1/48 Hasegawa & Kinetic CF-18 Hornets 71 and 72

Gallery Article by Shawn "phantom" Weiler on Jan 14 2020

 

      

These two Hornets were built together for the current comparison group build on ARC. The older Hasegawa and the new kid on the block Kinetic kits. Both are out of the box, completely except for the decals. Both kits have advantages. The Hasegawa is a much stronger model. Highly superior landing gear and strength to hold the model up. The Kinetics gear is flimsy and is molded in the American naval Hornet way. The Hasegawa gives you options to do a land based (Canadian Australian etc) out of the box. I prefer the look of the Hasegawa cockpit and seat, but the Kinetic has much more pronounced details which make painting easier.

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The Kinetic kit comes with everything you need to make the wings folded. Hasegawa kits can be converted but either a special addition kit or expensive after market is required. I have the special addition Hasegawa kit I got in a trade, but the folding wing option is not there. The Kinetic kit also comes with the modern additions such as expanded flair cans and bird slicers on the nose. In addition to the current GPS tracking dome and canted aerials. However both the models I chose to build are well before those modifications took place. I used extra Hasegawa aerials to back date the Kinetic kit. The Kinetic nose is much harder to get to look right then the Hasegawa, Also I feel it just does not look right. It has a upwards cant which the Hasegawa does not. Another nice thing about the Kinetic is it has a refuelling probe. In building this kit in the past with the probe closed I found much putty and sanding was required. Which of course cost a lot of the finer detail to be lost. Both have the option to do the Canadian style spot light on the port side. Just the Hasegawa does not mention it in the instructions unless your working from a kit with Canadian decals.

Things I don't like, well the Hasegawa does not really have any. The Kinetic nose fits but with gaps that require putty. I have yet to build the Kinetic (3 times now) where I did not have trouble with the windshield. It just does not fit right closed. Both kits used over 20 year old Leading Edge decals. The decals for the 416 squadron airframe went on with no issues. However the porcupine 433 bird required two coats of decal save. Even still, most of the quills folded up and flaked off, or simply shattered. Even after two coats of gloss and two more coats of dull to seal everything in. Many of the quills had to be hand painted. I don fault Leading edge, I did this scheme in 1/72 back when the decals where new and they worked just fine. Over twenty years waiting for use is going to screw up any decal. I feel, while the folded wings and probe are nice, the Hasegawa is a much better looking kit when finished. But, with the canopy open and extra care, the Kinetic is also a fine kit.

"phantom"

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Photos and text by Shawn Weiler