ICM B-26 Invader arrived!
Before anyone complains about lack of photos, there are lots of hi-rez photos of the parts at various websites (Scalmates, etc.) that are better than any I can do here.
Overall: With the parts in-hand, the kit lives up to the hype and our hopes. I’m just working on the really excellent ICM 1/48 He-111H-6, and this is of similar quality.
All control surfaces – ailerons, flaps, elevators and rudder are separate. The bomb bay is open and detailed. Cockpit interior detail is all first-rate and looks good compared to photos.
This kit can only be done as the original 2-turret (upper and lower) configuration, though it is made so there will be a future release with only the top turret. I found photos of the two markings possibilities and they both have lower turrets. Looking at photos in the Third Bomb Group’s website (thirdbombgroup.org), there are B-26s identified as being there in 1952 that have both turrets. They used what they could get and didn’t complain.
The nose, which doesn’t open (but could with a bit of effort, though you’d have to scratchbuild the interior), is molded in separate parts so that the 6-gun early nose will show up. The kit also has both the early and late canopies, as well as the underwing gun tubs, so an early one is definitely coming.
There’s going to be a later version (probably with just the upper turret) that will have underwing HVARs, since the mounting holes are in the lower wing to be opened up.
One problem: getting enough weight for a nose-sitter. Cram as much as you can into the gun nose, and fill the nose ahead of the cockpit and around the nose wheel well, then under the cockpit to the bomb bay. There’s a lot of model aft of the main gear.
Overall assessment: Buy. In. Confidence.
And now a plea to the plastic kit manufacturers: FOR GOD’S SAKE! SLOW DOWN! As of tomorrow morning, since the first of the month, I have received: H-K 1/48 B-17G, ICM He-111H-6, ICM B-26B, Special Hobby Sunderland V, Eduard P-51D-5 and Tamiya P-38F/G. Yikes! (and they’re ALL really nice). How is a reviewer supposed to keep up? (Yes, this is a very “First World” problem)