KIT: 1/48 Breguet Alizé



€ 59.96 at squadron


Four Options




Multimedia kit


  After the second world war the French Navy start to look for a successor to the Grumman Avenger fleet in the role of “hunter-killer”. The program was launched and the French manufacturer Bréguet proposed the Br-960 Vultur on August 1951.

This two-seater was powered by a British Armstrong Siddeley Mamba 980hp turboprop,and a Hispano Nene jet engine. More than 9 hours of patrol  at 850 km/hour was expected. But it stay on prototype statement. So a second one powered by Mamba 3 (1 650hp) and Nene 104 engines, designed BR-965 was tested and presented ,with a second negative reply. Finally the third attempt was the good one with an “Awacs” supplementary role. The final airplane was tri-seater (pilot, navigator, operator), and powered by a Rolls-Royce Dart engine, that airlift for its  first on April 19th 1957.After trials at sea aboard H.M.S. Eagle (GB), the French test start on Arromanche (F). Initially order was for 100 aircraft ,but financial restrictions decrease the number to 75.Except French use, the Alizé (name of a wind) also flew under the India flag ,the Indian Navy Squadron 310, with 14 aircrafts.

In France the Flottille 4F ,6F 9F put them on the frontline on NAS and abroad on Carrier Clemenceau and Foch. The first plane took service on 1959 and the retirement was celebrated on 2000, after 42 years of loyal and trusty service. Obviously 42 years have involved modifications on the aircraft, but it concern mainly detection and avionics more than structural areas. In its offensive role the Alizé carried internally (ventral bay) and externally under the folding wings, torpedoes, anti-shipping missiles, rockets, bombs. For its detection role, sonobuoy system, with a retractable radar (after the “bomb” bay), and sensors in the tips of the main carriage pontoons complete the equipment.

Originally painted dark gray/light gray the first major update that ended in ’80 for 28 aircrafts shown the first camouflage evolution to light blue gray/white high visibility. At this occasion they were christened ALM for ALizé Modernisé (modernised) and improvements concerned radar, sonobuoy and navigation systems. In the 90’ though the airplane never saw directly combat, its engagement very close to action led to a second update program, including hydraulics, power, and transmission. At this occasion the airframe definitively turn to two tone dark grey paints. Near the end of the career, the ‘air police’ second role it played led again to comfort and modernisation for flying instruments with automatic pilot, heading system… The dimensions show your now that the airplane was relatively big

Lengh 45 ft 5 in, wingspan 51 ft 2 in Height 16 ft 5 in ,Wing area 387. 5 sq ft   



Except the very old 1/50 scale basic kit from French manufacturer Heller, aficionados of this lovely bird have long awaited a Dynavector kit, that never arrived on the shelves. Once again the courageous French artisan Fonderie Miniature tackle the subject. In the usual cardboard box you’ll find 192 parts; 23 in resin, 43 in white metal, 12 in vac-form (doubled “just in case if..”, 114 in plastic. The plastic part surface is better than the former models, though I notice nine sink marks on gear doors, top fuselage antenna and back of propellers and some engraved line that “swing” in some area around the karman fuselage.

That's not really a problem to solve, neither the flashes you’ll have to remove from the fuselage, wings, gear nacelles, spinner; only half an hour with caution. Aside the engraved panels you’ll discover engraved rivets too, that prove you that a serious research was done on this subject. Think to sand the wings and rudder interior trailing edge to get fine shape (but not a F-104!)The cargo bay is in plastic, while the crew area is a mix, with detailed parts in resin, i.e control panels ,floor, sides; and white metal for control stick, pedals, seats with p/e seat belts. As usual, and that’s a rule for all multimedia kits from all manufacturers, sand, check, re-sand, re-check..for proper fit. A dry fit of the empty fuselage with the wings show that you’ll have to adjust this area (with putty) with care for a good look.

Obviously you’ll add weigh in the nose to avoid a tail sitting attitude. All AEW airplanes in the world are kept aside from the Press, especially about sensible areas, such radar, console…until their retirement. But the documentation I get from this  airplane force me to clap my hands on the rendition, with 3 restrictions. The shape is overall good with two areas to correct easily by yourself. Just enlarge the decal notice to match your fuselage, and you ‘ll see, what I mean. The rear fuselage point under the stabilator is too straight, it must curve up to join the rudder. So sand to shape (you can also pour hard filler inside ,in case to go to far). The second correction deals with the radar aperture.

The shape on the drawing is good, the curve forward (next to the load bay) must be more high, and gently decline backward. My third observation goes to the first decal period offered see box art). The cockpit layout only match for the other scheme (at least the third). For the first generation aircraft (dark gray/light gray), the navigator has an instrumental panel and the cover from blinking insert the total pilot and nav instruments. And for the guy in the black and in the back ,it’s more complicated! So if you are purist, and  you have no info about first age activity, let it aside. The transparencies are good and the 2 forward portions of the gear pontoons are clear parts too, but do not try to polish, they housed sensors dark red ,not included) and looks like dirty glass, or steamed Plexiglas (see box art again).

 If you want to open the canopies , the two forward slides back, and for the operator it’s the left side window that slide vertically. I mention the good look of the gears and wheels, and the arrested hook unit and bay. During the assembly, at stage V you’ll see the part 105.That is a rectangular resin shape with bulged topside full of raised instruments. It is noticed that you’ll glue this item at the last stage under the canopy transparent part. That is true, and it is a control panel with parking brakes and some other grips the pilot action above him. If you think that the aircraft took to much place you can cut the wings and insert resin ribs to fold them. Some wiring are required, that you’ll find on some good internet walkarounds, search br 1050 and hunt!

The wing folding process was not symmetrical, and it was common to see a wing up and the other one down during manoeuvres. A striking diorama idea! The well printed decals are for three French Navy machines in the different colors periods mentioned above. The choice is yours, with the remark done at the beginning concerning instrumental evolution. The documentation is relatively rare up to date, with articles in French mag; LE FANATIQUE DE L’AVIATION (issue 94 and 136), in JETS (issues 2, 28, 29, 30, 59), and several shots in different issues of AIR FAN.   


As you’ll see above, FM just offer us a frontline French navy aircraft that was missing in the 1/48 range. With its Zephyr (derivative of the Fouga Magister), you can now model almost the entire fleet on aircraft carriers Clemenceau and Foch jets and propeller aircrafts, companion for the Hasegawa F8E(FN), and Heller Etendard and Super Etendard.If you are more interested in European propeller navies, it will complete the collection you start with the Dynavector Gannet .Of course I reserve it to medium experienced modeller who look for something else that F-4 ,century fighters, mig…I personally think that our own skill improve faster with such kits rather than “almost –ready” from high manufacturers. And who from this mainstream group would take the risk to produce such “second line “ article? Building the 100th P-51 mustang would annoy me deeply, and surely excitation and passion would decrease regularities kind of model is the last step before the personal handy craft kit that you dreamed for a long and create ‘cause a lack of interest and production. In this ultimate case FM save us time and money consuming on research, preparation, and production, even if a personal investment seem necessary at the end. But your friends' eyes will certainly be caught. Thank you FM!
















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