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Hello Everyone,

I have just joined the forum and this is my first contribution to Britmodeller. I hope you enjoy this build thread?


The Arado Ar 196 was a shipboard reconnaissance low-wing monoplane aircraft built by the German firm of Arado starting in 1936. The next year it was selected as the winner of a design contest and became the standard aircraft of the Kriegsmarine (German navy) throughout World War II.

Design and development

In 1933, the Kriegsmarine looked for a standardized shipboard reconnaissance aircraft. After a brief selection period, the Reichsluftfahrtministerium (German Air Ministry, RLM) decided on the Heinkel He 60 biplane. This was one of a line of developments of a basic biplane airframe that appeared as a number of floatplanes, trainers, and fighters. Deliveries started in a matter of months.

By 1935, it was found that the He 60's performance was lacking and the RLM asked Heinkel to design its replacement. The result was the He 114. The first prototype was powered by the Daimler-Benz DB 600 inline engine, but it was clear that supplies of this engine would be limited and the production versions turned to the BMW 132 radial engine instead.

The plane proved to have only slightly better performance than the He 60, and its sea-handling was poor. Rushed modifications resulted in a series of nine prototypes in an attempt to solve some of the problems, but they didn't help much. The Navy gave up, and the planes were eventually sold off to Romania, Spain and Sweden.

In October 1936, the RLM asked for a He 114 replacement. The only stipulations were that it would use the BMW 132, and they wanted prototypes in both twin-float and single-float configurations. Designs were received from Dornier, Gotha, Arado and Focke-Wulf. Heinkel declined to tender, contending that the He 114 could still be made to work.

With the exception of the Arado low-wing monoplane design, all were conventional biplanes. That gave the Arado better performance than any of the others and the RLM ordered four prototypes. The RLM was also rather conservative by nature, so they also ordered two of the Focke-Wulf Fw 62 design as a backup. It quickly became clear that the Arado would work effectively, and only four prototypes of the Fw 62 were built.

The Ar 196 prototypes were all delivered in summer 1937, V1 (which flew in May) and V2 with twin floats as A models, and V3 and V4 on a single float as B models. Both versions demonstrated excellent water handling and there seemed to be little to decide one over the other. Since there was a possibility of the smaller outrigger floats on the B models "digging in", the twin-float A model was ordered into production. A single additional prototype, V5, was produced in November 1938 to test final changes.

10 A-0s were delivered in November and December 1938, with a single 7.92 mm (.312 in) MG 15 machine gun in the rear seat for defense. Five similarly equipped B-0s were also delivered to land-based squadrons. This was followed by 20 A-1 production models starting in June 1939, enough to equip the surface fleet.

Starting in November, production switched to the heavier land-based A-2 model. It added shackles for two 50 kg (110 lb) bombs, two 20 mm MG FF cannons in the wings, and a 7.92 mm (.312 in) MG 17 machine gun in the cowling. The A-4 replaced it in December 1940, strengthening the airframe, adding another radio, and switching props to a VDM model. The apparently mis-numbered A-3, which had additional strengthening of the airframe, replaced the A-4. The final production version was the A-5 from 1943, which changed radios and cockpit instruments, and switched the rear gun to the much-improved MG 81Z. Overall, 541 Ar 196s (15 prototypes and 526 production models) were built before production ended in August 1944, about 100 of these from SNCA and Fokker plants.

The Ar 196C was a proposed aerodynamically-refined version. The Ar 196C project was cancelled in 1941.

Operational history

An Ar 196 on board the German cruiser Admiral Hipper

The plane was loved by its pilots, who found it handled well both in the air and on the water. With the loss of the German surface fleet, the A-1s were added to coastal squadrons and continued to fly reconnaissance missions and submarine hunts into late 1944. Two notable operations were the capture of HMS Seal, and the repeated interception of RAF Armstrong-Whitworth Whitley bombers. Although it was no match for a fighter, it was considerably better than its Allied counterparts, and generally considered the best of its class. Owing to its good handling on water, the Finnish Air Force utilized Ar 196s just for transporting and supplying special forces patrols behind enemy lines, landing on small lakes in remote areas. Several fully equipped soldiers were carried in the fuselage.

