by: Darren Baker [ ]
MiniArt is offering something a little different here that I feel falls into the realms of Luftwaffe 46. This aircraft design was in the works as the war came to an end, but it is my understanding that design and development had only reached the stage of wind tunnel tests. The purpose of the aircraft was to enable fighter aircraft to be used from heavily damaged areas without the need of an airfield and so to some extent stem the effectiveness of Allied bombing. I am adding an inbox review on Armorama as Aeroscale due to this being a 1/35th scale offering.
This offering from MiniArt is packaged in the usual cardboard tray and card lid. Inside there is a single plastic bag containing the parts for the model with the photo etch elements protected inside a card envelope which is a positive change by MiniArt. The decals are left a tad unprotected and so I have opted to keep them inside the instruction booklet.
This offering from MiniArt has a very low parts count, but that does not mean it is weak. I do not know what factual documentation remains covering this aircraft and for that matter what MiniArt was able to find on it, but from what I can see this model looks pleasing. The cockpit is nicely detailed in that the layout is conventional and I was very pleased to see the inclusion of photo etched seat harnesses. Around the cockpit is the fire power and I could only find mention of this on Wikipedia and so the following information is open to debate; it is stated that the armament was to consist of 2 × 30 mm MK-103 and 2 × 20 mm MG-151 so reasonable offensive firepower. MiniArt has provided access panels for the modeller who wants the weapons to be seen.
With the cockpit assembled you have a front and rear fuselage in two half sections. Panel line detail here is pleasing and will provide the modeller with a nice look to their model once completed. The general shape of this fuselage reminds me a lot of the V-2 rocket shape. The tail has four fins of a reasonable size again much like the V-2 that leads me to believe the V-2 had a big impact on the basic design of this aircraft.
At the rear of the fuselage there is a single wheel that in the event of takeoff two doors close around. At the ends of each of the four tail fins there is a coaster wheel that extends out from the fin in order to provide a more stable platform. On takeoff these wheels retract into the fins and two doors cover each of the wheels.
The wings or blades depending on your standpoint are again nicely detailed for the painting process to bring out. The aircraft was way ahead of its time as it was to be powered by ramjets; initial power for takeoff was to be provided by small rockets based at the end of each wing/blade. Each of the wings/blades could be rotated and that aspect has been provided by MiniArt in this model release. The blades rotate around a collar and being powered at the ends means there is no need for anything to stop the fuselage spinning. This being sold by MiniArt as a night fighter variant means that a radar assembly is needed and I am very pleased at the level of detail MiniArt has managed to put into this aspect.
MiniArt has proposed four potential finishes for this model and they are as follows:
Nachtjagdgeschwader 1, Germany 1945 – 1946
Nachtjagdgeschwader 200, Germany 1946
Nachtjagdgeschwader X, Experimental Camouflage, 2nd Battle of Berlin, 1946
Nachtjagdgeschwader 310, Germany 1946
This offering from MiniArt is a very pleasing offering for those who like the what if the war had gone further or ended differently, very much along the line of the ball tanks that MiniArt also released. The model has a pleasing cockpit designed into it and with a low parts count it will make for a large and quick build that will especially appeal to the younger modellers and the older modellers who wants something different.