The Tamiya 1:48 scale P-38 Lightning kit is the best of its kind in probably any scale (and you can read our review HERE). Nevertheless, there are areas of the kit where more detail can be added, and that’s where this particular Brassin set from Eduard comes in. It provides a complete nose gun bay for the P-38F/G.
Eduard Brassin # 648533 (MSRP: $39.95) contains 29 cast resin parts, 10 photoetched metal parts on one fret, and one small decal sheet. The cast resin details provide the full empty gun bay to which are added the four individual .50 caliber machine guns, the 20mm nose cannon, the four .50 caliber ammo boxes, the cannon ammunition magazine, ammo feed chutes, and the open gun bay doors. The photoetched metal details cover door hinge details, a data placard, and the forward bay bulkhead. The decal sheet provides the various stencils applied throughout the gun bay.
Detail here is exquisite from the structural elements of the bay to the guns themselves. The doors are also gorgeous, literally inside and out, but especially on their internal surfaces.
A few things of note: first, some basic surgery is necessary to remove some elements of Tamiya kit’s nose, a bit of the forward cockpit bulkhead, and small portions of the forward nose gear well to make this set fit. Second, the instructions provide a full nose gun compartment wiring guide using 0.4mm diameter wire, but the wire is not included. Third, one of the .50 caliber machine gun barrels in my sample was a little bit warped. It happens even to the best practitioners of resin casting when parts get that small and narrow. A little hot water can bend it back, but with the way in which the guns mount to their armatures in the P-38’s nose, the simple pressure of setting that gun barrel into place might just eliminate that warp.
Overall, a little previous experience working with aftermarket detail sets will benefit the scale model builder, since this is a bit more complex than a “drop-in” set, but it is a pretty straightforward task to integrate these parts into the Tamiya 1:48 scale P-38F/G. The payoff in terms of added detail and increasing the visual interest of the completed model is very high.
We extend our sincere thanks to Eduard for the review sample. You can visit them on the web at http://www.eduard.com and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/EduardCompany/
Scale Modeling News & Reviews Editor
Detail & Scale