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Vultee Vanguard Mk.I / J10

Dora Wings, 1/48 scale

S u m m a r y :

Catalogue Number:

Dora Wings Kit No. DW48050 – Vultee Vanguard Mk.I / J10

Scale:

1/48

Contents & Media

114 parts in grey-green plastic; 10 parts in clear plastic; approx. 25 parts on one photo-etched fret; die-cut vinyl canopy masks; decals for four marking options (incl. two "What Ifs").

Price:

34.00€ plus shipping available online from Dora Wings web store

Review Type:

First Look.

Advantages:

High level of detail; high quality mouldings; crisp recessed panel lines and rows of rivets; options include alternative canopies and poseable control surfaces; appropriate use of multimedia; welcome subject.

Disadvantages:

Some experience will be helpful due to absence of locating pins and the use of photo-etch.

Conclusion:

This is another great kit from Dora Wings.

This all-new 1/48 scale Vultee Vanguard is a high quality offering and is the only game in town as far as injection moulded plastic kits are concerned.

Strictly speaking, this is a limited run kit as suggested by its lack of locating pins but otherwise it looks very mainstream with its fine recessed surface textures, high quality plastic and fine sprue attachment points.

Dora Wings' 1/48 scale Vanguard will be warmly welcomed by lovers of esoteric and USAAF, Chinese, RAF and Swedish subjects.

It is also worth mentioning that this Ukrainian company continues to manufacture and distribute their models in the middle of a war and with their CEO fighting on the front lines. Buyiing this kit is one small way to support the Ukranian effort.


Reviewed by Brett Green

Background

 

The Vultee P-66 Vanguard was a United States Army Air Forces fighter aircraft.

It was initially ordered by Sweden, but by the time the aircraft were ready for delivery in 1941, the United States would not allow them to be exported, designating them as P-66s and retaining them for defensive and training purposes.

The British government took possession of 100 P-66s as the Vanguard I with plans to use the aircraft as an advanced trainer in Canada. After concluding their trials however, the British then relinquished the aircraft to China where 104 Vanguards (including USAAC examples) were shipped under the Lend-Lease program.

The Chinese received the assembled fighters via India by late 1942; Chinese Vanguards had USAAF insignia and serials as well as Chinese markings and Vultee serials on factory models.

The undistinguished combat record of the Vanguard in China was due to problems that began in transit where a number of Vanguards were destroyed during tests in India and others lost while en route to China.

 

 

Assembled P-66s were deemed unairworthy and abandoned at Karachi resulting in only 12 Vanguards on station at Kunming with the 74th Fighter Squadron of the 23rd Fighter Group, but this unit saw little action. Two Chinese squadrons from the 3rd Group and the 5th Group based at An-Su saw combat action with the Vanguard from August 1943 onward. However, many P-66s were destroyed on the ground during Japanese attacks while several were shot down in error when they were mistaken for the Nakajima firm's Ki-43 "Oscar" and Ki-44 "Tojo".

Although the Vanguard possessed a top speed of 340 mph (550 km/h), it was no match for the agile Japanese fighters in high-g maneuvers and relied on hit-and-run tactics against the Japanese

The P-66 in Chinese service was largely replaced by Curtiss P-40s in 1943. A number of surviving P-66 Vanguards were placed in caves for storage at Chungking for use in the upcoming civil war against Mao's Communists. As late as 1947, many were reportedly still in their crates.

They were originally intended to equip the 3rd American Volunteer Group (AVG); however, those plans for additional groups were dropped after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.*

* Historical text adapted from Wikipedia

 

 

FirstLook

 

Ukrainian company Dora Wings has a knack for picking interesting and esoteric subjects, and they have now expanded their range to include an all-new 1/48 scale injection moulded plastic Vultee Vanguard.

This initial boxing covers British and Swedish examples, both of which were tested in California but did not see front line action.

Dora Wings' 1/48 scale Vultee Vanguard Mk.I / J10 comprises 114 parts in medium grey-green coloured plastic (RLM 02?), 10 parts in clear plastic, 25 parts on one photo-etched fret, die-cut vinyl canopy masks and decals for four marking options.

 

  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
  • Dora Wings Kit No. DW48044  Vultee Vengeance Mk.II Review by Brett Green: Image
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The plastic is smooth and semi-shiny. Surface textures are made up mainly from crisply recessed, fine and consistent panel lines plus rows of recessed panel lines. The surface textures are more intricate than earlier releases - very nice indeed.

Sprue attachment points are narrow, but they do extend onto the visible outside surfaces of the major parts so do take care when removing the parts and cleaning up.

 

 

Fabric control surfaces are represented by raised fabric strips. I like these.

 

 

The cockpit looks really good with its tubular frame, separate floor, seat and flying controls. Details are supplemented by photo-etched parts including the front of the instument panels, harness straps, throttles, handles and more.

 

 

The instrument panel has a plastic base, dial decals and a front panel of photo-etch. An alternative one-piece plastic panel with basic moulded instruments is also supplied.

A detailed engine mount is fitted to the front of the firewall. However, this will be almost completely hidden inside the forward fuselage so you could probably omit this sub-assembly.

The engine is made up from finely detailed cylinder banks, crankcase cover but no photo-etched ignition harness.

 

 

The engine cowling is designed with photo-etched cowl flap sections that will need to be carefully bent into shape to follow the contours of the cowling. Dora Wings has moulded the join between the cowl and the flaps with a slightly recessed ridge that will permit a more positive connection with the photo-etched parts.

 

 

A wing spar is included. This should result in a solid join and accurate dihedral.

Main wheels are moulded as inner and outer halves. Tyres are plastic parts - no vinyl here.

 

 

Clear parts are thin and free from distortion. Two different styles of canopy are included - one with a longer rear section and an alternative with a short rear section.

 

 

The sliding canopy section is a separate part. Time will tell if it may be posed in the open position.

Dora Wings has thoughtfully provided die-cut, self-adhesive vinyl canopy masks, which will save some time taping up that birdcage canopy.

 

 

Instructions are supplied on a 16-page, glossy booklet. There are 50 illustrated construction steps.

The marking guide is in full colour.


 

Markings

The decal sheet is printed by Decograph from Ukraine. The decals are satin in finish.

 

 

Markings are supplied for one RAF and one Swedish-marked example that were tested in California. Dora Wings has also included two "What If" options in operational Swedish markings.

Registration and printing look good.

 

 

Conclusion

 

This is another great kit from Dora Wings.

Dora Wings' all-new 1/48 scale Vultee Vanguard is a high quality offering and is the only game in town as far as injection moulded plastic kits are concerned.

Strictly speaking, this is a limited run kit as indicated by its lack of locating pins but otherwise it looks very mainstream with its fine recessed surface textures, high quality plastic and fine sprue attachment points.

Dora Wings' 1/48 scale Vanguard will be warmly welcomed by lovers of esoteric and USAAF, Chinese, RAF and Swedish subjects.

It is also worth mentioning that this Ukrainian company continues to manufacture and distribute their models in the middle of a war and with their CEO fighting on the front lines. Buyiing this kit is one small way to support the Ukranian effort

Thanks to Dora Wings for the review sample.


Review Text and Images Copyright 2023 by Brett Green
Page Created 16 March, 2023
Last updated 17 March, 2023

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