Saturday, 23 July 2016

AMK Mig 31 B/BS
Review Build
Part 1 

Following on from my box review of AMK's latest boxing of the Mig 31 Foxhound. I have, as promised started this build review. This part covers the engines and intake assemblies. My first impressions on test fitting the parts are that AMK have, once again produced another beauty. The quality of the fit rivals, if not exceeds some kits from the 'big' manufacturers. Parts fit well requiring no trimming and only require removal of the sprue gate marks left after removing the parts from the main sprue trees. Some of the parts litrerally 'click' together.

The first assembly that the instructions call for is the assembly of the rear part of the engines. My research shows that these are painted green when new but with use and the passing of time build up with a 'sandy' coloured exhaust deposit along with some 'sooting'.
I painted the the interior surfaces with MR. Paint US WWII interior green which seems to be a very close match to the reference photos I found on the web. The interior was then weathered with Tamiya Weathering System pigments. Starting with sand and building up with soot and oil stain. I'm pleased with the end result which is what I had in my mind's eye at the start of the stage.

The next stage was to put all the engine parts in one half of the engine casings, the turbine assemblies having been painted with Alclad Burnt Iron. All the parts fit well and are located with a 'peg and slot' arangement.

Final assembly of the engine was to cement the opposite half of the engine. Once set the outer surface was again painted with Alclad Burnt Iron. I may pick out some of the impressive detail but I doubt any of it will ever be seen.

The next stage that the instructions called for is the assembly of the superbly detailed engine air intakes. Before assembly these were sprayed with Alclad Dull Aluminium, then weathered with a dark grey-black Mig AMMO wash. This really picked out the detail nicely.

 Once assembled the intakes look great and the wash add the grimy 'engine look'.

The next stage was to add the undercarriage bays, these were again painted with Alclad 
Dull Aluminium and again weathered with Mig AMMO wash.

This concludes part one of my review build, I plan that the next part will cover assembly of the undercarriage bays and placing the engines in the fuselage, but this of course is subject to how long I can find time to spend at the modelling bench.

Monday, 4 July 2016

1:48 Mig-31B/BS Foxhound 
Avantgarde Models Kits

The Mig-31 Foxhound was designed to replace the Mig-25 Foxbat. Developed in great secrecy, with may improvements over the Mig-25, the Mig-31 succeded in overcoming the Mig 25's short comings. Fitted with advanced radar and a new targeting computer it allowed  the crew to engage multiple targets, also added was a true look down/shoot down ability. The Mig-31B was fitted with in-flight refuelling capability whilst The Mig-31BS was an upgraded base model that eventually replaced  the Mig-31B during the 90s. 

In the Box 

The kit is essentially similar to AMK's earlier Mig-31BS/BSM boxing released in 2015. Based on constructive feedback from the modelling community several improvements have been made such as photo etch seatbelts, instrument decals, Germetika decals for the cockpit and tinted canopy parts.

The box is jam packed with three smaller boxes containing the lower fuselage, forward fuselage and weapons. The remainder of the sprues are in packed in resealable plastic bags


29 x sprues including the afore mentioned parts in boxes.
Two sprues of clear parts in clear and tinted styrene.
Ten smaller sprues for the missiles.
One Photo-Etch (PE) fret of brass.
One instruction booklet.
Two decal sheets. 

Instruction booklet:

The instructions are a 21 page stapled booklet with very detail, fine line drawings and coloured painting guides with Mr Hobby paint call outs.

 The sprues

These are moulded in grey styrene and are very finely engraved and have some lovely detail all very sharp and crisp.



The missiles

There are enough missiles provided so that any load out can be catered for (there is a comprehensive load out guide in the instruction booklet).

 X4 Vympel R-33 AA-9 Amos long range missiles
X2 R-40 AA-6 Acrid long range missiles
 X4 R-60 AA-8 Aphid Infrared missiles

Clear parts

Two sprues are provided allowing you to build a plane with totally clear canopies or with 'gold' tinted canopies.

Photo Etch

This includes among other parts, the seat harnesses, radar emitter antenna.


 Out of the box you can build three versions using the supplied decals
  • Mig-31BS 16 Blue Russian Air Force, Chelyabinsk-Shagol Airbase 2014.
  • Mig-31BS 23 Red Kazakhstan Air Force, 2012.
  • Mig-31B 73 Blue one of several operated by the training unit at Savasleyka Air Base.


Was it possible for AMK to improve on their already impressive BS/BSM offering? You bet it was, after listening to the feedback provided by the modelling community AMK in my opinion have upped the stakes when it comes to modern kits. Good moulding, detail, weapons instruction and decals along with a willingness to work with their customers are marking AMK out as a kit manufacturer to watch in the future.

It has been said by some modellers that by producing a Russian aircraft, AMK will only attract a niche proportion of the modelling community. That said, I don't normally build modern jet aircraft but this kit will be at the top of my build pile so watch out for a build review on Mish's Models Facebook page in the very near future.

Many thanks to AMK who via Mr James Hatch of Large Scale Models forum kindly provided this review sample.