If you're planning to build a 1/72 US Navy or Royal Navy PT Boat/Motor Torpedo Boat, Black Cat Models' new 3D-printed Bofors gun can add unparalleled refinement.
Ideal for Revell’s recent 1/72 ELCO 80ft PT boat releases, but equally suitable for Airfix’s Vosper or RAF Air Sea Rescue launches, Black Cat’s single-barrel Bofors 40mm cannon (72003) is an exquisite upgrade. It certainly serves as an exemplar for what 3D-printing can bring to the hobby.
It’s presented as a 13-piece resin ensemble, with parts coming on three sets of printing ‘plinths’. The main gun cradle, ammunition racks and railings – usually a complex ensemble in this scale – are just a single part. The same is true for the gun breech and barrel, with the latter featuring a convincing hollow muzzle. Examining this part in detail shows just how much attention has been paid to the Bofors’ accuracy; flash guard, recoil cylinder, top plate and handle, side hatch and loading ‘arms’ are all printed integrally. Even the spring coils are visible through an open slot.
The third frame supplies the remaining ancillary components. These comprise an elevation pinion rack, open sights (including integral aiming grids), recuperator cylinders, elevation/azimuth adjustment handles, spent case deflectors and two six-round ammunition clips.
All this complexity does exact a price though, and that comes via the myriad attachment ‘pens’ and while most will be easy to trim, the intermediate items between gun mount floor and the seats/pivot arms will demand greater care. Helpfully, though, some of the more easily broken parts (especially while handling during assembly) are replicated – these include adjustment handles and spent case deflectors.
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Black Cat supplies full instructions in downloadable pdf format via its website https://blackcatmodels.eu and while some parts may be delicate, its 1/72 40mm Bofors Single Gun will be a stunning addition to any model. Note that the main gun and mount colours will be as per the ship’s hull. The gun can be bought direct from Black Cat Models for €16.63.