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Pros & cons of the ICM Spitfire Mk. IX kit?

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  • Member since
    September, 2011
  • From: Kingsport, Tennessee
Pros & cons of the ICM Spitfire Mk. IX kit?
Posted by Eighth Air Force Pilot on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 8:15 AM

Looking at a Mk. IX spitfire kit from ICM, never built one before and needed to know how good they were, accurate?

"Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far," Theodore Roosevelt

 Currently on the bench:

  1. 1/48 Revell Germany Spitfire Mk.IX
  2. 1/48 Academy Spitfire Mk. XIVc
  3. 1/48 Tamiya Beaufigher TF Mk.X
  4. 1/48 Tamiya F-15C
  5. 1/48 Revell F-15E Strike Eagle
  6. 1-48 Revell B-17G

  • Member since
    September, 2004
  • From: Utereg
Posted by Borg R3-MC0 on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 9:07 AM

Pro's; good accuray, nicely detailed, comes with an engine

Con's: over enginered (partly because of the engine), early issues have quality controle issues, poor decals

  • Member since
    June, 2010
  • From: Austin, TX
Posted by DoogsATX on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 11:00 AM

I've got ICM's Spit VIII and Spit IX in my stash...haven't touched either but I did start on their LaGG-3 earlier this year (before losing a piece of side glass and being unable to continue without it...).

Overall impressions: solid detail, decent-to-better-than-decent fit. The glass on the LaGG was thick and a bit cloudy. The plastic has a strange feel to it, reminds me of Zvezda's molds in that regard. Also be prepared to deal with some flash, sinkholes and short-shot parts, but those vary kit to kit. 

Ultracast also makes a lot of parts to overcome some of the weaker points of the ICM if you want to look into those.

On the Bench: 1/32 Trumpeter P-47 | 1/32 Hasegawa Bf 109G | 1/144 Eduard MiG-21MF x2

On Deck:  1/350 HMS Dreadnought

Blog/Completed Builds: doogsmodels.com

 

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 12:15 PM

Eighth Air Force Pilot

Looking at a Mk. IX spitfire kit from ICM, never built one before and needed to know how good they were, accurate?

Do you mean that you've never built an ICM kit before, or this particular kit?  I can't speak to this specific kit, but if you've never built an ICM kit before, I'll offer my impression.

I've got their 1/48 P-51B on the bench right now; it's a copy of Tamiya's kit, so, details are as good as on the original, and the boxing I picked up had an extra fret of ground crew and a standing pilot, which I believe are original to ICM.  Plastic is a little softer than with Tamiya or Hasegawa, so sanding and scribing take more care than usual.

There was also an extra instrument panel and some other parts for variants of the exhausts, prop spinner, blades, and cockpit seat, which was also nice, always good to feed the spares box.

There are two main problems with the kit, which may or may not be indicative of ICM's quality as a whole.

One is that the instructions are very poor, consisting of exploded drawings, but no real notations.  You can follow along, but the instructions were unclear on the exact fit of the the flight deck, that is, the piece that makes up the cockpit floor, the radio deck, and ends with that piece of the fuselage immediately aft of the radiator vent.

That is the second problem with the kit--the flight deck did not fit properly, so the end of the piece did not fit, and I have a large rectangular hole aft of the vent and in front of the tail wheel compartment.  In this photo, you see it just above the vent door, filled with tissue for painting:

I have not yet built the Tamiya kit, so I've never had to fit these parts.  I have it in my stash now, and as soon as I opened it, I realized that the flight deck has to be fitted in such a way that the end of the piece forms the outer skin of the fuselage.  In this photo, it's the panel above the vent door, with the little aerodynamic antenna mounted on it:

There are ribs in the fuselage to align the deck, and on the ICM kit, they're misaligned, and the piece doesn't fit.

Now, it's not enough to keep me from ever buying this kit again, since I know what to look for and how to address it (cut that section off the flight deck piece and install it separately).  So, that is my ICM story--came across a problem, had to do some research, and figured out how to resolve it.  But the amount of detail, for the price (the kit was $10 on sale at Squadron), means that I'd still buy it.  But I'd also be alert with other ICM kits, that there could be minor issues.

Hope that helps!

Best regards,

Brad

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/HansvonHammer/Humor/th_MonogramMafia.jpg?t=1296972087

  • Member since
    April, 2006
  • From: ON, Canada
Posted by jgeratic on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 12:39 PM

It has been a few years since I bought my Mk.IX by ICM, but from what I remember it is the most accurate one in that scale, better than Tamiya and Hasegawa.  It's problem though were sink holes in the worst locations - that was why Ultracast came out with replacement parts strictly for ICM. 

