Author Topic: Copper State Models 1/32 scale Nieuport XXI Russian Service  (Read 96 times)

Offline Dave W

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Copper State Models Nieuport XXI   

REVIEWED BY David Wilson

Scale:          1/32nd
Price:   $A129.99 in Australia; €62 Euro (Export price direct from CSM); €75 in Europe ; £67.99/ $US 72 from Hannants UK;
Stockist:   Review Sample provided by and available through Copper State Models at:
Also available from quality model retailers world wide. 

Contents:   Six frames in grey plastic; decals for four marking options; full colour instructions booklet; photo etch fret; clear film (windscreen)

Nieuport aircraft were one of the most famous French designs of WW1, operated by several air forces and developed across numerous marks. The Nieuport XX1 evolved from the well known Nieuport XVII and first flew in 1916.

While it had a similar airframe to the Nieuport XVII, the type XX1 was powered by the Le Rhone 9C engine, fitted behind a horseshoe-shaped cowling, giving it in some ways a similar look to the well known  but smaller Nieuport 11.
The Nieuport XX1 (or 21) saw service with the French, Russian, British and American air forces and was made under licence in Russia.

The unexpected closure of Wingnut Wings in March rocked the model world and in the fallout since then modellers have looked to companies like Copper State Models to step in and replace the Wingnuts production schedule.
The reality, as Copper State have clearly stated, is that the Latvian company does not have the resources or the budget to replace Wingnuts’ release numbers, but looking at Copper State’s own products, they have already equalled or surpassed Wingnuts in kit quality.
After an initial foray into 1/48th scale, Copper State moved to 1/32 scale in 2018 with its acclaimed Nieuport XVII kits. They have wisely maximised the moulds with two new variations, a Nieuport XX1 and XXIII.
It’s a clever move as Nieuport represent some of the most famous French fighters of the First World War and for plastic modellers Nieuport kits have been around since the birth of the hobby in the 1950s.
The Nieuport XVII kits gave us a brand new Nieuport kit from a manufacturer whose high quality model kits seem to get even better with every new release.

The kit:                         
When it was released in 2018 we said that while the Forum doesn’t do “kit of the year” ratings, if we did, the Copper State Nieuport XVII would be a front runner for the title.
That quality and attention to detail is continued with his variation kit, which draws heavily on the XVII frames, but has new parts and decals representing the type XX1 in Russian service.

Copper State Models' 1/32 scale Nieuport XXI comes in the familiar packaging of a solid flip top- opening cardboard box beneath a separate lift off box top featuring distinctive artwork.

The individually bagged sprues within are well protected.
All of the plastic parts, and the decals and small photo etch are individually bagged.

As we have come to expect, the moulding quality is superb, there’s no flash to worry about and the sprue attachment points are small and thus far easier to gently remove from the frame.
Copper State deliver very subtle surface textures and even the delicate fabric stitching is depicted. Wing trailing edges are beautifully thin.
Cockpits can make a model and the cockpit interior for the Nieuport is outstanding. The seat back comes fully perforated, a nice detail touch.

This is a model that should look like museum quality out of the box, no need to rely on aftermarket here!
The Le Rhone 9C engine is nicely detailed and ready for extra detailing, rather important as much is exposed with the horse shoe cowling.

As before, the instructions booklet cover resembles a vintage Nieuport technical publication, a nice evocative touch.
The instructions booklet, in an A4 format, is well illustrated in colour and clearly shows where rigging and control cables are needed during the build process.

There’s a lot about this kit to like and the parts breakdown looks pretty straightforward to assemble aided by easy to follow instructions.

Photo Etch:
Photo etch quality is good and not overdone. A single small photo-etched fret contains the seat harness straps as well as the windscreen frame etc. Copper State seem to be aware that with photo etch, less is best.

Decals & Colour schemes:
The kit features four colour schemes of aircraft in Russian use.
1.   Ensign Peter Krisanov, 2nd Corps Aviation Detachment, Summer 1917
2.   Nie XX1 Naval Aviation School, Krasnoye Selo 1917
3.   Nie XX1 Grenadier Corps Aviation Detachment Moscow 1916/ 1917
4.   Nie XX1 Wilhelm Kaminsky, Grenadier Corps Aviation Detachment, Summer 1917

If there’s a criticism, it’s in the lack of any hobby brand paint callouts for the colours.

While the instructions note where particular colours should go, there are no hobby paint name references provided and this means modellers have to find this information somewhere else. Not necessarily easy for aircraft in what may be unfamiliar schemes to many of us.
There’s a world of difference between being a modeller interested in WW1 aircraft, and knowledge of the colours used by the Russian operators
The decals are printed by Cartograf of Italy, regarded by many as the best in the world. They are perfectly in register as expected.

Copper State Models’ latest entry in the 1/32 scale field is a quality enhancement to its predecessor. It’s now fair to say CSM produces the definitive large scale Nieuport kits. The Nieuport XXI was released in concert with the Nieuport XXIII - stay tuned for that review soon!

Highly recommended.
(Review kit kindly supplied by Copper State Models. Please support the businesses that support this Forum.)
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