by Mark D Smith

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Roden BE 12b

Kit: Roden (1:48)

As typical of my previous experiences with Roden kits, the instructions are to be followed at your own risk and can be uttery frustrating in their accuracy and completeness. Wingnuts they are not. On the other hand, understanding this up front, these are some of the most fun kits I have ever had the pleasure of building. The fine, crisp detail that Roden achieves in their smallest parts is good enough to put Eduard out of business. As for larger fit issues...details...a little Bondo never hurt anyone, right? I tried a slightly different painting technique on this one. It began with my usual airbrushed shaded and translucent fabric details. But then I took it a step further and after a clear coat, I began brushing on thin layers of Windsor Newton burnt umber. The oils were pushed around to create shadows and stains. It kind of had the effect of a Rembrandt v. Rijn oil wash...lending a sepia tone to the overall kit. Seriously, if you folks haven't seen Rembrandt's works up close, he used all the techniques we do on our models...except 250 years ago. Washes, Filters, layering of color...all of it.

AirCo DH-2

Kit: Eduard (1:72)

Eduard's DH-2 is a pretty decent kit I suppose, but at 1/72, it was kind of a stringbag, if you know what I mean. There may have been more Wonder Wire on the little buggar than styrene.

I also added some construction and painting shots as they are often more interesting than the finished model.

Sopwith F.1 Trench Fighter

Kit: Roden (1:72)

Roden's Sopwith Camel, trench fighter version. Basically it's a standard Camel with a couple of MG's mounted through an armor plate beneath the pilot protecting his underside.

Felixstowe F 2.A

Kit: Roden (1:72)

I recommend everyone try this paint scheme. It is actually not that difficult once you get the masking swirlies 3-dimensionally mapped onto the fuselage. Once completed, it gave me flashbacks of my days chasing the Grateful Dead around the East Coast.

A.D. Scout

Kit: Choroszy (1:72)

Looking for something new and different, I picked up five smallish resin kits at the Columbus IPMS Nationals last August. The Scout, likely the weirdest of the bunch, caught my attention from simple lack of conventionality. I've entered it in two IPMS shows people just don't quite know what to make of it. It doesn't exactly take rocket science to figure out why only 4 prototypes were made. Just a tad top heavy and somewhat prone to tipping over, the British gave up on this one none too soon. In any event, it was an interesting experience working on a full resin kit for the first time. My only major complaint with the kit was that the wings and control surfaces were way too thin.

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