Monogram 1/48 Mig-29 Fulcrum






One aircraft


Scott Van Aken


1988 boxing


The MiG-29 is marketed worldwide and equals or surpasses the F-15C in several areas. The MiG-29's wings are swept-back and tapered with square tips. LERXs are wide and curved down to the front. LERX begins on the nose below the mid-mount point, and the wings’ trailing edges end at a high-mounted point. Twin jet engines are mounted low and to the sides of the fuselage. Diagonal-shaped air intakes give a box-like appearance. There is a large exhausts. The fuselage is made of a long, thin, slender body with long, pointed drooping nose. There is a high-mounted bubble canopy. The tail fins have sharply tapered leading edges, canted outward with angular, cutoff tips. Flats are high-mounted on the fuselage, movable, swept-back, and tapered with a negative slant.

The MiG-29 is a widely exported aircraft, flown by Iraq, Iran, North Korea and Cuba among its many customers. The MiG-29 has a few advantages over its more electronically advanced American counterparts. At about 40 miles apart, the American planes have the advantage because of avionics. At 10 miles the advantage is turning to the MiG. At five miles out, because of the MiG weapons sight and better maneuverability, the advantage is to the MiG. The weapons sight is a helmet-mounted system that allows the missile to follow the line of sight of the pilot's helmet. Where the pilot looks is where it goes. Downsides to the Mig are its high maintenance man hour per flight hour ratio and the short overhaul time of its engines. This is often off-set by its low initial purchase price when compared to Western aircraft. Though it would be premature to assume that it will have the success of the Mig-21, the type is still in production and being constantly upgraded.



1988 boxing, eh? Must be engraved panel lines. Well, unfortunately, no. It seems as if Monogram is a bit of a late comer to that sort of thing and this kit is raised lines all the way.  The kit itself has some flash on it and there are ejector pin marks in a few places like the inside of doors, on the missiles and the pylons. No sink areas were noted, not even on the rather thick fins. The canopy parts are crystal clear. In terms of things under wings, there are two pair of AA-8 and a pair of AA-10 missiles as well as a centerline drop tank. The kit includes intake doors and one can pose the canopy open or closed. A pilot figure is also provided.

When discussing early kits of  'not so well known at the time' Soviet aircraft, there turns up the question of overall fidelity. Frankly, I'm not really sure just what is right or wrong with this particular kit. As with so many people who have only a fleeting interest in the type, I can tell you that it looks about right to me. Having said that, I'm sure that I'll be bombarded with e-mails telling me of the error of my ways. Fine. I can accept that. The markings in the kit are for one generic Mig-29 with a tactical number, a few stencils and the usual red stars. I'm sure that there are a lot of aftermarket sheets that will provide something a bit more interesting. The colors given to paint this plane are rather generic as well, giving Gray and Dark Gray uppers and Light Gray undersides. One thing I will point out is that it is unlikely that the upper air bypass doors would be open in flight as shown on the box art.



I'll have to conclude by saying that it is a Monogram kit. It is a good value for the money and while it may well have inaccuracies in shape, they don't seem to be gross ones and if you are looking for a pleasant build, then this would be a good one to have. Though not currently in production, they can be found at swap meets with some ease.

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