I had seen these 1/4 scale R/C figures a while back when a friend (300wins) sent me a link to Aces of Iron’s website. It wasn’t until recently I picked up a pair to see if they could be turned into busts for those of us who build things that just on the shelf.
I found two figures that I liked and ordered them. This review covers the “WWII Luftwaffe Pilot, Style 3, Battle of Britain” (Other Luftwaffe styles include a different pilot and one that is wearing his mask and goggles). The company produces a range of both WWI and WWII figures and they also have an area for “Jet Age” pilots that doesn’t have any offerings listed as of yet.
In the Bag
Well that’s easy -- there’s one part. The figure is cast as a single, hollow, piece of resin that requires no assembly. Even clean up is kept to a minimum with a healthy mold seam that starts at the top of the head and runs the length of the back. It appears to be in an area where removal won’t take too much -- if any -- detail with it. This seam should clean up OK using the usual techniques for dealing with seams on large resin figures (sandpaper and putty). Other than one or two other spots that could use just a bit of light sanding the molding is extremely crisp and clean.
There is an awful lot of detail that is nicely sculpted from the Iron Cross to the zipper teeth on the front of the jacket. Straps, buckles and the texture inside the flying helmet are all nicely done. There is even detail included inside the oxygen mask, something you’d expect in a figure this large. Uniform detail is also nicely done and the folds appear to fall naturally.
Company literature states the figure is wearing a LKpW101 helmet, model 10-6701 oxygen mask and model 306 goggles in addition to his basic uniform. All of these pieces of equipment look accurate when compared to the reference material I have on hand.
Facial details appear to be crisp and clean and give the impression this guy is looking at something in the distance.
At some point I’ll have to make a decision about how to mount this figure. There’s a large mounting hole in the bottom of the figure that looks like it would take a similar sized piece of brass rod or a dowel depending on how the builder decides to display this figure. There is a small cusp around the “hole” that can be sanded off if the builder chooses.
Overall this appears to be a crisp piece of work in a rather large scale. The painted example of this figure provided on the Aces of Iron site (painted by Michael Johnson) looks nice and is an attention grabber.
Johnson's paint job can be seen as the finished figure at the top right of this review.
The only area -- other than painting -- that will take a little time is cleaning up the seam on the back of the figure.
While this is a hollow resin casting, it’s not easy to find a similar 1/4th scale of similar quality offered for the same price. Finding aircrew can also be a difficult proposition when it comes to busts (when compared to “grunts”). This is a nice option of those of who build large scale figures of aircrew.
This figure is offered in 1/4th; 1/5th; and 1/7th scales.
I ordered my busts from Perfect Pilots: http://www.perfectpilots.com/index2.php
While intended as a product for remote control airplanes, Aces of Iron Production’s figures might attract the attention of some static modelers with their level of detail and relative low-cost compared to other busts.