Eduard 1/48 Spitfire I 1938-1940
KIT #: 11143
PRICE: 81.00 delivered from the UK
DECALS: Ten options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Initial tooling, Profipack, two full kits


The Spitfire is one of those iconic aircraft of which every Briton is aware to some fashion or another. Often touted as the saviour of the UK during the Battle of Britain (it was actually the Hurricane that shot down more bombers), it has nonetheless been burned into British history. A lot more glamerous and a newer design than the Hurricane, it was able to get greater performance out of the same engine as the Hurricane. It was also one of the few aircraft in production from the beginning of the conflict until the end, though the later versions were only basically the same shape with little interchangeable with the first aircraft.


What with Eduard doing a series of later Merlin Spitfires, it was only a matter of time until they moved back in time a bit to the original offerings. The timing is a bit odd considering that Tamiya released their excellent Spitfire I shortly before this one made it on shelves, but one thing I've noticed over the years is that both companies have their fan-boys. It is really a win-win situation for today's enthusiast as we have a number of well done early Spitfire kits now available to us.

You do get two full kits in this box which means two of everything except decals and oddly, fuselage halves. There is some esoteric difference between the early and later Spitfire I fuselages which comes to an armored and unarmored fuel tank cover. One fuselage is for the first three markings and the other is for the other seven. In fact, you really need to decide what markings options you'll be using and read the instructions carefully ("E's a witch") prior to starting to ensure that you have all the right bits in place. I've recently been informed that there are several seats provided and the instructions fail to say which to use on which option.

As usual, the kit relies on photo etch to get the best from the build and two sets of color photo etch are included that provide major pieces like rudder guard, instrument panels, seat harness, radiator cores, seat armor, and a number of other tiny pieces. In several instances, you can leave some of these off and just rely on the plastic bits.

Other options are open and closed canopy and Eduard provides separate clear bits just for that. The flat, early canopy is also provided for those planes that require it. Another option is an open or closed cockpit door. As small as the Spitfire cockpit is, it would be a shame to keep all that cockpit work closed up.

Instructions are superbly done with lots of notes and if you follow them, you cannot really go wrong. I exempt myself from that statement as I have been known to screw up an anvil. You get a huge main decal sheet along with one for the fuselage codes and (not shown) two stencil sheets. As has been reported, the decals are not as opaque as one would like, especially the yellow parts, which significantly darken against the camouflage. However, you are provided with ten options, a number befitting a combo Profipack offering. If none of the options grabs you, there are aftermarket sheets out there. I have a nice Illiad sheet I used on an Airfix Spit I and the Victory Production sheet on the Battle of Britain in case none of the kit offerings grabs me. They also provide decently opaque roundels.


Initially, I was going to pass on this and wait for the single boxing (now available), but after being told it was no longer available, I hit the Internet and found it was quite plentiful outside the US so ordered it from the UK at a most reasonable price. Having seen the kit built up, I can tell you that if you are a Spit boffin, you'll be quite pleased with this one.

October 2020

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