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P-40B Cockpit
for Trumpeter's 1/32 scale kit

 

Fabflight

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: DET32002
Scale: 1/32
Price: Around 30 Euros
Contents and Media: Nine pieces in grey-green resin; one photo-etched fret
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: High quality casting; well detailed (considerably better than kit part equivalents); convincing harness and cushion cast onto seat; subtly bulged and flattened resin tyres; effective use of photo-etched parts for smaller details; simple replacement for kit parts.
Disadvantages: Does not address the depth of the cockpit or the squat pilot's seat; some pin holes and minor damage.
Recommendation: Recommended for enhancing the detail of the Trumpeter 1/32 scale P-40B (ie, not as a correction)

 


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FirstLook

 

Fabflight has released a multimedia detailing set for Trumpeter's 1/32 scale P-40B, comprising a replacement cockpit, main wheels and tail wheel.

I have chosen my description carefully here. The cockpit is a replacement, not a correction. It does add considerable detail to Trumpeter's front office, but does not address the problem with the depth of this area of the kit. Unmodified, the kit cockpit floor is too high, meaning that the entire cockpit is too shallow by around 7mm as far as I can estimate.

Fabflight's resin detailing set comprises nine parts in grey-green resin and a photo-etched fret. The flat cockpit floor has been improved with rivet, panel and control rod detail. Sidewalls are appropriately busy and are designed to be further detailed with a combination of photo-etched parts and kit parts. The instrument panel is supplied is a photo-etched part. I have test-fitted the kit-supplied acetate instruments to the holes in the photo-etched panel. They line up nicely.

A harness and cushion are convincingly cast onto the resin replacement seat, although the seat itself suffers from the same squat appearance as its kit counterpart. This is another complication of the shallow cockpit - an accurately sized seat would be too tall for the cockpit. The rear bulkhead has a nice seat mount and headrest cast in place.

All the parts are cast to a very high standard, but there were some tiny pinholes and some small pieces broken in transit. These will be easily repaired prior to final assembly.

In all cases, the detail on the replacement parts is noticeably superior to that on the kit parts.

The wheels are a great bonus. They are slightly flattened and bulged, and the left and right main wheels  have been cast from separate masters. This means that the "rotation" of the tyres on their flat spots is slightly different, as evidenced by the positions of the positions of the hub fasteners - a terrific detail touch. The wheels also have deep locating holes for brake lines.

Instructions are by way of four diagrams with an indication of where each part number should be located. Some additional reference may be of help during construction.

 

 

Conclusion

 

Fabflight's 1/32 scale P-40B detailing set will add considerable detail to Trumpeter's cockpit, and the wheels are a very welcome bonus. If you are satisfied with the depth of the kit cockpit, you will be able to use the main components of this set as a direct replacement for kit parts.

Recommended as a detail set.

Thanks to Fabien from Fabflight for the review sample.

Correcting the Trumpeter Cockpit

If you want to deepen Trumpeter's cockpit, you will have a fair amount of work in front of you.

It would seem to me that Trumpeter has probably misinterpreted the structural features at the top of the sidewalls. The top of their sidewalls does not match reference photos of the real cockpits sills. See the P-40B cockpit photos on page 59 of Bert Kinzey's P-40 Warhawk in Detail and Scale to see what I mean. The sidewalls will need to be largely rebuilt; while the bulkheads and rudder mounts will have to be modified, at a minimum.

The seat also looks too short and squat, probably because it has to fit in the shallow cockpit. This will be tricky to fix. Finally, I believe that the floor of the P-40B was curved (it was the top of the wing centre section, so it followed the shape of the wing). However, this is not too obvious as much of the floor is hidden by the seat and behind the instrument panel.


All the FABFLIGHT range can be seen at http://fabflight.free.fr or http://www.Master194.com

and ordered at FLIGHT 66 ( flight66@wanadoo.fr )


Text and Images Copyright 2004 by Brett Green
Page Created 27 April, 2004
Last updated 28 April, 2004

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