1:48 scale Hobby Boss F4F-3, “Wildcat”

March 23, 2013 · in Aviation · · 8 · 4.1K

Remember that -3 I saw in the hobby shop after I finished converting the F4F-4 to a -3? Well, I bought one and decided to see how it stacked up against the Tamiya kit.
In my opinion, Tamiya is the better kit. Even though does give a more detailed wheel bay and some weapons bay detail, the overall fit of Tamiya's kit is hands down the better of the two...in my opinion. However, that in no way means the Hobby Boss is a horror show. Quite the opposite is true and it too, is a very fine model and will build up into a real winner.
Hobby Boss released both an early and a later F4F-3, an F4F-4, an FM-1 and finally an FM-2. (The FM-2 IS a horror show with the nose and cowl being completely wrong. I have been working on one of these, using the Vector corrected cowl, engine, prop, forward fuselage and control surfaces. Almost done with that and I'll post pictures when I can).
THIS Hobby Boss kit is built pretty much out of the box. I added paper seat belts,nylon thread antennas, Aeromaster decals. The model is painted with Model Master Enamels in the early war scheme of Blue Gray over Light Gray. Weathering is thinned oils and pastel chalk.
Thanks again and have a great night

Freddie from LI

Reader reactions:

9 additional images. Click to enlarge.

8 responses

  1. i DO Love those ginormous insignias; plan to do that with a 72nd scale Hasegawa kit (in itself an outstanding kit).

    Keep me posted on the FM-2. Feel like i kind of need one to finish out my Pacific War collection.

    Nice build, but i think i will stick with Tamiya, unless somebody gives me a HobbyBoss kit.


    • Hey David, don't poo-poo the HB kit, it really is a darn nice model and has some very striking similarities to the Tamiya kit in the cockpit and the engine. HB has a MUCH more detailed engine accessory bay. They also provide more "Wildcats" to pick from. The only stinker there is the FM-2. They screwed that up royally and you will need to get the Vector upgrades to do an accurate FM-2.
      (BTW, I am almost ready to paint my FM-2 so I'll post pics when I get that done. So far the kit is moving along nicely)


      I found that all in all, the Tamiya kit has more crisp detail, and the fit is a LOT better.

  2. Nice work Freddie. I have one of these in the stash - from what I see it's sort of a scaled-down Trumpeter kit (surprise surprise).

    • Looks that way to me too Tom, and it's a nice little kit that has potential to do a lot with. Goes slightly different than the Tamiya kit but the influence is still there. Tamiya fits better and the detail seems more polished, if that's the word to use.

  3. Good looking Wildcat Frederick! And, I really love the pics, that's a very cool effect.

  4. Yep, very nice Wildcat.

  5. In my opinion the Hobby Boss kit has a strong resemblance to the Tamiya kit because of reverse engineering...when they decided to go with the FM-2 with the taller tail and different engine set up things went a stray because, they didn't have a suitable pattern. It's cheaper to look at your competitors work and RND and start from that expertise than to start from scratch and look at the real thing. Had they consulted with modelers and took measurements from real the A/C things would have been different. The best form of flattery...

  6. Very nice work on your wildcat!

Leave a Reply