1/72 F-14A Tomcat
This is the Fujimi kit with Verlinden seats. The kit missile pylons did not fit very well and were exchanged for a set of pylons from the Hasegawa Tomcat. Also, Superscale decals were used to give this Tomcat the markings of VF-142 Ghostriders.
Minor modification was done to the landing gear by extending the oleos of the main legs. Looking at photos of the real thing I could not see that the nose landing gear extends when unloaded so I left this leg alone. Unfortunately I was not able to pose the speedbrakes open on this model because these are molded shut in the Fujimi kit, as mentioned below. Clear acrylic rod was used to support the model in the air.
Appearing at the same time as the new tool Hasegawa Tomcat (both kits were released all the way back in 1989!) a comparison is inevitable. Although Fujimi’s Tomcat is a bit easier to build the Hasegawa kit scores points on having slightly more accurate outline around the forward fuselage and finer detail overall.
Both kits have separate slats and flaps, but only Hasegawa offer separate speedbrakes. On the other hand Fujimi provide two complete engines with their trollies along with a radar assembly which can be shown if posing the radome open.
All things considered, in my humble opinion the Hasegawa kit still comes out on top.
The title photo is my somewhat hamfisted attempt at deleting the supporting rods using a photo editing software. I also added the wingtip and nosegear light to increase the realism.
5 additional images. Click to enlarge.