Kits and accessories to model RNZAF variants.
Peter Mossong and Anthony Galbraith (1:48)

The Kits - 1:72  Coming soon I hope!

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The Kits -1:48




KOSTER PV-1 VENTURA:  Kit No. 23:  Vacformed with resin and white metal details.  Decals for US Navy (several options) and RAF (two options).  The kit supplies optional parts to build all variants, including the Boulton and Paul turret for the RAF's Ventura I and II, so an example used by No.487 (NZ) Squadron can be built from this kit.

Quality is almost equal to that of Falcon and Dynavector, but is let down by poor resin (many air holes, and not very crisp in my two examples).  The engines are only supplied as the front row (these need replacing with Hi-Tech, Aires, Vector, or Engines and Things R-2800's).  The wheel bays are supplied as resin inserts.  Undercarriage struts, tailwheel and weapons are supplied in nice crisp white metal. 

Overall, a very good package, and I will be building several in various RNZAF markings using roundels from the Aeromaster RNZAF sheet as some of these are the correct size and style.






Fonderie Miniatures PV-1 Kit No. 6040: Injection molded with resin and metal details. An 'In-Box' review by Anthony Galbraith.

F.M are to be congratulated for producing an injection moulded kit of the PV-1 Ventura. Up until now only the Koster Vac has been available and upon a quick look, appears quite nice too. 

Upon opening the box I was quite surprised at the size of the Ventura in 1/48 scale, and although I have the Classic Airframes Hudson, this is a completely different beast apart from some visual similarities. All the parts are a soft light grey plastic with engraved panel lines similar to early Classic Airframes kits, which show a little flash. There is a bag of resin and another bag of white metal parts (more of which later), and two sets of vac transparencies.




The instructions are very basic to say the least, which starts with the cockpit/interior which consists of much of the resin and white metal which is very nice indeed. There isn't a lot supplied for the rest of the interior, and if you are to open the separate rear door then you might want to add some more detail. 

Next are the wings which have a rather nice resin wheel well to be glued in. Here though is where I have a little concern. The lower wings are fine but the upper wings seem to be very flat across the surface with little or no aerofoil cross section. I do feel though that if you were to either gently warm the plastic you could manipulate some curve but knowing me I would melt or distort it beyond repair, so I am going to run a spar through the wing and super glue the leading and trailing edges together. This should work fine with this soft plastic as I am sure it won't need much.

The kit has a resin and metal engine that should build up quite nicely. The rest of the kit is to me, a little on the simplified side, and the wheels, props, and cowls will need further refining.




A couple of different options are supplied in the kit which is good to see. A different nose cap with radar antenna etc. for a night fighter version, as well as a chin gun pack under the nose with a 1 or 3 gun option. Small dots are present on the underwing surfaces for the placement of underwing rockets and rails in white metal, or the option of long range fuel tanks.

The transparencies are supplied as a small injection moulded sprue for the windows and vac windscreen, turret and tunnel gun glazing which are ok. I am sure that with the framing painted up they won't look too bad as they aren't as crystal clear as we have come to expect from Falcon/Squadron.

The decal options are for a French Aeronavale and a US operated plane of VB-135.

Dimensionally it scales out pretty good and F.M. seem to have captured some of the fuselage shape subtleties quite well.

All in all not a bad kit. I feel that with a little care and attention, and a little extra detail work, you can produce a nice model from this. I am going to use some Aires resin engines, and a couple of spare 'paddle blade' props from the Tamiya Corsair chopped down to bring this up to a higher standard. I am sure it will make quite a difference. 



Revell Lockheed PV-1 Ventura  1:48 scale  Kit 85-5531: Finally, we have a buildable  1:48 scale injection moulded kit of the Ventura, thanks to Revell USA. Produced in a mid grey plastic, and moulded in Korea (proudly engraved on the external surface of one lower tail-plane !!! tsk tsk) the large box contains the makings of the standard mid to late production PV-1 with the solid radar nose as used by the US Navy, Marines, the RAAF, the RNZAF, and others such as the SAAF. Other than the decal options (2 x USN and one RCAF) the only option given with the kit is the under nose ‘gun pack’ or the clear bomber's panel.

The average modeller (probably 95%) will be able to make a very nice replica straight from the box, but those amongst us that prefer an accurate as possible replica will have a bit of work to do.
It's obvious that the Paul Matt drawings were used in the production of the masters, as the kit matches these drawings almost exactly in most areas other than the fuselage cross sections and the tail fin and rudder dimensions! 

