David Knights' Weblog

August 16, 2019

Magazine review: Scale Aircraft Modelling Vol.41 #5 (July 2019)

I’ve looked back and realized I haven’t done a SAM review in about 4 years.  I used to do them all the time.  Out of the habit I guess.  I still get the magazine and live through its ups and downs.  This issue is the last by its current editor.  A new editor took over for the August issue.  I’ll review that when I get the time.

In this issue, two subjects I am greatly interested are covered.  There is a long form build review of the Revell/ICM MiG-25 RB.  While the RB is a recon version is a recon version, the cover of the magazine features a nice drawing of one of the interceptor versions.  There is also a color article on pre-WWII RAF far east colors, centering around whether any Vildebeestes were wearing a blue/green far east scheme. (They probably weren’t)  A good issue.  I enjoyed it and it took me more than 30 minutes to read it, which is a good sign.

My one criticism would be that in man of the short build reviews, the models built for the review don’t look very good.  If I were a manufacturer, I’d be worried about the impression these photos left of my models.

 

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April 3, 2018

Magazine review: RT Volume 40 #1

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 5:51 pm
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In past reviews I’ve said just about all I can say about RT.  It is, IMHO, the best non-commercial modeling magazine out there, and in fact is one of the best magazines period.  It is the only modeling magazine that I read all of the articles regardless of subject or scale.

This issue is no different.  In addition to an excellent article on building the 72nd scale Airfix Spitfire PR.XIX, there is an article on building and improving the Italeri Italian manned torpedo from WWII.  There is also build article on a 1/144th 727 airliner.  Finally there are two articles on the RG-31 Nyala, MRAP/ wheeled APC.  The first is a history of the vehicle, with a focus on its use by the Canadian armed forces, while the second is a construction article using the Kenetic kit as the starting point.  Both are excellent reads, even for a non-armor guy like myself.

Highly recommended.

May 23, 2017

Book review: The Mitsubishi Zero, Type 0 Carrier Fighter (A6M) “Zeke” in World War Two. (Combat Colours No. 9)

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 10:36 pm
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Book review: The Mitsubishi Zero, Type 0 Carrier Fighter (A6M) “Zeke” in World War Two. (Combat Colours No. 9)
Author Nicholas Millman
40 pgs
ISBN 978-1-908565-57-0

The magazine, Scale Aircraft Modelling, publishes a series of “books”, really more like pamphlets, that look like magazines.  The series is called Combat Colours and features a particular aircraft or time period and is focused on paint colours and markings.  In regard to this issue, No 9 in the series, it covers the thorny subject of the colours of the iconic A6M Japanese Zero fighter.

This particular subject is one that has been the subject of much debate over the last 20 years or so, especially as it applies to the early A6M2.  For years the early Zeros were thought to be a light gray.  However, more recent research has revealed that the original color was a taupe, somewhat akin to RLM02, and weathered, due to chalking, to a light gray.  The author of this volume, Nicholas Millman has dedicated many years to the study of the colors and markings of Japanese aircraft.  He has previously authored several of the best books in the Osprey book series, on aircraft like the Ki-27. Ki-43, Ki-44 and Ki-61. He also runs a highly informative website called Aviation of Japan.  http://www.aviationofjapan.com/

Mr. Millman, standing on the shoulders of giants such as Don Thorpe, Ian Baker, Robert Mikesh and James Lansdale, has brought together much of the latest research and organized it in a very easy to understand manner.  There are discussions of many of the different camouflage schemes the Zero wore throughout its career. All of the detail areas such as cockpits, props, cowls and undercarriage are discussed in separate sections. The author deserves credit for laying out his research and conclusions and acknowledges where there are alternate interpretations.

This pamphlet is lavishly illustrated with many black and white photos as well as colour side views as well as several colour charts.  The downside of all these colour illustrations and charts is that it has driven the cost of the pamphlet above what you might expect for, what in essence, is a 40 page magazine.  The retail price of this issue of Combat Colours No.9 is $23.  While this might seem steep, I can say that if you are at all interested in the Zero, this book is well worth it, constituting the latest thinking on the subject of how to paint you model of the Zero.

Highly recommended.

December 27, 2016

Magazine review: IPMS/USA Journal Vol.28 #6

Filed under: IPMS,Modeling — dknights @ 3:55 pm
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The latest issue of the Journal is out.  Frankly this is the best issue in a number of years.  This has nothing to do with my having a book review in the issue and one of the other articles has previously appeared in MMCL’s Tactical Notes.  If you aren’t a member, join IPMS/USA now.

December 23, 2016

National Geographic B-17

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 9:39 pm
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This photo of B-17 Button Nose appeared in the March 1945 issue of National Geographic.  Oddly enough the aircraft itself was lost in August 1944 over France.  Luckily, the crew pictured below all survived.

B-17

B-17

October 19, 2016

Magazine review: RT Vol.38 #3 (Fall 2016)

Filed under: IPMS,Modeling — dknights @ 8:01 am
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The latest issue of RT rolled in a week or two ago and though I read it right away, I’m just getting around to doing the review.

Heck, these reviews of RT could be on autopilot now.  Every one is the same.  It’s a great magazine; you should join IPMS/Canada.

Well, it is true for this issue as well.  We get part two of Jim Bates Canadian Hurricane article as well as decals to make a few of the aircraft profiled.  There is also a nice build of a series of Canadian Sherman variants.  As I’ve said so many times before, it is a great magazine; you should join IPMS/Canada.  Plus, free decals!!!

October 3, 2016

Magazine review: Small Air Forces Observer Vol. 40 #2 (158)

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 9:47 am
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The latest SAFO is out and it makes for compelling reading.  There is an in-depth article with photos and side view drawings of the Estonian air forces which flew for the Luftwaffe.  In addition there is an article on the Fiat CR.20 in Italian service and a rundown of all of the air contingents which served with ISAF in Afghanistan.  As always SAFO provides some excellent reading material as well as inspiration for possible modeling subjects.

July 7, 2016

Magazine review: RT Vol. 38 #2 (Summer 2016)

Filed under: IPMS,Modeling — dknights @ 10:58 pm
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Frankly, I almost get tired of writing a review of issues of RT.  RT, as you know by now is the quarterly magazine of IPMS/Canada.  All of my reviews are pretty much the same since I am of the opinion that RT is the best modeling magazine out there, either commercial or non-commercial.

This issue is particularly good. Our good friend Jim Bates has the first part of a multi-part article on the Canadian Hurricanes.  This article contains a bunch of great reference photos and represents the kind of in depth research that modelers crave.  Jim has done a true service by gathering this info.  In addition, there are articles on a 1924 steam powered truck, a 72nd WWII Canadian minesweeper as well as a 35th scale build of the WWII Canadian army “Otter” recon vehicle. All of these articles are well worth reading and this magazine provided great reading material on a round trip flight to DC a few weeks ago.

If you aren’t already, you should become a member of IPMS/Canada right away.  Tell them David sent you.

June 1, 2016

Free decals

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 10:26 pm
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and an interesting article series, if you join IPMS/Canada.

May 24, 2016

IPMS Canada

Filed under: IPMS,Modeling — dknights @ 2:51 pm
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IPMS Canada produces, IMHO one of the finest modeling magazines out there, RT.  This issue soon to come out contains an article by “friend of the blog” Jim Bates.  Now would be the time to join.

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