The F-14 Kai is equipped with the larger of the 2 sensor pods under the wing glove. The kit comes molded with the smaller one which needs to be cut off.
The larger pod is an option in the kit.
The Kai doesn’t have the wing gloves so these need to be closed up.
With the wing gloves in the closed position, they (oddly) get in the way of the MLG bay bulkheads so I trimmed these off to get them to fit.
A dryfit of the front assembly to the main fuselage shows a prominent step on the port joint. If I recall my previous failed builds, this was the same problem in all of them. Not sure how I’ll tackle this one yet.
I can happily remove the MLG bay bulkheads because I’ll be modeling my Kai in-flight. The kit has no gear up options so I have to trim off all the gear door actuators.
The main door aligns pretty well.
With some careful aligning, the other parts also fall into place pretty well.
The intakes have alignment holes molded in. These were filled with plastic card.
Not bad at all!
The intakes will need to be pre-assembled before attaching to the bottom fuselage. The intake trunkings come with some prominent raised injection pin marks which need to be trimmed down.
There is also a recessed injection pin mark just inside the intake lip but it’s not visible once the intake is attached to the fuselage.
Next up are the wings which come in multiple parts. The Hasegawa mold is showing its age as I had to clean up a lot of flash around all the component parts. I also trimmed off some of the raised injection pin marks on the wings for a better fit.
You’re given the option to position the flaps and slats down which is nice but this leads to some finicky fit if you want everything closed up. After some careful aligning, trimming and elbow grease, the wings eventually came together.