Central Powers Aircraft
by Scott Janney

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Oeffag s.253 Albatros D.III

Kit: Roden (1:72)

OEFFAG s.253 Albatros D.III. After building a couple of kits with completely scratch built interiors, I was hoping to take a break and work on something OOB. The Roden Albatros s.253 seemed like a good candidate. Maybe I'd put some instruments in and the seat belts... but that's it! Well, maybe a throttle and hand pump too. And if I put those in then maybe... You get the idea. My OOB ended up only using the kits rudder bar and control column, and even that was modified. Since this aircraft was going to have the fully cowled engine, I thought it would be a shame to build the kits nice looking Austro-Daimler and then hide it under the cowl. I've got other projects that it could be better used on. So I made some dummy cylinders that the exhaust stacks could attach to and mounted where the kits engine would go. I used an old Revell Nie. 17 propeller cap, some plastic tube stock and metal piano wire to rig up a propeller shaft that would turn. Paints are Polly Scale and Tamiya. The fuselage is painted in Tamiya Deck Tan with Burnt Sienna artist oil lightly applied with packing foam. Finished with Future mixed with a little Tamiya clear yellow to give a varnished look. Wings and tail used two slightly different colors of Ivory for the CDL. These were both rattle can paints. I tried to represent the wing/tail ribs and upper wing crosses as seen from below. This didn't turn out very well and looks a bit amateurish. The cabane struts were cut down a little which lowered the upper wing and slightly reduced the dihedral of the lower wings. Rigging is stretched silver sprue. Propeller is painted in Wood and Burnt Umber oil, my propellers are always best viewed from some distance away... like from another room.

Albatros DII

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Roden Albatros DII, OOB with a few cockpit details. Instruments from the FCM decal sheet. When I constructed the upper wing it had a slight bow to it which becomes much more noticeable in the lower wings. I should have test fitted the interplane struts and modified before I glued them on. Paints are PollyScale, Gunze Sangyo and Tamiya. The Gunze Sangyo reacted poorly when over-sprayed with semi-gloss so I had to paint the wings and tail surfaces twice. As with all Roden DII's I have purchased, the kits axle was broken so this one had to be scratched. Those with a sharp eye will notice that I rigged this one incorrectly, should have used the box art as a guide instead of the instruction sheet.

Albatros DII

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Roden Albatros DII. This kit was built OOB as Max Boehme's aircraft. The only items that I scratched were a few cockpit details and the axle as this was broken when I received the kit. Paints are PollyScale and Tamiya.

Albatros DVa

Kit: Eduard (1:72)

Eduard Albatros DVa. Another nice kit from Eduard. Had a small problem with the axle airfoil not aligning with the landing gear struts but, removing the tabs took care of that. Paints are PollyScale and Tamiya. Decals are a combination of the kits and the Roden Albatros DVa.

Albatros DIII Oeffag S.153

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Roden Albatros DIII Oeffag S.153. This kit is finished as Stfw. Otto Forster's aircraft. Once again I followed Pedro Soares procedure to apply the camouflage. I think it turned out very well. Paints are mostly Pollyscale.

Albatros D.III

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Werner Voss's Albatros D.III with some scratched cockpit details but otherwise built OOB. Paint is PollyScale and Tamiya with the instrument decals coming from the FCM sheet. This is the second project that I have rigged using wire instead of stretched sprue. I'm a little disappointed with how the ply fuselage turned out. My dry brushing is much too heavy so the finished effect does not look convincing. I do want to Thank Robert Karr, Mikko Saarela and Dave Calhoun for helping me out with the questions I had about Voss's aircraft. Their information proved most valuable.

Fokker Dr.1

Kit: Eduard Fokker Dr.1 (1:72)

Eduard Fokker Dr.1 Built mostly OOB for the Roll Models 1/72, Dr.1/Nieuport contest of 2009. The addition of seatbelts was allowed for the contest but the fuselage grab handles and engine piping were added afterwards. Researched from the Osprey book "Richthofen's Circus", the kit was built as the Jasta 11 aircraft of Ltn Eberhardt Mohnicke. Paints are Polly Scale, Mister Kit and Tamiya. Rigging is stretched sprue. As this aircraft was speculated to be 155/17, I was able to use the kits decals (425/17) and chop up the serial number as it is only partially visible. A great kit that went together quickly and effortlessly.

Fokker Dr. I

Kit: Eduard (1:72)

Eduard Non-Profi Fokker Dr.I, OOB. This was my first Eduard kit and it certainly went together well. Paint is PollyScale and rattle can, Chili Red I think it was. I referenced the box art when painting but have some doubts to it's accuracy. Shouldn't the red on the upper deck extended all the way to the back of the cockpit?

