The P-38 Lightnings produced by Tamiya in 1:48 scale are exceptional model kits, first with their 2019 release of a P-38F/G. In 2020, this was followed by a limited edition P-38H. As is often the case, Eduard released a series of aftermarket detail sets for these kits, including the P-38H. In this review, we look at Eduard’s BIG ED set that bundles three items for the P-38H at a savings for the customer.
Eduard’s Big Ed set for the Tamiya 1:48 scale P-38H (# BIG49268; MSRP: $32.95) contains two individual photoetched metal sets (#491115, P-38H and # FE1116, P-38H Seatbelt Set) and one pre-cut self-adhesive masking set (# EX719).
The main attraction here is certainly the P-38H detail set. This set features two frets. One fret contains 63 parts, many of which are pre-painted items on the single fret. Included here are the instrument dial faces and instrument panel frame, side console details, many small placards and handles, details for the radio sets, and a few other miscellaneous items for the cockpit. The pre-painting is exceptionally well done (as is standard with Eduard) and the instrument dial faces have been treated with Eduard’s “raised glass” effect. The second fret is unpainted and features another 34 parts. Here, you will find items such as the rudder pedals and landing gear oleos, but the most important items here are those that represent the fine mesh surfaces of the oil cooler intakes and radiator faces. In the kit, these are represented by flat decals, but this photoetched metal treatment really captures their subtle textures in an accurate, three-dimensional fashion.
The STEEL seatbelt set provides seven parts, five of which are pre-painted. It includes a single-piece shoulder harnesses, lap belts, and latches. The pre-painting is excellent, and even the stitching details are represented in very fine, high-fidelity detail.
The last item in this BIG ED offering is the pre-cut self-adhesive masking set. It offers precision masks for the windscreen, canopy, and wheel hubs. As an avowed user of Eduard masks on almost every project I’ve done for several years, I can attest to their how masks enhance precision, decrease risk when working with clear parts, and save a ton of time. The instructions suggest using liquid mask for the open sections of the canopy that are not covered by the self-adhesive mask – and that’s fine – but I always use a little tape instead.
Overall, this BIG ED set will bring some great details to your Tamiya 1:48 scale P-38H. It provides elements for the cockpit and airframe exterior that are superior to the detail in an already outstanding kit, and their masks are a real pleasure to work with. As a BIG ED set, these three items are bundled here at a savings than if the customer bought these sets separately. Builders of the Tamiya P-38H will enjoy what this brings to the table.
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