Platz 1/144 Lighting F6 “Royal Air Force”
The Lightning F.6 was the ultimate Lightning version to see British service. Originally, it was nearly identical to the F.3A with the exception that it could carry two 260-imperial-gallon (1,200 L) ferry tanks on pylons over the wings. These tanks were jettisonable in an emergency, and gave the F.6 a substantially improved deployment capability. There remained one glaring shortcoming: the lack of cannon. This was finally rectified in the form of a modified ventral tank with two ADEN cannons mounted in the front. The addition of the cannons and their ammunition decreased the tank’s fuel capacity from 610 to 535 imperial gallons (2,770 to 2,430 L), but the cannon made the F.6 a “real fighter” again
Now on to the kit itself. Firstly there are 2 kits in this box.
The kit comes in a side opening box. The sprues are in 2 resealable bags, one aircraft in each bag. The decals come in their own bag too. The instructions are on piece of folded glossy paper giving 4 black and white pages, bu the decal and paint guides are in colour.
Each aircraft is made from:
- 30 plastic parts on 6 sprues
- 1 clear part
The box also contains:
- 1 decal sheet with a small correction sheet
- 1 4 page instruction sheet
The instructions are very clear and show everything you need 6 steps, including decals and painting.
The sprues have fine recessed panel lines and small attachment gates and are the usual good quality we expect from Platz. The level of detail is very good with no obvious issues.
The build is in 6 steps:
- This puts together the cockpit with a floor, seat and an instrument panel. The details are quite basic, but then again there’s not going to be a lot seen once the canopy is in place. Adding a couple of thin tape seat belts would be good.
- This step puts the 2 fuselage halves together trapping the cockpit parts from step 1 in between them. The tail is completely on the port fuselage half. There uis no mention of adding weight to the nose, but it would probably be a good idea.
- Step 3 adds the wings, tailplanes, canopy, nose cone and engine exhausts. There is a head on view showing the angle of the wings. There’s an arrow pointing to the holes in the wings for the over-wing tanks that says these holes are only needed for decal options A and B and are to be filled if using decal option C.
- Step 4 adds the 2 ventral fins and also gives you the instructions for adding the undercarriage doors in the closed position, if that is your choice.
- Step 5 is painting and adding the decals. More on those elsewhere.
- The last step adds the over-wing tanks, if needed, probes, refuelling probe and undercarriage in the extended position, if that was your choice.
The paints are called out in Model Master and Mr Color. Colours are indicated in the steps of the build where needed.
The decals look in register and the colours look good. The backing sheet is used to hold smaller groups of decals in place so you’re not left fiddling with lots of small 1/144 decals trying to line them all up with one another. This does lead to some backing film between decals, but it does make decal placement an awful lot easier. The decals were printed by Rocketeer Decal, whom I’ve not heard of before. The sheet contains decals for 3 aircraft
- RAF 74 Sqn XS27/N
- RAF 11 Sqn XS904/BQ
- RAF 92 Sqn XN791/D
There is an error on decals 14 and 15, the squadron colours are missing, but a small correction sheet is supplied.
Overall this is a very nice double kit with fine recessed panel lines and nice details.
Thanks to Platz for the review sample.