Airfix's recent new-tool Hawker Sea Fury is a very nice kit, but some of the detail is oversimplified. A case in point is the main wheel well which, to be fair, certainly isn’t bad by mainstream kit standards. However, it definitely could do with a helping hand when compared with photos of the real thing. Thankfully, Roy Sutherland has come to the rescue with a beautifully detailed resin replacement.
The set is packed in a simple zip-lock back on a card backing and is accompanied by comprehensive instructions. The upgrade comprises 18 beige resin parts.
The casting in the sample set is flawless, and the level of detail offered really is superb; with patterns produced by Roy himself and Gerry Moss, it fully illustrates why Barracuda Studios have deservedly established such a high reputation for excellence.
The star of the show - and the core of the upgrade - is a replacement for the main well itself. This is jam-packed with details completely missing in the original kit part. There's a mass of extra structural elements, plus cables and pipework, and the fine casting makes all the detail absolutely pop out. Plus, importantly, it doesn't suffer from the injection-pin marks that will be a pain to correct on the kit part.
The firewall and front spar is constructed from three parts, with the spar again boasting crisp detail. Rounding everything off are over a dozen small details to install, creating a beautifully "busy" wheel well that will really repay time invested in careful painting and highlighting.
The set is accompanied by a very comprehensive set of instructions, featuring a step-by-step written guide and clear colour photos of each point. There are even a pair of reference photos included of a preserved airframe included for good measure.
In terms of complexity, the upgrade doesn't appear to be too hard to install. The essential task will be thinning the inside surface of the kit's lower wing part. The instructions include a very helpful photo of this, with the areas to be thinned clearly highlighted. So long as you take your time and follow the instructions, this should be a suitable upgrade for any modeller used to working with resin parts and performing simple surgery to kits.
Roy Sutherland’s latest addition to his range of Barracuda Studios upgrades for Airfix’s Sea Fury is an absolute gem. It improves the basic kit wheel well beyond all recognition, and represents excellent value for the sheer level of detail incorporated. I can recommend it without hesitation to modellers with a bit of experience.
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Highs: Excellent detail that shouldn't be too complicated to install. Comprehensive instructions.Lows: None noted.Verdict: Barracuda Studios' Sea Fury Landing Gear Bay totally eclipses the original Airfix interpretation.
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About Rowan Baylis (Merlin) FROM: NO REGIONAL SELECTED, UNITED KINGDOM
I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...