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Found 19 results

  1. Super Mystère B2 Early (FR7001) 1:48 Azur Frrom The Super Mystere was a successor to the earlier Mystere series of jet fighters, and was the first European production aircraft to be capable of supersonic speeds in level flight, thanks to its slender swept wings, and the addition of an afterburner ring to its Atar 101 engine. The prototype of the Avon-engined B1 first flew in 1956, with the French engined B2 flying a little later, and going into production for a run of 180 airframes. A further upgraded B4 was cancelled before it reached production due to the superior capabilities of the Mirage III that was coming into service at that time. The Super Mystère bears a passing resemblance to the North American F-100 Super Sabre of a similar vintage, which owes more to the direction of aviation and aerodynamic research at the time, rather than any sneaking about in balaclavas. The B2s entered service with three Escadres de Chasse in mid ’57, each of which adopted a colour and name for their subordinate escadres, and went on to serve in these roles until 1977 when they were withdrawn, a few going on to serve at a French technical school. The Israelis also bought two dozen airframes, and considered them a good match for the MiG-19s that they often encountered, particularly during the Yom Kippur and Six-Day wars when some were lost to enemy action. Another dozen aircraft were purchased by the Honduran Air Force, who later bought a few more, which went on to serve well into the 90s, performing ground support operations for their nation. The Kit This is Azur Frrom’s first 1:48 scale kit, and one of very few kits in this scale of the Super Mystère, the only other injection moulded styrene being from a company that has a reputation for being difficult to build. This is good news for “quarter scale” modellers such as myself, as it should be more widely available and much easier to build. The kit arrives in a top-opening box in their usual pale blue theme, with an attractive painting of the subject matter on the front. Inside are five large sprues in grey styrene in a resealable clear bag, a clear sprue in its own bag, decal sheet in another bag, and the instruction booklet. It is printed in colour on glossy paper with colour profiles on the rear pages, followed by a few more pages illustrating Azur Frrom’s range of products in 1:72 scale. Detail is good, including finely engraved panel lines, raised and recessed details in the cockpit, gear bays and air-brakes, and crisp clear parts to show off your work on the cockpit details. The kit is a cooperation with Special Hobby, as can be seen from the sprues, and that should give many modellers an idea of what to expect. Construction begins with detailing of the fuselage halves with exhaust cowling, air-brake bays and other inserts that are particular to this variant. The exhaust trunking is built up alongside, starting with the main tube with the afterburner ring suspended between the two halves, then top-and-tailing it with a split exhaust and a crisp rendition of the engine’s rear face. The cockpit is assembled on the floor part, which has the side consoles and front bulkhead moulded-in, adding the instrument panel with decal, rudders with supports, control column, and rear bulkhead that has the ejector seat ramp moulded-in, turned into a tub by the application of the cockpit sidewall inserts. The long intake trunking is made from top and bottom halves, with the front compressor face of the Atar engine blanking it off at the rear. This and the exhaust are inserted into the starboard fuselage half on a set of pegs, but the fuselage isn’t closed yet, as there is more work to do. The main gear bay is built from roof, two curved bulkheads front and rear, plus a divider down the centre, which is then inserted into the lower fuselage along with the nose gear bay, all of which is painted in a buff primer. The cockpit is glued into the starboard fuselage on a flat spot moulded into the intake trunking, the rudder is placed in slots in the fin, and the port fuselage half is brought in, trapping the rudder and a small insert behind the cockpit, and being joined by the lower fuselage to form the full profile. There is a choice of inserts under the fuselage depending on when the aircraft was built, fitting the intake lip to the nose to tidy the area up, with a small clear light inserted into a depression under the nose. Although the Super Mystère was a low-wing monoplane, the lower wings are separate, plugging into slots in the wing roots that are moulded into the fuselage sides. My example had a small short-shot in one wingtip, but it’s nothing a little styrene sheet and some filler can’t fix during the build, but you may wish to check your example to be sure. An insert with ribbing is placed inside to form the outer portion of the gear bay, then the upper wing is glued over it, with more of the primer used throughout. They are slotted into the fuselage, whilst adding clear tip lights and small round lights in the upper trailing edges, and the low T-tail is created by inserting the two elevators into their fairings near the bottom of the fin. The landing gear comprises three straight struts, the nose gear inserting into the bay by twisting is through 90°, then fixing the retraction jack into the rear of the bay. The main gear legs are inserted into their sockets with the retraction jacks inboard, and each gear leg is tipped by a wheel, using two halves for the main gear and a single moulding for the nose. The gear bay doors are attached to the sides of the bays, adding retraction jacks to them along the way. Numerous small parts are attached under the fuselage, including a pair of probes under the intake, giving it a catfish appearance. Turning the model over, the ejection seat is made from eight parts, slotting into the cockpit with a piece of head armour behind it, the instrument coaming and gun sight at the front, including two tiny clear panes on the sight. The canopy can then be fitted over the cockpit, starting with the fixed windscreen, and a choice of open or closed canopy, which opens in a non-standard manner, raising at both ends. If posing the canopy closed, there are small pips on the bottom rail of the clear part that need removing, but if posing it open, the rectangular section behind it raises up, and the front is supported by a pair of rods, giving the canopy the impression of hovering over the pilot. It is quite easy to imagine a pilot banging their head if they were incautious when leaving their aircraft. A pair of rear-view mirrors are supplied for the front of the canopy, and the rear support is detailed with its own jack that is visible when completed. Markings Depending on your point of view, there are either two or three decal options on the sheet, as the first option was seen with differing tail decoration during its career. From the box you can build one of the following: SM B2 No.110, 10-SB from 24/04/59 to 20/11/64 EC 01/10 ‘Valois’, Creil SM B2 No.110, 10-SB engaged in SEATO Cruise top Bangkok in March 1961 Sm B2 No.60, 5-NJ from 03/05/61 to 06/04/64, EC 01/05 ‘Vendée’, Orange-Caritat The decals are printed using a digital process, and have good registration, sharpness, and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut loosely around the printed areas. This means that the carrier film on the decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier film free, making the completed decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the carrier film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view, and saves a good quantity of precious modelling time into the bargain. Conclusion A great many Francophile 1:48 modellers will be very happy with this new release from Azur Frrom, as it fills a gap in early French jet aviation, and fills it with a well-detailed model of this important mark. Highly recommended. Available from collaborators, Special Hobby Review sample courtesy of