Arado in Allied hands

Arado AR196 naval reconnaissance floatplane in the collection of the Bulgarian Air Force Museum at the airport in Plovdiv. The aircraft is the pride of the director, who is seen in the foreground. Previously, this seaplane was at the Marinemuseum in Varna, but was returned to the Air Force Museum for lack of space

The first Arado Ar 196 to fall into allied hands was an example belonging to the German cruiser Admiral Hipper, which was captured in Lyngstad, Eide, by a Norwegian Marinens Flyvebaatfabrikk M.F.11 seaplane of the Trøndelag naval district on 8 April 1940, at the dawn of the Norwegian Campaign. After being towed to Kristiansund by the torpedo boat HNoMS Sild, it was used against its former owners, flying with Norwegian markings. At 03:30 on 18 April, the Arado was evacuated to the UK by a Royal Norwegian Navy Air Service pilot. The plane was shortly thereafter crashed by a British pilot while on transit to the Helensburgh naval air base for testing. At the end of the war, at least one Arado Ar 196 was left at a Norwegian airfield and kept in use as a liaison aircraft by the Royal Norwegian Air Force for a year on the West coast.

Former military operators

Bulgaria- Bulgarian Air Force
Finland- Finnish Air Force
Germany- Kriegsmarine Luftwaffe
Norway - (captured)Royal Norwegian Navy Air Service, Royal Norwegian Air Force
Soviet Union- Soviet Air Force, Soviet Naval Aviation

Aircraft on display

Ar 196 A-3An aircraft operated by the Bulgarian Air Force is displayed at the Museum of Aviation and the Air Force, Plovdiv, Bulgaria.Ar 196 A-5, Werknummer of 623 167An aircraft that formerly equipped the German cruiser Prinz Eugen is in storage at the Paul Garber Facility of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum, and awaiting restoration. Ar 196 A-5, Werknummer of 623 183Another aircraft from the Prinz Eugen was displayed from 1949 to 1995 at the Naval Air Station Willow Grove, Pennsylvania and subsequently transferred to the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Florida. The upper fuselage and canopy were damaged during transit, and it remained in storage awaiting restoration. In December 2012, it was packed into containers and shipped to Nordholz, Germany. Restoration began in August 2013, in time for that city's celebration for 100 years of German naval aviation. The plane, on long term loan from the National Naval Aviation Museum, will eventually be displayed at the Naval Air Wing 3 (Marinefliegergeschwader 3) headquarters at Nordholz Naval Airbase.
The Aircraft Historical Museum, Sola, Norway, has on display an Ar 196 A-2 fuselage frame raised from the wreck of the German cruiser Blücher in Oslofjord.

Another aircraft is known to lie in the Jonsvatnet, a lake near Trondheim in Norway. A number of wartime German aircraft have been recovered from the lake, but the Ar 196 remains undisturbed as its crew were killed when it crashed there in 1940 and it has the status of a War Grave.

A wrecked Arado Ar 196 A-3, believed to be D1 + EH, was snagged by a fishing trawler off the island of Irakleia in 1982 at a depth of 91 meters. It was towed out of the fishing lanes to shallower waters (about 11 meters). The upside down plane, with fuselage and wings mostly intact, has become a popular spot for Scuba diving.

Specifications (Ar 196 A-2)

General characteristics

Crew: Two (pilot and observer)
Length: 11.0 m (36 ft 1 in)
Wingspan: 12.4 m (40 ft 0 in)
Height: 4.45 m (14 ft 7 in)
Wing area: 28.4 m² (306 ft²)
Empty weight: 2,990 kg (6,592 lb)
Max. takeoff weight: 3,720 kg (8,200 lb)
Powerplant: 1 × BMW 132K 9-cylinder radial engine, 960 PS (706 kW, 947 hp)


