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Internal Brace
for Trumpeter RA-5C Vigilante


Nautilus, 1/48 Scale

S u m m a r y
Catalogue Number and Description Nautilus Models W-2809 -  Internal Brace for 1/48 Scale Trumpeter RA-5C Vigilante
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: Nine parts on a die cut wooden sheet
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Clever and helpful accessory addressing a problem with Trumpeter's Vigilante; useful instructions
Recommendation: Recommended


Reviewed by Rodger Kelly

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Every now and then something unexpected pops up out of the blue that you can really find useful.  This new wooden internal brace set for the 1/48 scale Trumpeter RA-5C Vigilante is one of those occasions.

Nautilus Models are a US based company that have been around for while now.  Better known for their resin and wood detail sets for ships, the internal brace set, to my knowledge at least, is their first foray into the scale aviation world.

The Trumpeter RA-5C kit has been around for a while now.  It is a reasonable kit as far as I'm concerned.  It does require a fair bit of work to assemble with the upper fuselage seam being the most difficult to address.  I have two kits and the fuselage halves on both kits are curled downwards not a great deal, but they are curled.  To cure this I immersed the parts in hot water and gently bent them outwards.   Once this was accomplished I removed the assembly pins and added tabs along the seam in the same way that you would with a vac-form kit to reinforce the seam and to give the glue more surface to bite into.  Once this was done, I used a piece of sprue to hold the end of the fuselage open and to reinforce to "square" it up to line up the tail cone seam.  This was not an onerous task but it was time consuming.  Once assembled and braced in this manner, the fuselage of my kit is reasonably rigid but I treat it with care lest the seams pop open.

The Nautilus Models kit addresses these problems.  The kit comprises nine pieces in all.  Seven of the parts are the internal brace itself with the remaining two being FOD (foreign object damage) covers for the engine intakes.

The kit is manufactured entirely from a thin and light wood that has been laser cut to form the parts.  Construction is easy.  Simply snap the parts from the fret and you are just about ready to go.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

The rear bulkhead has two holes cut into it to hold the Aires resin after-market after-burner cans should you want to replace the Trumpeter kit ones.  Nautilus quotes Aires set #4118 but Aires have just released a new set specifically designed to fit the Trumpeter kit (#4258).  A dry-fit of these cans reveal that some adjustment will be required to the Nautilus part to ease fitment should you opt to use this set.  I can't speak for the former Aires set as I don't have one in my possession.

An A-4 sized page of written instructions accompany the set that advises a suggested assembly sequence but I found the pictures of the set being fitted to the Trumpeter kit on their website http://nautilusmodels.com/W-2809.htm to be of more assistance.

This is a nice product from Nautilus that will ease the construction of your Trumpeter Vigilante.


Text and Images Copyright 2005 by Rodger Kelly
Page Created 29 August, 2005
Last updated 29 August, 2005

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