|KIT:||MPM 1/72 DC-2, CLS/Lufthansa|
|PRICE:||$34.40 from www.greatmodels.com|
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Short run with injected clear bits|
The aircraft that really put Douglas on the map was the DC-2 airliner. Basically a 'stretched' DC-1 with an additional row of seats, the DC-2 was quickly seen as the finest airliner around. It was fast, quiet and able to carry a reasonable number of passengers over a good distance. In fact, Douglas was able to sell every plane it built before moving to the even larger DC-3, the aircraft that brought air travel closer to everyone. DC-2s were also license built by Najakima for the home market.
In all around 200 of these aircraft were built and served in a variety of airlines both in the US and overseas. Several were also used by military services, mostly in the US where they were used as staff transports under various designations depending on the equipment carried, though most were known as C-32A or R2Ds depending on the service. Some were also equipped with military gear as temporary bombers and used as such in Spain and by the Finns. Probably the Soviets as well, though little is know of these operations. Though some survivors were operated post war, most were replaced by the much more widely available DC-3/C-47.
Typical of MPM, this kit is is molded in a medium grey plastic with petite engraved panel lines as you can see in the image to the left. Basically, this is little more than a reboxing of an earlier kit, with nothing changed aside from the decals. Even the box art itself is little more than a sheet of paper glued over an existing kit box.
The kit is still nicely molded and has the dreaded separate prop blades which must be carefully glued onto a central hub. Frankly, I don't like these, especially the butt joined ones, as I have trouble with blade alignment. OK, call me lazy, but I like having things like this already done for me. The clear bits look a bit hazy, which is fine as there really is not much to see on the inside. In the cabin, no seats are offered, just a cargo floor. The kit also offers two different noses; one with prominent twin landing lights for use with this kit and another very plain one for another boxing. Also additional is a broader chord fin that is not for this particular kit. From what I can gather, there have been at least four if not five boxings of this same basic kit. I've also not seen one built even though the kit has been out for at least four years
Instructions are standard MPM with nicely drawn construction steps and color references for Humbrol paints. Additional drawings show detail construction and proper wing angles. Markings are for two aircraft, two with the Czech national airline and another for this same plane in Lufthansa service. Actually, three of the latter are provided, one with the aircraft marked as when it was just seized in 1939, and two others with Lufthansa in slightly different markings. All the schemes are shown as painted aluminum. If one can find the right sized letters, an RLM 02 colored Lufthansa plane could be done as well. The decals are nicely done and quite thin, providing all the markings needed for the options provided in the kit. You can see that what is provided was carefully chosen to maximize decal space!
MPM has provided a very nice kit of this important airliner/transport. It is a bit basic in some areas, but leaves a lot of room for those who want to add more to it. This is one that really deserves to be seen more and I can tell you that I've one of these in my future.
An excellent reference for this kit is the 4+ Publications Douglas DC-2
You can find this kit and many others at GreatModels
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