MiG-21PFM vs. A-4E The Sound of … Vietnam

Eduard constantly surprises us with wonderful repacked kits. They are not only in new boxes, but sometimes elevated to another level, with metal or resin parts, great decals options or dual combos. Recently, they re-packed into super-kits several F-4 Phantoms, utilizing the Academy new tooling, alongside with their fine Brassin and Photo-etch lines. That was great, and then they did even more for the Vietnam Air War fans – they released Vietnam Scooters – repacked Hasegawa A-4 with new and amazing decals and a lot more goodies.

I almost bought the last one, because I wanted an A-4 to be converted into a Top Gun Aggressor but decided to wait a bit, hoping that they will hit us with Aggressors set – again repacked A-4 from Hasegawa. Instead, Eduard did better.

They announced a limited edition kit called “The Sound of Silence”. Inside – two aircraft /so Dual Combo/ – a MiG-21PFM and an A-4E. First being Eduard’s nearly perfect -21 tooling and the latter: Hasegawa so-far-unsuppressed in quality A-4 tooling. So far a hit, you might say. Things don’t stop here though. This is a VERY Limited Edition kit, and as far as my attempts go, it was unobtainable from regular Eduard dealers. Only Eduard themselves. Even cooler than that is the fact that there are to be only 1000 of these on the market. 999, considering the one we are reviewing here. But yes, the good news doesn’t stop here. So, let’s take a look inside of the box, to see what we are dealing with actually:

The box comes in a sky blue colors, without the typical Eduard screeming colors. Eduard is not spelled properly but EduArt instead. This is no coincidence, and a few rows below you will see why. Opening the box shows up several plastic bags, separated properly to show two different kits. First we have light gray plastic in two bags /clear parts inside of them too/, which represents the A-4E. A little white paper states that this is Made in Japan, and it is IMPORTED by Eduard. Or EduArt. The other three plastic bags inside holds dark grey plastic of Eduard’s MiG-21 sprues /2 bags/ and the clear sprue for the transparent parts. This is the well known MiG-21PFM from the -21 Eduard /Edu8237/ series, which is second to none in the business. It is absolutely the same thing which they sell as a single Profi-Pack MiG-21PFM.

On the bottom of the box, there are a cardboard leaflet, photo-etch parts, a bag of resin materials, decal sheet and masks. Masks are for both aircraft, common for Eduard high-end kits. Photo-etch parts for the MiG-21PFM include the cockpit deck and sides in colored etch material and brass colored PE parts for additional add-ons on the plane. A-4E photo-etch sheet is only one, mostly cockpit details, again colored. On it, there is engraved lettering: “Vietnam Scooters”. Most likely it was taken from Edu1197, limited edition set that I mentioned above. Nevertheless, the quality of all the PE materials is superb, typical for Eduard. I consider them the best in that business.

There is a bag with two resin parts. Those are for the A-4E Skyhawk seat. It is very nice to have that, since the OOTB seat is not exactly up to today’s standards and that way Eduard makes this a truly Superkit, with PE, Resin, Masks and beautiful decals in one box. As for the decals:

The are printed in Cartograf – Made in Italy – and are very high quality. Again – this is the best decal company in the World. /If you are following me here, you will see that Eduard packed mostly “the Best” in the business into this box/. They feature 60% technical markings, mostly for the MiG-21PFM fuselage, wings, pylons and rockets. Duh! The rest are markings for the Vietnamese Air Force /which are not that much/ and the colorful decals on the A-4E, which are typical for the era and are truly inspiring.

Overall the decal sheet is large but with very thin decals, so with the quality we are getting from Cartograf its all a matter of time and nothing more.

The cardboard leaflet is with short description of the idea of the boxart and the Vietnam air war. Basically, we have fully loaded A-4E on a typical bombing run over Vietnam, chased by an intercepting MiG-21PFM. That was common during the late 60s, where this supposedly happened.  The leaflet represents smaller version of the boxart, which is created by Koike Shigeo. He is well known for his work on Hasegawa boxarts, famous mostly with almost photographic accuracy. Made in Japan again. Enough said.

Here we come to the most important thing of the kit.

the leaflet

It came packed in a huge box, the size of a 3rd of a laundry machine packing. That is because the bonus with this 1000 pcs Limited Edition EduArt beauty is not the dual combo set, nor the PE or the Brassin. It is an A2 sized Art from Koike Shigeo, same as seen on the box. It is carefully packed in a cardboard envelope a little over A2 size. This is for you to frame and hang on the wall. It is big, beautiful and accurate. All characteristics, which implies price. Such aviation art is often quite expensive, like $500 or more, and here we get it as a bonus. Oh my! Eduard…or EduArt!

That poster alone worth the money I spent for the kit, which actually is pretty affordable. I got the PFM as a stand-alone kit recently, and if I oughta bought the Vietnam Scooters set, I would’ve payed more than buying “The Sound Of Silence” dual combo + aviation art. Tricky! In the same time the best scale model investment for me for the last 5 years. Just perfect!

I won’t spend much time explaining the qualities of each kit here, they are widely discussed. Also, on my YouTube channel, you will be able to find review of the PFM, PF and many others from the MiG-21 line quite soon. I am pretty sure if it comes down to buying this kit, you are well aware of what you will be getting. I must conclude though, that this set is a great deal. Investment wise as well. With only 1000 pieces on the market, it will very soon worth 2 or 3 times the price and if Eduard does not re-release that in the near future, in a decade…who knows!?

Thanx to Eduard for this wonderful present to the modeling society, A-4E & MiG-21PFM and Vietnam Air War fans. It is great to have such company in the modeling world. Czechs must be very proud!

Visit Eduard store, and hurry up! There will be no kits left soon…