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Yak-1b, Arma Hobby 1/72

Trying to leave my relatively narrow comfort zone, I am currently building a car in 1/24th scale. Well, it is tedious to say the least – I spent more than a week of back and forth and all I have is frustration. Painting a large smooth surface is something I still cannot do very well, not to mention the patience required to wait for the gloss to dry.

So, I started and quickly finished (!!!) a side project – a Yak-1b from the Polish manufacturer Arma Hobby, in 1/72nd scale. This pretty recent kit already made some noise in the modelling world, won an award or two and got raving reviews. So it should have been a quick and easy build.

And quick and easy-ish it was. There were some issues on the way, most of them caused by myself being careless. In fact, if I could blame anything, it would be the building instructions which can be a bit confusing at some points.

Another issue is the number of sinkmarks – these sinkmarks are somewhat of a trademark of Arma Hobby, and they plague their kits from the very beginning. They could actually make it into a slogan, “five times more sinkmarks than the competition!” or something like that. Those are easy to fix, but hard to notice – I noticed most of them only after painting the base colours, and I decided not to fix them.

Another problem I have is the canopy – for once, it is very thick with a noticeable distortion. Also, there’s no open canopy option, which is a shame given the great cockpit details.

Last but not least, the decals are just to thick to conform to the very delicate details. But, the print quality is perfect- notice the lettering below the canopy, the whole thing is 1 cm wide!

If it weren’t for these issues, the kit would be perfect – the details are delicate and crisp, the cockpit details are great, everything fits like Legos. But, as it is, I’d say it’s just “not bad”.

Anyway, here it is – Yak-1B No.13, 2 Squadron, Polish 1st Fighter Regiment, Sgt Hugo O’Brien, Operation Berlin, 1945.  The instructions incorrectly refer to the pilot as “Patrick O’Brien”, which is an obvious error BTW.

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