  2. SPAD 510 7eme Escadre & At War (FR0049 & FR0050) 1:72 Azur Frrom The SPAD 510 was an interwar biplane fighter that was half-way between the stringbags of old, and the modern monoplane fighters, insofar as it was primarily constructed from metal alloys, with only the wing and flying surfaces covered by fabric. It was a development from an earlier SPAD design that was made in response to a requirement from the French Air Force in 1930, and was the only biplane offering due to the encroachment of the monoplane into fighter design. It had an unusually long gestation for the period, entering service six years after the initial design, with many of its earlier problems resolved, and powered by a Hispano-Suiza 12Xbrs V12 engine that drove a two bladed prop and propelled the fighter to a maximum speed of 230mph, which was respectable at the time, and met with Armée de l'Air requirements. It was intended to fly with either two cannons or four machine guns, or a combination of the two, but practically only four machine guns were fitted, while the last two off the production line were equipped with a single 20mm cannon between the cylinder banks to fire in a synchronised manner through the prop. Fewer than 70 were made, and by the time WWII was on the horizon they were already being phased out in favour of more advanced monoplanes, often the capable Morane Saulnier MS.406, although other types were used. With a comparable performance envelope to the British Gladiator, it was clearly outclassed by the enemy Bf.109Es that it would encounter early in the war, although a skilled pilot could possibly achieve a kill despite the disparity. Although many were withdrawn from the frontline to training units, some were initially lined up against the Axis forces as coastal defence before they were ousted and had to move to another more suitable locations. A few were taken on charge by the Germans after the armistice, although they were of little practical use as a fighter. The Kit This is a brand-new tooling from Azur Frrom, with two boxings released initially, one depicting the first squadron to take the 510 on, 7éme Escadre who also provided the pilots for the Weiser Circus aerobatic team, which was named after their squadron leader. The other boxing is an ‘At War’ issue that includes the aircraft that were charged with protecting the coastal areas at the beginning of WWII. The kits arrive in identical-sized end-opening boxes in their usual blue theme, but with different box art on the front and the decal options on the rear. Inside the boxes are two identical sprues of grey styrene, a small clear sprue, the same multi-purpose decal sheet, and an instruction booklet that looks very similar, but is in fact different depending on which boxing you are looking at. This is what I sometimes refer to as “medium run”, as although it does have some aspects of a short-run kit, it is quite accomplished, but not quite up to mainstream in terms of finish to the sprues etc. Don’t be put off one iota by that fact though, as it’s a nice kit and has some good detail moulded-in. Construction begins identically, and doesn’t diverge until right at the end when differences in the exhausts are pointed out in a scrap diagram in the At War boxing, which the modeller would have to scratch build. The cockpit is a flat floor with some details moulded-in, which is added to by fixing a control stick, seat, rear bulkhead, front bulkhead and the instrument panel frame with foot well added, the latter also receiving a decal to depict the instruments. The fuselage halves are closed up around the cockpit once painting is completed, and here you will notice that the halves have engraved panel lines throughout. The lower wings and elevators are all single parts, as is the engine cowling, which has some nice perforated grille detail moulded into it. A scrap diagram shows that the wings and elevators are all intended to be fitted as 90° to the rudder, so get your EBMA wing jig out if you can’t trust yourself to get everything aligned correctly. The small wrap-around windscreen and clear gunsight are added on pegs to the forward section of the cockpit, then it’s time to double the number of wings. The interplane struts are substantial and low in number, resembling an italic capital I, with N-shaped cabane struts mounted on the top cowling in front of the cockpit. These are best aligned with the upper wings during setting of the glue in order to avoid fit issues, and although the rigging is ignored for now, there are full rigging diagrams toward the rear of the instructions to help you make a more accurate model. Everyone has their own technique, so we’ll leave that up to the individual and move on. The main wheels are moulded into their spats and are fitted on long tapering struts, fixing on pegs to the underside of the fuselage, then braced by a pair of wires that attach to the lower section of the legs and a raised area of the underside. The lower wings have blisters on the top surface that have hollows on the underside, which are filled by the gondolas that have the guns moulded into the front, the barrels of which you can drill out for a bit more realism if you wish. At the tail is a skid, and further forward is a stirrup for the pilot’s access, a pair of shackles for stores under the centreline, with a rectangular radiator fairing just beneath the pilot’s feet. After a page and a half of rigging diagrams, the two-bladed prop and a pair of aerial masts are the last parts to be glued in place. As previously noted, the At War boxing has a different exhaust layout depending on which decal option you choose, so be prepared to undertake some DIY to achieve the proposed layout. Markings Each boxing has three decal options printed in colour at the rear of the booklet, all with the same basic scheme that has green upper surfaces with a high demarcation on the fuselage, over a silver underside. The option with the red rudder fin will need to be painted to accept the white 1 in a circle, which is the only variation in painting that I could see. From each box you can build one of the following: 7éme Escadre (FR0049) Nr.26, Red 1, 1ére Escadrille GCI/7 (Spa 15 Bayard’s Helmet), Lt Ozanne, esc. Leader, June 1938 Nr.14, White 5, 3éme Escadrille GC II/7 (Spa 73 Japanese Stork), Dijon, Spring 1939 Nr.25, 4éme Escadrille GC II/& (Spa 78 Black Panther) Dunkirk show, 1937 At War (FR0050) Nr.9, White 8, DIAP (Dépot d’Instruction de L’Aviation Polonaise), Lyon-Corbas, May 1940 Nr.44, White 14, 3éme Escadrille GARC II/561, Le Havre-Octeville, November 1939 Nr.56, Red 6, CIC Montpellier (Fighter Training Centre), June 1940 The decals are identical for the two boxings, so if you change your mind and can find the schemes, you can build any of the above options. You’ll need two boxes if you want to build one from each boxing though. The decals are well-printed, in good register with dense colour and sharpness, including a number of stencils and the instrument panel decal, which is printed in white and hides particularly well in the middle of the sheet. Conclusion It’s a charming little aircraft from the Blériot-Spad stable that was caught between the transition from biplane to metal monoplanes. It’s an unusual aircraft that we don’t get to hear of often, but it is an appealing kit. Highly recommended. Both kits are available from Special Hobby’s webshop, and it’s Special Hobby that moulded the kits in conjunction with Azur Frrom. 7éme Escadre (FR0049) At War (FR0050) Review sample courtesy of
