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First Look Review
148
Hobby Boss Mirage IIICJ
Hobby Boss 1/48 Mirage IIICJ
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by: Andy Brazier [ BETHEYN ]


Originally published on:
AeroScale

Introduction

Hobby Boss entered the game with their ground breaking 1/72 scale series of aircraft, they have now entered the 1/48 aircraft market with this great looking Mirage IIICJ. Also on the horizon are another Mirage, Rafale C, 2 versions of the A-10 Thunderbolt 2 and a F-18 Hornet. Only time will tell how well they will be received.


History

The first major production model of the Mirage series, the Mirage IIIC, first flew in October 1960. It was a single-seat interceptor, with an Atar 09B turbojet engine, featuring an "eyelet" style variable exhaust, which gave it a top speed of 2230km/h (Mach 1.95) and a range of 2500km.
Armed with 2 x125 round DEFA cannons, fitted in the belly with the gun ports under the air intakes. It also had 5 wing pylons on which it could carry a wide range of external stores, Sidewinders, Matra R-511, R-530, AS.20, AS.30 missiles, MK 82 bombs or JL100R rocket launchers.
The Israeli's outstanding success with the Mirage IIICJ, scoring kills against Syrian Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-17s and MiG-21 aircraft and then achieving a formidable victory against Egypt, Jordan, and Syria in the Six-Day War of June 1967, the Mirage III's reputation was greatly enhanced. The "combat-proven" image and low cost made it a popular export success.
The Mirage IIICJ was the designation given to the Israeli Mirage III C's.
The Mirage IIIC was also exported to South Africa as the Mirage IIICZ, and to Switzerland as the Mirage IIICS, to which one was sold in preparation for license construction.



The Kit

Packed in quite a large lidded box the Mirage IIICJ comes on 6 sprues with 172 light grey and 11 clear injected plastic parts.
All the parts are clear of flash, but there is quite a few pin marks to be found on the kit. Most I believe will be hidden on the finished kit, but a few can be found on the inside of the intakes and undercarriage doors.
The kit has some lovely recessed panel lines and rivet details. The wings have separate flaps which have a textured rivet detail on them. The flaps don't look as though they are positional, but with a little work could be dropped. The tail fin and rudder is moulded onto the main fuselage halves, so reworking the rudder requires some surgery.
The interior detail is fairly good, with all the gear doors having some great detail. The undercarriage bays are made up of several pieces each, with each panel having a nice touch of detail on it. Undercarriage legs are typical Tamigawa quality, but the front leg does look a little on the fragile side.
The ejection seat is made up of 5 parts, but does not have any harnesses moulded on or as separate parts.
The cockpit interior has a little moulded on detail in the form of raised dials and levers, and the same can be found on the instrument panel. There are decals for the instruments and possibly the ejection seat, but at no point in the instructions are you told to apply them.
The external stores that come with the kit are 500L and 625L fuel tanks, MK 82 bombs, Sidewinder AIM 9D, Matra 530 C,K, Matra 530 E,M missiles and JL 100R rocket launchers.
The MK 82 bombs look very good but deciding what weapon load you want will be a painful choice as they will all look pretty good sitting underneath the aircraft.



Instructions

The instructions are printed in the usual line drawing way we are all used to on a concertina type folded booklet.
Step 1, starts with the cockpit assembly and ends with step 13 with weapon assembly and placement.
The build sequence is in a logical and easily understood way, with options and interior paint colours given on each section.
As stated before with the cockpit, at no point are you told to apply decals, even though the symbol is stated on the front page.



Painting and Decals
The paint schemes and decal placement are on a separate colour sheet of A3 size glossy paper. All the paints numbers are from the Gunze Sangyo Aqueous Hobby colour and MR Color range.
2 different paint schemes are given for 4 aircraft.
The 2 NMF aircraft are from,
1st Flight of the 119 Tayeset of the Heyl Ha' Avir
No 59, 101st Tayeset of the Heyl Ha' Avir, during the Six Day War in 1968.
The 2 camouflaged scheme aircraft of green/ brown/ tan uppers and light blue lowers, are from,
101st Tayeset of the Heyl Ha' Avir
NO 92, Seine, Aemee de l' Air BA 120 Cazaux, April 1976.
The decals are printed on an A3 size sheet and all look to be in perfect register. There is about 1mm of carrier film around the edges of each decal, but as I have seen before on Hobby Boss decals they do look slightly blotchy.

