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In-Box Review
Gnat T-1 upgrades
Folland Gnat T.1 upgrade sets
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by: Andy Brazier [ BETHEYN ]

The Folland Gnat was a small, swept-wing British subsonic jet trainer and light fighter aircraft developed by Folland Aircraft for the Royal Air Force and flown extensively by the Indian Air Force.
The Gnat was designed by W.E.W. Petter as a development of the private venture Folland Midge. It first flew in 1955. Its design allowed its construction without specialised tools by countries not highly industrialised.[1][2] Although never used as a fighter by the Royal Air Force (RAF), the Gnat T.1 trainer variant was widely used. The Gnat became well known as the aircraft of the RAF's Red Arrows aerobatic team.
The Gnat was exported to Finland, Yugoslavia and India. The Indian Air Force became the largest operator and eventually manufactured the aircraft under licence. India then developed the HAL Ajeet, a modified and improved variant.
Info from Wikipedia

In the bags
Eduard have released update sets dedicated to Airfix's new tool 1/48th Gnat T.1. The first set we shall look at covers the interior and a few external parts with the second set containing paint masks.

Folland Gnat T.1 S.A.
Mfg. ID - 49707, Suggested Retail - 16.99 (Hannants)
This set has two photo etch frets, one pre-coloured and self adhesive, and one plain fret. Two sets of instructions are included in the re-sealable bag.
The pre-coloured and S.A fret holds the parts for the cockpit.
The bang seats are completely made over with new seat cushions, harness's and ejection pull handles.
The photo on the right, has three types of seats that I have for the Gnat. The first is the standard Airfix seat, which is pretty decent to start with, but does lack a couple of the harness's. The second is the Pavla replacement, which is a one piece resin part. This does look good, and is slightly more 3 dimensional the Eduard one, but you will need to buy two as Pavla only supply one seat in the packaging. The last seat is the Eduard one, which uses the Airfix seat as a base, and has numerous parts attached, including the several harness's, seat cushions, pull cords and a couple of stencil placards for the top side of the seat.
The cockpit also has a lot of detail added, with new side consoles, instrument panels, rudder pedals and sidewall details. All the Eduard parts for this area are pre-coloured and self adhesive. I have had mixed results with the S.A parts from Eduard. I have used a couple of the S.A sets and one didn't stick to anything, and I ended up using glue, but the set I used for the Super Tucano stuck down first time with no problems.
The majority of the parts on the plain fret holds parts for the undercarriage and flaps.
The undercarriage gets a near enough complete makeover, with the undercarriage legs getting brake lines and a couple of other detail parts. The bays have several P.E placards and access panels added. The nose gear bay has a complete new floor attached. The nose bay door has a new inside face and the main gear doors have two new strengthening spars attached.
The flaps, which can be modelled dropped in the kit, are completely replaced with P.E flaps and have a couple of flap actuators to be added.
The canopy has a rear view mirror, and the external fuel tanks have new fuel caps to be added. A couple of bits go into the open nose section avionics bay.
The two instruction sheets are printed in the typical line drawings style. Various symbol's for replacing parts, bending P.E and adding parts to the kits parts are easy to read. Red shaded areas are for removing moulded on detail, of which most of this is in the cockpit.
If you have used Eduard P.E before then you will pretty much have your own way of following the build sequence in conjunction with the kits instructions. If you have never used PE instructions before then it can get a little confusing juggling several sets of instructions at a time without missing any parts. My way of tackling this problem is to mark a big "E" at the start of the build next to any parts in the kits instructions that have P.E added or replaced.
This set is worth the time and effort if you are planning to build the Gnat with an open cockpit, and wheels down.

Folland Gnat T.1 paint masks.
Mfg. ID - EX452, Suggested Retail - 5.99 (Hannants)
The one small Kabuki tape mask sheet and a one page instruction sheet are packed in a re-sealable bag,
The mask set has masks for the two canopy sections. the main canopy is a four mask affair, which only cover the edges of the canopy, so liquid mask will need to be applied. The windscreen is made up of two parts and as with the main canopy liquid mask will be needed to fill out the center.
The rest of the masks in this set are for the wheels. The main wheel mask cover one side of the tyre part, so you can spray the hub. The spoked hub is a separate part in the kit so no masks are needed for this part.
The twin nose wheels have masks for the hubs, so the tyres can be sprayed. There are four of these masks.
This mask set is handy, but I wouldn't call it an essential item.

Rowan Baylis has reviewed the Airfix Gnat here.

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Highs: Improves the kits detail, especially in the cockpit.
Lows: P.E set costs more then the base kit.
Verdict: The P.E set does really enhance the detail in the cockpit and landing gear areas. The mask set, is handy, but the canopy is pretty easy to mask yourself anyway.
  Scale: 1:48
  Mfg. ID: see text
  Suggested Retail: see text
  PUBLISHED: Mar 26, 2015
  NATIONALITY: United Kingdom

Our Thanks to Eduard!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Andy Brazier (betheyn)

I started modelling in the 70's with my Dad building Airfix aircraft kits. The memory of my Dad and I building and painting a Avro Lancaster on the kitchen table will always be with me. I then found a friend who enjoyed building models, and between us I think we built the entire range of 1/72 Airfi...

Copyright 2021 text by Andy Brazier [ BETHEYN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


As I am building this little jet for the Trainer/two seater campaign, I might as well turn this thread into a build blog. Cockpit done. Pretty easy to build, even if the smaller S.A bits needs glue to attach. . Cockpit sidewalls. Main undercarriage bays with added P.E. Andy
APR 01, 2015 - 01:53 PM
Hi Andy - neat little trainer which looks good in the majority of schemes it carried! Will you have it on the Bulldogs stand at Cosford show? I'd really like to see it close up! Regards, Steve S. (Bolton IPMS)
APR 01, 2015 - 01:59 PM
Hi Steve, It will be in the scheme of the Central Flying School, which is a colourful scheme of Fire Orange and silver. I wont be at the Cosford show, but I will be at Telford , so I will bring it there. Andy
APR 01, 2015 - 02:25 PM
All the interior is in. Fuselage being closed up. The fit of this kit is exceptional. Andy
APR 01, 2015 - 03:30 PM
The fuselage is closed up, and the wings are on. A little filler is needed around the wing joins. It is surprising how small this kit is. The replacement Eduard flaps are made up of 8 parts each and are a little fiddly, and require multiple bends, but do look good once installed. Andy
APR 02, 2015 - 11:53 AM
Eduard masks applied to the canopy, and white glued into place. Eduard only supply the outside frames, so you have to fill the middle portions yourself. The silver part of the camo is on. Red/orange to be applied next. Andy
APR 05, 2015 - 03:56 AM
Those Eduard PE parts sure make a huge difference to the look of the Airfix Gnat Andy. Nice one tim
APR 05, 2015 - 04:52 AM
Nice one Andy That's really nice work - and the upgrades definitely look worth getting. I promise I will get back to my poor neglected Red Arrows Gnat one of these days... All the best Rowan
APR 07, 2015 - 12:57 AM

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