Maximum speed: 311 km/h (193 mph)
Range: 1,080 km (670 mi)
Service ceiling: 7,010 m (23,000 ft)
Rate of climb: 300 m/min (980 ft/min)
Wing loading: 98.2 kg/m² (20.1 lb/ft²)
Power/mass: 167 W/kg (0.101 hp/lb)



1 × 7.92 mm (0.312 in) MG 15 machine gun
1 × 7.92 mm (0.312 in) MG 17 machine gun
2 × 20 mm MG FF cannons
Bombs: 2 × 50 kg (110 lb) bombs

The Box and Artwork:


A side panel of the box showing some of the many details included in this kit:


Contained within the box are 13 grey sprues, one clear sprue, a 16 page black and white assembly, paint and decal instruction booklet and a sheet of cartograf decals. The grey sprues are divided into 5 clear polythene bags that are sealed with a strip of cellotape, and, the clear sprue is in a bag of its own. The decals are covered with a soft opaque paper sheet and inserted into the center pages of the instruction booklet. The box is one fabrication with access to the contents enabled by pulling open one of the end flaps. I much prefer the two piece box constructions with a base and a lid:


Pages 2 + 3:


Pages 4 + 5:


Pages 6 + 7:


Pages 8 + 9:


Pages 10 + 11:


Pages 12 + 13:


Pages 14 + 15:


Pages 1 + 16- the front and back pages:


The 13 grey Sprues:








A close up of some detail on one of the sprues:


The clear sprue:


And, finally, the Decal sheet:


Overall, at first sight, these parts look very well engineered with zero flash, and if any, it's hardly noticeable. The details are nice and crisp, the molded parts are clean, free of warp and ejector pin marks in visible surfaces. The clear parts are thin, free of blemishes, gate blushing and/or splaying, air traps, knit and weld lines and no optical aberrations to disturb visual transparency and clarity. There's a ton of styrene for the price, the decals are very nice (cartograf), but the instructions look a little confusing in places...we'll see when we get to the build.

That's my introduction done with, now onto the build!

Thanks in advance for taking a look guys and commenting.



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Revell 1/32 Arado AR196A-3 Seaplane "Build Update #1":

Hello Guys,

So, I made a start on this baby and the following is a description, including images, of my progress so far.

As always, the first step I take, is to wash all the parts before I begin, to ensure any mold residues are cleaned off that might affect the adhesion of primer and paint:


I then began the build by assembling some of the larger parts to eliminate some of the 14 sprues spread over the dining table. I first assembled the mounting feet to the base, just incase I decide to mount the finished plane to the supplied base:


Next, I assembled the two floats. These were made up of two side parts, a top and two internal braces. Because the plane is a tail-sitter, 30g of weight is required in the front end of each float; I used white putty that I packed into the whole of the front sections;


I then taped them until the glue had set:


Next, I assembled the Starboard side wing assembly:




Followed by the Portside wing assembly. I have decided that I will have the starboard side wing in it's fixed flying position and the portside wing will be folded back:



After the wings were assembled, I moved onto the Horizontal Stabilizer assembly, the ailerons, flaps and the Pilots seat assembly:





It was now time to apply a black base-coat to the internal assembly parts and inside of the fuselage. I also airbrushed the base assembly black:




When the black base-coat had dried, I then airbrushed a RLM 02 grey/green color to all of the internal cockpit assembly parts and inner surfaces of the fuselage sides and flooring. I used Model Masters 4728 Olive Drab toned down with white, which I thought looked liked a close match:








When that paint had dried it was then time to start detailing the component of the cockpit assembly and building the individual sub-assemblies of the cockpit:


Starboard side inner frame work:


Portside inner framework:


Control boxes on the back of the Pilots seat, the front engine bulkhead, steering column, instrument panel, foot pedals and rear gunners seat cushion:




The Pilots seat:




The front engine bulkhead with the oil tank, filters and air intake/filter:


The instrument panel:


Progress so far:





Well that's it until my next update, thanks in advance for taking a look and commenting!


Martin :)

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Wow, phenomenal (and fast) progress. I'll be watching with interest, as I've got the kit in the stash.


