by: Andy Brazier [ ]
History The first US Navy’s jet aircraft to be operated from the aircraft carriers and the first jet of the US Marines ever, such could be the description of the airframe produced by McDonnell under designation the FH-1 and which was commonly known as the Phantom, although the same name, just with a number II added, would be later given to another and much more popular jet to seemingly eclipse the historic significance of the original Phantom.
McDonnell company was established in 1939, and in 1940 it received its first contract for a production of subassemblies for other producers. In January 1943, McDonnell’s design team was assigned a new job though. The US Navy commissioned a jet fighter aircraft to be built which was to be known as the FD-1, later to be renamed to the FH-1 in 1947 (in US Navy system, the letter D denoted the Douglas company)
FH-1 upgrade set Item No - 73642
Price - 14,95 €
One half pre- coloured, and one plain fret, are packaged along with a small clear film, and the instruction sheet in the now familiar Eduard re-sealable bag.
Most of the parts on both frets are for the cockpit area, and canopy, with a few parts for the undercarriage bays and legs.
The first item to be replaced is the kits harness, Eduard's harness is pre coloured and has a lot more detail then the kits plain P.E offering.
Next up is a multi piece sandwich type instrument panel, which replaces the kits raised and decaled panel. Some sanding to remove the raised areas on the kits panel is needed to apply the P.E parts, but a quick session with a sanding stick should do the job in no time. The film is for the new gunsight which sits atop the instrument panel, which also has some new more detailed parts attached.
New details for the cockpit sidewalls and some nice pre-coloured side instrument panels, pretty much complete the cockpit improvements.
The canopy gets a new aft shelf, and a spar goes into the rear of the canopy. The windscreen gets two much needed mirrors.
The nose gear bay, gets part of a new floor and back wall, which has no detail at all on the kits back wall. New side walls and hydraulic lines replace the basic detail found on the kits undercarriage bay interior, and should really liven this area up.
The nose leg gets a new locking strut and oleo, which on the kit are a bit chunky looking.
Two new inside faces for the nose gear doors are also supplied.
The last parts that benefit from this set is the main wheels and wells. The wells have two new walls, and hydraulic lines added. The legs also get a few parts added, with brake lines being the main improvement.
FH-1 Mask set Item No - EX 526
Price - 8,25 €
Although the canopy on the Phantom is not hard too mask, its always nice to have the option of a mask set for it, and Eduard have produced a mask set for the canopy and wheels.
The masks are made from the usual Eduard Kabuki tape, and packed in a clear sleeve backed up with cardboard. A small set of instructions complete the contents.
The masks covers the edges of the main canopy, with the centres having to be filled with a masking fluid (not supplied). Masks are supplied for the windscreen, which completely cover the three panels of glass.
Wheel hub masks for the main and nose wheels are supplied.
Having used Eduard masks before, I can vouch they are normally a good fit and easy to work with.
The instructions give you the placement of each mask and any liquid mask needed is shown.
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