Fokker D VII

Kit: Revell (1:72)

This was intended to be a quick build but as usual it took longer than I had planned. The Revell kit gets a little help with the addition of a Roden engine, propeller and machine guns. The axel/airfoil and wheels are also spares from a Roden D VII kit. The interior is scratched and the instrument panel decal is from the FCM sheet. As some of you may notice this is the aircraft that is under the guns of Cpt. Robert Soubiran from the box artwork for the Eduard SPAD XIII kit. As such, I'm assuming that this aircraft is the product of the artists' imagination. Still, I liked the paint scheme so thought it would make a nice build. Paints are Tamiya and Pollyscale and the decals are primarily from the FCM sheet with the lozenges being from an old Allmark sheet.

Fokker E V

Kit: Roden (1:72)

This was built pretty much OOB as Theo Osterkamp's machine. Paint's are Pollyscale and Tamiya. Lozenge decals are A/G.

Junkers DI

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Roden Junkers DI built OOB. I pretty much mirrored the box art on this one. My decal solvent had absolutely no affect on the decals as far as conforming them to the corrugated surface. Paints are Tamiya and Pollyscale.

Pfalz D.XII

Kit: Toko (1:72)

Toko Pfalz DXII in 72 scale, mostly OOB. I was working from kind of an interesting reference for this model. It was of either a prototype or early production aircraft as they were in the process of changing over the insignia. This was my first attempt at scratching as I wanted to replace the tail with the early versions. I had no reference other than the photograph so it's a pretty good bet that it is not very accurate. If I remember correctly the lozenge decals are Americal Gryphon.

Pfalz DIII

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Roden Pfalz DIII, OOB. After seeing Tim Burke's build of Rudolf Stark's Pfalz I thought I would like to try this version for myself. This was my first try at mixing a silbergrau. I used PollyScale aluminum and white. Think it turned out looking more like a pearl gray than a silver gray. Decals are mostly from the kit with a few from the Meikraft kit.

Phonix DII

Kit: MAC (1:72)

MAC Phonix DII built OOB. I used the method described by Pedro Soares to create the camouflage on this aircraft. The technique worked very well (Thank You Pedro!) however, I chose colors that were too close in contrast so that they are very difficult to distinguish form each other. The whole effect is sort of a muddy green.

Roland CII

Kit: Heller (Airfix) (1:72)

Heller Roland CII. I had no reference for the interior so I just winged it. After the fact, I had a chance to check out the Eduard's interior and found that my two biggest errors were omitting the stepped floor and the fact that I put the observers seat in facing the wrong direction. The machine guns are Rosemont for the Spandau and Roden for the Parabellum. Paint is PollyScale and is referenced from the box art. I'm sure it should have some kind of numerical identification on the tail.

MAC Roland D.VIb

Kit: MAC (1:72)

MAC Roland D.VIb, this model was referenced from aircraft 6142/18 as seen on page 32 of the Roland D.VI Datafile 37, which was said to have had its fuselage painted in a four color camouflage pattern. Not having any other reference for this camouflage than the black and white picture, I patterned it after the Roland built Halberstadt Cl.IV that was painted from the factory in a mauve, tan/beige, green and Prussian blue scheme. I speculated about whether the tan/beige would be the natural wood color of the fuselage or painted. In the end, I painted it. I took some artistic liberties here as I know that on the Halberstadt fuselage, the colors were in reverse on the opposite side. I could find no reference that stated this was the case for the Roland D.VI so I made them uniform front to rear. One feature that I know is incorrect is the weight, capacity chart and serial numbers. On the painted fuselage they should be in a light blue and not black. Maybe someday I'll have the ability to print my own decals and I can correct this. But realistically, I doubt I could get the weight table in place behind the rigging and control lines so will probably just have to live with it. I made a few modifications to the kit, added some cockpit details and chucked the stock landing legs. Replaced them with some bent piano wire and Roden wheels. Made a few modifications to the kits engine to make it resemble the Benz unit a little more. The Spandau's are a mix of the kits and Fotocut for the cooling jackets and sights. Paints are Pollyscale and Tamiya. I'm still experimenting with oil paints which are what I used for the propeller. Lozenge decals are Eagle Strike. Rigging is stretched silver sprue. Decals are mostly from the kit but with a few from the Freightdog (Pegasus) Iron Cross sheet.

