have recently released a 1:48 resin instrument panel for the P-51D-5 as part of their growing LööK range of upgrades. Designed specifically for their beautiful new tool Mustang, the 3-part panel is cast in black resin and pre-finished to allow it to be installed without the need for any painting.
The colour detail is excellent - certainly on a par with Eduard
's alternative photoetched panel included with the Profi-Pack kit (see Andy Brazier's fine build HERE
) - which is hardly surprising, as I expect very similar or identical technology is involved. The dials and placards look great viewed with a magnifier, and the painted line dividing the primary instruments is present (something that’s a devil to depict in this scale by hand). Where the LööK panel really scores is that it naturally boasts deeper raised details than can be achieved with photo-etching.
Also included in the pack is a very nice set of pre-coloured etched seat harnesses. This seems slightly odd, as the ProfiPack Mustang kit already includes seatbelts, but (perhaps strangely) the belts in the kit and LööK set are not
quite identical. They differ both in construction and the style of the pre-colouring (which seems slightly sharper-defined in my kit set). So, you have a choice over which to use - plus, the LööK belts will obviously come into their own when Eduard
inevitably start releasing simpler Weekend Edition P-51Ds.
The instructions are clear and simple to follow - and one interesting point I spotted when comparing the seatbelts, was that the drawings in the kit and the LööK set show the lap belts fitted reversed (see the photo at right). Most references I’ve checked tally with the LööK instructions, and I’d have thought common sense would have dictated that there was a standard way in which the seatbelts were arranged for safety reasons (even a moment’s hesitation could be the difference between life and death when undoing the straps in an emergency).
The only negative comment I can really make concerns the packaging. The etched fret is attached to the cardboard backing so strongly, there’s a real danger of damaging it when you remove it.
P-51D LööK set is beautifully produced and offers a very quick and easy way to install an instrument panel that’s far more detailed than most of us could ever hope to paint by hand. Obviously, if you like your models “factory fresh”, it’s ready to go without any further work, but it could look unnatural if you’ve weathered the rest of the cockpit. In this case a little subtle dry-brushing and weathering will blend it in and also help define the edges of the parts.
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