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"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" Poe Dameron's X-Wing by Revell

By Tyler Robbins - images & text © 2016

Scale: 1/50 - approximately 10"/254mm long when built.

Parts: 55 pre-finished, injection-molded styrene.

Instructions: 1 foldout sheet of pictoral assembly diagrams.

Decals: N/A

Molding Quality: 7 - It's no Fine Molds kit, but it has reasonably high sharpness.

Detail: 7 - Some missing detail, but what is there is good.

Accuracy: 9 - It's exactly the same shape as the original CGI model, minus some details.

MSRP: $29.95 USD (~$39.09 CAN/ € 23.73 EUR as of 9/2016) available your local hobby shop or internet retailer.

Overall Rating: 7 - Great potential for a accurised build, but looks fine out of the box.

[Please click to enlarge]

I didn't really have high hopes for this one when I heard that Revell was doing a line of snap-together kits from The Force Awakens. I disliked how they handled a lot of the Original Trilogy subjects such as the X-wing, and especially the Millennium Falcon. Their hulls are obviously not accurate, and while the details are nice, they simply can't be built into good representations of the original subjects without serious modifications to their main parts.

Out of the Box

So when I opened up the box for Poe Dameron's X-wing, I was actually a little shocked that the model kit is fairly accurate to the T-70 from the movie. After snapping it together, I held it up to some high-res publicity shots of the CGI model and… I can't see any significant differences at all. At. All. Sure, there are a lot of missing details, but the details that are there are accurate to the CGI model. I thoroughly enjoyed swooping it ar… I mean, performing air-worthiness tests with it, and it really looks the part! The wing's mechanism is stiff, but it works well for keeping the wings level when they're stowed and at full spread when they're locked into attack position. And it also has inconspicuous lugs that hold the wings together in cruise position.

I'm not really a fan of the type of plastic they molded this kit out of. It's that hard, brittle black plastic that is tough to cut or work with. I had to be very careful separating the parts from the sprues, especially the laser cannon barrels. With those, I actually scribed the attachment points to the sprue with my eXacto knife before I cut them to ensure the barrels didn't break when I snipped them. It's something that's unique to black-molded kits, I find, so you needn't worry about this with the Resistance X-wing kit, as it's molded in light gray.

The fit of the model is very tight, and I can't think of a single joint that I worried about it working its way apart over time. If you just want to snap it together and zoom it around, like the twelve-year-old in me did, then you're going to have a blast with it after you're finished. The only down side is if you want to take it apart again. The fit is so tight that you run a serious risk of breaking off the alignment pins, and in fact I broke at least five when I tore mine back down to give it an alcohol bath to remove the paint.


The size is also a plus for me. It's in that odd box scale, but it's close enough to 1:48 to fit in to my collection, plus with this being a fictional subject you're not as tightly bound to scale as you would be with other, real-life subjects. Personally, I think the size of the kit is the best feature. It allows you a huge amount of space to work with, especially if you want to try lighting it. It also looks really nice on the shelf next to other Star Wars subjects, with its size giving it a presence among them that the tiny 1:72 scale Bandai kit just can't compete with.

About That Finish...

Where the kit starts to lose its charm is the factory-applied paint job. This is something that surprised me, because I have a couple of the Clone Wars kits and their paint jobs are thin, sharp, and well-applied. By contrast, the paint on this kit is thick, wobbly, and goopy. There are several obvious areas where the paint was glopped on. It looks like the person who painted it at the factory let the airbrush linger in far too many places, causing a buildup. Regardless, it pervaded the entire kit. Inconsistencies in the paint work also plagued the model, with the paint having different levels of opacity even on the same part. Also, there was a small window on the front of the canopy that is supposed to be clear, but it was painted over on my sample. And for some reason not all of the paint came off in an alcohol bath. I'll have to break out the oven cleaner to get it all off, though to be fair, there's not much left and I'm not sure this is something Revell can control. It's just a shame to me that it's not all coming off in a single pass.




But that's really the lowest point in the kit for me. The rest of it is not bad at all in my opinion, and in fact I think that the kit can be turned into a fine display model of the T-70 X-wing without much issue.

