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Eduard's new-tool Hawker Tempest

Review of the 1/48 scale aircraft kit with near perfect fits and great decals
RELATED TOPICS: AIRCRAFT
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The Hawker Tempest was an update of the Typhoon that incorporated a re-designed wing, a fuel tank relocated to a stretched forward fuselage, and tail fillet to stabilize these changes.

Eduard’s all-new Tempest (this isn’t the same Tempest kit Eduard first released 20 years ago) provides a great reproduction of this beast. It includes clean moldings and fine recessed surface details. There’s also a full fret of photo-etched (PE) parts - and you’ll use it all!

Unused plastic parts, including a second prop and spinner, tires and hubs, and rockets, point at other versions being released. Ed: Since FSM received this review sample, Eduard has offered the Series 2 variant.

Construction was absolutely straightforward. In the cockpit, the seat with PE belts, cockpit floor, rear bulkhead, and joystick go together without problems. The kit includes optional PE rudder pedals, but they are fragile and fell apart; I installed the plastic pedals instead. (Once the fuselage was closed up they weren’t visible anyway.)

Eduard provides three options for the instrument panel: all plastic with molded dials, a blank panel with decal instruments, and an all PE panel, which I used.

The tubular side frames for the cockpit, parts D17 and D4, were extremely fragile. One was broken when I got the kit, the other broke during assembly.

There’s a lot of PE detail for the cockpit side consoles, including panels and levers. It’s time-consuming to add but looks great when done.

Be careful bringing the cockpit components together. As I said, it’s fragile especially if you’re working with fractured framing.

The radiator assembly went together easily. It, the cockpit, and the tail wheel fit perfectly into the fuselage halves.

The only hiccup in the otherwise trouble-free wing assembly was the inner gear door retraction struts (parts E79), which are exposed and easily broken.

After joining the wing and fuselage, I had to fill and re-scribe where the rear of the wing meets the lower fuselage.

Landing gear and associated doors went together without a hitch.

There’s a choice of plastic or PE antennas, but I used the plastic. The PE was too delicate ­— if it gets bent, it’s ruined.

I was concerned that the PE tail stiffeners were too thick, but after a coat of paint and the application of a wash, they didn’t look too bad.

The gorgeous Cartograf decals include six marking options, from which I used a D-Day fighter (VF-K) from No. 3 Squadron. These were some of the best decals I’ve ever worked with.

Overall, Eduard’s Tempest is a nice kit. I spent 32 hours building it, but it would have been less if I hadn’t had to deal with broken parts. Despite that, it was an enjoyable build.


Note: A version of this review appeared in the September 2019 issue.

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