  3. Hello Here is my finished 1/72 FRROM Meteor T. Mk 7 in Israeli defense Force guise in 1956. This particular aircraft was one of the few which were fitted with a camera under the fuselage to become a recce bird. I reproduced that from a picture of a museum aircraft which could have been farther modified for preservation. I have followed advices for the upper part of the canopy as this is not the same as the NF Meteor canopy. I sanded the second and fourth frames above and reproduced them inside by means of decal stripes. I could not do the same for the side windows of the windscreen as this is too tiny around. Here is the WIP : https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235098944-azur-frrom-meteor-t-mk-7/ And then the pictures. Patrick
  4. Hello Even if I have already started some WIP kits in the French GB I have simultaneously startde this 1/72 Meteor T Mk. 7 AZUR FRROM. This kit was already produced by MPM/Special Hobby under the label Xtrakit in 2008 and I have both boxes to compare. You will see the details are not up to the level of the more recent Meteor NF from the same manufacturer but if like me you do not cut the one piece canopy it is detailed enough. First here are the grey sprues I started this build with the wings and for each main undercarriage well there are four separate walls The instrument panel and the starboard console are put OK there are few details on the floor... Here are the front faces ot the engines I made aluminium harnesses for both crews The main colour was RLM66 to create a small scale black The whel wells are aluminum and the front faces of the engines are ready to be glued To be continued... Patrick
  5. Potez 25 A2/B2 'Hispano' and 'Lorraine' Decals (FR0X04) 1:72 Azur Frrom The Potez 25 was a French single engined, two-seater biplane designed in the interwar period and used widely by air forces around the world. A flexible design, the Potez 25 was used in a variety of roles, including as a fighter, bomber escort, light bomber and reconnaissance platform. The A2 variant was primarily a reconnaissance aircraft, powered by either a 520hp Salmson 18Cmb radial engine, a Lorraine 12Eb inline engine or a Hispano Suiza 12Jb engine. The Potez 25 had a range of 373 miles and a maximum speed of 132 mph. Armed with 7.7mm machine guns, it was also capable of carrying 200kg of bombs. Curiously, the aircraft could quite easily be converted from biplane to parasol-winged monoplane and served with the Romanian Air Force in this configuration. In total, over 4,000 examples were built, including many under licence. The Potez 25 haf not been brilliantly represented by kit manufacturers over the years. until Azur Ffrom stepped in with their new kits in 2019 which we reviewed here. These new decal sheets are for this kit (and the special Hobby boxing of the kit) and come with detailed instructions. FR0X04 This sheet is for the export versions of the Potez 25 which were sold around the world as well as French Aircraft serving overseas. The options on the sheet are; Aeropostale & Air France No.1520 F-AJDX Buenos Aires 1929 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 No.1521 F-AJDY (before Air France - no other details given but in South America) - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 No.1522 F-AJDZ June 1930 South America - Using kit SH72407 No.2036 F-AJZS - No details given) - Using kit SH72407 No.1521 F-AJDJ in 1934 (no other details given) - Using kit SH72407 Uruguay B1-2 L182 1930's No other details given - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 B1-5 1936 - No other details given - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 White 8 TOE - No other details given - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 White 1 First Potez 25 In Uruguay - Seen 1934 - Hispano Engine but with a Lorraine type cowling - Build from FR0037 There has been some debate about the blue used here but with no conclusion I have seen, some details can be seen here on markings of the period. Paraguay White 3 - Puerto Sastre 1933 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 Greece Sigma 14 - Captured in Eleusis 1941 - Hispano Powered aircraft using FR0038 (Sigma 4 can be built but the modeller will have to rearrange the decals) - Aircraft camouflaged. Sigma 14 - Larissa mid 1930s - Hispano Powered aircraft using FR0038 Poland 42-68 White 4, 34th Sqn, 3rd Aviation Regiment, Poznan - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 42-295 White 3, 55th Sqn, 5th Regiment, Lida 1934 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 42-310 White 7, 55th Sqn, 5th Regiment, Lida 1934 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 Croisiere Noire No.2221 Code V489 Adj Chef Mayadox, Cne Pennes - Using kit SH72407 The decal are Printed in the UK By Fantasy Printshop so there should be no issues with them at all. The printing looks first rate with minimal carrier film. The instructions are 12 pages long with detailed histories (where available) and they quote references for the aircraft. There are also detailed notes about the individual aircraft about how to build them from the kit specified as some had minor differences. Conclusion Three cheers for Azur Frrom for taking the initiative and producing additional decals for their great kits. Highly Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  6. Potez 25 A2/B2 'Hispano' and 'Lorraine' Decals (FR0X03) 1:72 Azur Frrom The Potez 25 was a French single engined, two-seater biplane designed in the interwar period and used widely by air forces around the world. A flexible design, the Potez 25 was used in a variety of roles, including as a fighter, bomber escort, light bomber and reconnaissance platform. The A2 variant was primarily a reconnaissance aircraft, powered by either a 520hp Salmson 18Cmb radial engine, a Lorraine 12Eb inline engine or a Hispano Suiza 12Jb engine. The Potez 25 had a range of 373 miles and a maximum speed of 132 mph. Armed with 7.7mm machine guns, it was also capable of carrying 200kg of bombs. Curiously, the aircraft could quite easily be converted from biplane to parasol-winged monoplane and served with the Romanian Air Force in this configuration. In total, over 4,000 examples were built, including many under licence. The Potez 25 has not been brilliantly represented by kit manufacturers over the years. until Azur Frrom stepped in with their new kits in 2019 which we reviewed here. These new decal sheets are for this kit (and the special Hobby boxing of the kit) and come with detailed instructions. FR0X03 This sheet is for the export versions of the Potez 25 which were sold around the world as well as French Aircraft serving overseas. The options on the sheet are; Ethiopia / Abyssina, 1. White 1 "Nessre Tafari" - Addis Ababa August 1929 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 2. White 2 "Nessre Asfawossen" - Addis Ababa September 1929 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 3. White 3 "nessre Makonnen" - Addis Ababa September 1929 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 4. Hispano No.2 - Jan Meda 1930 - Hispano powered aircraft using kit FR0038 French West Africa (AOF) White 12 No.822 Dakar 1934 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0038 White 5, No.1303 Seen at Atar (Date not specified) - - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 White 1, No1299 (no details given) - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 Manchria White P.2 - Mukden September 1931 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 White P.15 - Mukden September 1931 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 White P.9 - No details given - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 (Aircraft later used by the Japanese as were most Manchurian Aircraft- you can use the decals in FR0037 for a Japanese aircraft)) Indochina Yellow 3, No.1981 from 1933 - Using kit SH72407 Yellow 9, No.201 Bien Hoa 1933 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 Yellow 5, No.1451 Bien Hoa 1935 - Using kit SH72407 No.201 No details circa 1930 - Lorraine powered aircraft using kit FR0037 Levant (French mandate in Syria & Lebanon) White 5, No.737 In service from 1924 - Using kit SH72407 