REXx | Galvanically Grown Metal Exhausts
Reviewed by Brian Leitch
Here for review, we have four complete sets of metal "galvanically grown" exhausts from REXx courtesy of H & B Hobbies.
Long since gone, we have all heard the name "Moskit" when referring to some of the coolest metal exhausts you could get for plastic models. They came pre-packaged and complete, with no need to paint since they came in a rusty/patina type metal. They were about as close to the real deal not only in looks, but in scale thickness as you could get. Moskit has long since disappeared from the modeling world, and a lot of us thought we would never see that same process being used for the scale aftermarket again.
These exhaust sets from REXx are produced the same way as the Moskit exhausts were, using electricity to produce a chemical reaction that effectively "grows" the metal on forms. I do not pretend to understand the complete process, but needless to say, it produces a product that to me is second-to-none in the looks and scale thickness departments.
In this review I will be covering four individual sets of REXx exhausts, going into detail on each one including photos of each individual set.
REXx has done a nice job with these. The exhausts come pre-packaged in a small clear plastic bag, surrounded by foam, and then packed in a small clear box with a cardboard surround. Bob from H & B Hobbies has sent me 4 individual REXx exhaust sets to review, all 1/32nd scale of course. We have here sets for the Kitty Hawk Model OV-10A, the Special Hobby Yak-3, the ICM I-16 and finally a set for the Tamiya P-51D:
I will go through each set individually so we can see exactly what you get in each set. Let's take a look shall we?
Kitty Hawk OV-10A
The OV-10A is close to my heart, and I hope I had some small part to play here as I sent Bob from H & B Hobbies my kit OV-10A exhausts hoping that REXx could make a galvanically grown copy of them. To my delight, that is exactly what happened! I have to give Bob and H & B Hobbies a BIG shout out here, as these exhausts may not have happened if not for Bob and H & B's connections with REXx. Thanks again Bob!
The OV-10A exhausts in typical fashion, come in a single piece per side, and have the two baffles inside the exhaust just like the 1:1. My OV-10A set came slightly bent up at the edges of the exhaust, but that was easily remedied with some tweezers and some very slight pressure. These parts are in fact VERY delicate, so care and time is needed when dealing with them. However, if you take your time, and are gentle handling them, their delicate nature should not really be an issue.
The OV-10A REXx exhausts are really neat looking in my opinion, and really will add a lot to any KHM OV-10A. As you can see, they come with a very nice patina on them from the factory, (part of the galvanically grown process that is one of the biggest appealing features to me) and they look very realistic to my eye:
The OV-10A set from REXx has all the kit exhaust detail, but is much thinner in scale thickness. This is a trade off, as that same thinness that makes them so neat looking, is also what makes them so delicate. As referenced above, this can be overcome by simply treating them as you would with an small delicate scale modelling parts. These really look excellent to my eye, and these will be a very welcome addition to my next OV-10A.
ICM Polikarpov I-16
Next up is the ICM Polikarpov I-16, and with these exhausts you get all the stacks on what is basically a metal "pour block". These can be taken off of the block with seeming ease, as REXx has made some slight cuts where they meet the block. This looks like it will help substantially with removal of the stacks. REXx even provides the base attachment plate and representative bolts as well. The individual stacks are very nicely represented and extremely thin looking for the utmost realistic look:
I like the look of the I-16 exhaust stacks very much, and with the same type patina on them (even though not as much will show as the OV-10A) they will make a really good kit even better:
Special Hobby Yak-3
Next up is the Special Hobby Yak-3 exhausts. These are also very well molded/grown but these too had some very minor crushing going on that again was easily solved with some tweezers and some careful tweaking. The Yak-3 exhausts are, as far as I can tell, based the same as the kit parts, all on a single bar, to be glued in place, keeping all the stacks relative to each other. REXx even molded in the mold seam in the middle of each of the exhaust stacks. They will look terrific in place on any Yak-3, and will as the other sets, save lots of time and weathering because they look SO cool right from the factory:
Tamiya P-51D (Un-shrouded)
Finally, we have the REXx set for the Tamiya P-51D family of kits. The REXx exhaust stacks like two of the other sets, just needed some very minor adjusting to get one pipe on the port side back in line with the other set. I have not had the opportunity to try to dry fit these in my Tamiya kit, but they are very similarly sized to the Quick Boost set. These (ESPECIALLY without the shrouds in place) will look fantastic on any P-51 model, and can add a whole new depth to a part the everyone wants to look as realistic as they can get it. The REXx set for the Tamiya P-51 fills that need for sure. This set, like the others is well molded with a cool patina straight from REXx. You can also clear these with flat if you like for a different look, or just keep them as is.
The REXx P-51 set comes like the Yak-3 set on a metal bar that should be able to be mounted much like the kit parts would. All in all, these is will be one terrific addition to anyone's Mustang:
These REXx sets are to me, VERY much worth the asking price, and are for the most part, priced about the same as similar other AM products that you would have to paint and weather. To me, part of the joy of the REXx sets is the patina and the lack of need for painting or weathering.
The only down side I can see to these is their delicate nature. These sets are not toys, nor should they be treated as such, and generally scale modelers are a particular bunch, normally wanting accuracy/looks over robustness. In the case of these REXx exhaust sets, if you treat them as any normal delicate modeling part you should have no issues what so ever. These sets will make any kit just that much better in the looks and scale realism departments. I can't recommend them enough!
With 10 being perfect and 1 being completely useless, I would give these REXx galvanically grown exhaust sets a strong 9. If they were not so delicate I might be apt for a 10, but we cant have everything, and I think most of us are willing to give up a bit of strength for scale realism. In the case of exhaust parts, these generally don't get handled at all once the model is completed anyway, so to me this is a good trade off.
Many thanks to Bob at H & B Hobbies for the review samples, which can be purchased at the following link:
© Brian Leitch 2018
This review was published on Friday, August 31 2018; Last modified on Friday, August 31 2018