MiG-29 A Fulcrum
by Tomas Chmelik
MiG-29 A Fulcrum
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Revell’s big 1/32 scale Mig-29 in two variants
(single and double seater) was issued for the first time several years
ago. At that time, kits received – at lest as I remember- positive
feedback. They were the only kits of this airplane in 1/32 scale so
probably mainly the attractives of the airplane was the main factor.
After several years the single-seater model was reissued. How to review
the model now when there is more information available?
General summary is described in more detail at the
and of the article, but even here I can say that the feelings from the
kit are at least mixed. After opening the relatively large box with
attractive cover you will find six sprues with relatively high number of
light grey parts, one sprue with clear parts and large sheet of decals.
Model is marked “Super decal” a decals are really perfect, very
complete, with perfect register, but also with some minor flaws (see
later). Instructions are traditional Revell type, but again, with some
minor flaws. But lets go step-by-step.
Parts are crisply molded, without flash, with crisp
negative engraving. Looking closer one can find that some details are
relatively rough and in some aspects very schematic, typical example is
cockpit, wheel wells or other details. However, when compared to
short-run kits, the model sounds like an easy build – which is true.
More confusion appears when the model is compared to literature – 4+
publication in this case. Engraving is largely fictious, wheel wells are
totally wrong and flaws can be found in number of other areas (tailpipes
for example). How are these problems related to absence of information
at the time of making the kit is a question.
The question is how to proceed further. The modeler
has three basic options – leave the model out, being disgusted, or deal
with problems which includes major surgery and scratchbuilding, or leave
the flaws away with the use of resin aftermarket accessories to replace
the most problematic parts, if available. From the previous sentence it
becomes – being alibist - clear that I chose the third option. Major
surgery is not my cup of coffee, I know that I would not be able to end
with a satisfactory result. Therefore I searched web for resin
accessories – surprisingly, looking at flaws of the kit, there are not
many. Resin cockpit is (or was) produced by CAM – I was able to obtain
one via internet, but the product is listed as out of production. I
noticed that it is in plans of Black Box as well, but this might be
intended for upcoming Mig-29 from Trumpeter. Other resin details used
were Exhaust and FOD covers, also from CAM. One disadvantage of the kit
is that intakes n the upper fuselage are made in open position which is
not typical for grounded aircraft, without any kind of attempt to
represent what is under them – it would have been useful to have them as
alternatives – closed or open. However, resin cover is a good option,
supported by the fact that red color of covers puts more life to the
model. As far as I know no other accessories are available – however
there would definitively be a space for improvements!
Construction itself is without major problems.
The fit of the main parts is very good, without
flash. Construction steps are straightforward so the main components are
put together relatively quickly. Problematic areas were already
mentioned here – cockpit is successfully replaced by resin parts,
however their age is somewhere noticeable. One big disappointment is the
wheel wells – they have almost nothing in common with its original. When
completing construction by adding wheel well covers I noticed that when
in open position they do not look “right”. The problem might not be only
in the covers, but also in the shape of intakes, so there is almost no
chance for repair without significant surgery.
The undercarriage generally could include more
details, but as the model is intended for display shelf and not for
competition I decided to leave this part as it was. Aside of the cockpit
the construction was in fact out of the box. To conclude – model looks
after completion as a Mig-29 so let’s leave dealing with flaws to those
who feel to do so.
One note to instructions – it is relatively
logical, but in some parts I had a feeling that it was made for a
prototype model, because sometimes calls upon parts that are not
available, sometimes mixes left and right part of the plane etc. The
best solution is to consult your references for the placement of small
The kit contains two sets of decals – one for a
colorful German Luftwaffe subject, depicted on the box cover, while the
second is a Russian plane no. 47 with attractive shark mouth in a
I searched the Internet for pictures or drawings of
this concrete plane, but aside of few general drawings of Mig-29 with
shark mouth I have found no concrete evidence of this plane. However, as
shark mouth goes together with the shape of Mig very well, I decided to
choose this option. Instructions are not clear also regarding camouflage
colors – they call for mixage of Revell paints without any reference to
other brands or FS codes. Instructions also describe three tone
camouflage for Russian plane (grey+grey-green on upper surfaces, lighter
gray on undersurfaces) which I have fund no evidence of being true – my
references were mostly listing light grey overall with grey-green
camouflage on upper surfaces. The reason might be that pictures of real
plane sometimes look to have different colors due to sun fading, dirt or
generally weathering, but theoretically I have also no evidence against
three-tone camouflage. Finally I decided to stick to my references and I
went for two tone camouflage. Model Master paints were used - USSR
Fulcrum Gray a USSR Fulcrum Gray-Green. They are semi gloss, very good
for airbrushing and in my opinion they represent the Russian tones very
well. Light wash with artistic oils and pastels were used for
weathering, followed by gloss varnish.
Decals are very complete and in perfect register.
They are opaque and adhere well, with slight use of setting solutions.
They include stencils for German and Russian version separately which
are readable. However, instructions are sometimes not clear where to put
especially the small ones, sometimes I had a feeling that instructions
call upon a stencil, which is not available on a decal sheet. Funny
parts of decaling are the strips for missiles – they are too short to
run around the missile. Trivial problem, but looking at complexity of
the decal sheet bit surprising.
After a final coat of varnish, adding of small
details and model was complete.
What to say as a conclusion? I prefer to build kits
out of the box; however as same as in the case of the Mig-21, I used
resin aftermarket parts that helped model a lot.
Other flaws of the kit were not treated, but as the
result looks as a Mig-29, I am satisfied. Pictures were taken before
transport to final destination so some finest details are not yet
attached. Summarizing the kit, I would conclude by the following:
Attractivity of the subject
Well moulded parts, no flash
Relatively easy construction
Panel lines not where they should be
Shape problems, sometimes visible
Wheel wells, undercarriage as a whole
Finer details sometimes too rough
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Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2005
by Tomas Chmelik
Page Created 26 May, 2005
25 May, 2005
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