Nationalist Spanish No.2353 Spanish Morocco Aug 1936 (Possibly) This was an aircraft which absconded to Spanish Morocco as the pilot wanted to join Franco's Forces) The decal are Printed in the UK By Fantasy Printshop so there should be no issues with them at all. The printing looks first rate with minimal carrier film. The instructions are 12 pages long with detailed histories (where available) and they quote references for the aircraft. There are also detailed notes about the individual aircraft about how to build them from the kit specified as some had minor differences. Conclusion Three cheers for Azur Frrom for taking the initiative and producing additional decals for their great kits. Highly Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  7. Hello After nearly 10 months I have finished these couple of 1/72 Azur FRROM export Martin 139. These are not difficult to build but I built other kits in between and here they are. First the Martin 139 WH-2 #515 of ML-KNIL (Netherlands East Indies) at the end of 1939. The date is important as I chose to paint the orange rudder which was discarded later. Next the Martin 139 WAN of the Argentinian Navy Escuadrilla de Bombardeo #2B3 in 1940s. Here is the build : https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235078053-172-azur-frrom-b-10-export/ Patrick
  8. Hello Last week I received directly from the factory a couple of 1/72 AZUR FRROM B-10 Export. Actually these are the first two boxes from this manufacturer with FR0043 B-10 Export WC/WAN > China Air Force and Argentine Navy FR0042 B-10 Export WH-2/WAA > Dutch East Indies and Argentine Army I am starting cutting the first sprues next weekend but here are the instruction sheets and the transfers. Patrick
  9. Hello Here is my recently finished 1/72 SNCASE SE 535 Mistral. After SNCASE built DH 100 Vampire under license they developped another version SE 532/535 with a Rolls Royce Nene engine. The air intakes were modified and the fuselage was deepened. The SE 535 were equipped with ejection seats but the SE 532 were later retroffited. My kit is a Mistral from 7ème Escadre de Chasse in Algeria in 1958. I cut and dropped the flaps as they always were in that position on the ground. The upper fuselage and the new air intakes are specific pieces added from the Special Hobby Vampire kit. Patrick
  10. Potez 25 A2/B2 'Hispano' and 'Lorraine' (FR0037 and FR0038) 1:72 Azur Frrom The Potez 25 was a French single engined, two-seater biplane designed in the interwar period and used widely by air forces around the world. A flexible design, the Potez 25 was used in a variety of roles, including as a fighter, bomber escort, light bomber and reconnaissance platform. The A2 variant was primarily a reconnaissance aircraft, powered by either a 520hp Salmson 18Cmb radial engine, a Lorraine 12Eb inline engine or a Hispano Suiza 12Jb engine. The Potez 25 had a range of 373 miles and a maximum speed of 132 mph. Armed with 7.7mm machine guns, it was also capable of carrying 200kg of bombs. Curiously, the aircraft could quite easily be converted from biplane to parasol-winged monoplane and served with the Romanian Air Force in this configuration. In total, over 4,000 examples were built, including many under licence. The Potez 25 has not been brilliantly represented by kit manufacturers over the years. The last time I remember reviewing one was a fancy mixed media kit released by Grand Models around three or so years ago. Now Azur Frrom have stepped up to the plate with a modern, injection moulded kit of the type that offers both Hispano and Lorraine engined versions. Inside the box are five frames of grey plastic and a single clear frame, as well as photo etched parts and decals. The plastic parts are all nicely moulded and have plenty of fine detail. We'll take a look at the Hispano version first, before covering the differences with the Lorraine version. Construction starts with the well-detailed cockpit. This sub-assembly is made up of the floor detail, seats, instrument panels, control columns, rudder pedals and the podium and machine gun for the observer/gunner. The cockpit sidewalls are packed with detail too. Once complete, the cockpit detail is sandwiched between the fuselage halves and the underside of the fuselage, which is separately moulded. The engine cowling is next. The inner struts fit inside this structure and tiny holes must also be drilled in pre-marked points in order to accommodate the rigging. Once complete, the cowling/forward fuselage can be joined to the main section of the fuselage which, in turn, can be joined to the lower wing (or blanking piece if building one of the Romanian parasol-winged monoplane versions). The upper wing joins to the fuselage and lower wing via a system of struts. There are different struts for the monoplane version. No jig is provided to help with alignment, so this model may be better suited to experienced biplane builders. The landing gear uses a similar system of individual struts. The instructions recommend making pins from brass rod to strengthen these parts and you will need to source this yourself as none is supplied. The main wheels benefit from some photo etched detail to represent the spoked wheels. More photo etched parts are used to represent the elevator control parts and the locating points for the rigging. Finishing touches include auxiliary fuel tanks and four small bombs. A choice of three different propellers is included, with helpful notes to explain which belongs to which of the different aircraft represented on the decal sheet. Four decal options are provided, which is pretty generous for a kit of this size: Potez 25 B2, Royal Hellenic Air Force, coded Sigma 3, Athenes-Tatoï airfield, end of April or May 1941; Potez 25 A2, Royal Romanian Air Force, Little Entente and Poland Air Race (placed 6th if you're wondering), Prague, August 1928; Potez 25 A2, Royal Romanian Air Force (monoplane configuration), Little Entente and Poland Air Race (placed 4th), Prague, August 1928; and Potez 25, Yugoslav Army, Little Entente and Poland Air Race (not placed), Prague, August 1928. The decals are nicely printed and the colours look nice and bold. Potez 25 A2/B2 'Lorraine' This version of the kit is virtually identical to the Hispano-powered version, but obviously has different parts for the engine cowling and radiator, which is at the front of the cowling rather than underneath. There is also no parasol-winged version in this boxing. The decal options provided with this version are: Potez 25 A2 Nr 2054, White RF 22, Aéronautique militaire, Rochefort training unit, France, 1937; Potez 25 B2 Nr 42.216, White 6, 34 th Squadron, 3 nd Regiment, Polish Air Force. Aircaft built by P&L. Poznan, Poland, 1932; IAR-Potez 25 B2 Nr 211, Romanian Air Force. Aircraft built by IAR in Brasov probably in May 1934; and Potez 25 A2 in French Indochina, captured by the Japanese in March 1945, sent to Thailand when the Japanese forces surrendered. Don Muang (Thailand), Autumn 1945 Conclusion Three cheers for Azur Frrom for taking the initiative and producing an injection moulded model of this attractive and important interwar type. The kit is very nicely detailed indeed, although I have to say it probably isn't ideally suited to biplane virgins. That said, if you take your time and pay attention to the instructions, you should be rewarded with a really appealing model to which a huge variety of marking schemes can be applied. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  11. S.N.C.A.S.E. S.E. 535 Mistral 1:72 Azur Frrom The distinctive De Havilland DH.100 Vampire was built to fulfil a wartime requirement for a small, lightweight jet fighter for the Royal Air Force. Although the prototype aircraft flew almost two years before the end of the War, the production aircraft arrived too late to see service in the conflict. Despite this, well over 3,000 examples were produced and the aircraft enjoyed a relatively long service life by the standards of the day. Powered by a single De Havilland Goblin turbojet, the diminutive Vampire was capable of 548 mph and had a service ceiling of over 40,000 ft. In common with many other fighters of the day, it was armed with four 20mm cannon. The S.E. 35 Mistral was a licence built Vampire, manufactured by Société nationale des constructions aéronautiques du Sud-Est (S.N.C.A.S.E.) and based on the Nene-powered Mk.53 that was also used in Armée de l'Air service. The Vampire has enjoyed something of a modelling renaissance recently. For a long while, the old FROG and Heller kits were pretty much it as far as 1:72 Vampires were concerned. Czech Master released a range of well-regarded but pricey resin kits some time ago, but it is not until fairly recently that we have had some new plastic kits of the type courtesy of A Model, Airfix, Cyberhobby and Special Hobby. This particular kit by Azur Frrom is based on the Special Hobby kit, which has already been released across a range of labels, including Xtrakit, Special Hobby and Azur. It includes a new resin seat and an extra frame of parts which includes a new upper fuselage, intakes and nose. Inside the top opening box are over 70 parts moulded in grey and clear styrene, as well as a sheet of decals, a resin seat and a full-colour instruction booklet. The kit looks excellent on the sprue, with lots of crisp, moulded detail and surface structures made up of fine, recessed lines and fasteners. The overall impression is closer to a modern, high pressure injection moulded kit than the older MPM/Special Hobby kits in my collection. Construction starts with the well-detailed cockpit. This area is made up of the floor, rear bulkhead, pilot's seat, control column and the instrument panel. The instrument panel features recessed detail and a decal is provided for the instrument dials themselves. The gun sight is moulded from clear plastic. The inside of the fuselage halves benefit from some separately moulded sidewall details. Taken together, the overall impression is of a well detailed and suitably busy cockpit. The resin seat really serves to lift the detail up a notch. Other internal detail includes the front and rear faces of the turbojet engine. Azur Frrom (Special Hobby) have elected for a bit of a smoke and mirrors effect here, splitting the front face of the engine into two parts so each can be seen through the intake trunking (part of which is cleverly moulded to the lower half of the fuselage pod. There is no separate tail pipe for the jet exhaust, with the pipe and protruding lip being moulded as part of the upper and lower fuselage halves. The nose cone is moulded separately to the rest of the fuselage, and it follows a panel line which should reduce the need to clean up the joint when finished. It will also enable you to fit the nose weight after the main structure of the model has been completed - a definite plus for a natural tail-sitter like the Vampire/Mistral. Once the two halves of the fuselage pod have been joined together, attention turns to the wings and the horizontal stabiliser. The wings are simply moulded in upper and lower halves, with control surfaces moulded in place. Surface details are very nicely represented, although the trailing edges are a little on the thick side (nothing that can't be sorted relatively easily though). The shallow main landing gear bays are moulded as part of the lower wing but are pretty well detailed. The engine air intakes are separately moulded on the extra frame of parts. Happily, this addresses one of the shortcomings of the original kit (titchy intakes). The tail booms look pretty good and, as with the wings and horizontal stabiliser, the control surfaces are moulded in place. With the airframe complete, attention turns to the undercarriage. The undercarriage itself is quite nicely moulded without being overly complex. Ordnance is catered for by the inclusion of a pair of drop tanks and a pair of rockets. The canopy is nicely moulded and is split into two parts, so it can be finished in the open position if desired. Three decal options are provided, which is more than reasonable for a kit of this size: SNCASE SE-535 Mistral No. 82, 8-PB, EC 1/8 "Maghreb", Rabat-Salé, Morocco, 1957; SNCASE SE-535 Mistral No. 195, 7-BC, 7 éme EC, Telergma, Algeria, crashed on 19 August, 1958; SNCASE SE-535 Mistral No. 64, 20-LF, EC 1/20, "Ouarsenis", Boufarik, Algeria, 1959; The decals are nicely printed and the colours look accurate to my eye. Conclusion I liked the original version of this kit a lot, and this version from Azur Frrom is no less appealing. The level of detail is very good indeed, and provided there are no surprises in terms of fit and finish, it should build up into a nice model. Overall, this is a nice kit which I am looking forward to building. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  12. Renard R-31 (FR0039) 1:72 Azur FRROM The Renard R-31 was developed to a Belgian Air Force requirement for a reconnaissance & Army co-operation aircraft in the early 1930s. The design by Alfred Renard of Constructions Aéronautiques G. Renard featured a high parasol wing to allow for an unobstructed view. The construction was welded steel tube with metal sheet covering at the front, with fabric elsewhere. 34 aircraft were built with the R-32 being an unsuccessful attempt at a closed cockpit version. The R-31 was not a well liked aircraft due to poor handling and being vulnerable to flat spins. In fact the Belgian Air Force banned it from any type of aerobatics. The R-31 was still in use at the time of the German invasion. Some were destroyed on the ground but they did manage fifty-four reconnaissance missions in support of allied operations to defend Belgium. In the air the aircraft were hopelessly out classed by the Luftwaffe and most were destroyed in combat. The few survivors were later destroyed by the Germans as they had no interest in keeping any. There is now a project underway to construct a replica using the original drawings. The Kit This is a new toolkit from Azur FRROM brings us this mainly forgotten aircraft of the Belgian Air Force. The kit arrives on two spures of grey plastic, a small clear sprue, and a small PE fret. A point of note for the sprue shots is that the fuselage halves are on the wing spure but had vome adrift in the bag so I photographed them next to the smaller sprue. Construction starts in starts in the cockpit area. Inside the fuselage is a good representation of the steel tubular structure. The seats are made up with the addition of PE seatbelts and added to the cockpit floor, rudder pedals are added. The complete floor and instrument panels are added in and the fuselage halves are brought together. The spates are added for the main gear along with the wheels. The large underside radiator is then built up and added. The observers machine gun is then completed, this has many small PE parts. Next up the wing is made up ad added along with the main struts either side. PE control rods are added on top of the wing. PE boarding steps are added along with an airspeed indicator. At the rear the tail planes, rudder and tail braces are added. To finish off the observers gun is added, and at the front the propeller. Markings The decals look to be in house and should present no problems. They look to be crisp, in register and colour dense. Markings are provided for three aircraft. All are Khaki Green over Aluminium dope, the third aircraft having a higher demarcation line than the other 2. N12, No.9 Sqn Belgian Air Force, January to May 1940 N9, No.11 Sqn Belgian Air Force. Personal aircraft of the Sqn Commander Paul Henry, de la Lindi. January to May 1940 N18, Wewelghem Flying School 1936. Conclusion It is great to see this kit of a relatively unknown type from between the wars which unfortunately was outclassed at the beginning of WWII. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  13. CASA C-212-300 France (FR0040) 1:72 Azur FRROM The CASA C-212 Aviocar is a medium cargo aircraft with a short field capability designed by Construcciones Aeronáuticas SA or CASA of Spain. The aircraft is a boxy fuselage with a high mounted wing and twin turbo prop engines. The cabin is not pressurised. In the 1960's the Spanish Air Force was looking to modernise as at the time it was still relying on a mix of C-47s and Ju-52s for its transport requirements. The SASA 212 was a proposed 18 seat transport aircraft which could fill a few different roles. The aircraft first flew in 1971 and the Spanish Air Force would acquire them from there. 477 Aircraft were built over 42 years, with the last -400 with a glass cockpit by then being built in 2012 when Airbus Military decided to discontinue production. Production continues though under license in Indonesia. The aircraft has been used by many military and civil users all over the world. For the 300 version the propellers were changed from Hartzell composite blade propellers to Dowty-Rotol all-metal propellers. In addition a larger stabiliser and winglets were added. The most noticeable difference though was the addition of a nose baggage compartment which extended the nose. The Kit This is a new toolkit from Special Hobby with Azur FRROM offering a "French" issue of the kit which is the C-212-300. The kit arrives on six sprues of plastic, a clear spure, and a small sheet of PE. From the look of the unused parts on the sprue a maritime/patrol version is planned at some point. Construction starts with deciding to do a 100 or 300 model. If doing the 300 then the kit nose needs removing and the extended 300 nose adding. Once done you move onto adding the instrument panel in at the front. Instruments are supplied as decals. The windows are put into the main fuselage halves from the inside at this point, as well as the side cockpit glazing. The main fuselage doors and inserts at the front are then added. The rest of the cockpit is then built up, this can then be added and thee main fuselage closed up. Its worth noting there in no interior for the main cargo cabin and the ramp is moulded closed. Next up the undercarriage is made up and the main sponsons added. The nose is added along with the main cockpit glazing. The tail planes are made up with separate control surfaces. The instructions advise to add nose weight but omit how much is needed. The tailplanes ad rudder are now added to the main fuselage, along with the tail plane fairings. The wings are made up next. There is a single part upper and left/right lowers. 4 flap actuator fairings are added to each side. The two engine nacelles are made up and added along with the fronts and propeller assemblies. These can then be added to the wings. Two trim tabs on the wing need to be removed. The wing is now fitted to the fuselage along with various antennas and sundry parts. As these differ in the varietals attention will be needed to select the correct ones. The wings are made up next. There is a single part upper and left/right lowers. 4 flap actuator fairings are added to each side. The two engine nacelles are made up and added along with the fronts and propellor assemblies. These can then be added to the wings. Two trim tabs on the wing need to be removed.The wing is now fitted to the fuselage along with various antennas and sundary parts. Markings There are printed by Cartograf for the main sheet, and Aviprint for the grey markings; both should pose no problems, four options are provided; French Air Force Flight Test Centre Jan 2015 Civilian Aircraft, operated by Boogie Performance, France 2009 Civilian Aircraft, operated by CAE Aviation, France 2009/14 French Air Force Flight Test Centre Jan 2009/11 Conclusion It is great to see this over looked small transport aircraft now being injection moulded in 1/72. All the better we now have the 300 as well. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  14. Hello As promised here is my second Northrop Delta. This time this is the Delta 1A of the TWA when used as a mail delivery aircraft. For that reason I did not put either the passenger seats or the window curtains. It could have been a weight saving measure. The main difference with my previous Delta is the engine. The Delta 1C was powered by a 9 cylinder radial Wright Cyclone SR1820 F3 engine. For the Delta 1C it was a 9 cylinder radial Pratt & Whitney Hornet engine. Patrick And now both Deltas compared
  15. Hello Here is the first of my couple of Northrop Delta. This one is the Delta 1C, c/n 7, EC-AGC from the Spanish Postal Airline (LAPE - Líneas Aéreas Postales Españolas ) in 1938. The work in progress is here : The TWA Delta 1A will follow soon. Patrick
  16. Hello Here is my next project with the build of a couple of Northrop Delta 1. These are brand new kits made by Azur FRROM in 1/72. So far there are two boxes with civilian versions to build either : Delta 1A TWA, Delta 1B Aerovias Centrales, Delta 1C A. B. Aerotransport. And the Over Spain box to build the delta 1C under Republican colours or after the civil war. Here are the runners. Here is the instruction sheet to engrave the right shape of the Delta 1C passenger door. I am going to build first the Delta 1A when TWA flew her as a fast mail delivery transport aircraft. For that reason I suppose the passenger seats were discarded to save weight. The second kit is the Delta 1C EC-AGC in 1938/39 when flown by Republican Spannish AF as a VIP transport plane. To be continued... Patrick
  17. Nieuport NiD 29 / Nakajima KO-4 1:72 Azur FRROM The Nieuport NiD-29 C1 is a fighter designed br by Gustave Delage in 1918. WWI ended before it was produced. In 1920 it was selected as new fighter by the French Aéronautique Militaire and the delivery to the units started in 1922. 700 of this aircraft were produced. In 1925 the French Aéronautique Militaire had 25 NiD-29-equipped squadrons. Several aircraft fitted with bomb-racks took part in low-level assault tasks in North Morocco at the end of 1925. The Nieuports remained in service with France till the end of the 20s. Aircraft were also produced under license in Belgium, Japan, Italy and Siam. They were used by the air forces of other countries as Spain, Sweden, Argentina, Kwansi, China and Manchuria. In 1922 the Belgian Aéronautique Militaire ordered 108 aircraft. Twenty aircraft were delivered direct by Nieuport from 1922 (Ni.1 to Ni.20) and eighty eight were built under license by SABCA (Ni.21 to Ni.108) these were delivered between January 1924 and October 1926. During 1931 they were replaced by Fairey Firefly IIM fighters. Sweden ordered ten Nieuport NiD-29 C1 in 1925. In the new Flygvapnet (created on first July 1926) they were named J2 (Jaktflygplan 2, for fighter aircraft 2) and wore the numbers 63, 65, 67, 69, 611, 613, 615, 617, 619 and 621. In 1929 seven machines were still in service. In 1922 the Italian Army selected the Nieuport NiD-29 C1 for the new Regia Aeronautica. Macchi and Caproni built these under license. It was named Macchi M.29 by Italians. The first Italian built machines were delivered to fighter units in October 1924, all together 175 aircraft were built by both Italian firms. They remained in service till 1931. In 1923 the Spanish Aviacion Militar ordered 30 aircraft. Deliveries started from the end of 1923. They equipped the fighter group of Getafe (Madrid). In September 1924 some were sent to North Morocco, they were based at Nador (Melilla). They took part in the Morocco war. Spanish aircraft were withdrawn in 1931 and replaced by Nieuports 52. The Nieuport NiD-29 C1 was selected by the Japanese Army to replace the Spad XIII and Ni.24. In 1923, one machine was bought in France. The NiD-29 was built under license by Nakajima which produced 608 machines. The type was called Ko-4 by Japanese. The Hiko Rentai (Air regiments) 1, 3, 4, 7 and 8 were