Aeroclub 1/48th Royal Aircraft Factory BE 12.
reviewed by Steve Jantscher
|White Metal Quality:||A|
The Royal Aircraft Factory BE 12 was an important type flown by the early RAF during WW I, but has been long ignored by model makers. That is, until now. Aeroclub, well known for their extensive line of metal and plastic after market detail parts, and their growing line of multi-media kits, has added the BE 12 to their line-up.
This kit offers the main structural components in a finely cast plastic. The fabric effect is convincingly represented. The detail "panel" lines are both raised and recessed, as appropriate. The low pressure injection molding process results in rather larger (thicker) than normal spru/part gates, which will require more than the average amount of clean up. In addition, the "panel" lines are not as crisp as one might find on a modern Japanese kit, but perhaps better reflect the nature of a fabric and wood aircraft.
The metal parts comprise the bulk of the rest of the kit (except for the single twin-windshield vacuformed piece). These are very nice, and as good as I've seen anywhere.
As with many limited run multi-media kits, this one isn't for every one. The instructions are very basic, offering one single type-written page of instructions, and one twin page plan layout. This isn't a kit for beginning modelers, especially not "kit assemblers". These instruction materials assume a higher than average level of modeling skills in the builder. The decals look good, and appear opaque, but only application will tell for sure.
Over all, this is a very nice kit, which
when matched with the skills of an above average modeler, will result in a handsome
model. Short of Tamiya deciding to enter the WW I arena, this is also likely
to be the only offering in this scale of the BE 12 for some time to come.
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