Wednesday, December 9, 2009
SHADES OF RENWAL’S VISIBLE MAN - CLEAR PARTS LET YOU LOOK INTO THE SOUL OF YOUR MODEL
Decades ago, the US Renwal company came up with the bright idea of making a transparent model that revealed the insides of its subject, a 3D version of the traditional cutaway book illustration. The Renwal Visible Man was a big success, and was soon joined by the Visible Woman (though without private parts to allow her to give birth), the Visible Engine, and others that included even a Visible Dog.
Apart from these early stalwarts, transparency has been largely ignored by manufacturers over the years, but the magic of ‘seeing inside’ is still there, and the latest convert to the idea is Trumpeter. Its big 1:32 scale Fairey Swordfish is absolutely a gem in this department, with a transparent port fuselage section that allows you to gaze inside the ‘stringbag’s portly form. You can mask off parts for painting, to reveal more or less of the interior, as you wish.
The recently introduced MkII Swordfish joins the already available MkI, and is packed with detail, has a wingspan of some 433 mm (17 in) and has a box stuffed with no less than 373 components. Wire bracing on biplanes has become a near-standard fixture on ready-built models such as those of Corgi, but here on Trumpeter’s Swordfish, you get to do it yourself with a supplied wire bracing set. Never the easiest of jobs, at least the big 1:32 scale helps, though this reviewer will pass on the job to a more nimble-fingered craftsman.
All in all, a fine addition to the ranks of see-inside models, and an excellent kit of a World War II classic aircraft.
Visit Trumpeter here.
You can buy the Trumpeter 1:32 scale Swordfish MkI here.