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Paul A H

Bellanca CH/J-300 Record Flight - 1:72

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Bellanca CH/J-300 Record Flight

1:72 Dora Wings

 

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The Bellanca Aircraft Company was a manufacturer of light an utility aircraft founded by Italian emigre Giuseppe Mario Bellanca in 1927. The CH-300 was a six seat utility aircraft with a high-wing braced monoplane and fixed undercarriage. The CH-300 quickly gained a reputation for outstanding endurance and load carrying capability, which led to its successful operation in a range of environments, particularly Canada, where the RCAF used them for aerial photography. On 5 July 1933, two Lithuanian pilots - Steponas Darias and Stasys Girenas - took off from Floyd Bennet Field in Brooklyn in an attempt to cross the Atlantic and reach Vilnius. The crossing was completed, but the aircraft crashed in a forest at Pszczelnik in Poland, killing both pilots.

 

Dora Wings are a Ukrainian company founded in 2017. They specialise in limited run plastic and multi-media kits of mainly civic aviation subjects in both 1:72 and 1:48 scale. This particular kit comes packaged in a neat, top-opening box adorned with artwork of the subject flying past the Statue of Liberty. Inside are four frames of grey plastic, a small frame of clear parts, two resin parts for the streamlined landing gear legs, a small fret of photo etched parts, decals and paint masks. The frames themselves show a lot of sink marks, but the parts themselves are very well moulded, showing crisp detail and no signs of flash or other problems. 

 

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Construction begins with the engine and cowling. This is quite a complex sub-assembly, with no fewer than twenty-one of parts needed to complete it (albeit nine of them are exhaust pipes). The finished article will be beautifully detailed, however. The cockpit is similarly well appointed, with separately moulded rudder pedals, twin control columns, bench seat and instrument panel. A small decal is provided to represent the details on the instrument panel. Three different options are included for the main landing gear legs, including the resin option which is used for the second of the three decal options. The wings are split into upper and lower halves, while the ailerons are separate parts. Photo etched parts are used to represent the aileron control rods. With the various sub-assemblies complete, the fuselage halves can be joined. Each side of the fuselage includes half of the undersurface, whereas the upper face is a separate part. The engine sub-assembly can then be added, along with the vertical tail and elevators. Full marks are awarded to Dora Wings for making the rudder and elevators separate parts. Once the fuselage is complete, the modeller just needs to add the wings, various struts and the landing gear. 

 

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Dora Wings have included decals for three different schemes:

  • Bellanca CH-300 'Lituanica'. This is the orange painted aircraft shown on the box artwork;
  • Bellanca J-300 'Cape Cod'. Flown by pilots Russell Boardman and John Polando from Ne York to Istanbul in 1931. This aircraft is finished in orange with a black upper fuselage;
  • Bellanca J-300 American Legion, East Boston Airport, 1930. Ths aircraft is finished in light grey, with blue flying surfaces. 

 

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Conclusion

 

Dora Wings appear to have done a good job with their CH-300/J-300. Limited run it may be, but the parts are crisply moulded and it looks like it will be an enjoyable build. An interesting selection of marking options are included, and the paint masks and photo etched parts are also a welcome bonus. Recommended. 

 

Review sample courtesy of 

 

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Have this model. So some points:

Kit does not include the masks as in your pictures. Probably they give better kit for the review.

Cockpit is extremely basic. If you build Lituanica, you will notice some spare space behind the seats for fuel tanks etc, small pins also there, but the parts are not included. 

There is a bit of flash. Well quite a lot. Some parts are not even (seems that the mold was not closed properly and top of the part is moved about 1 mm to the side comparing to the bottom of the same part). 

Nothing fits. Make sure to do lots of dry fitting. I have closed the fuselage now, so far could not find a part that fits at least reasonably. Be ready to do lots of cutting and sanding.

When fuselage closed it has from 1mm to 3mm gap at the bottom. Top part of fuselage even fits quite well, but will require a lot of filler. Dried fit the wings - same problem. So be ready to use a lot of filler. 

Parts on the sprues are not numbered, but instructions shows the numbered parts. Well, might be fine, kit is not huge. 

Kit was about £18. Which is quite costly for 1/72 scale, comes on the price range as Eduard Spitfire Profipack same scale. You cannot compare them. 

I remember building ICM spitfire 1/48. It had much less problems that this kit and is double cheaper and more detailed + you understand what you get for your money. Not worth money at all. The only selling point that it is very rare model to find, and they are the first (correct me if I am wrong) to make Lituanica. I am quite disappointed that I got it as soon as it came live, what an error. Thanks God I did not buy more kits from them and it is sad that there are no honest reviews around :(

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Its unfair to call this review not honest, its an in box review so it needs to be read like that.

 

Julien

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56 minutes ago, Julien said:

Its unfair to call this review not honest, its an in box review so it needs to be read like that.

 

Julien

Sorry for misunderstanding. In no way I wanted to call this review not honest. I love those presentation reviews and they should be this way as it is. I am not talking about this review. 

In general you can find plenty build reviews with all the flaws so know what to expect from a kit. Understandably, Dora Wings is a new company, hence not many reviews. Hope it is clearer now and very sorry if that was understood in any other way :)

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Thanks

 

Julien

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On 2/14/2019 at 12:29 PM, PaulV said:

<...>they are the first (correct me if I am wrong) to make Lituanica <...>

Well you can be forgiven for thinking this as the first kit is an obscure one:

https://www.scalemates.com/kits/palinton-0000-lituanica--557031

 

It's a vacuum form kit by Lithuanian company which, i believe, did not produce any other model. Well, technically it's "vacuum form", but the sheet is so thick, you could be forgiven for thinking it's a piece of tank armour with aircraft shaped dent. If you think Dora's offering is challenging to build you should try building Palinton's model. I am not nearly as adventurous and i keep mine in "never ever under any circumstances must it be built" stash.

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