Top Drawings is a really nice series of books from Kagero Publishing that are aimed specifically at the modeller who loves and needs to get the detail on their models just right. The latest one I have obtained a copy of looks at the Curtiss P-40 B, C, D and E Models.
This offering from Kagero is a soft back book written by Mariusz Łukasik. This is a duel language offering with English on the left of the page and Polish on the right of each pages where there is dedicated text. The cover is made from a light card with a gloss finish and inside there are 26 pages of high quality matt paper. The book is presented in a portrait style throughout.
The book begins with a short written introduction and that is the only pure text in this title as its purpose is to provide accurate visual reference material. The material is presented in the form of scale drawings and colour profiles. Included with this release is a very nice colour print of a P-40B Warhawk during the attack on Pearl Harbour by the Japanese that brought America into World War 2.
The title offers 23 pages of scale drawings in the two main scales of 1/72nd and 1/48th scale and these cover the aircraft in up to six plains. The aircraft is covered from the sides, front, back, top and bottom, in addition to this some aspects of the aircraft are presented in their own right in order to cover very specific areas while retaining the scale of the parts shown in most cases; where this is not the case. I was particularly pleased to see instrument panel and the various tyre tread patterns receive special attention as I know that tyre tread is a difficult aspect to asses in many cases.
I was initially left feeling a little disappointed to find there is no fold out plan in this offering and I did not feel that this was compensated by the very nice print that is included, but after giving this further consideration I changed my mind as Kagero has included so many more pages in this title that more than makes up for the lack of a separate sheet. The colour profiles supplied in this issue pleased and surprised me as the main multi profile aircraft is an aircraft in British service and there is even a P-40 in Japanese markings while on trials after being captured.
This offering from Kagero as part of their Top Drawings line of books looking at the Curtiss P-40 B, C, D and E Models is not a title for the person interested in reading about the aircraft; it is a title aimed very specifically at the modeller looking to build an accurate representation of the Curtiss P-40 B, C, D and E Models improving on the details provided with the model. The scale drawings also enable the modeller to check the accuracy of the main parts of the aircraft model with the cross sections of the fuselage and wings being a big plus for accuracy checks. I did feel let down at the loss of the fold out sheet plan, but this is more than compensated for by the increase in pages in the title.
Highs: A large increase in page count is a nice aspect of this title.Lows: The loss of fold out sheets and masks, but this is compensated for with the increased page count.Verdict: A very nice addition to the range of titles from the Top Drawings series and I feel offers good value for money.
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About Darren Baker (CMOT) FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH WEST, UNITED KINGDOM
I have been building model kits since the early 70ís starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70ís, I have had lots of opportunitie...