Pavla 1/72 Lysander II




$32.98 (29.96 at Squadron)


Three options


Scott Van Aken


Multi-media kit with vac canopy and resin detail parts.


Allow me to blatantly paraphrase from the kit instructions in this regard. Developed from a 1935 specification (A.39/34) for an army co-operation aircraft capable of taking off and landing from short, unimproved strips, the aircraft was to be used for artillery spotting, light recce and light bombing. Construction started in 1935 and first flew in June of 1936. It was accepted and the first of 169 Mk.I variants began leaving the lines shortly thereafter.

The first squadrons to equip with the type were 4, 13 and 26 Squadrons to be followed by II and 16 Squadrons. (For the uninitiated, there is no 2 Sq, the unit being designated by Roman numerals. It is a history thing). During the early days of WWII, many units were deployed to France, but thanks to their rather slow speed (which is great for spotting and recce, but not for fleeing), they were no match for marauding German fighters and the units were pretty well decimated. Other units were operated in the Middle East, the Western Desert and in Southern Asia against the Japanese.

 The Mk.II was an improvement over the Mk.I with a larger engine and some improved systems. A total of 442 of these were built and used until the end of the war. Some were exported to Turkey and Eire as well as used by the Free French in North Africa. Others were used as target tugs and on all sorts of secret missions, dropping agents in occupied territories. 75 Mk.IIs were built in Canada by the National Steel Car Corporation.


Pavla kits are pretty modern short run kits. That means that though the molding technology is short run, they do not suffer from the usual problems of short run kits. This means no huge sprue attachment points, good external detailing, quality decals and excellent decals. It also means that there are a lot of resin bits for the smaller parts and the canopy is done in vacuformed plastic. I should also mention that the vac plastic is relatively thick. Some may not like this as it means they are not crystal clear, but I like it as it means a larger area for glue!

The major components that are in resin include the seats, instrument panel, fuel tank, bulkhead, wheels, various small cockpit bits and a goodly number of teeny resin bomb racks. The vac canopy comes in three parts to allow proper installation and for you to display the aft canopy open. Landing lights are also included. There are also some options that include the ability to model the aircraft without the wheel covers on the side of the wheel pants. A Volkes filter is provided for the French option. There is a lot of detail in the interior and that includes a variety of braces that are easily seen through the transparencies. This kit also continues the use of a resin prop hub and separate plastic blades. Allow me to whine and snivel about wanting a one-piece prop as I find the separate blade bit to be a real pain, especially when there isn't a full spinner to hide the mess and help with blade alignment. The technology is there to do this so there isn't any excuse except to increase the parts count.

Instructions are excellent as Pavla has some of the best in the industry. All the construction drawings are easy to read and those colors needed during construction are provided. The color chart provides for FS 595, Humbrol, and Agma colors as well as the generic name. Markings are provided for three aircraft. First is one of the box art airacraft from 13 Squadron during 1939/40 in France. Like the other RAF aircraft, it is camouflaged in Dark Green and Dark Earth over Aluminum. The other RAF plane is from 225 Squadron in the UK during June 1940. The Free French aircraft is in the desert scheme of Dark Earth/Midstone over Azure blue. This aircraft was based in Tchad during 1942. The decals themselves are superbly printed and are quite thin so should work well.


Yet another old Frog/Airfix kit has seen an up-to-date short run kit as a replacement. Frankly, I'm glad to see it as while the older kits are nice, those wanting some real detail in their kits had no choice but to make it themselves. For the rest of us, we pay more and get a lot of additional detail for our money.

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