Major Walter Sigel’s Ju 87R-2 from Stab I./StG 3 – The Kit
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I will use the 1/48 new tool Airfix B-2/R-2 kit for this build. By the way, I was surprised that this kit has no coverage here (at least I couldn’t find any).
I also have some extra goodies I may use.
The kit was released in 2017 and received many good reviews with the only criticism mentioning the sink marks and ejector pin marks in the cockpit area. But the question is, what is a good kit? Is it how well the parts fit, how accurate it is or how easy it is to build. At the end it depends what is important for the builder. For me as a confessed rivet counter, accuracy is what is important for me.
The Airfix offering does look like a Stuka and the shape and measurements stack up nicely in most parts. But how does the detail stack up? I am not a great fan of scale drawings as they are as good as the person who draws them… I therefore compared the kit to pictures from the R-2 on display at the Science Museum in Chicago and from the R-2 restoration to flying condition at the Flying Heritage & Combat Armor Museum in the USA.
Doesn’t look bad at all, but there are some issues.
1. Maintenance hatch missing
2&4. Hole to lift aircraft missing
3. Maintenance hatches identical on both sides, but they are
different o the starboard side
5. Maintenance hatch missing
6. Orientation of maintenance hatch wrong
7. This is also a screw-on panel
8. Maintenance hatch missing
9. This needs some explanation.
Airfix depicts the spot under the fuselage where the ETC 500 is attached to carry the bomb with no cover panel in place. It looks to me that Airfix based there design on the picture below on the wright from the pilot manual.
But this picture states that the “cover panel” has been removed (ohne Verkleidungsblech). The picture on the right shows this panel in place. The Chicago R-2 has the panel in place as well. Most likely the aircraft wasn’t flown without this panel in place, but the Airfix kit doesn’t contain the cover panel.
But maybe the biggest boo boo on the fuselage is the oil cooler air intake.
It lacks curvature and depth – strangely the enclosed oil cooler for use with the Airfix engine assembly is correct…
11. Flap actuator too close to the edge
12. Aileron balance rod indent should be much closure to the wing edge
13. Panel lines too close to the edge
14. Panel substantially too narrow
15. Panel too wide
And here a picture of the pattern wing on which the rebuilt is based on.
16. Walk way just doesn’t look right
17. Maintenance hatch should be larger and at wrong location
18. Maintenance hatch should be larger and at wrong location
19. Panel lines should be equally spaced, resulting in a larger panel towards the wing tip
20. 10 vertical rivet rows on the kit but correct are 9 rows going all the way to the leading edge
21. Starboard underside has a rectangular maintenance, but Airfix has identical hatches on both sides
22. Orientation of the two maintenance hatches wrong
Many published drawings show double rivet rows. which is not correct. The horizontal double row of rivets is interesting. The wreck picture shows them, but it looks that there is a second sheet of metal which hides these rivet as it is only riveted along the vertical lines (see above picture).
23. There should be two separate trim tabs (same issue on elevators)
24. Airfix has the trim rods on both sides, but they should be only on the port side
They are missing on the elevators
That is what I found so far and I am sure I will come across other discrepancies during the build.
Even though I am a rivet counter, I definitely dislike the rivets Airfix implemented on this kit as they are way over the top – specially so on the rudder.
And as can be seen on the pictures, the Ju 87B/R has positive (dome head) rivets under the wings and the rear fuselage.
I have to say that I am rather disappointing about this kit as it needs a lot of work to make an accurate model from it. Using the older Hasegawa offering would most likely be less work to get an accurate Berta.
Thanks for looking and please share your thought.