Comparison link

Since this review Loon models has came out with a replacement resin fuselage for the Hasegawa kit.

regrads,

Jack

Edit: my bad, just realized Tamiya don't have a Mk.9 offering in this scale.

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 2:29 PM

I am building their Mk VII kit right now which is closely related to their MkIX. I have both kits and side by side, I think the parts for both versions are in both kit boxes. Overall a very nice kit.

Pros: Nicely detailed, good fit, simple construction, beautiful engine, decent cockpit, lots of optional parts- wingtips, rudders, chin scoops, armaments

Cons: few positive locator pins- good Mk I hand eye coordination required, a bit of flash to be found, no seat harness molded in place or decal.

Recommendations- replace the kit seat and exhaust stacks.

I amhappy with my build so far and planon replacing those items. It actually builds smooth and quick. With a little add on effort it can really shine I think. For the priceyou certainly can not go wrong. It's not 'shake and bake', but with just some basic modeling skills and efforts you'll have a nice Mk IX for less than Tamigawa.

 

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 5:30 PM

Hi, Stik, and everyone else who's built this kit, do you know if it's a tooling original to ICM, or did it originate with another maker (like the P-51B)?  If it's the latter, I'd be curious to know how it compares to the original.

Best regards,

Brad

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/HansvonHammer/Humor/th_MonogramMafia.jpg?t=1296972087

  • Member since
    June, 2010
  • From: Austin, TX
Posted by DoogsATX on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 5:52 PM

the Baron

Hi, Stik, and everyone else who's built this kit, do you know if it's a tooling original to ICM, or did it originate with another maker (like the P-51B)?  If it's the latter, I'd be curious to know how it compares to the original.

Best regards,

Brad

From what I understand, the ICM Spit is their own mold. The P-51 dates from earlier and was a more-or-less direct lift from Tamiya (though the fit is nowhere near on par). I have their P-51K and can attest...it looks just like Tamiya's P-51D, but if Tamiyas go together like Legos, the ICM goes together like those knock-off-legos that always sucked.

On the Bench: 1/32 Trumpeter P-47 | 1/32 Hasegawa Bf 109G | 1/144 Eduard MiG-21MF x2

On Deck:  1/350 HMS Dreadnought

Blog/Completed Builds: doogsmodels.com

 

  • Member since
    February, 2011
  • From: Monterey Bay,CA-Fort Bragg, NC
Posted by randypandy831 on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 6:51 PM

Eighth Air Force Pilot

Looking at a Mk. IX spitfire kit from ICM, never built one before and needed to know how good they were, accurate?

google is your best friend.

http://www.cybermodeler.com/hobby/kits/icm/kit_icm_48061.shtml

tamiya 1/48 P-47D $25 + shipping

tamiya 1/48 mosquito $20+ shipping

hobby boss 1/48 F-105G. wings and fuselage cut from sprue. $40+ shipping. 

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Wednesday, November 23, 2011 11:41 AM

DoogsATX

it looks just like Tamiya's P-51D, but if Tamiyas go together like Legos, the ICM goes together like those knock-off-legos that always sucked.

Hehe, good analogy, I like that.  Yes, that's in line with my experience with the P-51B.

I may have to get myself the Spitfire and see how that looks, too.

Best regards,

Brad

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/HansvonHammer/Humor/th_MonogramMafia.jpg?t=1296972087

  • Member since
    June, 2010
  • From: Austin, TX
Posted by DoogsATX on Wednesday, November 23, 2011 11:58 AM

the Baron

 

 DoogsATX:

 

 

it looks just like Tamiya's P-51D, but if Tamiyas go together like Legos, the ICM goes together like those knock-off-legos that always sucked.

 

 

 

Hehe, good analogy, I like that.  Yes, that's in line with my experience with the P-51B.

I may have to get myself the Spitfire and see how that looks, too.

Best regards,

Brad

yeah, I was going to say...because the Tamiya P-51B may be the single best-fitting kit I've ever assembled. Fit was so snug and perfect I didn't even have to glue the upper wing to the fuselage. And the closed canopy just literally clicks into place. The open one I went with was a bit more of a balancing act, but even that was problem free. 