Oh, and welcome to the forums

Edited by kwaterous
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Wow, phenomenal (and fast) progress. I'll be watching with interest, as I've got the kit in the stash.


Oh, and welcome to the forums

Thanks K, greatly appreciated. I have to be honest with you, I have just completed this model on Sunday, but wanted to share it with people, so, I looked on-line to search for modeling related chat sites and came across Britmodeller. being an ex-pat, the name appealed to me and so I joined last night and posted the above. I'll post some more throughout the day to share my 17th build since I started modeling in January 2014 after taking "early retirement".

Cheers :)


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Nice start!


Thanks, Martin, much appreciated! I actually just completed this model on Sunday (2 days ago) and wanted to share it, as I'm really chuffed with how she turned out, and after searching on-line last night for modeling related chat-sites, I came across this one.

Cheers :)


Beautiful start to a lovely subject.


Thanks Clive greatly appreciated! I actually just completed this model on Sunday (2 days ago) and wanted to share it, as I'm really chuffed with how she turned out, and after searching on-line last night for modeling related chat-sites, I came across this one.

Cheers :)


Epic first post Martin and very informative . Well done on joining this forum


Thanks, Alistair, greatly appreciated! :)



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Revell 1/32 Arado AR196A-3 Seaplane "Build Update #2":

Hello guys,

I progressed further and so I'm back on here to present my latest progress with this "Build Update #2" report.

It was now time to assemble the cockpit, so I started off with gluing the instrument panel, the pilot seat and control boxes onto the cockpit floor:


I then fitted the two outer frames:


Next, I fitted the front bulkhead with the Oil tank and oil cooler assembly:


I then fitted the exterior underside fuselage section to the bottom of the flooring:


I then glued the 300 liter fuel tank covers onto the top of each Float:


Next, I assembled the rear machine gun magazine storage rack and the forward facing machine gun:


I then fitted the forward facing machine gun into location:


Followed by fitting the rear machine gun magazine storage rack into its location:


I then went to bed and waited until daylight so I could take better photos of the assembly instead of the poor light from the dining table chandelier:








The next step was to start detail painting the engine components and then assembling them:






With the engine assembly complete, I then gave everything a clear coat in readiness for a dark dirt wash:


When the clear coat was dry, I made my own wash from a mixture of Black oil paint and Mineral Spirits and brushed it over all the painted and clear coated parts:





After applying the wash, I then decided to move on with the propeller assembly starting with airbrushing the Spinner red:


I then airbrushed the propeller and the two underwing bombs silver, so that I can add chipping effects to them later in the build:


I then assembled the propeller and when the glue had set, I took a bottle cap, placed blu-tak inside of it, then stuck it to the end of the Spinner to act as a mask for airbrushing the Scwarzgrun onto the back end of the spinner and the propeller blades. I used Humbrol 91 for this color:



I then moved onto building and painting the rear gunners Machine Gun assembly:


Once it was set, I temporarily fitted it to take photos to see how the cockpit assembly now looked with the addition of the machine gun and after the wash had been applied:










I then temporarily located the engine and propeller assembly at the front of the cockpit assembly to get a feeling for what things were going to look like once built up:






Next will be to assemble the fuselage halves around the cockpit and assemble the engine and cowlings to the front of the fuselage:



Well, that's it for this build update guys! Thanks again for everyone that has followed this build along and for all of your kind comments, too, much appreciated!

Until my next update, thanks for watching!


Martin icon_e_smile.gif

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Great work! Keep it going!

A few moth ago i have build this bird (only positives emitions!!!!)

Just one advice: mount the floats to the plane in a final stage and paint them separatly (it halps to easyer masking, painting and weathering)

Best regards! Egor.

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Great work! Keep it going!

A few moth ago i have build this bird (only positives emitions!!!!)

Just one advice: mount the floats to the plane in a final stage and paint them separatly (it halps to easyer masking, painting and weathering)

Best regards! Egor.

