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  1. Macchi MC.202 Folgore: A Technical Guide Valiant Wings Publishing The Italian Macchi MC.202 was possibly the best fighter to serve in the Italian Air Force during WWII, although it suffered from multiple problems with its ancillary equipment that could sometimes have fatal consequences. A Development of the 200, it was fitted with license built DB601 engine, and evolved into a formidable dogfighter that was held back by its poor armament, which initially consisted of only two Browning M2 derived machine guns, to which a further two were added in the wings later on, only to be removed from the aircraft in the field to save weight. The book is one of Valiant Wings' Technical Guides, and is No.3 in the Airframe Detail series. It consists of 80 pages, numbered from 3 to 82 for some reason, and is in a portrait format in a "perfect bound" binding. It is written by Maurizio Di Terlizzi with additional text by Richard A Franks, and profiles by Richard J Caruana. It is divided into sections as you would expect, with the chapter headers as follows: 1. Introduction A brief history of the aircraft. 2. Technical Description Detailed coverage of the construction and equipment. 3. Camouflage & Markings Colour side profiles, notes and photographs. 4. Appendices MC.202 kits, accessories, masks, decals. 5. Bibliography The pages are packed with information, photos, drawings and diagrams that will be invaluable to those like myself that want to know exactly how the model they are building works. There are detailed breakdowns of the various structures and plenty of colour photos from the few examples that remain in existence today. Conclusion From a modeller's perspective it's a handy tome to have available during a build, and as I have Hasegawa's 1:48 offering on the shelves, it will come in handy at some point. It is also useful purely from an interested party's point of view, and I found the introduction to be a good read, with plenty of information imparted. Whether my scatter-brain will hold onto said information is another matter however! Either way, it is wallet friendly, and very well worth the effort of getting hold of a copy. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  2. Dornier Do.17Z – A Technical Guide Valiant Wings Publishing The flying pencil has received a lot of attention this last year, with the raising of a crashed example and the release of the new Airfix kit in 1:72, so this book from our friends at Valiant should be of great interest. It will also find favour with those owning the Classic Airframes 1:48 kit, as well as general aviation enthusiasts. Written by Richard A Franks, it covers the aircraft from its earliest prototypes, where you can see how it came by its nickname due to the slender fuselage and fairly pointed nose, right through to the end of the 17Z's career and eventual replacement by the do.215 that started life as the export variant, which was in turn supplanted by the 217. The book is a perfect bound softcover, comprising 80 pages plus covers, and is split into four main sections plus appendices, as follows: Introduction An eleven page history of the aircraft from conception to completion, including some photos of the early prototypes and test airframes. Technical Description Thirty eight pages of detailed pictures, drawings and diagrams of the airframe, and its internals, including cockpit, crew compartments, electronics, fabrication, gun installations and bays, all of which is accompanied by detailed captioning. Camouflage & markings Eighteen pages of photos, text and six pages of profiles showing the various schemes worn by this quirky-looking aircraft. Building a Do.17Z Libor Jekl builds the new Airfix 1:72 Do.17Z over seven pages, showing just what can be done with the kit and his amazing skills. Appendices Do.17Z Kits, accessories, decals, bibliography The appendices only take up four pages, and are tightly packed with information, rather than drawn out to fill pages as happens with some titles. Conclusion If you're interested in the Do.17 and its successors, you'll find plenty of interest in this new title, and a lot of photos that I've not seen before. I'll certainly put my review copy to good use when I tackle my CA kit. It will also come in handy if you're waiting for the proposed Do.17Z kit from ICM, who have been gracious enough to give us two excellent 215 variants so far. One of these for each of the 215 and 217 would be my next wish. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  3. The Blohm & Voss Bv.141 (Airframe Detail No.1) Valiant Wings Publishing The Bv.141 was perhaps one of the weirdest looking aircraft of WWII that almost made it to production, with its asymmetric design, large wings, fuselage nacelle reminiscent of an Fw.189, and the fact that much of its development and history has been lost in the confusion that reigned at the fall of the third reich. This new book from Valiant Wings has been penned by Richard A Franks, and extends to 63 pages in a perfect bound format. Notes in the corner of the first page tells us that almost all known pictures, drawings and diagrams still extant of this aircraft have been included in the book, and this is evident from the sheer quantity, some of which are surprisingly good, and some necessarily small and grainy because, well, that's all we have! The book is broken down into chapters as you'd expect, as follows: Introduction. This includes a brief history and extends to 11 pages with plenty of photos between the text. Technical Description. Going over the airframe in 9 sections over 38 pages, this will be of great use to anyone wanting to improve the detail of their kit. Diagrams, technical photos and excerpts of the flight manual are included. Camouflage & Markings. Extending to 9 pages with four pages of three-view and profile drawings, this section covers the variation of markings and schemes from beginning to end. Building a Bv.141 A build by Steve A Evans is catalogued over 4 pages, with some very nice photos of an exceptionally well built model. Appendices. One page split between kits and available books. Conclusion This is a very interesting and informative book of a left-of-field aircraft that is probably going to be a little more mainstream after the recent release of the Hobby Boss kit reviewed here. It is eminently readable, laid out in a sensible order with some really good photos, especially of the interior, and should be of use to anyone wishing to improve their kit, whether it be the new 1:48 kit, or Airfix's ageing offering in 1:72. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
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