Czech Pre WW II Bomber Prototype
Planet Models, 1/72
u m m a r y
||Planet Models kit number 178 - Aero A-300
|Contents and Media:
56 cream coloured resin parts; 2 complete vacformed sets (4 parts to each set); 3 white metal parts, decals for one aircraft at three different periods plus a 12 pag; A5 sized instruction booklet with history, parts plan; 14 photo type build diagrams and 4 pages of full colour paint/decal instructions.
USD$70.20 available online from Squadron
GBP£37.87 available online from Hannants
Interesting subject; highly detailed inside and out; good decals and colour instructions; no noticeable distortion.
||Not for novice modeler; build diagrams are slightly vague and confusing; some flash and therefore cleanup required.
||An interesting prototype bomber model that's not quite up to the detail level of CMR but with an equal level of moulding.
Planet Models' 1/72 scale Aero A-300 is available online from Squadron.com
The Aero A-300 was designed in 1936 as a replacement bomber/reconnaissance aircraft for the Bloch MB-200 to be flown by the Czechoslovakian Air Force. With twin engines and a low wing, it was about the size of an Avro Anson. Although tested by the Focke Wulf Company after Czechoslovakia was taken over by Germany, it did not proceed.
Like CMK, Planet Models is a part of the MPM organization but where CMK specialize in resin update sets, Planet do full resin models. As you would expect from an MPM associate, their detail and accuracy is very high.
The first thing you will notice is the box the kit comes in is very sturdy, something MPM them-selves have been playing around with lately also. The second thing is the instructions. Unlike MPM's very clear line drawings, these are of the photo variety which several other model producers have tried recently and rejected. It's quite hard to pick out individual parts and in at least one case, a part has been miss-numbered. However, as this kit is obviously for the more experienced modeller, it shouldn't cause too much trouble.
There is no PE which many will be glad to hear, just resin, 3 white metal parts (undercarriage legs), va-formed canopies and decals.
The resin parts have a fair amount of flash which will need to be cleaned up but I could see no evidence of warpage which is common in resin kits. Interior detail is very good with some moulded on to the very thin fuselage halves and the side access door is separate so can be modelled open or closed. The detail level is perhaps not quite as high as the CMR kits which could almost be called extreme but the casting quality is very similar.
The three white metal parts have reasonable detail with just a little bit of clean-up required and are the two main undercarriage legs and tail wheel leg.
Vacformed canopies are a bit daunting as there are 4 items involved but as with any good short-run kit you get 2 sets just in case Murphy wants to lend a hand.
Decals look very good with perfect register, acceptable colour density and minimum carrier film with markings for 1 aircraft at three different periods. As mentioned above, there are 4 pages of paint/decal instructions in full computer generated colour.
The colour schemes depicted are:
The first prototype A-300 during trials at the Research Technical Aviation Institute in August 1938. It is in over-all Khaki, coded S-5 in white with Czech roundels in six positions.
Next is the same aircraft with all Czech markings removed and replace with Swastikas in preparation for inspection by Ernst Udet on March 23rd, 1939.
Again, the same aircraft, painted in 4 colour camouflage with Czech markings again, coded V3 in blue and stolen by Czechoslovakian patriots and used in an “April Fools” raid on Dresden on the 1st of April 1939.
There are many modellers out there who just love obscure prototypes, especially those which weren't proceeded with. This kit fits the bill perfectly, and if they can handle the resin, white metal and vacformed canopies, all the better.
The resin casting is not the best I've ever seen but this just means a little extra cleanup and the kit is only let down by the somewhat vague instructions which I believe experienced modellers will have no problem with.
Thanks to MPM / Special Hobby for
the review sample
Review Text Copyright © 2008 by Glen Porter
Images Copyright © 2008 by
Page Created 20 July, 2008
20 July, 2008
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