TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Limited-run kit wizard Dora Wings has chosen a fascinating subject in the Swedish Air Force J 9 as it’s latest 1/48 offering. CHRIS CLIFFORD inspects the contents.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Okay, let’s get this out of the way first… I love Swedish Air Force aircraft regardless of time period. It’s that enticing mix of indigenous and imported types, the triple-crown insignia, and attractive colour schemes that fuel my passion for the subject. And I’ve always been rather keen on the Seversky P-35 fighter too, so Dora Wings’ boxing focusing on Swedish P-35s – which in that country’s service were designated as the J 9 – was always going to attract my attention.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Above: The absence of locating pins betrays the kit’s limited-run nature, but the engraving is generally good.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Above: Detail-hungry modellers will be happy with the moulding of the engine, but of course, embellishments can be added if desired.

This kit (DW48042) is typical of Dora Wings’ eclectic tastes and its mixed-media approach. There are many finely detailed styrene parts, a photo-etched (PE) metal fret, and vinyl masks for the cockpit and passenger window glazing. The moulding overall is neat, save for the occasional surface imperfection, but these are easily neatened. However, the presence of PE parts and lack of locating pins places this firmly in the lap of the experienced modeller.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Above: Rudder pedals are present in the well-appointed cockpit.

And the proceedings get pretty involved immediately, as the cockpit has various small PE components, but while you’re diligently separating these from the fret (without them going ping!), you will have already appreciated the busy styrene areas of the cockpit, which has well-defined features. These include ribs and electrical cabling/boxes on the fuselage halves, but also separate and busy-looking side panels, with recessed circles to portray lightening holes in some of the framework. The rudder pedal unit is also well appointed once assembled, as is the cockpit floor. The PE fret also has seat belts and instrument panel parts, as well as small levers and handles. Ultimately, the cockpit components all form one large sub-assembly, apart from a separate gas bottle unit, and the passenger seat within the fuselage (behind the pilot's seat) is also included.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Above: There’s plenty going on with the cockpit sidewalls, which will look great once painted and weathered, and after the PE refinements are added.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Above: Almost all of this photo-etched brass helps to detail the cockpit, but the larger components at top right are engine cowling panels.

Tackled next is the powerplant, and Dora Wings has excelled itself here. The radial engine comes in halves, and the cylinders have very fine cooling fin detail. Separate ignition cables and valve rod units are also present, and the gearing cover is beautifully detailed.
Easing the build process is a one-piece lower wing, which mates to corresponding upper halves, and the panel line engraving on all these components is splendid. Separate control surfaces are also provided, the ailerons having individual actuators. Other convincing parts are the machine-gun barrels and the forward fuselage upper decking.

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

Above:  The cockpit floor is a busy item,  although our sample suffered several imperfections... which are easily dealt with.

Richly-coloured decals and painting information for four airframes are provided, and the first two will certainly challenge your finishing skills, as the mottle camouflage is intricate. The third example is painted overall green on its upper surfaces, but all of the first three aircraft have the sectioned black, Neutral Gray and white undersides leftover from an exercise in the autumn of 1941. The fourth J 9 is in overall polished aluminium, and wears simplified roundels without the yellow circumferential trim. Dora Wings provides equivalent paint codes for Mr Hobby, Tamiya, AMMO MIG, Hataka and Lifecolor paints.

The four airframes are:

•    8/8, 1st Division, F 8, 1942
•    35/8, 3rd Division, F 8, summer 1943
•    F/11, 3rd Division, F 11, late 1944
•    15, F 8, spring 1940

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

At £24.99, this is an excellent kit for Swedish Air Force fans, or those looking for a propeller-driven fighter subject that’s a little different. If your painting/airbrushing skills are up to the task, the camouflaged liveries will look superb, although if you want a simpler finish, the overall green upper surfaces or bare metal option will make life simpler, yet still look eye-catching.

For more information on this and other kits from the company, visit www.dorawings.com
UK importer for Dora Wings is Albion Hobbies: www.albionhobbies.com

See below for more photos...

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER

TRIPLE-CROWN FIGHTER