Bronze was a most important material in ancient times and its wide use was to last until the medieval times. Today it has lost its role and it is replaced in many cases with modern materials. But its good working properties make bronze a very interesting casting material and Eduard has done one very interesting project—they’ve released a landing gear for the MiG-21 made of bronze!
The product we’re talking about is Eduard stock number 648 080 and the kit presents the landing gear for one MiG-21 in 1/48 scale. It comes in the standard packaging—a plastic transparent case with two cells, one for etched parts and the other for the large molded parts. On the back is the instructional leaflet.
I expected problems as I’ve seen the issues that can occur during casting of metal parts. The main worry was with visible mold lines. This package includes three legs and they are perfectly molded! I checked it several times and I was impressed every time with the top-notch surface quality. The bronze is very sensitive to moisture and tends to oxidize and Eduard has provided a thin surface protection. I directly painted acrylic paints over it and the paint adhered perfectly.
No matter that it is metal this set is easy to work with. The only part that demands some manipulation is #M1, the nose leg. You must cut the “axe” and leave just the small 0.5 mm pins for matching to the nose wheel. A number of resin parts are also provided and they are mostly dedicated to the landing gear doors (that attach directly to the legs) and actuators. A few elements are made in photoetch and it is best, in my opinion, to add them at the end of landing gear leg assembly. Paint them in natural metal color, while the leg is in grey color. Photos below, kindly provided by Aleksandar Milosevic, will be of great help as reference to complete this:
For wheels you can use the standard plastic parts from the Eduard kit or resin examples. On this image you can see resin wheels. This is an excellent product and I am sure it will find its way to hard core MiG-21 fans! You may find yours here!
Great thanks to Eduard for providing the sample product.