Aeromaster 48-358: SB2C the Beast part 2

Units: Various




Scott Van Aken

A number of years, ProModeler (Revell-Monogram) released an SB2C Helldiver kit. Earlier, as in the 1960s, Monogram had produced one in 1/48 that had folding wings, retractable landing gear, deployable flaps, working bomb bay with droppable bomb and canopies that could be slid back. In other words, the toy-model that was in vogue at the time.

Market research showed that the kit was much desired by the modeling public. As sometimes happens, it fell flat and initial sales were not very good. As you can expect, it has not been reissued very much in the intervening decades, but it well worth picking up if you locate one.

This sheet has markings for seven aircraft, most of them in overall sea blue. These are also, for the most part, SB2C-4Es so you'll need to do a bit of research and perhaps some mods as the kit is an SB2C-4.

First up is a VB-84 plane aboard the USS Bunker Hill in 1945 with the yellow nose band and arrow geometric markings.

From VB-10 aboard the USS Randolph in July 1945 is the second option. By then, the short lived geometric markings had changed to letters.

There are two French options on the sheet. Both are with Esc 3F in Vietnam in 1945. Note that these were SB2C-5 aircraft so will have the later pilot's canopy with no frames. Note also that there is no blue for the rudder markings, the airframe color substituting for this.

Next are two VB-87 planes from the USS Ticonderoga. First has the geometric pattern for markings and the second has the later letter codes.

Finally, in an 'Atlantic or ASW scheme' is the last option. This scheme was dark gull grey on the upper surfaces with the rest of the airframe in white.

Decals are nicely printed and my experience with old Aeromaster sheets is generally quite good.

September 2017

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