Kazan Model Dynamics has been producing some outstanding products including their 1:48 scale F-14, P-51, Bf 109, Spitfire, and F6F detail sets (and you can see our reviews of most of them HERE). In 2021, Tamiya released their stunning 1:48 scale F-4B Phantom II kit. The engineering of the kit is marvelous, and the overall fidelity of detail in that kit is excellent. Still, one could argue despite its quality, the wheel wells are somewhat under-detailed. Some of that is an artifact of the technological limits involved with the injection molding of plastic. Kazan Model Dynamics has recently released a super-detailed wheel well set for the Tamiya F-4B to enhance the kit’s wheel well detail and accuracy. Let’s take a look.
This set (#KAZ48010TAM: F-4B Wheel Wells [for the Tamiya kit]; MSRP $24.99) contains seven 3-D printed parts that serve as complete replacements for the kit wheel wells. The printing of these parts is so high in resolution that they are virtually indistinguishable from cast resin. The detail is eye watering, capturing all the structures, plumbing, wiring, and other equipment in the F-4B’s wheel wells. Starting with the nose gear well: it is simply gorgeous. It builds up out of five parts (nose gear well ceiling, left and right sidewalls, and front and back walls). All the structural elements and electrical and hydraulic lines present in the real aircraft are represented in outstanding detail. A little work will be necessary to get the nose gear well properly integrated with the clear parts: all the plastic nose gear well detail on kit part C39 will need to be sanded down and removed. A small section of the upper nose gear strut mounting tab (part A24) will also need to be shaved off for a perfect fit.
Moving onto the main gear wells: each one is a single 3-D printed part. They represent the contiguous, forward, outboard, aft, and inboard well walls. These parts do not include the well ceiling because they do not have to. The ceiling is composed of the unmodified inside of the kit’s upper wing halves. The detail seen on these 3-D printed main gear well wall parts is again outstanding, capturing everything from the ground hydraulic servicing points, test panels/boxes, very fine wiring (some of which is very delicate, so be careful when handling), all the way down to bolt details. Unlike Kazan’s nose gear well parts that require a little work to achieve a proper fit, the main gear wells are designed to drop into the kit’s lower wing/fuselage (part A1). This kit part requires no real modification beyond removing a few locator tabs for the kit gear well items. Those tabs are not needed to locate the correct placement for these single-piece main gear wells.
This set is very well priced, especially considering the value and outstanding detail that it brings to Tamiya’s 1:48 scale F-4B kit. These parts represent an impressive aftermarket upgrade that is very easy to incorporate this great kit. Scale modelers hoping to add even more to their F-4B need to look no further. This detail set will be used in my Tamiya F-4B build without a second thought.
Many thanks are owed to John Bubak at Kazan Model Dynamics for the review sample. You visit them on the web at https://www.kazanmodeldynamics.com where you order this set directly (and any of their other items), follow their blog, and read their build articles. I also thank Scott Bricker for allowing the generous use of his lightbox to take the photos used in this review, while my setup is still in a box, yet unpacked, following my recent house move.
Scale Modeling News & Reviews Editor
Detail & Scale