Northrop and flying wings go hand in hand, and the N-9MA was one of the first experiments developed by Jack Northrop. Built as a test platform for the upcoming B-35 flying wing, the N-9M serieswas designed as a midget B-35 to discover all the aerodynamic personalities of that huge bomber. Three N-9Ms were built, with the first being the N-9M, the second being the N-9M2 and the final one being the subject of this kit, the N-9MA. A fourth N-9M was built to replace the first N-9M, which had crashed, and this one was referred to as the N-9MB. All of the N-9M series flew and provided countless amounts of research data on the subject of flying wings, with the culmination in today's B-2 Stealth bomber.
Sword's first kit was of the N-9MA and was released in 1998. This was of a limited run nature and the plastic quality wasn't the best. Later Sword releases were of a much higher quality and Sword has decided to go back and redo their original kit and bring it up to their current standards. And that's exactly what they've done here.
The moldings of this kit are much crisper and cleaner than the original, with the end result of there being far less resin being needed. Also, this kit features an injection-molded canopy. The cockpit tub and nose wheel well are cast as a one-piece resin insert and the fit of that piece is simply superb.
This is a very simple kit to build, with the wings being split into upper and lower halves. The one-piece cockpit means that a day of detail painting followed by an hour of gluing will give you a complete model, ready for paint. The paint scheme is striking and yet simple at the same time, with the upper half finished in yellow and the lower half in blue. While it would be nice, unfortunately the fit isn't quite good enough to allow you to paint each half before gluing them together. A pity, too, as that would give you a very nice demarcation.
This is a welcome change to their earlier kit, which, while buildable, would have left you wanting something easy for a while. This kit is now a quick build and a weekend should give you a nice looking N-9MA, no problem. If you never picked up the Sword N-9MA because you thought it a bit crude, definitely grab this one. You won't be disappointed.