equipped with Ko-4. Fighter units with Ko-4 took part in the invasion of Manchuria in 1931 and 1932. A lot of fighter schools were equipped with Ko-4 in 1937 (according to some sources, they were still in service in 1941). In China, the Kwansi government bought ten Nakajima Ko-4s in 1935 for advanced training. The following year the Kwansi joined the central Nanking government. All the aircraft were then integrated into the Chinese Air Force. At the end of 1937 seven Ko-4s were still in service for training. Manchuria bought four Ko-4s. After the Japanese invasion, these aircraft were put into service by the Japanese Army. In 1937 one Ko-4 was used by the new Manchukuo military aviation. In 1923 the Siam Aeronautical Service chose the Nieuport NiD-29 for its fighter units. Twelve machines were ordered from France as well as forty Hispano 8Fb engines. Licensed construction was also negotiated. The NiD-29 C1 was named Bin Khpa Laï 4 (it means fighter model 4). Forty aircraft were built by local factory. The 52 aircraft equipped four fighter squadrons. In 1937 they were replaced by Curtiss Hawks II & III (some sources claim several machines remained in service for training until 1941).(Information from Azur FFROM) The Kit On opening what seems to be Azur FFROMs standard open end box you are presented with a model which can only be described as one of few parts. There is one sprue of shorter run injection plastic, two small bags of resin parts, one sheet of clear acetate for the canopy, and a small PE fret. The parts feature some nice if restrained detail, appear to be well moulded with no problems. The fabric effect on the wings is very good for this scale, some of the smaller parts have a little bit of flash, but its nothing serious. Construction like most aircraft starts with the cockpit. This is made up from a combination of plastic and PE parts for the finer items. Once this is made and installed the fuselage and be closed up. Once this is done the lower wing and the tail planes are attached. Next step is to attach the wheels and their bracing struts. All of these are plastic. Also at this stage what appear to be oil coolers? In resin are attached to the wheel bracing struts. The guns can then be added to the top of the area behind the engine cowling. The kit includes open guns, and ones covered by a shroud without any real explanation in the instructions of which ones to use. I guess the modeller will have to consult references. The engine cylinder heads and exhaust are attached next. These are supplied in resin, and are very small / delicate. Once finished with the engine its on to the upper wing. There are a total of 10 individual struts to line up here so this will not be a quick job. Once finished there is the small matter of the windscreen, and small it is! This is printed on a flat sheet of thin acetate and will have to be cut out the folded by the modeller. Given the bad vac canopies I have seen on other 1:72 bi planes this might be a better idea? Finally with this kit Azur FFROM have actually provided a rigging diagram! Decals - France & Belgium Boxing The France & Belgium Boxing of the kit gives three choices of markings. ND-29 C1 of SPA 124 "Fayette" Soiux Indian Head Emblem (France) - Overall Dark Green ND-29 C1 of SPA 81, German occupation Force 1924 (France) - Overall Dark Green ND-29 C1 of no85 of 9th Escadrille de Chasse Of belgium 1922 - Dark Green over Aluminium Dope Decals - Export Boxing The Export Boxing of the kit gives three choices of markings. ND-29 C1 of the Flygvapnet J2 (Sweeden) - 1926 - overall Aluminium Dope ND-29 C1 of M29 of the Regina Aeronatica, 70th Sqn (Italy) - 1927 overall Aluminium Dope ND-29 C1 of the First Fighter Group Spanish Military Aviation, Getafe in 1926 - Overall Dark Green Decals - Nakajima Ko-4 Boxing The Nakajima Ko-4 Boxing of the kit gives four choices of markings. Nakajima Ko-4 No.83 Imperial Japanese Army - overall Grey / Green Nakajima Ko-4 No.695 Imperial Japanese Army - overall Grey / Green Nakajima Ko-4 No.220 Imperial Japanese Army - overall Grey / Green (Red Rudder) ND-29 C1 of Bin KhpaLai 4 of the Royal Aeronautical Serive of Siam in 1936 - Overall Dark Green All decals are by Aviprint and look to have good colour density and be in register. Conclusion This kit from Azur FFROM does fill a gap in the "tween wars" fighter era. I cant find any evidence of anyone else doing this kit outside of short run resin. The kit is not an easy one by any means, but should build up to a nice model with some time and care. Overall recomended to those with some bi-plane building under their belts. Review sample courtesy of
  18. Focke Wulf Fw-58B "Export" and "South American" kits Azur 1:72 Kit FR009 - Fw 58B "Export" Kit FR010 - Fw 58B "South American" Before doing this review I hadn’t heard of the Focke Wulf Fw-58. After doing some research, I can honestly say that I don’t know much more than before I started! What I do know is that there were over 1300 produced with many being exported to no less than 8 nations. Wikipedia states that 17 nations in total operated the aircraft, so I find it quite surprising that there is so little information about this attractive little aeroplane. First flying in 1935, it set out to provide a light training, transport and communications aircraft for the Luftwaffe. It was powered by two Argus AS 10 inverted V8’s of 240hp and constructed of welded steel tube and semi-cantilevered wing. The surfaces were a mix of fabric and metal. The two main variants were the Fw-58B as modelled here and the more widely used Fw-58C that was fitted out to carry passengers. The armed version was fitted with guns in the nose and ventral position. The B model also has provision to carry small bombs, although more for training than any combat requirement. Only one aircraft survives today in Brazil but another one is being restored in Norway. The kit The B & C models were released by Special Hobby a few years ago. This is a re-release under the Azur brand of the B model. Both kits have the same plastic offerings but with different decal options. OK, let’s start with first impressions. The kits are presented in the new style top opening boxes with inspiring art work of what I believe to be a nicely formed aircraft. Three medium grey sprues are supplemented by several resin components and an etch sheet that are separately bagged. Moulding quality on the plastic looks to be very good although limited run, missing the location pins that were are used to on more mainstream kits. The fabric effect on the fuselage and wings is very well reproduced in a subtle way that gives good scale accuracy and finely recessed panel lines give a good presentation of the metal surface areas. There is minimal flash and no sink marks that I can see. The A5 instruction booklet provides clear diagrams for assembly. Before I go on, I’ve come across a good pdf document that would be useful for building this kit. Please find it HERE. It has good drawings of the structure and undercarriage assembly if you wish to add some scratch built detail. You will have to register with the site to access it if you've not already. Construction starts with the interior. There is more than enough detail to leave you satisfied straight from the box. The plastic parts are boosted by etch details that include panel, seatbelts, rudder pedals and throttles. The etch panel also has a film that is to be fitted behind it with the instrument details on. Referring to the link I mentioned above, there is a diagram showing a dual control option. The kit only provides for single control options and one seat, so if you want to add further detail, adding the second pilot position could be your chance! The interior steel framework is represented by formed detail on the inside of the fuselage halves. A great addition often over looked on kits is side walls to cover the wing root area inside the fuselage. These wing