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JRM-3 Coulson Flying Tanker
& JRM-3 Mars

Czech Master Resin, 1/288 scale

S u m m a r y :

Catalogue Number:

MM01 (JRM-3) & MM02 (JRM-1)



Contents & Media

Both kits have 5 x cream resin airframe parts, 11 x black resin propellers and beaching gear. Decals for 2 x JRM-1 & 7 x JRM-3 options.


Available on-line currently exclusively from West Coast Hobbys for Cn$24.99 each: JRM-1 & JRM-3.

Review Type:

First Look


Crisp, very simple and well detailed for the scale. Would make a great desktop model.


None apparent


Ideal first resin kit, simple, inexpensive (for resin) and attractive.


Reviewed by Mark Davies

HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron.com




Originally conceived in the late 1930’s, the Mars was developed to meet a patrol bomber requirement. The prototype, known as “The Old Lady” first flew in June 1942.  As the XPB2M-1 Mars it had a twin fin tail and looked like an enlarged PBM Mariner in many respects. She was then converted to a transport configuration as the XPBM2M-1R with all armour and armament removed, and decks strengthened for cargo, because the flying-boat patrol bomber concept had been superseded. The Old Lady was finally scrapped in 1945.

The production aircraft, known as the JRM-1 Mars, featured a single tail fin, significantly modified longer fuselage and more powerful engines compared to “The Old Lady”. 100 JRM-1’s were ordered, but in the end only six were built (the first being lost early on in an accident). The last aircraft was completed as a JRM-2 with more powerful engines.



They were used as transport aircraft within the Pacific region, and  bore five Pacific Island group names, Hawaii Mars (used twice as the destroyed aircraft first used this name), Marianas Mars, Philippine Mars, Marshall Mars and Caroline Mars. Marshall Mars was lost to an engine fire, and the four surviving aircraft were later converted to JRM-3 configuration with Pratt & Whitney R-460 Corncob engines

In 1959 the remaining four JRM-3’s were purchased by a consortium of forestry companies for fire fighting duties. They were re-engined with less powerful and presumably easier to maintain Wright R-3350’s. Hawaii Mars was still fighting fires in 2009, and the type remains the largest operational flying boat to see service.





CMR has already provided us with a well detailed and beautiful Mars kit in four 1/144 scale boxings, which despite the scale builds into quite a substantial model (see Don Hinton’s fine model and article which appeared recently on Hyperscale).  The 1/288 kits reviewed here have been produced exclusively for West Coast Hobbys of Canada, and are not as tiny as the scale would suggest. Span is approximately 214 mm or almost 8.5”, and length around 127 mm or almost 5”.



The kits comes in a sturdy top-opening box, with all parts sealed in plastic bag, which along with instructions and decals is sealed in another bag. Both consist of only five cream resin airframe parts, plus four propellers and seven beaching gear parts in stronger black resin.  Instructions are simple and clear, with coloured painting and decaling guides. Written instructions are in English, and colour call-outs include and FS code.


  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
  • CMR 1/288 Martin Mars Review by Mark Davies: Image
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The parts are crisply cast with just a little flash and no pinholes evident. Panel detail is engraved and very restrained, with just enough to make the finished model look interesting. Windows are recessed enabling your preferred window colour to be added (eg. Black, dark grey or silver-grey etc). It would be possible to then add a clear medium to finish off the suggestion of clear perspex.



Decals look to be the usual high CMR quality with good registration and they should have good opacity. There are two colourful schemes for Coulson’s fire Hawaii and Philippine Mars fire bombers; plus seven options, all glossy sea blue, for various USN machines covering variations of Hawaii, Philippine and Marshall Mars.



Assembly should be simplicity itself, making these kits ideal first forays into resin building. A great antidote to modeller’s block if you fancy completing a kit in a weekend, or even 24 hours with fast drying paint! The scale is such that it would make a nice desktop model, or could accompany diecast airliner models in the same scale. 





This is simple but very well executed kit of an interesting subject. Inexpensive for a resin kit, its and ideal introduction to building in this medium, or could serve as a respite from more complex projects. Highly recommended to flying boat and fire-bomber fans alike.

Thanks to Czech Master Resin for this review sample.

CMR Models are available online from Hannants in the UK,
Red Roo Models in Australia and quality specialist model retailers worldwide.

Text Copyright 2010 by Mark Davies
This Page Created on 14 February, 2010
Last updated 14 February, 2010

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