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AGO C-IV Late (KPM0398) 1:72


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AGO C-IV Late (KPM0398)

1:72 Kovozávody Prostějov




The C-IV was a two-seat German reconnaissance biplane from WWI that was introduced in 1916, but wasn’t well-received due to some negative characteristics, namely being unstable in flight.  The initial orders were large from German and overseas customers, but these were scaled back appreciably in light of the early experiences of the flight crews.  An attempt to solve the instability was made by installing a fin in front of the small comma-shaped rudder amongst other improvements, but despite this the orders weren’t reinstated, resulting on fewer than 100 being built overall.  It was powered by a Benz straight-6 water-cooled engine that produced a respectable (for the day) 220 hp, and had a distinctive vertical exhaust that pushed the fumes over the heads of the crew and away into the slipstream at a relatively spritely 120mph maximum speed.



The Kit

This is the third boxing of a brand-new tooling from Kovozávody Prostějov, and like most of their 1:72 kits, it arrives in a small end-opening box with a painting of the type on the front, plus the decal options on the rear of the box in full colour.  Inside are two sprues of grey styrene, a small sheet of clear acetate with the shape of the windscreens printed on it, a decal sheet and the instruction booklet, which is printed in colour on a sheet of folded A4.  Detail is good, and includes plenty of raised and engraved features, plus a well-detailed engine and internal details moulded inside the fuselage.









Construction begins with painting the instrument panel according to the first drawing, then creating the cockpit on its floor, adding the two seats on raised cylinders, the steering wheel (yes, it’s a wheel) and a pair of rudder pedals in front of the pilot, then applying the decal lap-belts on both seats.  The engine is moulded as a single part, but is well detailed considering its size, and has the exhaust “horn” added overhead before it is trapped between the fuselage halves along with the cockpit, instrument panel and the tail skid.  Inverted-V cabane struts are fitted each side of the engine, adding an MG08 machine gun to a pair of pegs on the port side strut.  The rear gunner’s ring is installed over the opening and his Parabellum MG14 is fixed to the rear after adding a large magazine to the right side of the breech, with a single inverted-V strut and rectangular frame placed between the two circular cockpit openings.  At the rear, the full-span elevators are placed on a recess in the deck, the part helpfully marked with the word “bottom” on the underside, unless someone was just feeling naughty?  The comma-shaped rudder and fin are glued over the groove in the centre, and a pair of struts hold the fin vertical, with a mirror image pair under the elevators that do the same for them in the horizontal.


The lower wings are full-span and fit in a recess under the fuselage, fixing Z-shaped vertical struts near each tip and a single strut around mid-span, taking care to line the holes up with those in the upper wings.  The Z-struts are made from a V-strut with a straight strut glued to the flat front of it, and should be allowed to cure before installing it on the wing.  The upper wings are two separate halves that butt-join together, and our usual advice of adding pins for strength applies here.  A small tube is fixed under the starboard wing in the centre of an engraved radiator on the lower surface and you should add the two feeder hoses as you join the wings, which will doubtless be a delicate task.  It would be a good idea to fit the two acetate foil windscreens before installing the upper wing for convenience’s sake, using a glue that won’t fog or melt the acetate to secure them.  Under the wings, a pair of V-struts hold the aerofoil shrouded axle in position, fitting the two wheels on the ends, and adding a mechanism that looks to be some kind of latch or arrestor to the centre of the aerofoil.  The last part is the two-bladed prop with moulded-in spinner that glues to the flat front of the fuselage.




There are two decal options on the sheet, both wearing the same camouflage scheme of brown and two shades of green over a light blue underside.  From the box you can build one of the following:






The decals appear to be printed using the same digital processes as Eduard are now using, and have good registration, sharpness, and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut loosely around the printed areas.  I mention Eduard because from 2021, the carrier film on their 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.




It may not have been a particularly good aircraft, but the tapered wings give it a more modern look, and it’s a little bit different from the norm, which is an automatic tick in the appeal box from my point of view.


Highly recommended.




Review sample courtesy of



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Definitely one I'll be getting (having already indulged in the other WW1 birds they have available 👍)


I'll be interested to see how the new decals work out in practice . . . .

Not to be negative, but my own experiences of two previous KP decals sheets has been bad enough for me to bin the sheet of a recently purchased kit as soon as I got home with it to prevent me being drawn into using them. (A couple of friends have had similar problems such as bubbling/ poor adhesion/ thick and nonconforming with KP decals so it's not just down to my application techniques (which have worked okay with other manufacturers and aftermarket decals)


Thanks for the review, I look forward to seeing one built up, maybe even mine 😀



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