SUMMARY
Highs: Nicely detailed, low price and a easy looking build.
Lows: A few pin marks, blotchy decals and no interior decaling instructions.
Verdict: I believe Hobby Boss have a winner on their hands with this kit. Having only seen sprue shots of the Eduard Mirage IIICJ kit, this does look better detailed and should compete really well.
Percentage Rating
80%
  Scale: 1:48
  Mfg. ID: 80316
  Suggested Retail: 12.99
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Feb 16, 2007
  NATIONALITY: France
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 84.81%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 83.94%

About Andy Brazier (betheyn)
FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH EAST, UNITED KINGDOM

I started modelling in the 70's with my Dad building Airfix aircraft kits. The memory of my Dad and I building and painting a Avro Lancaster on the kitchen table will always be with me. I then found a friend who enjoyed building models, and between us I think we built the entire range of 1/72 Airfi...

Copyright 2019 text by Andy Brazier [ BETHEYN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of KitMaker Network or the British Bulldogs IPMS-UK group. All rights reserved.



Comments

Hi Andy Nice review!!!! What really interests me: Is it a copy of the Eduard kit ? ... sprues-wise they are different, but ... I am not politically motivated as some guys on other forums might be (a la "do not buy Ferengi stuff") but the whole programme smells alittle like "Dolly" .....Rafales could be Revell clones, (excellent model BTW), A-10 are surely scaled down Trumpeter .. know what I mean? The problem would be that these clones might be first rate (even better in some points), but what when the companies that are betrayed go belly up .. who will produce the first rate models to be cloned and improved? ... just a thought best wishes Steffen
FEB 16, 2007 - 03:13 AM
I'm pretty sure that the Mirage aren't Eduard copies. There is a number of differences when you compare the sprues. The A-10s I would have thought were scaled down Trumpeter kits, there T-34s were. Andy
FEB 16, 2007 - 03:19 AM
Hi Andy that's not what I mean (as already stated in my pevious post) I am not after legal issues .. they surely have changed enough so it is not too obvious .. someone made an intersting experiment with the Tamiya and ICM P-51 --- one fuselage half from each ... fits perfectly ... I'm looking forward to your build report! cheers Steffen
FEB 16, 2007 - 03:43 AM
Yeah I know what you mean Steffen, I'm not after legal issues either, as my first thought was that they were Eduard copies when they were released, but now I'm not so sure they are. Once Eduard release the Mirage as a "Weekend Edition" I'll do a side by side comparison. That is an interesting experiment, i wonder how many other kits out there would match up ! I must admit that I'm really looking forward to getting my hands on the A-10 kit, as long as I can sneak it past the Beloved :-)8 :-) . Andy
FEB 16, 2007 - 04:43 AM
Hi Andy I just bought myself the profipack for 28 Euro .. sure a little more expensive than the Weekend edition, but still a great price .. only have to get the pavla seat now. ... I hope someone will do a Nesher too. BTW the osprey is not too bad, though I find Shlomo Aloni's books a little too patriotic .. but thats no real problem as the combat aircraft series has some books that cope with the othere side, so I can "mix" my own view from them. Onfortunately I did not have the chance to take a look into the HB A-10 box that my pal Volker brought from Nuremberg ... but he took a few pix and I think it is a nice model (not sure about the accuracy, but the scale police will surely coe up soom with that...) here are some pix of the sprues: A-10 Thunderbolt II OTOH I am occupied by many many (...) projects sooo I just hope to get some of them finished soon before I start other models ... best wishes Steffen
FEB 16, 2007 - 01:08 PM
Hi Andy, Nice review. I'm not at all a wingy-thing guy, so please forgive my somewhat ignorant questions... You mentioned that the IIIC was marketed as the IIICJ to Israel and the IIICZ to South Africa. What were the major differences between the baseline C, the CJ and the CZ? Could this CJ easily be converted to a CZ without any major AM purchases? Or would you recommend a different 1/48 Mirage for conversion to SA colours? Thanks again for the review. Rudi
FEB 27, 2007 - 11:51 AM
Hi Rudi No differences, as the eduard kits have both decals inside. J and Z are just designations for the land that get the planes .... there were more, but I am no expert. BTW your IPMS site hase a LOT of useful information: LINK cheers Steffen
FEB 27, 2007 - 01:43 PM
Hi Steffen, Thanks. Yeah, the local IPMS site is ok-ish. Personally I find it too "local" and too "wingy".... i.e. it's great if you build SAAF aircraft. Now IPMS Stockholm... now there's a great IPMS site! Rudi
FEB 27, 2007 - 01:54 PM
Started to post this in response to the Mirage review because I was initially disappointed that it was only an in box review. I realise now that it is listed as First Look. In that sense, it's good to know what is in there! I am going to be picky though - constructive criticism I hope. The photographs are a bit limited in usefulness because the shadows make them a bit unclear. Try using more subdued lighting or bouncing/diffusing your flash. Finally, there is no way that the decal sheet is A3 in size!!! I haven't seen it but then again, I haven't seen many A3 decal sheets...
MAR 11, 2007 - 05:43 PM
   

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