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Ian Bartlett
17 articles

KittyHawk 1/32 T-6 Texan (Harvard)

February 28, 2016 · in Aviation · · 14 · 5.4K

Hello everyone,

Here are some pics of my latest project. I,m pleased with the final result, but it was no mean feat getting there.

First of all, big respect to KittyHawk for actually producing this aircraft for us. When it first appeared I bought one straight away, and on opening the box, it is crammed with beautifully moulded parts, there are a lot of decal options, and it is about as comprehensive as anyone could want.

As you can see from the build pics, the interior builds up nicely, with loads of detail. I added an Eduard Zoom self adhesive cockpit set, which really made the detail stand out, and a pair of Barracuda resin P-51 Mustang seats, as i read that quite a lot of post war Harvards used these (also my pet hate is assembling fabric harnesses!). I also used a SAC metal undercarriage, because as with all my models it will travel to shows, and metal legs are so much more robust.

The engine is a work of art, even down to the bits which it is not possible to see, the pics attached show the completed unit before installation.

Despite what has been written by the press about this kit being wonderful, it wasn,t the dream build I was expecting. It is a challenge, and for the money it cost, it isn,t what one might expect from a WnW, Hasegawa or Tamiya build. It has issues around unnecessary over engineering in some areas, whilst some seemingly simple schoolboy errors in others which would have added much more value to the kit, which is a real shame. If anyone is planning one of these, drop me a line and I,ll outline the challenge areas in more detail.

Challenges aside, it is an imposing model, of a large aircraft, and looks very impressive alongside my other warbirds in this scale.

Happy modelling everyone!

Reader reactions:
6  Awesome

15 additional images. Click to enlarge.

14 responses

  1. Looks wonderful! Did you correct the landing gear issue? I understand it is not far apart enough or something? I'm not sure I would even notice, but much has been written about it. Having seen ones done both ways I honestly can't tell, so just curious.

    • Its noticeable if you've been around T-6s. The landing gear is too narrow. Given the price and available material for research blah,blah, and blah. Its fix able. Regard less, Ian has done a excellent job

  2. Hi Rob,
    Thank you for the comment.
    I was,t aware of this, so my answer would be no. Although there are some issues around the fit of the undercarriage, which needs resolving whether or not metal legs are used.

  3. I experienced similar "over-engineered" fit issues when [trying] to assemble their earlier offering of the F-35B Lightning sat on the 'shelf of doom' for quite a while before I continued with the build. It, too, wasn't the kit I'd hoped. I haven't bought a KH model since! Although I've seen other KH kits that turned out quite nicely (including this T-6 of yours). Hopefully, the quality of KH will improve. I really wanted to get this one, but after seeing reviews of all the "issues", it remains the "build that wasn't". Again, your rendition looks very nice, despite the problems encountered. I suppose one day (if another company doesn't produce a better one), I'll "bite the bullet" and give it a go.

    • Oh dear...
      I have the F-35B in the stash as well... Eek! :o)
      Its a pity, because they are doing some really interesting subjects, and need to be encouraged to continue to do so.

      • I said, my KH F-35B didn't fit worth a S***...maybe it was a lemon or maybe it was ME. But like I said, I've seen other KH builds that looked pretty good, including the Lightning II. Attack yours with an open mind, Ian...maybe you'll prove me wrong.

  4. Ian, marvelous job on the Harvard. Whatever challenges the kit presented, you overcame. Looks as described, thanks to you.
    I like Harvards, SNJs, T-6s, the whole family. There used to be one at the local airport, which the owner told me had (as he discovered) battle damage from the French Algerian war.
    You could hear it coming! I miss it.

  5. Nice looking build. Like Craig, I haven't bought a KH kit since my fiasco with the F-86 D. Not that it was a dog but I wasn't really aware that it would be that challenging.
    Your bird looks stunning.

  6. Despite the problems and reported inaccuracies you've ended up with a superb model, it looks great.

  7. Great result Ian. Problems or not your model speaks for itself: well done!

  8. This is a nice kit from KH, of an interesting subject. Your model looks very good, well done! I always thought there was a problem with the KH kit gear legs, as I recall from SAAF Harvards the legs were a bit further apart and slightly longer. The gear flipper doors also stood at more of an outward angle, not so vertical? All this should be a relatively easy fix? Such a famous trainer. I love the very distinctive "buzz" the Spamcan makes, at high power settings, unique sound from the prop tips and the rumble of that P&W AN 1340. She reminds me of a Disney cartoon version of an aircraft, in a way!

  9. Thank you all for your positive feedback, obviously this aircraft is dear to many peoples hearts, and for obvious reasons.
    Onwards and upwards, I have an F-4 Group Build to contribute to... :o)

  10. Ian - love it! Sad so much of the great work on the engine get's hidden away.

    I recently build a 1/72 Academy T-6, and decaled it in the same scheme your selection here! (you can see it on my iModeler blog). Fun that we both chose that colorful version.

  11. Beautiful trainer turned out very well

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