Mirage Models in Poland has been producing plastic injection-molded kits for many years now and those have traditionally been in 1:400 scale. In the past few years
they have begun releasing some new 1:350 scale kits. One of those new kits is the World War I German torpedo boat
A86. Now out of the box it is an acceptable
model but it is a little soft on details and some of the parts are somewhat clunky due to the less than state of the art injection-molding. The kit would benefit
tremendously from some photo-etch and
North Star Models has answered the call with a dedicated detail set. The set not only includes what the kit lacks, like
railings and ladders, it also provides parts that are replacements for the kit’s thicker plastic versions  as well as numerous additional detail items that will improve
model substantially.
The detail set is comprised of two frets labeled 1 and 2. Fret 1 contains some replacement parts and detail additions like the bridge deck, bridge roof, bridge wing
supports, searchlight tower, propeller guards, propellers, aft windscreen, mine rails, funnel cap and details, boat details, life rings, davits, anchors, a nameplate and
other small detail parts. Fret 2 contains pre-measured railings, inclined and vertical ladders, watertight doors and hatches, skylight covers, replacement pilothouse,
bridge wing bulkheads, numerous portholes with and without covers, anchor chain, cable reels and other detail parts. The relief-etching is generally well-done and
part numbers are etched into the fret. There are three-pages of detailed instructions which cover assembly and placement of all the parts provided with this detail set.
The instructions are well done with fairly clear illustrations and icons indicating kit items that need to be removed and spots where there is symmetrical placement of
items. Any references to kit parts have the original Mirage part number.
The use of this detail set will turn what is a basic model into a real show-stopper. I was glad that Mirage produced a kit of a World War I German torpedo boat and I
am even happier that
North Star Models stepped up with this detail set. My thanks to North Star Models for the review sample.
Felix Bustelo