Since we have a couple build articles on Fokker D.VIIs this month, check those articles out for more information on the type. Meanwhile, here's the kit....
With the recent release of the Roden Fokker D.VII kits it was a bit disappointing to hear that MAC was coming out with a kit of this plane as well. After seeing their recent Roland D.VI and Phönix kits, though, I was hoping that MAC would build off of what Roden provided and we’d end up with a much better Fokker D.VII. Sadly, this isn’t the case. The kit comes molded in the now standard MAC tan plastic, with a small fret of photoetch and two decal sheets.
Starting with what goes inside, the engine is made up from a right and left half, with the cylinder tops being a third piece. While this piece could probably use a bit more detail on the sides, realistically not much other than the top will be seen once it’s in the fuselage. MAC departs from the style of interior that they’ve used on previous kits in that the cockpit floor is separate from the ‘floor’ for the engine. The cockpit is made up from a combination of photoetch and plastic, while the fuselage sidewalls round out the interior detailing with some rudimentary structure showing.
Moving outside, the machine guns are very simplistic and most modelers will want to replace them with something that has a bit more detailing. The cowling front is well done, though, with the mesh being nicely represented. Moving back from this piece, though, the cooling louvers on the sides of the nose are represented by raised platforms rather than actual vents. This will not be easy to fix in the kit, although perhaps a complete resin nose might do the trick.
The wings and tailplanes have very well done rib detail, restrained but present. The upper wing in my example was slightly warped, but some careful bending soon fixed that. All of the flying surfaces are molded as one piece, with the exception of the lower wing (separated into right and left pieces). The struts for the wings are molded thin, while the tailplane struts are provided out of photoetch.
The decals in this kit are very impressive, providing no less than six examples, all from Jasta 18. With their red forward fuselages and white rears, they were very colorful birds. All of them have some sort of bird on the sides, and all have different wing arrangements, with some having lozenge and others a combination of lozenge and red paint. The decal sheets include lozenge pattern, complete with rib tapes, as well as all the necessary fuselage markings including complete stenciling. Printed by MPD the decals are nicely printed and in perfect register.
While this isn’t the perfect Fokker D.VII we all wanted, it does have its merits. Most importantly, though, is a little card in the box from MAC, asking what we’d like to see next from them. That alone is reason enough to pick up this kit, as then we can all send the card back and ask for a SPAD 7 and 13. If you’ve got a pile of Revell Fokker D.VIIs sitting in the closet, the leftover decals would allow you to have an entire Jasta 18 lineup on your shelves as well.