|KIT:||Anigrand 1/72 C-124A/C Globemaster II|
|PRICE:||$148.00 from Anigrand USA|
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Resin kit with vacuformed clear bits.|
After the end of the second World War, the USAAF found the C-74 Globemaster was a very capable and useful aircraft, and began to consider acquiring an improved version proposed by Douglas. It used the same wing, tail and engines from the C-74, but featured a new and enlarged fuselage, as well as clamshell doors in the nose. The result was the C-124 Globemaster II. The YC-124 prototype made its first flight in 1949. The first operational C-124 was delivered in 1950. It provided valuable service in the Korean war, but was deemed too slow in the Vietnam era, so it was earned nickname "Old Shakey". A total of 204 C-124A, and 243 C-124C were built, a turboprop-powered KC-124B tanker variant was considered. In 1970, most the C-124s were transferred to the Air Force Reserve and the Air National Guard. The C-124 was finally replaced by the C-5 Galaxy in 1974.
Just as an aside, the local Reserve unit at Scott AFB that was flying C-119s received C-124s around the late 1960s and flew them for a few years before getting rid of them and converting to an Army Reserve unit. They were eventually flying UH-60s before becoming an Army National Guard unit and moving to Decatur IL, where they are still flying their Blackhawks. Their hangar spaces are now occupied by the 108 ARS, IL ANG and flying KC-135Rs. Interestingly, the Army shop and office spaces were not deemed worthy of the USAF-ANG so in typical Air Force fashion, a huge, multi-million dollar complex of offices and shops were built just for ANG use, complete with expensive and totally needless landscaping so it can look just as pretty as the rest of the base. Your tax dollars at work.
Many people, including me, were quite surprised when it was reported that Anigrand would be releasing a C-124. It is one of those planes that we always hoped would be kitted, but really didn't think anyone would do it. Well, do it they did and I have to say that I'm quite pleased that they did so.
The fuselage is divided into a fore and aft section with a solid interlock feature that worked so well with their XF-12 'Rainbow' kit. It makes for a very sturdy structure in a fuselage that is over 20 inches long. You'll also note that there are structural reinforcements in the fuselage halves as well. A radar nose is supplied for the C variant. The wings are an upper and lower half and my samples had no warping at all. These will make into a total wingspan of well over two feet. You'll notice in the image to the upper left that each red mark on the tape is a foot. I've also put in an image from the Anigrand web site so you can see all the various bits (image on the right). Though the A model standard wing tips are not shown, they are in the kit.Naturally, Anigrand's images are of a kit that is perfect. Haven't seen one of those yet! The wheel well detailing is typical of Anigrand in that it is just some Evergreen strips put in there to approximate wheel well detail. You have alternate wing tips depending on if you are doing an A or C version. The wing to fuselage is quite good and quite positive. You'll have to fill the resulting seam, but there will be no problem getting proper dihedral. I don't think that wing droop over time will be a problem as the wing is relatively thick.
The engine faces are very nicely molded, one of Anigrand's better efforts. The props have separate hubs into which you slot the blades. You still have to get the angles correct, but this method has worked quite well in the past. I'd still like to see one-piece props, but perhaps that is beyond Anigrand's current capabilities. Landing gear are quite sturdy and it may well be that these will hold up under all the weight. I highly recommend removing the axles for the main gear, drilling the space out and replacing them with short metal rods. The axles on my Rainbow kit were unable to hold up the model and snapped when I was moving it. This was as much due to the weight I had to use to keep it from tail sitting and the C-124 will be a major tail-sitter without a lot of weight. Fortunately there is a ton of space for it.
OK, so how about the resin quality. I've been told that Anigrand uses pressure molding with its resin. Well, if that was the case, then I should see few if any air bubbles and that is not the case. I think they are using low pressure casting which won't remove all the problems. Talking with others in the resin casting industry, they probably need to use higher pressures in the 60-80 psi range.
This means that most of the larger castings show air bubbles, some of them quite large. These are mostly in the tips of the fin, horizontal stabilizers and wings. I also found a number of pinholes alongside the engraved detail on the fuselage parts. The fuselage also suffered from 'divots' or small depressions in various areas along with some detritus on the outside of the parts as if someone had gouged sections of the mold.
None of these will be difficult to repair and anyone who has done Anigrand kits or those from other makers will have run into these and know how to fix them. It is a bit time consuming but not at all hard to do. The large ones can be dealt with using superglue followed by accelerator and then sanding before the superglue fully cures. Smaller ones can be filled with paint or Mr Surfacer 1000/500 then gently sanded. If you have read the recent XP-60 article, then you will see that this can be easily fixed. A set of clear bits are provided for the cockpit area and all those windows. I recommend getting a punch for the side windows or using some other method for doing them such as using clear decal film or white glue. Conversely, you could fill them with clear plastic rod or superglue and then sand the area flush.
Markings are for one aircraft, a C-124A (49-0258) in generic USAF markings that is now in the process of being restored at the AMC museum at Dover AFB, DE. Apparently it was brought up to near C-124C standards with the radar nose and wing tip heaters. It is in overall unpainted metal with black areas around the engines and in other standard areas. The sheet does not include wing walk areas so you'll have to deal with those from the spares bin or paint those on. The sheet also has some C-17 decals such as the serial and AMC badge.
You know you have to have it. These are selling as fast as they come in so you know that Anigrand has hit it big with this particular kit. It is a big one, but yet it is not really complex. I know that when I build mine, it will be done in subassemblies of the fuselage and two wings, mating all three in the final assembly step. If you have any desire for something as cool as this one, get your order in now.
Thanks to Nostalgic Plastic/Anigrand USAfor the review kit. Free shipping in the US. If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly by asite that has nearly 300,000 visitors a month, please contactme or see other details in the Back to the Main Page Back to the Review Index Page Back to the Previews Index Page
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly by asite that has nearly 300,000 visitors a month, please contactme or see other details in the
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