SRAM 1/72 Resin AGO C.II
During the early days of WWI many aircraft utilised the pusher format in which the engine and propellor were behind the pilot and the tail was held on a lattice boom behind the wings. Although this is most commonly found on Entente aircraft such as the FE2, DH2, Voison and Farman types, it was also utilized by the German firm of Aerowerke Gustav Otto, otherwise known as AGO. The AGO C.II differed from these other designs in that the tail was carried by a pair of wooden fuselages rather than the usual boom structure seen on most other pushers. Most, if not all AGO C.IIs were used by the Bavarian Air Service, and a total of around 180 of all types of AGO pushers were built.
This intriguing aircraft was recently released in 1/72 scale by SRAM, and this sample made its way to me via a series of trades between a fellow WW1 List member, VAMP Mail Order and myself. My sample scame in a ziplock baggie, but as it was trade, I do not know if this is how it is usually sold or not, but as the cover illustration was a loose page inside, I would think so. The kit itself is cast in the usual light tan resin - except the two nacelle halves which are in a grey-green colour. All castings are nicely done and the only blemishes I could see were in the wheels they had a couple of air bubbles, but these are easily filled.
Starting with the nacelle, it has engraved panel lines and no interior structure. the sides are thin enough that internal details can be incorporated if desired.
The tail booms are cleanly cast and have locators for the unique shaped struts that fit around them and hold them between the wings. However these struts are very fragile in resin and are best replaced - actually this is true of all the struts in the kit.
The wings have nice rib details with thick trailing edges, again sanding can take care of this.
The remaining parts are the Benz engine this has the manifold molded in place with individual pipes leading to each cylinder and should be nice when cleaned up and painted; radiator, wheels, seat, struts and propellor. No other interior details are provided besides the two seats.
The instructions consist of just a side view, top view and front view - apparently from the old Harleyford volume. Additionally there are two photographs of the original aircraft. Decals are confined to just two sizes of crosses (four of each), for the wings and rudders.
No colour notes are provided, however the illustraton shows a wooden nacelle and tail booms with CDL fabric. Photos of some show they may have been in overall white or light blue with black edging to the booms and nacelle - most appealing, especially if done as serving in a Bavarian unit with black and white markings added.
With the exception of the thick trailing edges, the moldings are well done and will make into a most striking and unique addition to the collection.
The kit is available from VAMP Mail Order. My thanks to Todd Hayes for the trade......