The well discussed skinny props also show up against those in the drawings - now rectified by sets from Mike West at Lone Star, and the guys at Vector who have also done engine 'noses' with the correct magnetos and the missing prop governors. The wheels are pretty basic, and I understand there are sets underway, along with ‘corrected’ cowls from several other resin casters such as Lone Star, Vector, Mastercasters etc.  It is keeping the ‘cottage industry ‘alive at present!

One other omission, is the very large internal fuel tanks in the centre cabin just behind the main spar. This area can be seen through the fuselage windows! If one is to open up the fuselage door, a rear floor section, and internal structure will also need to be added.

From the fuselage breakdown of the kit, it is obvious that the 'bomber' nose will apppear in the future, so the B-34/B-37 and Ventura I and II series will all be able to be produced.

Overall a very nice effort. Revell are to be commended for finally getting this out, and providing a good basic 'canvas' to work with at a unbelievable price!


Zotz 'OCEAN RAIDERS' 48-009 (Also available in 1:72 scale): Has markings for NZ4525, NZ4540 and NZ4613, with relevant artwork and variations of the RNZAF roundels. Unfortunately, these have been printed in the darker US Insignia Blue but are still useable.  Two 'faded' roundels with the correctly portrayed borderless white bars are provided for the upper wings of NZ4540.

One item that has been missed, is that only two of the narrow RNZAF style fin flashes are provided. On RNZAF PV-1's, these were applied to both inner and outer surfaces. The second set will have to come from the Aeromaster or RooDecals RNZAF sheets.



One other point Zotz/Albatross have missed, is that the roundels with the US Insignia Blue borders should be of the 'offset' style, as the RNZAF Blue centres were added directly over the 'Stars And Bars'. The colour keys at the top of the instruction sheet will also give an incorrect guide to the paint scheme if following the drawings. The colour notes below are correct.

My examples have no register problems, and will help to fill a gap in the scarcity of WWII RNZAF marking schemes.

My thanks go to Eli for doing something out of the ordinary.

Ventura 1:48 V4882. RNZAF PV-1 Venturas - two options: RNZAF PV-1 Venturas, Pacific Theatre, No.1 (BR) Squadron, June to November 1943. NZ4509, based in New Zealand, late June 1943 (US Navy Blue Gray and Light Gray scheme with RAF-style roundels) and NZ4511 "Slippery Sam" based at, Henderson Field, November 1943 (US Navy Mid-War ‘Three Tone Scheme’).


My feelings are very mixed with this sheet. Firstly the shade of blue that Ventura uses is far too light for the correct RNZAF Roundel Blue, and we have since discovered that 'Slippery Sam' should be NZ4512. That last one is easy to overcome with a change to the serials and fin codes, but the roundels are another matter entirely! I also believe the nose art's lettering is Yellow and white, not red.

Ventura 1:72 V7275 - RNZAF PV-1 Venturas - three options:  RNZAF PV-1 Venturas, Pacific Theatre, No.1 (BR) Squadron and No.11 Servicing Unit. NZ4509, based in New Zealand, late June 1943 (US Navy Blue Gray and Light Gray scheme with RAF-style roundels), NZ4511 "Slippery Sam" based at, Henderson Field, November 1943 (US Navy Mid-War ‘Three Tone Scheme’) and NZ4624 of No.11 SU, 1944 (very faded (NZ) Blue Sea Grey and (NZ) Sky Grey scheme).


My comments to the 1:48 sheet also apply to this one.

Xtradecals: X48097 1:48 Lockheed Vega PV-1 Ventura (6): RAF AE936 SB-G 454 Squadron; USN 49486 No 486 'Miss-Us-Flak' Tarawa 1944; 132-B-1 VB-132 'Thumper' Port Lyutey 1944; RNZAF NZ4509 Red Devil 11 SU Gisborne 1944; NZ4511 1(BR) Sqn 'Slippery Sam', Henderson Field 1943;RAAF A59-85 SF-R 13 Sqn 'Reluctant Dragon' 1944.

x48097  X48097_1    

This latest sheet from Hannant's Xtradecal range has options for most users of the Ventura, with the addition of an RAF Ventura II which will have to wait for the 'bomber nose' version to be released, or used with the Koster kit.

Unfortunately, the two RNZAF options are the same aircraft as those on the Ventura sheet, with one advantage being that the roundels are the correct shade of blue! 

I must put my hand up and admit I had some input toward corrections to this sheet when Hannant's first released it at Telford in November. This was before I became aware of Dave Homewood's research regarding 'Slippery Sam' and the correct serial for this aircraft, so it is still incorrect on this revised sheet. My comments regarding correcting this have been noted on the Ventura sheets.



A detail shot for modellers of the PV-1's cockpit and instrument panel.


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