Czech Master Resin 1/72 Supermarine Spiteful Mk. XIV & Seafang FR. 32
The Spiteful and Seafang were developments from the highly successful Spitfire lineage, with the Spiteful being designed for the RAF and the Seafang for the Royal Navy. The basic design for both of them was similar and both borrowed heavily from the Mk. 24 Spitfire. The fuselage, in fact, was very similar, with only a few changes being made to the Seafang to make it more carrier-friendly. The biggest change, however, was with the wings. With the wings of the Spiteful/Seafang Supermarine left the classic elliptical wing design of the Spitfire and went with a trapezoidal shape instead.
While the Spiteful and Seafang were not successful as planes (mainly due to the advancement of the jet engine), the design was sound and in fact the wings from the Spiteful found their way onto Supermarine's first jet fighter, the Attacker.
Czech Master Resin has been putting out some very nicely done kits lately, and these two are no exception. Since there is so much similarity between the two types, there are lots of common parts between the two kits. In fact, only the fuselage, tail, and spinner are different between the two.
The interior is very nicely detailed and once cleaned up a bit and painted should look every bit like a Spitfire cockpit (which the Spiteful/Seafang had). The seat looks somewhat wide, but once inside it will probably look just fine. The fuselage halves have sidewall detailing that looks pretty good, although some extra detailing could be added. The very thin and clear vacuformed canopy will show off anything extra you do, so if you can find the references you can really go to town.
The main differences between the two fuselages has to do with the nose area. On the Spiteful, the nose is classic Spitfire, with a scoop under the wing and a curve up to the spinner, which holds a five-bladed prop. On the Seafang, the underwing scoop is incorporated underneath the chin, extending all the way up to the spinner, which instead of a standard five-bladed affair is a six-bladed contra-rotating propeller. In both kits the blades are provided as separate pieces, fitting into a one-piece hub.
The tail is the other main area of difference between the two kits, with the Seafang incorporating a tailhook similar in arrangement to that of a Seafire. The remaining parts of the kit are the same between the two. The landing gear is very nicely detailed and actually looks somewhat frail. It might be worth looking into replacing for strength, but then again these models, even though they are resin, don't weigh that much.
The decals for both kits are very nicely printed by MPD and in the case of the Spiteful choices are given for three different serial numbers. Only one choice is given for the Seafang however. Full painting instructions are included and finishing your Spiteful or Seafang should be no problem with the enclosed instructions.
If you're a Spitfire fanatic, you'll definitely want to pick up these two kits. While not exactly Spitfires, they do provide the lineage from the Spitfire to the jet Attacker (also available from Czech Master Resin) and they will definitely be a conversation piece.
Fonderie 1/48 Br693