Brengun 1/72 Aero A-18
By Matt Bittner
The Aero A-18 was a biplane fighter aircraft built in Czechoslovakia in the 1920s. It was a development of the Ae 02 and Ae 04 fighters Aero had designed during World War I, but also borrowed from the more recent A.11 reconnaissance-bomber design.
It's excellent we're seeing more between-the-wars ('tweener) aircraft models and currently it appears the Czech modeling industry is leading the charge. There have been plenty of Czech 'tweeners released in the past few years in 1/72 scale and some have been released by Brengun.
The Brengun 1/72 Aero A-18 consists of 34 pieces of gray resin and decals for two aircraft:
- An overall aluminum aircraft, C.190
- A multi-colored camouflage aircraft with an emblem on the side
The molding quality of this kit is extremely nice and the only thing missing are seat belts, easily added from a photoetch set. The quality of molding is so high the floor piece consists of not only the floor but also the front bulkhead, rudder pedals and seat, with no loss of detail. Nice! The entire cockpit consists of only three pieces: the floor, the control stick and the instrument panel. With the proper painting, washes and dry brushing the detail will really stand out.
Once the three cockpit pieces are put into one fuselage half then the halves can be glued together. Now the tail pieces are added along with the guns (although those might be best left until after painting so they can be painted separately). The next instruction step has you glue on the exhaust stacks and the landing gear. I will leave off the stacks until the end but will decide when I build the kit if I add the landing gear now, or at the end.
In an unusual twist, Brengun has you add all wing struts to the underside of the upper wing prior to adding the upper wing to the rest of the kit. Interesting and will only work if the strut mating areas are perfect and don't need any finessing. Again, something to be figured out as you build the kit. But in any event, definitely paint the underside of the upper wing prior to adding the struts, and it would be good to paint the struts first as well.
Now the lower wings are glued to the fusleage via a butt-joint. I might add some pegs for a better mating surface. The final steps of construction have you add the upper wing and shows how the rigging looks, which is not supplied.
I've always been a fan of 'tweeners and with how the Czech modeling companies have released many 'tweener kits of their own company's designs, have become enaomoured with Czech 'tweeners. They can be either single-color (like this releases C.190) or very colorful with multiple camouflage colors. Brengun's 1/72 Aero A-18 is an excellent release into this relm and even though resin, has a really high level of detail that needs to be seen to be believed. I am really looking forward to building this kit.
I definitely send lots of "thanks" to Brengun for sending their Aero A-18 for review.