With a number of 20 B-2 Spirit aircrafts, the USAF definitely possesses an unmatched collection of stealth bombers. Moreover, the B-2 Spirit is built as a stealth, long-range heavy bomber to serve the strategic needs of the USAF during the late Cold War era, and is still today the world`s one and only aircraft of its type. Built by Northrop Grumman in the late 90`s and later modernised to Block 30, the B-2 Spirit can carry thermonuclear and conventional ordnance, and even standoff missiles. And features a legacy airframe design of a dark flying wing.
This kit has a box that is typical for some of the biggest 1/48 kits, which without a doubt is an impressive statement for what hides inside the box. The box itself is from a glossy, very sturdy, high-quality cardboard, and I`m glad that Modelcollect
choose the black design of the box, which was my favorite. The box art shows a distant flying B-2 at dawn, while on the side walls of the box are visible some schematic renditions of the highly detailed areas, as well as basic information of the plane and some other important highlights. The packing of the plastic parts themselves is also very nice there are plastic bags for the sprues, the PE and the decal sheets, as well as thick foam insulation sheets around the massive wing and fuselage halves.
It starts with a couple of big bags stuffed with plastic parts and keeping in mind that this is a 1/72 scale kit the amount of plastic definitely is a lot. The small parts feature details mostly for the interior of the plane such as bomb bays, cockpit, engine and landing gear bays. The control surfaces are all separate parts, which allow plenty of choices when assembling the model. The quality of the plastic is so-so. The big parts are thick and hard, and on the other hand, the small details are fine and thin, but not exceptionally detailed with rivets, cables, etc. Still for a 1/72 kit the amount of details is pretty decent. The surfaces of the body and the wings have several deep panel lines, which could have been thinner, but still they are there. At least the hard plastic means that the sharp edges will stay sharp, and this plane is bounded by sharp edges.
There are two rather smaller and identical sprues that hold the bombs, which are needed if you display the bomb bays with open doors and visible bombs/rotary launchers. A small fret of PE parts will help you improve the cockpit scene quite a lot, because the PE parts are painted and are for the most important parts the instrument panels. There is one small bag with one clear part the crystal clear canopy, which provides great visibility and very minimal distortion. The instruction manual is like a magazine big, colorful, glossy thick pages, and plenty of schemes for the assembly steps. From a brief history of the aircraft, to the color schemes and the airframe variety this guide definitely is one of the most beautiful assembly guides that I know. It, in a combination with the beautiful renditions along the sides of the box, are a great source of inspiration when building the model.
- Myriad of opts to assemble/display the model. All the control surfaces are made out of separate parts. Also all the bay doors on the lower fuselage, and some open doors on the upper fuselage, are separate parts;
- Hard sturdy plastic for the main surfaces is important to ensure the sturdiness of a model with such a width and weight;
- The profiles of the leading edges of the wing are with the right curves, which allows to make a B-2 Spirit with the latest Block 30 upgrades;
- Overwhelming amount of details for a 1/72 scale kit. From the full-length intakes and the curving exhausts, to the dozens of parts in the bomb bays this kit definitely offers an unmatched variety between vast spacious parts and fine thin details;
- The Two Bobs decals known for their high quality and correct color register, offering the assembly of 3 different B-2 airframes Spirit of America, Spirit of New York and Spirit of Mississippi;
- Nice and easy fit of the plastic parts the main parts of the body feature massive notches for easier fitting and test-fitting. There will be needed some filling and sanding of the seamlines, but other than that the parts fit pretty good.
- The price of the kit is rather high for a 1/72 kit, but it is definitely worth it B-2 is a gigantic model in 1/72 scale and could even compare to the most 1/32 scale models in terms of dimensions and weight;
- The panel lines are not proportional to the scale of the kit. They are way too wide and deep;
- Lack of indentations for RAM patterns along the panels conjunctions;
- The canopy is a one-piece canopy instead of a frame with a combination of 4 clear parts, because if painted from the outer side the 3 vertical frames between the windows will not look with the desired depth. And else the canopy is crystal-clear, and should be dimmed;
- Overwhelming details in the cockpit, which will stay hidden, especially if you tint the canopy in black/light grey;
- Thick profiles of the control surfaces and slightly too thick profiles of all the aft profiles. The boundary air intakes (the Zig-Zag patterns right infront the main intakes) are molded together with the rest of the surface and thus do not provide the feel for a layered intake. There are missing layers along the edges of the exhaust decks for cooling air as well.