Tamiya 1/32 Spitfire Mk VIII Cockpit - by Jeroen Veen - Mechelen, Netherlands
Earlier this year I finished my Tamiya 1/32 Spitfire Mk IX and I was so impressed with that kit that I ordered the Mk VIII as soon as it was released. Straight from the box this really is a beautiful kit, and the longer you talk about it, the longer the list of superlatives will become. But... does this mean there is no room for improvement? As soon as I saw Roy's upgrade sets for the cockpit I knew I wanted to use them because they really add that extra touch.
Set BR32003 gives you extra's and replacements. It is a bit strange that Tamiya missed the very present oxygen hose on the right hand side but BR32003 gives you a pretty and very subtle hose that is easy to attach. The set also has the gear retract quadrant which is a direct replacement for the kit one, but carries more refined detail. The four hydraulic lines that go to the front of the cockpit can easily be fixed in the predrilled holes. The throttle on the left hand side is also a direct replacement for the kit part, but again more detailed. Most impressive is the stick. On the front of the stick are three wires that are to be fet through predrilled holes. How Roy managed to do this I don't know, but the wires -that come with the set - can be put in place without extra drilling. Great! I was thoroughly impressed with the detail on the stick.
Now, is this all? It's getting better. The instructions (you don't really need them because this set is very easy to use) are enriched with a couple of color pictures which makes it very easy to see how everything should be painted. You can also see how Roy applied extra cabling on the sidewalls, which comes in very handy if you feel like spicing up you Spitty even more. Then there are the decals. Tamiya managed to miss the placards in the cockpit but this set has them all: for fuse boxes, landing gear retractor, instrument panel, throttle and so on. Thanks to the instructions it's not hard to see where they should go, and with some Micro Sol and Set they performed superb.
I also used set BR32001, a direct replacement for the seat: it has the leather backpad which the kits seat lacks. Detail again is just wonderful, with a clear painting guide in the instructions. The seat comes with a big casting plug which is easily removed. When you have no experience with this, Roy's instructions will talk you through the process and you can't go wrong if you are careful.
Painting all these goodies is a real pleasure and puts the beautiful kit cockpit in a new dimension. These parts are delicately casted, very easy to use and I would advise them to everybody.
BarracudaStudios products used:
BR32001 Spitfire Seat with Leather Backpad
BR32003 Spitfire Cockpit Upgrade Set
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