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The main undercarriage is built into the airframe at a fairly early stage and needs to be masked and carefully protected thereafter.
Airfix 1/72 Lancaster B.I (F.E.), by Frank Reynolds
There are two prominent windows on the fuselage spine that Airfix have omitted. The Avro Lancaster Mk. This might be mistaken for a mould gate but it should not be removed since it serves as a spacer between the engine and the cowling.
The main gear assembles are well detailed and sturdily engineered. The distinctive exhaust collector rings and hedgehog exhaust pipes were painted in Tamiya X Bronze finished with a wash of dirty thinners. Two stout lancatser spars are fitted across the floor assembly at this stage. I have lancawter pre-painted Revell intake on stand-by to attach to this model if needed. The small external aerials were added and two small windows in the fuselage spine were drilled out to be filled with Micro Kristal Kleer.
Above and below the nacelles are the very distinctive carburettor and oil cooler air intakes and their complex shapes are rendered fairly convincingly. The second is from No Sqn. The Hercules engines come next and they will reward careful and steady assembly. instructikns
Airfix Instruction Sheets
This neatly illustrates the strange designation system of Lancaster production where the MK. With care, steady progress can be made to arrive at a basic airframe, with wings, engines and tail attached, ready for painting.
They are finely moulded with the engines in aircix parts, consisting of a front and rear row of cylinders and a nose gearbox. The whole airframe was then propped upside down on the lancaser bench while the underside was fitted out.
The fuselage windows are provided as clear strips, but I chose to omit these and install windows of Micro Kristal Kleer at the painting stage. Back to the Review Index Page.
The second is a more mundane option since the aircraft lacks the bulged bomb bay and ventral turret. Then the upper and lower wing halves are glued together while trapping the spars and wheel wells inside.
There are two pages of colour three-views as a colour and decals placement guide. So the Lancaster II stands out from the norm by its unusual engines, by being the variant with the heaviest defensive armament and by introducing the bulged bomb bay. The decals were of good quality and reacted well with Micro Sol and Micro Set decals solutions.
For the record Airfix provide the following parts options in this kit which define different versions of the Lancaster.
Back to the Main Page. The bomb doors can be constructed open but no bombs are supplied, being offered in airfic separate accessory pack. The kit is well engineered, the decals are comprehensive and of good quality. Now the awkward part, for the main gear legs must be added next and will stick out and dangle around for the whole of the rest of the build.
Airfix instructons engineered the main gear to fix onto the front face of the front wing spar, so the gear legs have to be fitted from above in a slot between the wing leading edge and the rear part of the engine nacelle.
Although it costs over a quarter of the price of the basic kit, there are over perfectly die cut masks in Kabuki tape that can be applied with confidence akrfix they will fit each panel of the glazing and saving what could be hours of work in having to cut each mask by hand.
Airfix does not however provide some of the elements of very late build aircraft such as the taller astrodome to the rear of the flight instructoins, extended rudders or treaded tyres. The turret frames are clearly defined and their interior frameworks have enough detail to be convincing to my eye. They would be added at the final finishing stage. The engines instructiojs painted gunmetal with a dark wash to dirty them up a little. I then proceeded with the fuselage assembly as normal.
It is a major project, but one that is worthwhile.
Airfix have a good reputation for well researched colour schemes so should TW have such an intake or not? First introduced into RAF service inthe basic form of the Avro Lancaster heavy insrtuctions changed little during its production run and the Mark 1 continued in production to the end.
These need to be filled, although this is not made clear instrucctions the Airfix instructions. It was conceived for the Royal Air Force as a kind of insurance policy against the possibility of enemy action disrupting supplies, so an alternative source of power plants might be available. Once this assembly has dried, a cover plate fills the gap between the wing leading edge and the nacelle.
There are some niggles with warped parts, but nothing that could not be corrected. The decision was taken early on in airvix Lancaster production programme and the first prototype flew in November This is a kit that requires time and patience in the build, working progressively from one stage to another.
However they would disappear from the order of battle by September since the shortage of Merlin engines had never materialised and there was no reason to continue with a separate logistics chain for such a specialised type.
This kit has some neat touches, with the main gear doors having small support struts moulded on and this is useful in lining them correctly. The type gained a reputation for being reliable and some crews preferred the air cooled engines that were less vulnerable to flak damage. Attention now turns to the wings and this concentrates the mind.
The Lancaster II is most associated with No. Airfix has carefully designed its Lancaster tooling to cover many of the detail differences between Mks and the early and late production versions of the same Mk. Propellers and undercarriage were added to complete the project.
The tail fins were added at this stage. II is the strange cousin of the family. Shrouded or unshrouded engine exhausts.
Next the instructiond halves were added but I left the fins until much later since they would be painted and added separately. Then on with the propellers, a few aerials, the mass balances to the control surfaces and the whole package springs into life.