New on the aftermarket scene are 3D-Kits with a new concept in plastic kit conversion sets. Rather than the traditional resin, white metal, photo-etch and the occasional vac-form, 3D-kits offer their set in full run injected plastic parts. Not only do they provide the conversion parts but they also boast high quality decals, exquisite detailing and uncompromising historical accuracy. One of their first sets is a conversion for the Hawker Hurricane MkIIC to a MkIID Tank Buster.
The conversion set comes in a little zip seal bag with a cardboard sleeve, which also provides a brief history the instructions and 3 colour profiles of the decal options, stapled to the bag. Upon opening the bag youíre greeted with eight plastic parts on two light grey sprues and a small decal sheet printed by The Fantasy Printshop.
A closer inspection of the parts shows that they are cleanly cast, with only a few injector pin marks are in areas that will not be seen once together so minimal clean-up of these will be needed. After reading and digesting the instructions I set about installing the conversion. Although the set can apparently be used on any manufacturers MkIIC, I decided to use it on the Airfix Hurricane MkIIC (A02096). After building the main components of the plane it was time to do the conversion.
First you have to decide whether you are going to use the fairings or not. If you are you have to open up the shell ejector ports, these are handed as the shells ejected inboard so you have to decide early which fairings (parts 2 & 3) to open. Next you need to remove and fill any detail not needed for the MkIIC and opening some holes for the fitting of the cannons. Now comes to fitting the Cannons and their fairings. The plastic is not too soft or brittle as is nice to work with. The beauty of the set being made from Injection plastic is that there is no need for sanding hazardous resin or using superglue to attach them. The plastic responded well to Microweld and liquid polystyrene cement. The fit of the parts are excellent and required no filling.
Painting and Decaling
Once the Cannons were fitted it came to painting and decaling. Three options are provided with the set and these are:
- 6 Sqn Gabes, Tunisia April 1943. Dark earth over mid stone with azure blue under surfaces
- 6 Sqn ĎOur Johní North Africa August 1943. BN795 was donated to the RAF by the mother Wg Cdr J W Gillian
- 1st Specialised Low Attack Instructors School, Milfield Northumberland
I chose to do the aircraft of the 1st Specialised Low Attack Instructors School. The aircraft was duly painted in ocean grey, dark green, mid grey and the ID band in Sky using Tamiya paints. After a coat of Klear it was time to decal, the Airfix decals were used for the roundels and the sets decals for the serials. The decals are in good register and settled down well with the use of the Microset/Microsol system (it a shame the same canít be said for the Airfix decals)
I really like this conversion set and it makes a change not having to sand or clean up any resin. The parts are easy to work with and easily convert the Hurricane to a MKIID. The instructions are informative but I would recommend downloading the additional information sheet from 3D-Kits website as there is some addition information and pictures from there. http://www.3d-kits.co.uk/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/72-C003-Hurricane-IID-Additional-Info.pdf
The addition of two 40mm Shell ammo boxes gives the builder diorama possibilities.
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