Eduard L-29 Delfin 1/48
Many generations of military pilots get training on Aero L-29 Delfin, jet two seat trainer designed and manufactured in CSSR. It was exported to several countries and last known user was LNR (Aviatsiya Lughanska Narodna Republika), who adopted one sample from museum and use it. It maiden flight was in 1959 and trial competitor for Warsaw Pact trainer held in 1961 at Monino and no matter it have inferior performance then other competitor, it was chosen as pilot jet trainer due to the better handling characteristics. Thousand of machine was manufactured by Aero and Let, greatest number of them for Soviet Union.
Sad to note that there is not much kits of this plane at all, it is far underestimated by manufacturer. Worst situation was in 1/48 where was available only kit from Planet Models and big refresh happen in 2013 when AMK deliver it as injection kit. Kit is simple and excellent designed, detailed and correct in overall look. Eduard follow this and deliver few product to update this kit and best one is Big Sin, ultimate etched upgrade set for L-29 in 1/48 scale from AMK. And this year, Eduard pack this kit under their label and deliver it as ProfiPACK. With stock code 8099, it bring kit with Eduard upgrade material.
Box is nice designed, smaller size, with attractive cover art. Inside of box is nice full color assembly booklet, five fret with grey plastic and one with transparent, three etched sets and all three with painted elements, protective masks and three sheet of decals (two with service labels and stencils and one with national and unit markings). Assembly start with pilot seats, each of the consist of two half’s, left and right as well pilot head rest and cushion. To regret, my sample comes damaged, on the top of the pilot seat is one rod and it was damaged on both parts. If you have similar situation, you need to replace it with metal or plastic rod of similar size. After this basic elements is assembled, I paint all interior parts in basic grey color proposed by Eduard but please note that it is not always same color. After basic color dried, I have assembled all elements and number of them is etched elements, which give really great look to the kit.
Kit have nice options to let cockpit canopy open as well to open nose of airplane and entire interior is good made and worth considering to be open. Only one critical situation is weight space, it was so narrow and you need to use small fishing lead balls to fill space. I put it under the cockpit hub but alternate option is to put it in nose, in front leg bay. On kit, as well real plane, front door is closed and hide much of interior so you can insert lead there, in case you have problems with stand of kit.
No special remarks about the same assembly, parts are excellent designed and fit, all goes smooth and no real need for filler. But on several areas I find depression of plastic, this is result of plastic shrink during kit plastic cooling in molds. Most prominent was in inner flaps and as well there is options to make natural metal kits, this area need to be cover by filler and make smooth. It is important as well metal paints, show any surface imperfection, so have this in mind. One more remark is about nose leg, it is tinny and a bit fragile, take care during handling, to keep it from crash.
As well it is easy for build, it was ready for painting just after few days. Options for paintings are few. First provided sample is natural metal machine no 4902 from Czech Republic, 11th Fighter Regiment; second is nice desert camouflaged used by Egypt Air Force; third is from Cold War Era, Czechoslovakia, end of ’60, early ’70, number 3246 from 1. Fighter Regiment and natural metal livery; fourth sample is one operated in USA, Reno Air Base, with Soviet markings and attractive blue grey camouflage; final one with Slovak markings, used in International Fighter Pilots Academy, number on machine 3250.
I find this last machine interesting, as well I realize that in my shelf I have no Slovak aircrafts do and decide to make it. It have interesting painting, where fuselage is grey color, wings are natural metal at bottom, horizontal tail also natural metal at bottom, nice three color on the top of wings and horizontal surfaces. First thing I have do is spray silver on fuselage and wings and horizontal tail. Yes, you read well, I spray silver on fuselage as well I did not notice it is not silver but grey. I notice that when it was ready for decals and I immediately paint fuselage in silver. Decals is more easy then I expected as well it have no any service markings, they are so many provided, so the work on decals last maybe hour. After that, I use fine blue wash over panels to enhance details.
Excellent kit!! Real pleasure to build it, absolute no specific problem, details are top provided and options for presenting it is also nice! High recommendation for that kit and big thanks to Eduard for provided sample. And how about to go here and get few for you?