On the Bench: 1/32 Trumpeter P-47 | 1/32 Hasegawa Bf 109G | 1/144 Eduard MiG-21MF x2

On Deck:  1/350 HMS Dreadnought

Blog/Completed Builds: doogsmodels.com

 

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Thursday, November 24, 2011 6:06 PM

Eighth Air Force Pilot

Looking at a Mk. IX spitfire kit from ICM, never built one before and needed to know how good they were, accurate?

Here's a few shots of my in progress Mk VII to give you an idea of the detailing in teh engine and cockpit. Common areas to the MKVII and Mk IX kits.

Engine

Cockpit sidewalls

center portion

and the seat which I plan upon replacing with a resin seat that has a harness

As you can see, lots of nice crisp detail under a coat of paint. When I get a wash on and drybrush some highlights it should really be nice...Stick out tongue

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    July, 2008
  • From: USA California
Posted by vetteman42 on Saturday, November 26, 2011 11:03 PM

That looks great Stik !!!!!!!!!!!! Gotta love the ICM engines.

Having built a few ICM aircraft kits I can say they are not for the beginner, the instructions couldn't be more vague I don't think. And they can be very fiddly. My only real complaint about the kits I have built has been the decals. They are ultra thin, and they shatter or break easily. Also you dont want to even get a bottle setting solution near the bench even Black Eye. Other than that with patience and taking ones time to fit everything before gluing they build up very very nicely. For the funny looking crystals I found dipping them in future after washing clears them up beautifully.

Just my 2 cents worth

Randy So many to build.......So little time

  • Member since
    July, 2013
Posted by DURR on Sunday, November 27, 2011 9:16 AM

for short money  they are great kits

that said  ... i found that trying to stick the eng. in it can be a headache   you don't see it anyway so  after a few trial fits and you get angry  just delete the eng

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Monday, November 28, 2011 12:13 PM

vetteman42

That looks great Stik !!!!!!!!!!!! Gotta love the ICM engines.

Having built a few ICM aircraft kits I can say they are not for the beginner, the instructions couldn't be more vague I don't think. And they can be very fiddly. My only real complaint about the kits I have built has been the decals. They are ultra thin, and they shatter or break easily. Also you dont want to even get a bottle setting solution near the bench even Black Eye. Other than that with patience and taking ones time to fit everything before gluing they build up very very nicely. For the funny looking crystals I found dipping them in future after washing clears them up beautifully.

Just my 2 cents worth

Thanks for the heads-up about the decals, Vetteman!  I am about to apply the decals to my ICM Mustang tonight.  They look decent enough on the sheet, but I'll proceed with caution.  Don't really have a choice at this point--I want to finish the kit by Friday, and have to use the kit decals.

Best regards,

Brad

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/HansvonHammer/Humor/th_MonogramMafia.jpg?t=1296972087

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Monday, November 28, 2011 4:23 PM

DURR

for short money  they are great kits

that said  ... i found that trying to stick the eng. in it can be a headache   you don't see it anyway so  after a few trial fits and you get angry  just delete the eng

I am having decent luck at getting the engine to fit so far. The biggest changes are thinning down the firewall where it slides into the slots in the fuselage side and narrowing the width of the firewall to eliminate its' spreading effect of the forward fuselage.

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    January, 2003
  • From: Poland
Posted by Aleksander on Thursday, December 08, 2011 4:33 PM

I've made a Mk VIII from the ICM kit -  there are the same parts - I recommend not to install the firewall unless opening the engine compartement since the wing dihedral will be incorrect. The fuselage halves fit together well without this part and don't press out the wings.

I'm quite glad of my kit, specially when the overall fit is concerned. You should also correct the undercarriage doors, since they fit to high (and the whole plane looks like in too short trousers)

Here she is:

  • Member since
    February, 2003
  • From: Rothesay, NB Canada
Posted by VanceCrozier on Thursday, December 08, 2011 5:09 PM

Aleksander

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y109/goria/Spitfire_Mk_VIII/100_6442.jpg

Nice work on that one Aleksander - I love the more unusual Spitfires!

I have the Mk IX in the stash, hoping to start it over the winter. On the sprues it looks spectacular, hoping it'll play nice with me. The decals on mine look horrible, but I already have an aftermarket sheet that I want to use with this kit. Good price too, mine was $22cdn from my local shop iirc.

On the bench: Italeri 1/72 Henschel 126; Heller 1/72 Curtiss Hawk H.75; Airfix 1/72 Supermarine Swift. And probably a cat when I'm not looking...

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