Author Topic: Avalon Decals 1/72 BE2c  (Read 300 times)

Online Jamo

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Avalon Decals 1/72 BE2c
« on: July 09, 2018, 05:24:19 PM »
Avalon Decals 1/72 BE2c #7005



Avalon is a Czech-based decal manufacturer and this is their first set for a WWI subject. This set is intended to complement the fairly new Airfix BE2c kit but there are also other BE2c kits with varying degrees of availability; in resin (Czech Master Resin), vacform (Formaplane) and short run injection moulded (Meikraft, Veeday).





Markings for eight BE2c aircraft are included, five in early war unpainted, clear doped linen finishes; two in PC10 and one colourful trainer (similar but not identical to one of the versions in the Airfix kit). There are sufficient roundels in the set to complete one CDL finished scheme and one PC10 finished scheme.

An A4 sheet of colour profiles indicates decal placements, and the decals are numbered for easy identification. The profiles include top and underside views.

The eight options:

2612 “St Catharines Ontario” presentation aircraft of 16 Sqn. It was declared missing on 1st June 1916. St Catharines is a city in Ontario, Canada and has an unusual spelling, not “St Catherines” as printed by Avalon, who presumably relied on the colour profile colour in ‘BE2 in Action’ (Squadron/Signal Publications) where it is also incorrectly spelled. The Vintage Aviator Ltd made the same mistake when they built their reproduction BE2c finished as 2612. So if you want to build a 1/72 model of the TVAL reproduction BE2c 2612, then Avalon’s decals are perfect!

10000 manufactured by Blackburn and includes their logo for the fin. This aircraft was modified at some point in its career with a BE2e style tail fin which was painted with a Blackburn logo in white. It was the only British aircraft to have a five digit serial number. Delivered to the RNAS Observers’ School Eastchurch on 19th July 1917 and deleted on 31st August 1917 after crashing. It is illustrated in colour in ‘BE2 in Action’ published by Squadron and a photo appears on page 29.

1709 8 Sqn, built by British & Colonial. Ronny Bar illustrated this aircraft for the inside rear cover of Datafile 172 “The RAF BE2c at War!”. A photograph of the aircraft also appears on page 9 of Windsock Datafile 42. 8 Squadron painted roundels on the tailplanes of their BE2cs, sometimes omitting the white in the roundel, leaving the CDL to show through.

A1350 was used as a training aircraft at Waddington by both 44 & 51 Training Squadrons and was wrecked on 6th January 1916. It is illustrated in colour in ‘BE2 in Action’ published by Squadron. This aircraft also has the larger, curved BE2e style tail fin.

1701 presentation aircraft “Victoria Hong Kong” (note the set does not include the inscription “Victoria Hong Kong” as the original aircraft doesn’t seem to have carried the marking). The Avalon instruction sheet says the unit is unknown but references identify this aircraft as having served with 4 Squadron. The decal sheet includes a nice representation of the emblem of the Overseas Club who sponsored a large number of aircraft for the RFC. 1701 was declared no longer fit for operational flying after a total flying time of 203 hours 52 minutes and was struck off on in March 1916. There is a colour profile of this aircraft on page 223 of Les Rogers’ book

1695 ‘Overseas’, an early BE2c with Renault engine & skids, donated by the Overseas Club. Note the Airfix kit does not include parts for the skid undercarriage. There is a Czech Master Resin kit in 1/72 of this version and Meikraft also did a short-run injection moulded kit, long OOP but still turns up regularly on ebay. There is a well known photograph of 1695 taken at Farnborough on 1st May 1915 before it was sent to the French authorities in Paris (presumably on loan). It returned to No 1 Aircraft Depot at St Omer on 12th December 1915, then went to 12 Squadron in January 1916. It was wrecked on 2nd February 1916. This aircraft looks very similar to one of the markings options in the Airfix A02104 BE2c which is for 1744 of 12 Squadron

B3995 No 18 Training School, Montrose. It was assembled from spares by ground crews and had the larger, curved BE2e style tail fin, and did not carry national markings on the top wing. A photo appears on page 21 of ‘BE2 in Action’ published by Squadron.

2633 presentation aircraft “Punjab II Kalabach” 16 Sqn France 1915. A small photograph of this aircraft appears on page 72 of ‘Fokker Fodder’ by Paul Hare

Things the reviewer likes about the set

First set of after-market decals for the new Airfix 1/72 kit, yay!

8 markings options, reasonably colourful and interesting, within the historical confines of RFC CDL/PC10 finishes. I liked the inclusion of the Overseas Club emblem

Roundels are in register and the aircraft serials are in correct historical font

Things that could have been improved

The single page decal placement guide is adequate but the profiles are small and no colour call outs are provided.

There is virtually no historical information provided, and no references for the modeller to read further.

Depiction of the presentation marking “Overseas” is a bit uneven, but considering the scale, may be considered ‘good enough’ by most modellers



Overall

An interesting and colourful set of markings options, with plenty of options to choose from. Highly recommended.

The decals were purchased by the reviewer from Hobby Link Japan

References

BE2 in action Peter Cooksley, Squadron/Signal Publications
RAF BE2C, J M Bruce Winsock Datafile 42, Albatros Publications
The RAF BE2c At War! By Paul R Hare, Centenary Datafile 172, Albatros Publications
Aeroplanes of the Royal Aircraft Factory by Paul Hare, Crowood Aviation Series, Crowood Press
Fokker Fodder, The Royal Aircraft Factory BE2c by Paul Hare, Fonthill
British Aviation Squadron Markings of World War I RFC RAF RNAS by Les Rogers, Schiffer Military History

Reviewer: James Fahey
« Last Edit: July 09, 2018, 05:29:57 PM by Jamo »