by: Tim Hatton [ ]
Pavla Models has released a cockpit set for the fine looking Airfix 1/72 Douglas A4B/P Skyhawk. Also included with the cockpit tub is a detailed front undercarriage bay. The release includes a fine looking Escapac 1A ejection seat.
All the resin parts are contained in a vac formed blister packaging. Inside there is:
-1 x one piece cockpit tub including the nose wheel bay.
-1 x Escapac 1A ejection seat.
-1 x Instrument panel.
-1 x Instrument panel hood.
-1 x set of rudder pedals.
-1 x control stick.
The design and casting of the one piece cockpit tub and forward undercarriage bay is cleverly done. There are minimal gates connecting the part to the casting block. The gates five in all are very thin and should present no problems at all removing them. The detail is nicely done with raised knobs and switches and the throttle lever looks very good. I do like the texture created on the rear bulkhead representing the insulation. The undercarriage bay features some fine detail including ducting and framework.
The ejection seat is one piece and like the cockpit tub, features some excellent detail including seat harnesses. Unfortunately the seat overhead activation cord had broken inside the packaging, but should not present to many problems replacing it with fuse wire or stretched sprue. The seat is available separately [cat no: S 72077].
The cockpit hood has the frame of the HUD cast onto it. All it requires is for the modeller to scratch build the HUD screen from clear plastic [use the clear plastic from the packaging]. The instrument has some low relief detail for the instruments, switches and knobs. The rudder pedals attaches to the back of the instrument panel. A little thin resin flash needs cleaning up from the middle of the pedals.
The instructions are illustrated with detailed black line drawings with English and Czech written instructions. There is some very fine draughtsmanship evident leaving you in no doubt what goes where. There are lots of helpful colour references for the instruments and seat. Some minor surgery is required to the kit to enable the fitting of the resin parts. The kits instrument panel hood needs removing and 3.5mm length of the inner cockpit wall by the instrument panel needs a slight reduction in thickness.
This is a very good release from Pavla Models. The cockpit tub, front undercarriage bay and seat offers significantly more detail than the kit parts.