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About Mfezi

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    Tenax Sniffer (Open a window!)

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    Pretoria, South Africa

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  1. I have built a lot of Zvezda kits - some of the older ones as well as many of the newer generation kits. I can honestly say I never had a problem with the plastic, despite the fact that many of their newer kits include some very fine and small parts. Maybe I'm not building Tamiya kits regularly enough to compare with properly, but I simply never had an issue to the extent that I noticed.
  2. No problem. It will definitely make for some extra interest when posed like that. As stated, you very seldom see photographs of Su-7's like that on the ground, but you can use any of a hundred back stories for why your example has the flaps down. I've never really taken statements like "they never..." too seriously. Having spent over a decade in flight testing, I've seen a lot of stuff that one would not consider ops normal. For example, more than once I have seen a fighter jet with several open panels to start up flight test instrumentation after the engine had already been started, all along with a heavy weapons loadout. When it comes to models, just go for it and while you build it you can think of an excuse for why it is parked with the flaps down. Of course, an in-flight pose is also always an option. So is maintenance, a system check, a forgetful pilot, a mechanical failure, a museum exhibit like the pictures above, etc. That's the nice thing about models - it is literally impossible to prove that your pose never occurred in the history of a given aircraft, unless the pose was physically impossible for some reason.
  3. This is a Su-7U, but it shows the flaps quite clearly:
  4. Mfezi

    F-14 ?

    I believe the AWACS comment goes back to the context of the old Iran/Iraq conflict, where I've heard that was indeed one way in which they were used. Of course, many things have happened and changed since then. Clearly there is a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding about Iran and its capabilities and the F-14 in Iranian use in particular - at least in the public domain. It probably goes for perceptions on both sides. Things are further muddied in that, while some things are public information (for example Iran's purchase of S-300 air defense systems), many other things are indigenously developed or upgraded and there are many questions about how good such systems are. For example, they clearly have some way to go in the development of any sort of modern fighter (most have been variations on the F-5 design), but they do appear to have done quite well when it comes to missiles, drones, guided weapons, etc. I'd be careful to simply write off their capabilities.
  5. Mfezi

    F-14 ?

    Fantastic photographs!!!
  6. Tough one - based on my own experience with FCS testing, the positive is that (obviously depending on the exact cause) most FCS issues on FBW aircraft do not require hardware changes. Bad thing is that the software changes can be very time consuming to isolate and often require a lot of unplanned new testing to validate. Hope for their sake that it is an easily traceable and fixable cause. It must be really frustrating that whatever it was only came out on the first production aircraft. Always glad to hear that the pilot got out safely though.
  7. I don't know about "particularly outstanding", but I thought the HobbyBoss MiG-17 is generally considered acceptable? http://www.hyperscale.com/2010/features/mig1748dwa_1.htm
  8. You are so right. This is also not a toy: Neither is this: And this is DEFINITELY not a toy:
  9. Look, I love this hobby and have been making model aircraft since I was 6 years old - so for more than 40 years. It has had a big impact on my life and, if I have to be honest, I took it even more seriously as I got older. Nevertheless, in most countries around the world you can buy plastic model kits in toy shops. Many of the models in my stash were indeed bought in toy shops - it is difficult to argue that something sold in toy shops around the world is not a toy. It doesn't change my passion for the hobby. About the age argument: Many Lego sets say 14+ on the box. Are those not toys either, even though they are (once again) sold virtually exclusively in toy shops? By the way, I just had a look: Kits made in the EU seem to generally have the 14+ sign, but my Hasegawa and Tamiya kits say nothing on the box, while my Zvezda kits just have a "no ages 0-3" sign. Looking inside on Tamiya instructions, the warnings I see are "A supervising adult should also read the instructions if a child assembled the model"; "Modeling skills helpful if under 10 years of age" and "Keep out of reach of small children". The same warnings appear in the instructions of many toys - something I can attest to as I have two fairly small children.
  10. In short, yes. And certainly much more so than Flanker, Fulcrum, Foxbat, Foxhound, Fullback, Fencer, etc.
  11. Concur. I know NATO code names are not designed to be flattering, but there appears to be something a little childish about that particular one. Just my personal opinion - maybe others like it. Good find. Did I hear correctly in the video that the guy said a contract was signed for 72 aircraft? I thought the official order was for 76. Maybe I heard wrong.
  12. These walkarounds may be useful: http://scalemodels.ru/modules/photo/viewcat_cid_474.html (5 pages of photos) http://walkarounds.scalemodels.ru/v/walkarounds/avia/after_1950/Mig-29SMT_2012/ (23 pages of photos) http://walkarounds.scalemodels.ru/v/walkarounds/avia/after_1950/Mig-29smt/ (7 pages of photos) For the last two links, you can find the numbers to navigate through the pages on the bottom left.
  13. I also enjoy this thread - I'm surprised it hasn't been more active. So, my contribution: Genre: 1) 1/48th WWII fighters: I prefer building aircraft from the larger or main combatants (US, Germany, UK, Italy, USSR, Japan, France) or, alternatively, South Africa, being South African myself. I tend to cycle through the countries. 2) 1/48th cold war and modern fighters, all sides. Manufacturer: I tend to pick subject first, then try to find the best kit of the type. I do like the usual ones: Tamiya, Hasegawa, Eduard for their great engineering. But for an excellent combination of subject selection, good research and good engineering I would say my favourites are Zvezda for 1/48th WWII and GWH for modern military. ICM has also done really well in both genres over the last few years. Zvezda is really difficult to beat for value (cost vs quality) and I'm extremely excited that they also now started dabbling in 1/48th modern jets. Favourite kit: Whatever I built last - if I'm satisfied with the results. In fact, I like kits that are accurate and of good quality, but perhaps with a slight challenge along the way. My most recent "favourite": 1/48th Zvezda La-5FN with Vector resin. One of those kits that require careful attention to detail, but that comes out absolutely looking the part when done.
  14. If you open the aperture, you reduce the depth of field, so how will the images be clearer with a wider aperture? If there is one thing which, in my opinion, make models look like models in a photograph it is a shallow depth of field that cause wingtips and other extremities to be slightly out of focus. You are right that the shutter has to stay open longer for a smaller aperture (everything else being equal), but that you can deal with by using a good steady tripod, a timer or remote trigger, good lighting and increasing the ISO (within reason). With most DSLR's you barely see the difference between ISO ranges of 100 to 400, unlike on traditional film where the difference between ISO 100 and 400 was very noticeable.
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