Thanks Egor, much appreciated! I completed this plane on Sunday, and I have just joined Britmodeller, so, I'm sharing my last build on here to introduce myself. This was my 17th build since I started modeling in January 2014. It's a fabulous model that I built in sub-assemblies, then put those altogether at the final assembly stage. You will see the rest of the build process that I performed followed by the "Final Reveal" photos and videos shortly!

Thanks for taking a look and commenting, greatly appreciated!


Martin :)

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This build is look really nice, its all coming together well. I have this in my stash also and was tempted to get it out but it has been beaten back by a Fulmar and Skua double build! Keep up the good work.

This was my 17th build since I started modeling in January 2014.

Holy cow! I dont think i've completed 17 since January 2010! Although my stash has probably increased by 17 since Jan 14 LOL

Cheers now


Edit: Just realised that we are in fact in April 2015 and not April 2014 :doh: but still thats over 1 a month not bad going!

Edited by moaning dolphin
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This build is look really nice, its all coming together well. I have this in my stash also and was tempted to get it out but it has been beaten back by a Fulmar and Skua double build! Keep up the good work.

Holy cow! I dont think i've completed 17 since January 2010! Although my stash has probably increased by 17 since Jan 14 LOL

Cheers now


Edit: Just realised that we are in fact in April 2015 and not April 2014 :doh: but still thats over 1 a month not bad going!

LOL!....I know the feeling regarding the increase in stash size...every time I go to the model store for some paint, or sanding sticks, scalpel blades, etc, I always end up bringing home a model or two! It's so difficult not to, when you see those boxes exposing themselves on the shelves, calling for your attention, begging you to take them home to give them lots of TLC!

I took early retirement in June 2013, so, modeling has now become my full-time "job". I put in anything from 40 to 60 hrs per week when I'm building! Once I start on a kit, I can't put it down...it's a severe addiction! :)



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Revell 1/32 Arado AR196A-3 Seaplane "Build Update #3":

I managed to get some more work done on this baby during the last few days, so, here is my latest update #3:

After completing the assembly of the cockpit and engine and applying a dirt wash to them and other pieces, it was time to seal the wash in with a Flat/Matte clear coat;



Except for the propeller assembly and the base which were given a Satin clear coat finish:


When the clear coats had dried, it was time to start assembly of the plane. I started by gluing the cockpit assembly into the Starboard fuselage half:



I then glued the Portside fuselage half onto the Starboard side and held them together with tape until the glue had set:


Next, I glued the Starboard wing assembly into location. This wing will be modelled in its fixed position and the Portside wing will be modelled folded back:


I then glued the Horizontal Stabilizer into location:


Followed by gluing the Rudder into place:


When all the glue joints were set, I removed the tape and checked the joints. I put some filler along the upper seam to ensure any small recesses were filled to provide a smooth surface:


While the filler was setting, I started with assembling the engine into the front and rear cowlings:




I then glued the front fuselage section into place and taped it until the glue had set:


When everything was set, I removed the tape and smoothed down the filler along the upper seam. I then put everything I had completed together on my table to see the progress so far:



I then glued the bomb carrier racks onto the underside of the wings:


I then put all the smaller pieces onto cocktail sticks in readiness for airbrushing Primer onto everything:


Next, I cleaned all the parts with Isopropyl Alcohol and masked areas that I wanted to remain unaffected by paint, prior to priming:




I then airbrushed Model Masters Grey Primer on all the parts:


When the Primer was dry, I checked all the parts to see if the primer coat was good:



Everything looked good except for the seam joint in front of the cockpit:


I reapplied some filler along the joint, sanded it smooth and re-primed that area then checked to see if it had improved. I was happy with the result it looked good and we were ready for painting:


I then prepared the parts to airbrush silver onto the metal areas of the plane, so that I could apply chipping later in the build to expose this silver paint beneath the upper camouflage colors:




When the silver paint was dry, I then pre-shaded everything:


Followed by sealing everything with a gloss clear coat:


When the clear coat was dry, I then put all the parts and sub-assemblies onto my table to check the progress that I had completed for this update:





So, that's as far as I have gotten with this update. From hereon, I will airbrush a coat of Hairspray onto all the areas that were painted silver so that I can do the "Hairspray Chipping" technique when the plane is completely painted.

