Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Wessex Review

Having now had a few hours of drooling over the kit parts I will now divulge my humble assessment for you.
The first thing of note is that Italeri has the aircraft designation wrong, it should actually be "HU.5" not "UH" as shown on the box. I believe that the "UH" designation is actually for US aircraft.
The model is moulded in a light grey plastic and comes on five sprunes plus a fret of photo etch and some mesh. The decals are very well printed and the instructions are clear and easy to follow. The clear parts are blemish free and look very easy to mask. The cockpit part has some nice raised rivet detail on the frame too.

Moving onto the "D" sprunes and here we have some excellent rotor blades, each one has been cast with the correct droop in them. The main wheels have flat spots as does the tail wheel and these look just right.

The main fuselage halves have some very nice details such as panel lines and rivet detail. Some of the horizontal panel lines look a little soft but nothing a quick pass with a scriber won't sort out. The cockpit and cargo areas look nicely done and are a good starting point if you want to add more detail but would look fine as they are.

The nose section on sprune B is very nicely done with plenty of details on the parts.The etched fret has seat belts, and instrument panel and various grills for placement on the fuselage and the sheet of nylon mesh is for the nose intake. However I would replace this with some suitable brass mesh.

Markings wise there are four options to choose from,
"A" Royal Navy No874 squadron Falklands 1982
"B" Royal Air Force No84 squadron Akrotiri Cyprus 1987
"C" Royal Navy No771 squadron Culdrose 1987
"D" Royal Navy RAE Farnborough 1982

I think it's great to see an all new model of the venerable Wessex and am very impressed with the kit. The drooping blades, weighted wheels and the ease of the assembly are all plus points for me as well as the very reasonable price, £25.99 here in the UK. Out of the box you will have a very nice looking model, with a small amount of detailing you will have a stunner.

No doubt the after-market boys will go to town offering all sorts of upgrades and improvements in the near future but to be honest I don't think the kit needs that much. Just a few wires and cables especially around the landing wheel struts and a few more knobs and buttons in the cockpit to busy it up are all that's required should you feel the need. I personally can't wait and will be starting the kit soon! Once I have trawled the web for suitable pictures and info that is.

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