AMK 1/48th MIG-31, Part 2
Starting from http://imodeler.com/2017/03/amk-148th-mig-31-part-1/.
Decaling and Weathering
This build was a premiere for me in two respects. I used Mr. Paint products for the first time extensively and the stenciling was done with a novel kind of decals from the Czech company HGW.
The great thing with Mr. Paint to me is the fineness of the spray. You can do things with them out of the jar that would require hours of tuning and optimizing with standard acrylics. Certainly a recommendation!
HGW are offering an extensive set of stencils for the MIG-31 using their so-called wet transfer technique: only the printed part of the decal goes on the model and no carrier film at all. That means good bye to all sorts of silvering problems and makes intermediate gloss cotes unnecessary at least from that point of view. The product performed very well for all the stencils but it has its limitations when the printed objects are big. For instance with the pink cockpit seals I had difficulties.
Weathering of the model was kept within certain limits as fotos of the aircraft in operation show good state of maintenance.
AMK have made a convincing kit.
The subject to my knowledge has not been covered by any kit in 1/48th scale before, although the MIG-31 is a truly impressing aeroplane. It’s obvious that AMK have the claim to become a premium kit manufacturer and given this great new release, I’m sure they will make their way. A second version of the kit has already been brought on the market and it eliminated the short comings of the first one (absence of instruments, belts and decals for the pink cockpit seals).
A 48th Tomcat and a MIG-25 have already been announced by AMK for 2017. It’s kind of bad luck, if you work your back off for a complex subject such as the Tomcat and right when you think you’re getting close to a release, it’s Tamiya who bring the ultimate kit. Or will Tamiya and AMK together start a Tomcat-o-mania? Let’s see, I’ll certainly have the MIG-25.
The build of this kit is not an easy one. The poor instructions make it imperative to contemplate about practically every step of construction and to extensively test fit even the obvious ones. The landing gears and wheel well doors of the MIG-31 are among the most complex in aircraft history and so are the kits’. And though there is no weakness in AMK’s design, things turn out difficult here. The same is true for the cockpit glazings that require a multi-part, multi-color assembly. Given that gluing transparent parts is never easy, they were a real challenge to build.
Nonetheless this build was a lot of fun and now that the model is standing in front of me, the result is rewarding. If you’re looking for a challenge and if you have a heart for Soviet aeroplanes and the Cold War period, this is it.
21 additional images. Click to enlarge.