AML 1/72 Bf-109D




$19.95 ($17.98 at Squadron)


Three options


Scott Van Aken


Short run with resin, etched metal and vac bits


Of all the early, Jumo-powered 109s built, the D variant was built in larger numbers than of the B and C model combined. The C was actually built in very small numbers and differed from the D only in having fuel injection where the D had a carbureted engine. Other minor differences were in having short exhaust stacks and a slightly different tail gear. The D model did see a lot of action in Spain along side the earlier B and the four C models sent to fight with the Legion Condor. It was in turn eclipsed by the Daimler-Benz powered 109E.

The D model was not completely gone from the Luftwaffe by the time Germany invaded Poland. Several units including JG 102 participated in that conflict and several were able to score against the Polish Air Force. They also saw limited use in the Norway and France campaign. However, with the advent of more E models, the Ds were then relegated to home defense, night fighting (for which they were not at all successful) and use in advanced training schools.


AML gets my vote as the company with the flimsiest boxes. We all dislike the 'letter-box' version and AML must use soggy recycled cardboard for theirs. Anyway, once the box is opened, you are presented with an obvious short run kit. Obvious due to the large sprues, ejector towers on large parts, flash some of the smaller bits and the obligatory etched brass set and vac canopies. For AML's credit, they do supply two vac canopies of fairly good quality, though mine were both crunched during shipment.

What AML did was to take their previous kit and add in resin bits. The etched metal parts are mostly for the interior, main gear doors and the sidewalls to the inside of the wheel wells! Resin parts replace the interior parts and add side walls. There are also resin wheels and a full set of resin control surfaces, including flaps. This will, of course, require quite a but of cutting and hacking to remove the old pieces, but those who really want to add a lot to their kit will gleefully attack the kit plastic to remove the offending bits. The resin itself is very well done in a dark olive color. The wheels are slightly flattened (not anywhere near as flat as the TD versions), so one needs to keep that in mind during construction.

You get the old 72008 kit instructions with a new sheet added in for the new resin bits. This sheet also includes a very comprehensive color chart matching the various shades with FS 495, Humbrol, Gunze, ModelMaster's enamels and Agama paints. It also provides RLM numbers. Decals are by Propagteam so you know they will be thin. There are markings for three planes. One in RLM 63 over RLM 65 from the Condor Legion as shown on the box art. The other two are in the splinter scheme of RLM 70/71/65. First is JG 102s commander; Hannes Gentzen with some kill markings on the fin. The other is From I./JG 71 in October of 1929 with a Red 6 on the fuselage side. As usual, the swastikas are broken into sections so you may want to hit the aftermarket decal sheets for this piece. As part of the updated kit, the color and markings guide are provided in full color, a nice touch.           


AML is known for producing kits of interesting aircraft and this one fits well into that mold. Though not for beginners, those with some experience in building short run models can make this into a real beauty. All of the right ingredients are there.

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