Hobby Boss 1/72 Zlin 42M
KIT #: 80231
DECALS: One option
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken


The aircraft were built by Moravan Aviation, founded in 1934 by Tomas Bata in the Czech Republic.

As a follow-on and replacement for the successful Zlin Trener series of tandem aerobatic trainers, Morovan developed a new family of light aircraft, featuring a side-by-side layout and comprising a two seat trainer, the Zlín Z 42 and a four seat trainer/tourer aircraft, the Zlín Z 43. The Z 42 first flew on 17 October 1967, achieving airworthiness certification on 7 September 1970.[2]

The aircraft fuselage center section is of welded steel tube, covered with sheet metal and fiberglass panels. The tailcone is of monocoque construction. The empennage is of sheet metal, and incorporates an all-flying tail. The two-spar wings are of all-metal construction. The tricycle landing gear is fixed, with a steerable nose wheel. Designed for aerobatics instruction, it was certified to +6.0 and -4.0 limit maneuvering load factors, and was equipped with full inverted fuel and oil systems permitting extended inverted flight. The Z 42 is powered by a Walter inverted six-cylinder engine rated at 134 kW (180 hp).

The revised Zlín Z 42M flew in November 1972, with a revised tail taken from the Z 43, and a Constant speed propeller replacing the variable pitch propeller (where the propeller pitch is controlled by the pilot) of the original Z 42. When early Z 42s were refitted with the new propeller, they were redesignated Z 42 MU.


I have to say that I found it unusual and a pleasant surprise to see Hobby Boss or anyone producing a model of a light aircraft. Civil aviation of this type is rarely kitted and we can only hope that this is a portent of things to come.

Typical of its least expensive kits, there are not all that many parts and most of the airframe is molded into just a few pieces. The wings and lower fusealge is one piece with the upper fuselage and fin/rudder being the other. The most surprising thing is that these two pieces are molded in clear plastic. Aside from the formation lights on the wing and fin tips, there are no clear areas. The cabin clear bits are a separate molding.

All the rest of the bits are molded in their standard plastic and are on a separate sprue. In total, there are only 13 parts. There are control sticks and an instrument panel to fit into the interior. The gear are molded with the wheels and there is a separate spinner for the prop, which will make it easier to paint.

Now just because this is a simple kit to build, doesn't mean that it will be simple to paint. All of the large blue areas on the wing tips, stab tips and the fuselage will have to be painted. The stripes and registration are on a nicely printed decal sheet. This sheet also includes the instrument panel decal and wing walk areas. The lone option is for a Slovakian aircraft. The well drawn instructions provide clear steps and paint in the Gunze paint range. For those without access to Gunze paints, the Sky Blue that is needed crosses over to Tamiya X-14 and Humbrol #48. I should also note that the instructions mention nothing about weight. You will need to cram as much as you can into the nose to keep this one from tail sitting.


A very delightful new kit and if you like light civil aviation, it is one you really should consider. I only hope to see other similar types released in the future.



June 2010

Thanks to Squadron Products for the preview sample. Get yours at your local shop or have them order it for you.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly, please contact me or see other details in the Note to Contributors.

Back to the Main Page

Back to the Previews Index Page