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First Look Review
P-39Q/N Airacobra
  • Ed_BIG4883_Pack

by: Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]

Originally published on:

Big-Ed 4883 includes four individual sets, all of which are available separately. As with the rest of the Big-Ed series the multi-pack offers modellers a worthwhile cost saving over the individual sets. The package comprises:

EX200 - Painting masks
FE195 - Placards
49376 - Interior and exterior details
48554 - Flaps

EX200 Painting masks
This is a classic example of Eduard's masks - simple, but very useful. The sheet contains 21 die-cut masks for the canopy, armoured glass bulkhead and wheels. It's the kind of set we've come to take for granted in Eduard's own kits and serves of a reminder how far they've advanced the standard of kit presentation these days.

FE195 Placards
The placards fret contains 34 pre-painted parts. The detail on the data-plates is quite extraordinary, with minute rows of "text". They are intended mostly for the cockpit, but there also several for the nosewheel bay and gear legs. The placards are designed to be used with the original Hasegawa kit parts and in a couple instances - e.g. the instrument panel and throttle - there is an overlap with what's included in set 49376.

49376 Detail set
This 2-fret set occupies the bulk of the package and is the most comprehensive. The first fret is pre-painted and contains 78 new parts. These replace the instrument panel with a superb new multi-layer version. The original kit panel is very good, but the detail on the instruments here is again amazing.

As you'd hope, there's a seat harness to fill the most obvious gap in the Hasegawa cockpit, a new throttle, gun priming handles, plus a plethora of tiny knobs and levers to dot around the office to bring it to life.

The second fret holds a further 88 parts. There's a new seat and electrical boxes to fold to shape, replacement rudder pedals and a lot of extras to add to the undercarriage legs and wheelwells.The cooling vents are replaced and the kit's bomb gets a thorough makeover with new fins and fusing propellers. The set includes several sets of cables and piping, which obviously are a bit flat for some tastes. If you don't want to use them, they serve as useful templates for cutting alternatives from soft wire.

48554 Landing flaps
Last but not least is a set of landing flaps. These always look more daunting to use than they really are - experience with several earlier Eduard sets shows that they are actually quite straightforward to fold to shape and fit - and they certainly make an eye-catching enhancement to the kit.

Big-Ed 4883 is a very neat package. Obviously aimed at reasonably experienced modellers, it offers significant upgrades over what is already a beautifully detailed kit. It offers a $15 saving over buying the sets it contains individually. Hmmm - the idea of an Airacobra with a superdetailed office and dropped flaps is a tempting project for those long winter evenings not so far ahead... Recommended.

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Highs: Very highly detailed and appreciably cheaper than buying the sets individually.
Lows: It's reasonably complex - not really suitable for anyone without a bit of experience working with photo-etched parts.
Verdict: This is a well-balanced combination of Eduard's available P-39 upgrades, building on what is already an excellent kit. With all the sets combined, the resulting Airacobra should be a stunner.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:48
  Mfg. ID: BIG4883
  Suggested Retail: $ 33.95
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Oct 14, 2007
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Eduard!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Rowan Baylis (Merlin)

I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...

Copyright 2021 text by Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of ModelGeek. All rights reserved.


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  • Ed_BIG4883_Placards
  • Ed_BIG4883_Details_1
  • Ed_BIG4883_Details_2
  • Ed_BIG4883_Details_Inst_1
  • Ed_BIG4883_Flaps
  • Ed_BIG4883_Flaps_Instructions