I recently built Eduard’s Hellcat, and I quite enjoyed the kit. Though I had the Profipack boxing of the kit, I used very few pieces of the photoetch. I find p/e to be a bit to fiddly for my tastes. Also, while the pre-painted IP panels look fabulous, I enjoy the process of painting and dry-brushing the IP.
There’s not much to say about this kit that hasn’t already been written. It’s a great kit, with no major fit problems. The parts are very nicely cast, and putting it together is a joy. I’ve not built a lot of Eduard kits, but of the ones I have built, this is certainly the nicest. I had forgotten how “beefy” the Hellcat was until I completed it and placed it on the shelf next to the Spitfires and P-40s and Mustangs.
I do recall that there was quite a bit of discussion about the shape of the cowl, so I did a little test of my own. I compared the shape of the cowl, when viewed head-on, to a meatball from a can of Spaghetti-Os, my cat named Huggy Bear’s head, and a bowl full of pinto beans. Of all of them, the Eduard cowling looked most like a Hellcat’s cowling. So I’m not sure what the fuss was about.
This kit has a special place for me. The markings are from our dear friend Tom Myers, from the set of Hellcat markings he released under the Possum Werks label, before he went home to be with the Lord. Unfortunately, my decaling skills are not the best, and I had some silvering around some of them. No reflection on Tom’s decals, certainly- they are printed by Cartograph and of the finest quality. I thought about taking steps to fix it, but I reflected back on conversations Tom and I had about building models. I realized he would have basically said “Forget it- go build something else.” So I did.
This kit has been released as a “Weekend Edition” at a quite reasonable price. At Squadron.com, it’s only $19.96 as of this writing. If you want to build a Hellcat, I highly recommend this kit, especially the very affordable Weekend Edition.
Special thanks to my father-in-law, Chuck Hollis, for the kind birthday gift that made this build possible.