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Latecoere 281, ex-Air France, Alas Rojas (Red Wings), Sarinena airfield, Spain, August-September 1936 (scratch, 1/72)


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At the outbreak of Spanish Civil War,  in Summer 1936, first country who sent some equipment to Republicans was France (then it was USSR). The other help was mostly private (from US, UK). Besides military (bombers, fighters) some of French airplanes  were civil machines like very successful light postal and passenger machine Latecoere 281. Initially they were just converted into armed bombers (like also Spanish Fokkers F VII/3m - so installing the bomb racks through removed windows),

Soon, to prevent "friendly fire" loses they were marked with red areas (belts). It was much later, in October 1936 when Germans came with Legion Condor and Italy with their forces, when Republican machines got camouflages. In summer 1936 the need for masking on airfields was not recognized yet.

In Aragon, the first and the largest airbase was organized in Sarinena and the machines based there formed "Alas Rojas" (Red Wings) unit.  Now there is a small museum there. The details of how the Latecores looked like there are scare, there are some photos but of poor quality, since those machines are visible mostly in background. There are also some apparently mistaken profiles. I painted the mode accordingly to my best knowledge, believes and assumptions.  I corresponded with Sarinena and Cuatro Vientos museums (no fruitfully, though), googled a lot etc. It was discussed in two threads. 

In Interwar section:


And in WIP section (where build is documented as well):


I would like to thanks all who were trying to help!


The build of Latecoere 281 started  with  an aftermarket product by French small company Renaissanse.  It contain the replacement engine and canopy for SBS kit of Latecoere 283/285 https://www.scalemates.com/kits/renaissance-rf72030-latecoere-28-3-5--1109415 

Besides all other scratched parts I have used the tail parts from this SBS resin kit. since they were useless for my parallel conversion of SBS kit into Latecoere 290 (this will came later :) )  


Here is the result - the Latecoere 281, ex-F-AJVB in Alas Rojas colors:







Comments welcome,





This is #10/2023... 

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19 hours ago, John_W said:

Outstanding as always.


John, many thanks! :)  


19 hours ago, invidia said:

Fantastic looking model 

Invidia, I appreciete your comment, thanks!  :) 





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On 9/3/2023 at 4:00 PM, corsaircorp said:

Impressive Jerzy !!

Well done Sir

I appreciate the bomb launcher...

Congratulations !!



Many thanks! The bombs launchers were constructed apparently on the Sarinena base and they are very unique... The photo documentation is only for hat on Fokker, but it is said, that the same were on Latecoeres...

22 hours ago, MACALAIN said:

Well done.



Many thanks! I remember your Latecoere by Aerophile. I was not that lucky to catch one of it, therefore the scratch work was the only option... :)

21 hours ago, Roman Schilhart said:

Very unusual and colorful model with interesting background story!

Roman, thanks a lot!

17 hours ago, MilneBay said:

That's a fine model. Excellent work and an interesting subject.

Thank you very much  for kind comment :) I appreciate it! 






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