RED ROO MODELS


RRR72137 RAAF Target Towing Beaufighter conversion (for Hasegawa Kit)


by David Harvey

 

Review Type

First Look

Scale:

1/72

Price:

$25.30 AUD from Red Roo

Contents and Media:

 

Advantages:

Very fine castings and comprehensive instructions

Disadvantages:

Some small bubbles in some components

Recommendation:

Highly Recommended

 

Introduction

One of the relatively forgoten parts of the airforce is the Target Towing aircraft. For many years this has been left in the background as it wasn't seemingly 'exciting enough' compared to the fighter aircraft. But in the last few years there seems to be a definite increase in the knowledge and availability of not only markings but kits or conversion sets. It has always surprised me with the lack of available kits as the many aircraft that have been used as Target Towers in order to train future pilots is astounding!

As part of this rise in interest levels, Red Roo models some years ago started working on the concept and components. Finally it has all come to fruition and they have released the much anticipated set in both 1/48 and 1/72.

Instructions

To sum it up in one word - Comprehensive! Red Roo has provided eleven pages of instructions to carry out this conversion plus several pages of decal placement and colour schemes for the five aircraft featured. You receive a short history of the type then numerous images, drawings and templates to use to place the different parts into the right spot or showing you where to drill holes. The last page of the instructions is how to make the Banner Target for those that want to do something very different. As this set is based on the Hasegawa kit you receive numerous references to part numbers in the kit and the best way to use, modify or discard them.

In these instructions you are told what to do, how to do it and where to do it in a very precise manner. The amount of detail in the instructions require you to thoroughly read them until you understand exactly what is required of you to complete the kit, even if you need to read them several times for it to sink in.

Contents

As part of this conversion you receive the following parts:

  • 1 x Target Chute (Brass tube);
  • 1 x Target Winch (windmill and winch);
  • 1 x Target Winch Pulley Fairing;
  • 1 x Target Pulley Mast (Brass wire);
  • 1 x 'V' shaped 0.015in wire (for lower cable bracket stud and IFF antenna);
  • 1 x piece of 0.005in plactic card;
  • 2 x photo etched fret;
  • 1 x length metallic thread for tow rope and empennage guard;
  • 16 x rocket mounts (8 x front and 8 x rear); and 1 decal sheet.

 

 

Whilst this set is not as extensive as the 1/48 set it is still very complete and provides enough to get the model looking correct.

The two main resin components supplied are the Target winch windmill and the Rocket Stubs. Once again Red Roo has done a bit of fine casting as the rocket stubs are increadibly small and delicate and once again have some wire to help hold them in spot. I find this interesting as they still look the part even with being so small.

The Winch Windmill is also very nicely cast with only one or two visible bubbles in the components. These bubbles are extremely hard to see due to the very small nature of the parts and should be easily filled. The whole assembly looks very delicate and you would need to take care once it is assembled and on the model.

Decals

As part of the 1/48 and 1/72 sets you receive the same markings for five different aircraft and a short history of each:

  • Beaufighter TT A8-265 in yellow and black stripes.
  • Beaufighter TT A8-359 in Yellow and black stripes.
  • Beaufighter TT A8-363 Silver uppers and yellow and black undersides.
  • Beaufighter TT A8-364 Silver uppers and yellow and black undersides.
  • Beaufighter TT A8-328 Silver uppers and yellow and black undersides.

In addition to the serial numbers you receive national markings, stencil data and a few other warning markers. All the colours are solid and look good as I have come to expect with Red Roo products. The serial numbers are in the correct font as per the images of the aircraft.

One of the challenges that these decals produce is that Red Roo has supplied the 'A' numbers in yellow and black to stand out from the yellow or black stripes. This means that you will need to match the yellow of the stripes with the decals or accept the different colour. I understand that the decals were done in Trainer Yellow and should not provide too much contrast if placed over most manufacturers versions of the colour.

 

Recommendation

This appears to be a very thorough conversion set that should certainly help make a totally different looking Beaufighter. The instructions are thorough, the colour schemes are striking and the decals look like they are up to the standard I expect of Red Roo product.

I highly recommend this set for those that would like a very different looking and coloured Beaufighter.

Review set courtesy of Red Roo Models.