The Devil in the Details

That is, if you're okay with the kit lacking a pilot. I don't know why, but all the Force Awakens kits which have cockpits also lack pilot figures. I would have appreciated even an inaccurate pilot to put into my X-wing to represent Poe Dameron, but I have nothing. I'll have to raid the 1:48 helicopter pilots in my stash to do it, but if you're a modeler who has no spares bin, then you're going to need to ask around the local hobby stores for spare pilots from modelers, or else look for 1:48 pilots in the resin upgrade bins (if your store even has those).

The only figure who is included is BB-8, and he's reasonably well done. I dislike the seam down the middle, though. It meant having to strip the figure, including those nice little orange circles on the sides. Repainting those will be a pain.

Back to the ship. The canopy is another area which could use improvement. I couldn't actually raise the canopy up fully, which was another surprise. You'd think after almost 40 years model kit companies would have the design for an X-wing's canopy pretty nailed down, and kits of the T-65 always seem to do a good job with this. But for some reason the hinge on the T-70's canopy just isn't designed to allow it to swing up fully. This isn't a problem for me because I intend to display mine in flight, but someone wishing to display it landed will have a problem.


The details on this kit, as I've said, are not bad at all. There are certainly some that are missing, like panel lines, the grooves on the trailing edges of the wings, and most glaringly, the featureless torpedo launchers. But what is there looks really nice to me. I especially like the butt plate for the aft end of the fuselage and the droid strip. The details there are tiny, fine, and deep. Now, that being said, there are some details that I'm really confused by. There are some sunken areas on the inside of the wings that are supposed to have large, cylindrical pieces of machinery, like on the old T-65 X-wing. But for some reason the plates you install that have these areas on them are not recessed at all, but are just flat bits of detail that barely resemble the area they're supposed to represent. I have no idea why they did this… There's plenty of room inside the engine housing, they wouldn't interfere with the landing gear, it wouldn't have increased the complexity, and it wouldn't have been impossible to mold as one piece. Bandai did it, after all. It's not too noticeable once the parts are installed in the wings, but it probably will bother most modelers who know that the detail is there. The aforementioned featureless torpedo launchers also confuse me. Why they couldn't have at least molded on the torpedo apertures is beyond me. I would have appreciated the effort at least. Finally, there are two holes in the wings where the aft landing gear would be socketed. This is something I really don't like. The holes are clearly visible on the inner wing surface and are very big, and since a lot of people will probably display it with the wings open, it's something that bothers me a great deal. But I'm not sure how else they could have done it, given the small amount of space they had to work with.


Finally, the base, while decent, leaves something to be desired, I think. While the bottom part is nice, the support structure is big and attracts a lot of attention. And that's the problem, because if this turns you off then you can't really use the bottom without a lot of sculpting to fill in the sunken part of the… sand dunes? Snow drifts? Lake surface? I'm not sure what it's supposed to be, but while it looks decent, it still has a sunken area that's meant to act as a socket for the display support.


Bottom line, it's not a bad kit for the money. The issues I mention are, in reality, relatively minor and not something that will require much major surgery to correct. While some of the parts of the kit can be a little tricky, none of it is impossible to work with if you're careful and have a steady hand. Even the "shakers" out there won't find this kit difficult, with the exception of the laser cannons, which are thin and will be difficult to cut from the sprue without damaging them. But I see that as a minor issue, especially in light of the nice size and the sleekness of the molding. The parts that will need correction if you're a stickler for accuracy will not be a huge challenge to modify. I could see someone spending maybe a week on this at most during the build phase if they corrected every issue, and that's really not that bad when you compare it to, say, the old AMT X-wing kit. That one would require a huge amount of time to get anywhere near accurate. Probably a solid month of reshaping the fuselage, scratchbuilding new parts, reskinning the engines, and adding a ton of new greebles to replace the poor quality details.


Personally, this is a win for me, and I highly recommend it if you want a nice kit of a new subject that won't take too much time to accurize.

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the reviewer.

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This page copyright © 2016 Starship Modeler™. First posted on 9 September 2016.