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Revell Germany 1/48 scale de Havilland Mosquito B Mk.IV

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Revell Germany 1/48 scale Germany de Haviland Mosquito B Mk.IV
Kit: No. 04555
Scale: 1/48
Manufacturer: Revell Germany, 49-05-223-965-0,
Price: $37.25
Comments: Injection-molded, 231 parts, decals
Pros: Good cockpit, engine, and bomb bay details; optional parts; nice decals
Cons: Engineering complicates assembly; spinners too bulbous
Issue published: July 2009
On a list of iconic World War II aircraft, Great Britain's Mosquito would be near the top. Now, Revell Germany's Mossie bomber swells the ranks of available kits of the famous plane.

Molded in light gray plastic, the parts show good surface detail, but there are some ejector-pin marks, sinkholes, and prominent mold seams. Some of the parts have strange molding artifacts, but a swipe with a hobby knife removes them easily.

In addition to cockpit and nose compartment details, the Revell Germany's kit features two complete Merlin engines and a detailed bomb bay complete with four bombs. To display the latter, you have to cut the access hatches from the sides of the nacelles, but here the instructions are clear.

Unused parts, including under-wing rockets and optional side windows, as well as the fuselage breakdown - the forward section is separate - point to the possibility of other versions of the kit.

The clear parts are thin, and there is frame detail molded on the inside edges of side windows. Unfortunately, there's no internal detail on the canopy, a prominent feature on the full-size aircraft.

Well-printed decals provide markings for three Royal Air Force Mosquito B Mk.IVs: two in night-bomber camouflage of ocean gray and dark green with black undersides and red codes; and another in ocean gray and dark green over light gray. All sets of markings feature nose art.

The 67-step instructions incorporate color callouts keyed to Revell's paint range.

This is no shake-and-bake build: Parts fit is OK, but before committing glue, I test-fitted everything (after filling the most obvious ejector-pin marks and sinkholes with super glue). I spent some time cleaning up parts and refining fits early to avoid problems later.

The cockpit looks good after painting and artist's oil washes, and the decal harnesses look OK through the glass.

I had trouble getting the front fuselage to close around the cockpit assembly, with a considerable gap to fill under the nose. However, the clear nose fit perfectly to the imperfect assembly.

Revell includes posable control surfaces. Although the elevators must be glued in position, the rudder, ailerons, and flaps are designed to be movable. The engineering of the flaps impressed me; as they drop, they also roll back like the full-size aircraft. All of these were too loose for my liking, so I glued them.

After trimming, the wings slid perfectly over the spars. I used thin white glue to obliterate tiny gaps at the wings and horizontal stabilizers.

The engine nacelles presented the greatest challenge. Following the instructions, I attached the inner halves first, then the landing gear and engine, followed by the outer half. Take heed: Inattention here leads to trouble. Dry-fitting and fine-tuning helped, but I still needed to sand and fill to blend everything. (I wanted to keep the Mossie's clean lines, so I left the engines out - but the Merlin parts fit cleanly.)

The complex gear legs consist of multiple scale-thin parts; they support the model, but won't tolerate a lot of stress.

The canopy framing is cleanly molded and easily masked.

After painting with Tamiya acrylics and clear gloss, the decals performed beautifully, needing only a nudge from Micro Sol to conform. The red, white, and yellow are solid over the black.

Finally I added the wheels, propellers, and clear lights. The wingtip lights have small, molded indents for bulbs that look very realistic when filled with clear red or clear green paint before being attached - and they fit perfectly.

The model looks every bit the "Wooden Wonder" of de Havilland. The finished model scales out very close to published dimensions, but the prop spinners appear too round; they should be pointier.

I spent about 30 hours on my Mosquito, with cleanup and parts fit taking a little more time than usual. Because of the challenges, I recommend this kit to modelers with skills intermediate and above who have experience refining fits.

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