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Arado Ar-196 Airframe Album 7
Valiant Wings Publishing

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This is the seventh in the series of Airframe Albums, this one concentrating on the Arado Ar 196 floatplane. As with the other titles in the series, this is beautifully printed book, written by Richard Franks, that is filled with details and information on this interesting aircraft. The book follows a similar format to the others in that there is a short history, (covering nineteen pages), of the design, the production airframes, and the current existing articles, whether complete airframes, or just parts. The next forty pages come under the title of Technical Information and provide an in-depth look at all the parts, systems, armament, fixtures and fittings. The text is accompanied by numerous line diagrams and where possible, photographs from the two extant examples, one in the NAAM, USA and one a museum in Bulgaria.

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The section titled Evolution, provides detailed information on the variations and changes between the various prototypes and production machines. These include the variations in armament, airframe, float configuration and engines used through airframe line diagrams. The next fifteen pages covers the markings and camouflage used throughout the aircrafts service life and is accompanied by colour plates of the different schemes used on the aircraft along with period photographs. The rest of the book is taken up with information and four complete build articles on the various model kits and decal that have been released over the years and a brief synopsis on their history, re-pops and the like. The build articles are on two 1:72, one 1:48 and one 1:32 models, which not only show how the aircraft can be built but useful tips on wan problem areas and how to overcome them. The last page is a bibliography of all the books, documents, and publications that have been printed on the Arado 196 giving ISBN numbers where available.

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Conclusion
As with the other titles in the series, this is a meticulously researched and presented book. To gather this much information must take a heck of a long time and it really shows in the depth this title goes to show every little detail on the aircraft. Even if you don’t have a kit of the Ar 196 it is still a very interesting book and a worthy addition to any collection. Very highly Recommended


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