|KIT:||Merlin 1/72 Thomas-Morse S4C Scout|
|PRICE:||Approx $20 when new|
|NOTES:||Very short run|
If I cut and paste something from another Web site, that constitutes plagiarism or copyright infringement. If I just post the URL, that’s perfectly alright. http://www.aviation-history.com/thomas/scout.html - among others. There are quite a few “Tommies” in museums (USAF in Dayton) and at least one original, not a replica, still flying.
This was one of Merlin’s best productions, and one few folks even knew existed. The photos show what came in the plastic bag. Injected parts – wings, tailplanes, and fuselage, are commendably thin and well molded. Minimal flash, clear raised detail, large sprue gates, which, for once, do not infringe on the actual part. Some surface “acne”, mostly on undersides. Careful sanding between raised rib lines will take care of that. No major deformities or distortions evident. Struts are lengths of Plastruct or perhaps Evergreen stock. A bit flimsy, so the spares box will have to be consulted. Small parts are done in white metal. Don’t know why. Guess Merlin’s injection process couldn’t render things that small. Resin apparently wasn’t around in them days. Wheels, prop, and engine can come from the spares box (already located and laid aside) but the cowl ring looks like it will take considerable work; or cleaned and used as a male master for vac-ing. Compared to photos of the real thing on the Web, the metal cowl looks to be too square at the front, as in the Nieuport 17. Photos show a much rounder nose, as in the Nieuport 28. I dunno – this might be a difference between the Gnome and le Rhone engined versions and bears further research prior to a build-up. Decals look like pieces cut from a Microscale sheet (They became Superscale more recently) and haven’t aged too well. Neither have I.
This looks like it will build up with little difficulty into a fine and rare model. There are so many more ahead of it in The Stash, though, that I’ll let it sit in hopes someone will kit a better version. WWI and early Between the Wars is the chosen purview of the new Olymp company, so if they ever stop doing variants of the Jenny, perhaps they’ll take on a Tommy.
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