Tread Pattern Tires
BR32031 P-51 Mustang Octagonal Tread Tires
BR32032 P-51 Mustang Block Tread Tires
BR32034 P-51 Mustang Mainwheel Hubs
BR48050 P-51 Mustang Oval Tread Pattern Wheels
BR48051 P-51 Mustang Hexagonal Tread Wheels
||1/32 and 1/48 scale
|Price and Availability:
1/32 scale tyres USD$6.95
1/32 scale hubs USD$4.95
1/48 scale wheels USD$5.95
all available online from Barracuda Studios
|Contents and Media:
||1/32 tyre sets contain two parts cast in cream-coloured resin; 1/32 hub set and 1/48 wheel sets contain four parts cast in cream-coloured resin; all sets include a single page full colour instruction sheet.
||Accurate; high quality casting; 1/32 tyre sets offer four different types of tread pattern.
||BarracudaCast’s Mustang tyres should almost be an almost mandatory purchase for anyone building a 1/32 P-51 model. The combination of accuracy, casting quality, and range of tyre treads will likely see these sets remain the standard for 1/32 P-51 wheels for a long time. BarracudaCast’s 1/48 P-51 wheel sets are also an excellent way to enhance your quarter-scale Mustang.
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Amongst the few parts of Tamiya’s 1/32 P-51D kit that warrant replacement are the tyres. These are a good representation of the diamond tread tyres fitted to many Mustangs, but being vinyl are tricky to clean up and paint. A number of manufacturers have stepped in with resin replacements – for both the tyres or the entire wheel – but none as comprehensively as BarracudaCast, which offers tyres with four different tread patterns. BarracudaCast also produces a set of accompanying hubs for modellers building 1/32 P-51 kits from manufacturers other than Tamiya, as well as two different 1/48 P-51 wheel sets.
1/32 P-51 tyres
BarracudaCast has chosen to represent four of the most common tread patterns carried on P-51 tyres: diamond, oval, octagonal, and block. In each of the review samples, these patterns have been cast crisply, consistently and deeply, with no flaws of any description. A side-by-side comparison of the BarracudaCast diamond tread tyres with their Tamiya counterparts reveals the former to be noticeably superior.
As pointed out on the BarracudaCast website, Mustangs in the field were often fitted with differently treaded (ie unmatched) tyres, and the four different tread patterns allow this to be replicated in model form.
The tyres are attached to their casting blocks via narrow rebates, which should be easy to separate with a sharp razor saw. There is a thin film of resin across the hole in the middle of each tyre, which took me less than a minute to remove with a file. There is no need to clean up the slightly rough edge that remains after the film has been removed, because this is completely covered by the hubs.
A test fit of the Tamiya hubs to the BarracudaCast tyres revealed perfect fit, with no fettling required. I simply cut the hubs off the sprue, cleaned up their sprue attachment points, and pressed them into the centre of the tyres; the fit is amongst the best between kit and aftermarket parts I have ever seen. No instructions are provided, but they are not necessary as the assembly process is very straightforward.
1/32 P-51 hubs
The first point to make about these 1/32 P-51 wheel hubs is that they aren’t intended for the Tamiya kit, because according to BarracudaCast ‘the mounting to the gearleg is different’. Using the hubs on Tamiya’s gearlegs will presumably result in fit problems, and in any case it’s not necessary because the Tamiya kit hubs are so good. Again quoting the website, the hubs are aimed at ‘modelers building a P-51A, B, C, D or K from Hasegawa, Trumpeter, Dragon, Hobbycraft or Monogram’.
The hubs are attached to their casting block via a thin strip of resin that, as with the tyre attachment, should be simple to remove. There is a thin film of resin over some of the holes in the hubs that will need to be carefully teased off with a file or piece of rolled up sandpaper. Casting quality appears to be near perfect.
I haven’t tested the fit of the hubs to the BarracudaCast tyres, but – given the quality of fit between the tyres and Tamiya’s hubs – I suspect it will be positive.
1/48 P-51 wheels
Not forgetting quarter-scale modellers, BarracudaCast has also released two 1/48 Mustang wheel sets: one with hexagonal tread tyres, and the other with oval tread tyres. In this smaller scale, the hubs facing the gearlegs have been cast integrally with the tyres, with only the outer hubs provided as separate parts. Again, casting quality is excellent, with clearly defined tread patterns and holes between the hub spokes (although as with the 1/32 scale hubs, there is a little flash that will need to be removed).
I’d almost suggest that BarracudaCast’s Mustang tyres (and hubs if you’re modelling a kit other than Tamiya’s) should be a mandatory purchase for anyone building a 1/32 P-51 model. The combination of accuracy, casting quality, and range of tyre treads means that these sets are likely to remain the standard for 1/32 P-51 wheels for a long time. The asking price of USD$6.95 for the tyres, and $4.95 for the hubs, also strikes me as very reasonable. Finally, the 1/48 wheel sets are an excellent way to enhance your quarter-scale Mustang, being almost certainly better than any kit wheels in this scale.
Very highly recommended.
David Muir, ‘Southern Cross Mustangs – the P-51s of Australia and New Zealand’ (Red Roo Models, 2009)
Bert Kinzey, ‘P-51 Mustang in Detail and Scale, Parts 1 and 2’ (Squadron Signal, 1996 and 1997).
Thanks to Barracuda Studios for sample
Barracuda Studio products are
available online from their website
Text and Images Copyright © 2014 by Brad Fallen
This Page Created on 24 January, 2014
24 January, 2014
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