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Building the 1/48 Kitty Hawk F-35B

I started building The Kitty Hawk 1/48 F-35B last night. Got quite a bit done. I decided to start with the engine as I plan to detail the rotating exhaust nozzle and figure that will take a bit of time. The model is a weird blend of precision molding, sloppy and careless quality control, and really clumsy engineering. I will give you my impressions of the kit as the build progresses

I can now see why some people hate Kitty Hawk products.

Let's start the review.

Engine construction is pretty straightforward. The main engine halves ft together almost perfectly so no problems there. The rotating nozzle halves also mate pretty well although I ended up cutting off the alignment pins because there was a slight mismatch with them on. I bought the KASL resin engine set thinking that it would add a bit of detail to the kit. The truth is that there is very little difference between it and the kit part. The kit part does have some funky raised lines molded in that are supposed to represent the exhaust leaves, but these can be easilt sanded down and rescribed. The KASL engine set is also meant to depict the straight-flight configuraion. There is no provision for the nozzle pointed down so that was a waste of money.

Here is the forward down-facing fan. The plastic is so thin you can see right through it. I had to reinforce and fill cracks with CA glue to keep from cracking under slight pressure from my fingers.

The drive shaft comes in two halves, but one piece was inadeqautely molded. Luckily, I also bought the KASL resin kit for the fan assembly.

As I mentioned, this kit is an enigma. Some of the parts fit perfectly together with nice detail throughout. More later....


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