Jays Model Kits


Kit JY0103 1/72 Spitfire Mk VIII


by David Harvey

 

Review Type

First Look

Scale:

1/72

Price:

$22.00 AUD from Boomerang Models

Contents and Media:

Two plastic sprues, wire mesh and white metal control column

Advantages:

Very nice panel lines

Disadvantages:

Rough casting and surfaces

Recommendation:

Recommended

 

Introduction

The Spitfire would have to be one of the most iconic, and most modelled kits in existence. The aircraft has been modelled in all scales and has had a large percentage of the different Marks kitted at some stage. Of all the Marks out there the Mk VIII would have to be one of better looking aircraft to me and I have several of them in 1/48 in various guises. To add to those many kits already out there Jays Model Kits has added a multimedia 1/72 Spitfire Mk VIII with two RAAF schemes.

The Kit

The kit is a multi media kit and consists of:

  • two sprues with the fuselage, wings and other smaller bits,
  • two vacformed canopies,
  • a white metal control stick,
  • a piece of fine mesh for the radiator intakes,
  • and a small sheet of decals.

 

When looking at the plastic a few things stand out to the eye:

  • The plastic is rough and will need considerable cleaning to make the surfaces smooth.
  • There is a great deal of cleanup of the parts to make them the correct shape.
  • There is not a great deal of detail for the interior and it will all need to be scratch built if you want any. The pilots seat is way over scale and needs thinning down or replacing.
  • The panel lines are very fine and look good for the scale of the kit.
  • The sprue gates are very big and I believe that great care will need to be taken when cutting (sawing?) the parts from them.
  • The instrument panel and rudder pedals are moulded solid and would need to be worked on to make them look correct. Whilst this would barely be seen I believe that anyone that bought the kit would want to clean this up or replace them with aftermarket or scratchbuilt items.
  • Both large and thin cannon bulges are supplied for the wings, unfortunately to fit the small bulges you would need to remove the complete panel with the large bulges on it and fit/replace it with the panel containing the small cannon bulges. This would be very fiddly in this scale.
  • Two different tail wheels are provided as well as the 90 gallon belly tank.
  • The propeller blades suffer from the large sprue gates and flash that would almost make them candidates for replacement with an aftermarket item.
  • The white metal control stick is the right shape but very thin with detail that would take great care with painting to bring out.
  • The two vacformed canopies provided look good and clear.

I believe that this kit would take a great deal of work to get the best results out of it. The sad part is that the fine detail can be seen under the rough surface and it cries out for careful cleaning to release it.

Instructions

As this kit is very basic, so are the instructions. They consist of two pages, a single double sided A4 sheet with construction notes on one side and the three view colour and marking instructions for G*ZP on the other as well as a single sided A5 sheet with the four view colour and marking guide for UP*P. The construction guide has only three steps on it with some templates for you to use to make the bulkhead and the undercarriage.

 

The Decals

The aircraft portrayed on this decal sheet are:

  • A58-492/UP*B of 79 SQN RAAF, Morotai Island, 09 Mar 45, in Dark Green, Medium Sea Gray and Ocean grey camouflage scheme; and
  • A58-617/ZP*G of 457 SQN RAAF, Morotai Island, 15 Dec 44, in Dark Green, Medium Sea Gray and Ocean Gray scheme.

The small sheet of decals provided the national markings, SQN codes and personal markings for each aircraft. The instructions mention that the decal producer made an error when printing them and gave the tail numbers of A58-627 and A58-517 and suggest that the modeller cut the decals to make the appropriate tail number. Unfortunately for this recommendation it is not possible to make up A58-492 out of the numbers provided.
The decals themselves are very nicely printed with solid colour that should go down well on the schemes portrayed.

 

Recommendation

This kit would involve a great deal of work to bring out it’s good points such as the fine surface detail whilst the possible replacement of many items may turn some away from it. There are better options out there for a 1/72 Spitfire Mk VIII such as the VERY pricey but VERY nice CMR kits but this kit does have potential. The kit is most definitely not for beginners due to the very nature of the kit with it’s large sprue gates and requirement to scratch build many items.

After reviewing the kit I do recommend it for the more experienced modellers who do not wish to spend up big on the CMR kits and are up for a challenge.

For a build review of this kit by David Edwards go HERE.

This kit is courtesy of and available from Boomerang Models.