items that wind up for sale tend to cater to one specific model in one specific
scale. Occasionally though, something comes along that can benefit modellers on
more than one type of project... like these! 3rd Wire Models has recently begun
producing open-position GE-110 Fighter-derivative engine nozzles. These are
featured on both F-14B and D Super Tomcats and nearly half of the F-16
variants in service across the world. These open-position nozzles were created
because the open-nozzle parts that come with Hasegawa's Super-Tomcat kits rarely
go together the way the instructions call for, and are rather devoid of detail
when they do. Alternately, the Hasegawa F-16 kits don't even have the option of
an open-nozzle provided... so a very useful item indeed!
purposes of this writeup, I built up the engine shroud of a Super Tomcat, which
the nozzle will attach to. I don't own any Hasegawa F-16 kits, but I will assume
the fit to be very similar, since the engine nozzle for my Hasegawa F-2A was
identical to the closed nozzles in my F-14D kit.
The nozzles come in
a package of two (good for one F-14 kit or two F-16 kits). The nozzles
themselves are casted in a very sturdy white resin and are attached to a small
pour stub. Removal of the stub is easy enough with a dremel or razor saw (be
sure to wear a mask to avoid inhaling a lot of resin dust, it's not healthy for
you). The cut area is easy enough to recognize; the only concern in the removal
process is to make sure you sand down the bottom evenly so it will fit
properly on top of the engine shroud.
personal-taste and you're good to go! It's a very simple aftermarket item that
can make a lot of difference. The detail on the inside and outside of the can is
great, and really shines out for 1/72 engine nozzles. There is only one very
minor issue with the nozzles though: The detail in the tiny notched areas on the
end of the burner can (where you can see between the 'feathers") gets kind
of eaten up in the casting process. It's kind of hit and miss; some will look
very clean while others are not. It's a very small problem though and not hard
to clean up if there's a problem.
I highly recommend
these nozzles to anyone who wants to not let their hair go grey for wanting open
nozzles on their F-14 kits (the Hasegawa petals really are a pain to assemble),
or to vary their Viper builds by displaying an open burner can. The detail is
amazing and for the price they simply cannot be beaten!
images below to see larger images