chord shaped parts simply locate on the side walls. The ventral gun location needs to be cut out from the upper fuselage. As there are no marks on the fuselage as where to apply your cuts, you will have to mark them by lining up the ventral fairing that fits into the cut-out. As there are no locating pins, the usual care will be necessary to get the fuselage halves accurately joined. I find using Liquid Poly or similar very useful for this as it gives a good initial bit but allows manipulation until you’re happy with your positioning. Holding it together with strips of masking tape is suffice until the glue (or weld) has dried. I’d recommend dry fitting the clear nose and cockpit before going ahead with the gluing just in case there are any alignment issues which might necessitate a thin fillet or plastic removal for a flush fit. The lower wing root houses the rear nacelles. Blanks are provided for these so that you’re not left looking into a big void inside the wheel bays. There’s no detail in these blanks, so you might want to add a bit of detailing yourself. The wing root locates to the underside of the assembled fuselage with the outer lower wings and uppers wings fitting around them. Again, short run kits can have a tendency to be challenging during this phase, so be prepared for any surprises that you might face. The tail plane has an unusual forward location of the tail. Again the fabric is well represented on this part without being over done. The nacelles are supplied in two halves with a front part locating the prop hub face and radiator intakes. The undercarriage is quite a complicated affair using a mixture of etch, resin and plastic. Etch wheel hubs give a good lick of detail in a place where it really gets noticed. The clear parts are beautifully formed. The transparent nose is moulded as a complete circumference so there are no fears about hiding glued seems. The nose blister is a separate part and houses a resin gun with additional ammunition magazine. I'd recommend dry fitting the smaller windows as some fettling may be required to seat them correctly. Note that some of them aren't required in this kit. With the bulk of the kit assembled, focus turns to the detail. Several struts, aerials and masts are provided in resin, plastic and etch to finish the kit off. I’d be tempted to leave the struts off until after painting to make masking easier if doing the camouflaged scheme. The resin parts are a little vague and will requite care cleaning them up. Decals The sheets in the kits are produced by Aviprint. Register is spot on with very sharp and precise detail. Schemes provided are: Kit FR009 “Export” – note the box top is labelled “Expert”! Hungarian G2+58 - operating from Poltava, Russia 1943 – light grey scheme Hungarian G2+47 – military mail runs on Hungarian front lines 1944 – camouflage scheme Romanian – Popesti –Leordeni Training School, Romania 1942 – camouflage scheme Romanian – Popesti –Leordeni Training School, Romania 1944 – camouflage scheme This last aircraft was shot down by a US P-38 on the 10th June 1944 Kit FR010 “South America” Argentinean “171” – Grupo 1 de Observacion, BAM Parana 1938-48 – aluminium scheme Brazilian “2-V-6” – Aviacao Naval, Brazil 1938-41 – aluminium scheme Brazilian “AT-Fw-1530” – Forca Aerea do Brasil, 1948-50 – Light grey scheme This last aircraft has been restored and is on show in Rio de Janeiro Conclusion This is a very nicely detailed if unusual kit. I doubt it will fall together given the limited run sprue design, but for a modeller used to doing such builds, I’m confident great results are possible straight from the box. How accurate the kit is, I couldn't accurately comment. It certainly picks up the character of the aircraft. Whilst some manufacturers offer main stream aircraft choices, I’m really grateful that Azur (amongst others) are prepared to invest in these rarer aircraft, especially when they are as attractive as the FW-58! Review sample courtesy of
  19. Ikarus IK-2 VVKJ / Hrvatska 1:72 Azur FR.ROM Built on the Pulawskis gull wing configuration, the IK-L1 prototype made her maiden flight on 22 April 1935, but was soon destroyed. The second prototype IK-02 flew on 24 August, 1936. The Ikarus plant received in November 1937, an order for production of 12 aircraft and delivered them during December 1938 to March 1939. During Summer 1939, the IK-2s are incorporated into 6 th Puk in Zemun airfield (Belgrade). In October 1939 they move to 4th Puk in Borongaj airfield (Zagreb) then starting on 13 March, 1941, to Bosanski Aleksandrovac airfield (near Banja Luka, Bosnia). The Yugoslavian aircraft (VVKJ Boxing) IK-2s took part in defence and get involved in a very hard fight on the Nova Topola airfield, on 8 April, 1941. On 11 April, the last IK-2 landed at Veliki Radinci airfield where all the surviving planes, including 3 IK-3s of 6th Puk and some Me 109s, were destroyed by their crews. Nr 3, 4, 11 and 13, being serviced on 6 April during German attack on Yugoslavia, did not take part in any fighting, but were captured by German troops and subsequently transferred to the Croat Air Force. The Yugoslav aircraft were initially painted overall in aluminium, the IK-2s get 4 large 1 m diameter Kosovo crosses on the wings, Cyrillic letters were applied. Big black numbers 1 to 5 are painted on fuselage of aircrafts nr 9 to 13. In late 1940, a standard camouflage was applied. This consisted of uppers in ochre/ dark green/ dark brown, lower in light blue-grey, with usually modifications of the topside crosses: painting out of the starboard cross, and reduction of port to 70 cm . The Croatian aircraft (Hrvastska Boxing) were those transferred by the Germans. These aircraft were nr 2901 to 2904. They were taken on charge by 17th Jato and 6th Grupa, at Rajlovac airfield (Sarajevo) and employed on reconnaissance missions. Two remained in use during 1944, no IK-2 survived the war. The Croatian aircraft were painted in dark green topside and grey underside. The Croat insignias appear on wings in the four usual positions, and on both sides of the rudder. The identification number is applied on both sides of fuselage.(Information from Azur FFROM) The Kit The Kit arrives in an open end box. The parts inside are bagged. There is one main sprue of parts, the main wing, a small PE fret and a bag containing the canopies. The detail on the kit is fine, engraved detail where needed, and some raised detail. The main parts are typical short run injection plastic, there is a little flash on some of the smaller parts, but this will be easy to clean up. The parts count for this small fighter is quite low. Construction starts with the cockpit. All parts are in plastic with the exception of some PE seatbelts, and the instrument panel which is made up of a plastic/file/PE sandwich. Once the cockpit is installed the fuselage is closed up and the tail planes added. PE parts provide the struts for the tailplanes. After this the main wing and the main gear needs to be fitted and its important the three struts are fitted in the right places, as they link the wing and the gear. The prop is next and for some reason is 3 separate blades which need fitting into the hub. Finally the canopy is added; here they have provided both an injection canopy, and a vac form canopy for those who prefer them. Decals For the Croation boxing markings are supplied for four aircraft, these are identical apart from the ID number. For the Yugoslavian aircraft markings are provided for the silver aircraft, and two variations of the camo aircraft. Conclusion Once again Azur FFROM have provided us with a kit of an aircraft not generally known for which they should be proud. Its limited run and not a fall together kit, but should be welcomed by modellers who like something a little different, and those wanting to model Balkans aircraft. Review sample courtesy of
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