S u m m a r
Catalogue Number and Description
Models 4255 - F-4D (late) Phantom Cockpit for the Hasegawa kit
Contents and Media:
resin, acetate film, photo etched metal
||Excellent detail and casting;
comprehensive photo-etch; solid packing
instructions; flimsy box
scale F-4D Phantom II cockpit set will be available online from
Not content to just
produce cockpit sets for each marque of the F-4, Aires have gone the
extra length and produced sub-variants as well. This set is for a late D
As with the other F-4 sets from Aires, the set is a mixed-media one. It
contains resin parts in the main with etch-metal pieces and an acetate
sheet. The set is meant for the old 1/48 scale Hasegawa kit.
The F-4C/D kit from Hasegawa was released in the early eighties and was
the first of their 1/48 scale Phantom "family" it released. When it was
first released it was well received and ran a close race with the Esci
series of F-4s for the crown of "best 1/48 scale F-4". It is still a
good kit now and Hasegawa periodically release it in different markings
guises. The kit still stands up well today and, apart from the raised
panel lines it exhibits, it is let down by the lack of detail in the
cockpits. This new set from Aires rectifies the latter.
The set comprises eighteen resin pieces, 50 odd photo-etched ones as
well as a small piece of acetate that holds three printed instruments
and a reflector glass for the gun sight. The resin parts have been cast
in mid-grey resin.
Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:
This set varies little
from Aires F-4 Phantom II (Early) set – 48-4245. In fact the only
differences are a new part 9 (rear cockpit instrument panel – new
instruments), part 10 (new instrument panel coaming – added 'black box'
to the right hand side), new acetate sheet (to reflect the changes to
the rear instrument panel), and new etch metal rear instrument panel).
The detail on the resin cast parts is simply superb. They are crisply
cast and would easily be the best I have seen from Aires. The set in the
main is cast as a tub with separate one-piece sidewalls, front and rear
instrument panels and seats. The balance of the resin parts includes
front and rear control columns, radar scopes and internal parts for the
The photo-etch fret is comprehensive. It contains, in the main, parts
for the canopy rails, instrument panels, and ejection seats harnesses.
The metal used is much like the lead foil you get from wine bottle. It
is soft and easy to work with, a good thing, as it is easy to manipulate
and drape the belts and harnesses onto the seats to make them appear
Does it fit? A cursory dry-fit of the tub itself (with taped one
sidewalls) into the fuselage of one my un-built Hasegawa F-4 kits tells
me that it is not too wide and the length looks alright. However, be
aware that you will need to do a fair amount of work to modify the kit
to have it fit properly. To be fair though Aires do warn you that
"Thinning of the plastic parts and dry-fitting of the assembly needed!"
A small instruction sheet is included. It carries 'exploded views' of
the suggested assembly sequence as well as a 'parts map' to assist you
in identifying the tiny resin parts.
As with all of the Aires cockpit sets that I have seen, there are no
painting instructions. Apart from a colour photograph of the painted and
assembled kit on the box top, nothing else is included.
Accuracy? To be truthful, I was not able to find two cockpit pictures
that claimed to be late F-4Ds in any of the references that I have or on
the net. It does however resemble most pictures. I would suspect that ex
F-4 crew chiefs will be able to tell us if it is accurate but I suspect
that nine out of ten modellers will accept the set for what it is – an
updated cockpit that will enhance their next F-4 kit.
The resin parts are packed into a zip-loc bag which is then itself
wrapped in a small piece of plastic bubble wrap. The photo-etch fret and
acetate sheet are placed into a plastic bag containing a piece of thick
cardboard to keep them flat. Both of these are then placed in a flimsy
cardboard box. I don't know why Aires persist with packaging their
cockpit sets this way as they already have a vastly superior packaging
system available to them. Fragile resin parts do suffer from damage in
the post as evidenced by this one which has two small parts broken from
the cockpit tub and the resin sprue.
Packaging aside though, this is an excellent set from Aires.
Thanks to Aires for the
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Page Created 20 September, 2005
Last updated 20 September, 2005
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