Thanks for following this build thread and for your kind and encouraging comments, much appreciated as always! icon_e_smile.gif

Until my next update, take care and happy modeling!


Martin :)

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Absolutely georgeous lovely to see coming together beautiful painting.


Thanks, Clive! Greatly appreciated! :)

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You have just shamed my pitiful progress on a couple of simple 1/72 builds. I shall self flagellate with a scourge all night.

LOL, Darby! I'm sure you're doing an extremely good job on your pair of 1/72nds. I keep away from that scale, my eyes are aged and strain too much leaving them sore and watery trying. I only build 1/48 and above, and at 1/48, I still have some difficulty. This is my first 1/32nd build, my first Revell Germany kit, my first float plane and my first time attempting the "Hairspray Chipping" technique and "filtering" during the painting phase.

Cheers :)


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Superb work so fsr, enjoying following this as got the very same kit and need an excuse to build it!

Thanks Batcode, greatly appreciated! You should make a start on your kit, it's an absolute gem and looks fabulous built right out of the box, although there are some nice after-market enhancements available. It's a really enjoyable build, I loved every minute of the 160 hrs I put into it between March 17th and April 19th!

Cheers :)


Yikes! Looks good!

Thanks, Phil, greatly appreciated! :)



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Revell 1/32 Arado AR196A-3 Seaplane "Build Update #4":

Hello Guys,

Following on from the last Build Update, it was time to give the plane a couple of thin coats of Hairspray to enable chipping later in the build. So, I borrowed the wife's hairspray from the bathroom while she was at work, decanted some into my airbrush cup and airbrushed it onto all the areas that I had previously painted silver;



When the hairspray had dried overnight, it was time to move forward with airbrushing the external colors on. I started by masking the wingtips and the engine cowling, on the undersides, to airbrush the yellow:




When the yellow was dry, I masked over it on the wingtips, and masked the rest of the plane in preparation for airbrushing the underside RLM 65 Hellblau:



I then removed the tape when the paint was dry and checked to see how everything was looking. I thought it was looking okay so far:




The next step was to make a start on the first of the upper-side camouflage colors, the RLM 72, so I masked the plane using an enlarged print of the views provided I the painting instructions, cutting out the separate sections and taping them in their corresponding locations on the model sub-assemblies; the portside wing, the floats and engine cowlings. I then airbrushed Model masters RLM 72 on to the exposed areas, and when that was done, I put a few drops of white into the RLM 72 to tone it down to then airbrush some highlights in selected areas, such as the fabric covered fuselage, flaps, ailerons and rudder;


I then removed the masking when the paint was dry and checked to see how that looked:




I then masked over the RLM 72 and airbrushed the RLM 73 paint. Again, I used Model Masters and repeated the highlighting process with this color by toning down with some white and airbrushing selected areas again:





When that was dry, I painted the light olive square on top of the fuselage, then masked the tail end of the plane for airbrushing the white band. I used Tamiya XF-2 Flat White:



When the white band was dry, I removed the masking and then painted the red noses on the front of the floats and the covers of the two 20mm MG FF Cannons, one on each of the leading edges of the wings. I then checked everything done so far and I thought that it was looking pretty good...well, I was happy with myself:










I then dry fitted/assembled some of the parts to get a feeling of what she's going to start looking like when built:






Well, that's it for this update, the next one will be my last update before the "Final Reveal" for this build. Before she's complete, I have chipping, decaling, weathering, final assembly and a final clear coat to put on her. When she's done, I will be attempting to build my first ever diorama to put her into, and I don't have a bloody clue where to start, so, I guess I will be watching a lot of "How To" videos!! icon_e_smile.gif

Thanks again for everyone that has followed this build, and who have made kind and encouraging comments, much appreciated!


Martin :)

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You are the real airbrush master! Lovely neat work!!!!

Thank you very much for your kind compliment! Greatly appreciated! :)



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