Miniwing 1/144 Sukhoi Su-24
By Matt Bittner
The Sukhoi Su-24 was the first Russian all-weather attack aircraft that had the first integrated digital navigation/attack system. It still serves to this day not only in the Russian air force, but also in the other countries it was exported to such as Belarus, Libya, etc.
One of the most requested kits that I've read about in 1/144 is the Sukhoi Su-24, and now - thanks to Miniwing - we have one. This version is for the "Fencer C" that was the first produced version and manufactered between 1971 and 1983.
There are 36 parts cast in a cream-colored resin, one clear-resin canopy, and a fret of 13 brass pieces, which are meant for the wing fences, antennas and pitot. Decals are for two Soviet-era aircraft, the first of the 149th GvBAP in overall gray, and the second was ochre and brown, over light-blue, that flew in Afghanistan, 1984. Decals are ALPS-generated so care must be taken.
Once you carefully (ensure to have both halves lined up all the way) glue the fuselage halves together (they're split laterally) then construction continues in earnest. I'm uncertain if the wings could be made to move or not - I suspect they're molded in such a fashion so you need to glue them either swept or not. There is no mechanism within the kit (since both fuselage halves are solid) and I don't think it would be easy to ensure both wings moved together.
The intakes are naturally separate pieces but the back end of the kit is one piece. However, the exhausts are separate so if care is taken removing them from their pour block you could probably glue those on after construction is finished.
There are a lot of resin "bits and bumps" so study the instructions carefully. This is one area I wish the instructions were a bit clearer on, as the only parts that are numbered are the ones on the photoetch fret. You'll have to study the resin parts and the instructions closely to be sure you put the correct part in the right place.
I would leave off some of the photoetch and landing gear until after painting, to be sure these aren't knocked off during painting. There are no external stores but there are pylons so if you want to add anything to them, you're on your own for finding parts.
All in all another excellent release from Miniwing and one not only long in coming, but one also worth pursuing. Right now - as far as I know - it's the only Fencer in 1/144 and while it isn't one of Miniwing's easier kits - with all the parts and the photoetch fret (a first for Miniwing) - it still is one of their best offerings. Highly recommended.
My thanks to Miniwing for supplying this kit to review.