Pfalz D.XII

Kit: Eastern Express (1:72)

Eastern Express Pfalz D.XII. This kit was finished as the Canberra Pfalz, 2600/18. Probably not a very original subject but, I was able to use the Wingnuts online instruction manual as well as the Pfalz D.XII Datafile as references for the interior and colors. Areas that had vents were thinned so that the vents could be cut out (both on the sides of the cowling and also under the radiator). Interior was scratched with the only stock pieces left from the kit being the rudder pedals and the control column which was modified to more closely resemble the Pfalz's. The Part D.XII photo etch sheet was used as a template for items such as the seat/seat back, floor and bulkheads. These items were cut from sheet styrene. Seat belts are Eduard photo etch and instrument decals are from the APC sheet (Lubos Vinar) and from Part. Fuselage looked a bit short compared to the Datafile. Everything fore of the cockpit looked accurate so this was an easy fix by adding on a couple of pieces of styrene at the tail on each side of the fuselage. However, I then had to modify the horizontal/vertical tail mounting locations, and also move the tail skid location and control line shrouds to the rear. This was my first time using the Old Propeller lozenge decals. To me, the colors look very good but, here are a few other observations. The decals are designed with an over print effect which I also thought looked good. But, they have printed them to represent a linen texture. Maybe in 32 scale this would look accurate but, for 72 scale, it's way too much. That's really my only disappointment with them. They are printed on transparent decal stock so you will want to prep accordingly. I used an undercoat of white which worked out well for the upper surfaces. The lower surfaces might look better with a light gray backing as that would maybe tone down the colors a bit. They adhere and conform to surface details very well. Guns are a combination of kit parts and PhotoCut. When building this kit as supplied from Toko, I don't remember it being so fragile. I broke the landing gear, interplane struts, and flash guards multiple times as the plastic is so brittle. The Eastern Express decals are of fairly poor quality and I was lucky I had some spares from an old Toko kit to use. I also used some from the Pegasus (Freightdog) Iron Cross set.

Roland C.IIa

Kit: Airfix (1:72)

Airfix Roland C.II built as a C.IIa from the fourth production batch (s/n 2700 - 2739/16). This is the version with the enlarged tail section and aileron controls in the upper wing. The fuselage was modified with additional access panels in the nose section, opening of the vents on the cowl around the nose panel, and a scratch built tailplane reflecting the larger dimensions. Rollover structure was scratched too. I replaced the spinner and prop from the spares box with pieces from Roden. As per the Windsock datafile, I had to add some sheet styrene to the upper wing tips to correct their shape but, the lower wings were long enough to correct as is. The engine is a spare Roden with the addition of a coolant reservoir. All cockpit components/details, except for the seatbelts (Eduard), instruments (APC Decals) and instrument bezels (Fotocut) were scratch built. The instructions for the 1/48 Eduard kit proved invaluable for this. Spandau and Parabellum guns are a combination of guns from the spares box and Tom's Model Works for the cooling jackets. The kits landing legs were used but thinned out around the axel mounting slots so as to be less cumbersome. Wheels are Roden. The text in the datafile stated that the tailplane was braced both from above and below but, in the photographs I could see no lower bracing. Paints are mostly Polly Scale and Tamyia, decals are Roden/Airfix. I took some liberties with the s/n... mainly in that I didn't apply one. But being as this is a Roland, you never know what you are going to get (or not get) as far as aircraft identification. If I ever come across some decals that I think will work well, I'll probably add a s/n although, this model wasn't really built as a specific aircraft. Rigging is stretched silver sprue. OK, I better come clean on this as some of you may have busted me already. Yes, the Roden engine I used is the BMW and not a Mercedes (I have no spare Mercedes engines, but lots of the BMW). I modified the fuel intakes to look more like a Mercedes and figured that since the block was pretty well buried in the fuselage, it wouldn't be too noticeable.

Roland D.VIa

Kit: MAC Roland D.VIa (1:72)

This model was built as aircraft 1202/18 as seen on page 8 of the Windsock Datafile 37, Roland D.VI. I scratched the interplane struts as this aircraft was from the first batch of DVIa's built and had the straight wing struts. I scraped and sanded the cabane struts to thin them out somewhat. For the landing gear, I kept the axle but discarded the rest. Wheels are Aeroclub and I bent up some .025 piano wire for the supports. Paints are Polly Scale, Tamiya and oils. The fuselage is painted Tamiya Deck Tan and then lightly streaked with Burnt Umber oil paint applied with a piece of egg crate packing foam. When that had dried, I finished with Future mixed with a little Tamiya clear yellow to give a varnished look. The Datafile photos showed the shroud around the engine as being rounded in front so I sanded to match. A sign of the times, the lozenge decals are A/G underside and Eagle Strike topside. I had to mix and match as I'm just about out of lozenge decal stock. All other decals are from the kit with the serial being spliced together from the numbers provided. Guns are a hybrid mix of Tom's photo etch (cooling jacket/sight) and Roden (breech). Rigging is stretched silver sprue. A nice kit but takes a little work in the fit and finish area.

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