Eduard 1/48 Messerschmitt BF109E-7 Trop (8264)ProfiPack
The development of the BF109 started in 1934/35 when the Reich Ministry of Aviation decided they needed a single engine monoplane fighter. Proposals & designs were submitted by four different companies, those being Arado, Heinkel, Focke-Wulf and Bayerische Flugzeugwerke (BF). At the time Professor Willy Messerschmitt was a technical Director for BF and had just enjoyed great success with the BF108 and hence the Messerschmitt BF109 was born .Over the next months the prototypes underwent a lot of development & modifications ,the results being an Aircraft which was really ahead of its time with features not seen before such as the low wing design , retractable undercarriage ,narrow profile wing , wing slats, landing flaps ,a gun firing through the prop hub ,and much more . However, the 109 did suffer from engine problems, but these were resolved with the introduction of the DB601 engine and further development with the DB605 . The BF109 first saw combat in 1936 when three were sent for service in the Spanish Civil war ,this gave the company a chance to validate the aircrafts performance in modern aerial combat ,it wasn’t long after this that the first ‘Production’ aircraft started to roll out ,that being the BF109B-1 . In the following year (1937) Germany also managed to grab the speed record with the 109 at a speed of 610.95kph! The BF109 was then rapidly developed in a short space of time with the C, D and E versions appearing and by the time of the Invasion of Poland, Germany boasted the best fighter produced in Europe .Having fought in the skies over the East and again over France with great success, it was during the Battle of Britain that a flaw came to light, A flaw which probably cost Germany that Battle . The BF109 was not capable of carrying drop tanks at the time and so had problems escorting the bombers over to England .A lesson was learned and very quickly the ‘F’ version was developed which was ready just before spring 1941. After this, the BF109 went on to fight in all theatres during WWII including the North Africa campaign, and even after the war the 109 was still being used by other countries .The Swiss used them up until the end of 1949 and Czechoslovakia had 109’s fitted with the Jumo 211 engine, these were also to serve in the newly formed State of Israel. Finland had the 109 in service until 1954, but the longest serving aircraft were probably that of Spain, using the HA-1109-1112 engine the BF109 stayed in service until it was retired in 1967.
Whats in the box …
4x Grey plastic sprues.
1x Clear plastic spue (canopies)
2x Small PE frets (including pre colored parts)
1x sheet canopy masks 2x Decal sheets (including markings for 5 Tropical versions and all stencils )
1x 16 page instruction booklet .
Let’s take a closer look at some of the details. Eduard has done a fine job of re-creating the panel lines & rivet detail on the 109.
And speaking of wings, the BF109 didn’t feature much detail in the Wheel wells, the side walls being covered with a canvas, but there are two very noticeable strengtheners on the roof of the wells to support the topside skin, a lot of kit manufactures miss this or just don’t add it, so it’s nice to see them well represented here.
Staying with the flying surfaces, the fabric areas are also well done with nice detail .
Moving to the cockpit, you have a couple of choices here when it comes to finishing. A full color PE set has been provided for the instrument panel .Should you wish to use it you will need to remove the molded detail from the plastic part, which again is well molded and will paint up nice as is. However! There is a third option for the IP, Decals have also been included if you’d prefer to go that way.
The sidewalls for the cockpit look good too, with a fair amount of detail added, and again a few colored etch parts are provided to further enhance this area.
The Engine is an area that will require close attention to the instructions .Here Eduard offer two choices, you can build the engine to be displayed (Top cowling left off) or build the aircraft with the engine cowlings closed up. There is plenty of detail on the engine its self if you do want to display it.
However, do read the instructions properly if you are going to close the cowlings as parts must be left off and the front of the engine block will require a little plastic removed from the top edge. This is all clearly explained.
Conclusions (First impressions )
Eduard has been adding to their line of BF109’s for some time now and the addition of the Tropical E-7 version is certainly a welcome one in my opinion. Having built a number of Eduard’s aircraft myself over the years and never having an issue with any of them, I don’t expect to see any problems with this one. Molding is crisp with all panel lines and fine rivet detail being excellently reproduced, that along with the detail we have come to expect in Eduard’s kits will make this another joy to build, and off course the inclusion of pre colored PE & the choice of Five different aircraft from which to chose, is a real added bonus making these ProfiPack kits real value for money.
Or see your nearest Eduard Stockist.
Many thanks to http://www.eduard.com/ for this review sample .