by: Jean-Luc Formery [ ]
HistoryThe Hanriot HD.1 was a French World War I single seat fighter. Rejected for service with French squadrons in favour of the SPAD S.7, the type was supplied to the Belgians and the Italians with whom it proved highly successful. 831 of a total production of about 1200 were in fact produced by Italian companies under licence.
The kitEduard has already issued the 1:48 scale Hanriot HD.1 in 1999 so it is over 10 years now that the model is available in one form or another. This time it comes in a quite appealing Weekend Edition boxing, though when you open the box for the first time, you rather think: "What? That's all?" Indeed, a WWI fighter is small and a 1:48 model of it doesn't take a lot of space.
This Weekend Edition kit (#8412) comes in a top opening cardboard box. The kit's content is the following:
- 2 sprues of light olive styrene parts.
- 1 clear plastic windscreen.
- 1 decals sheet.
- 1 instruction sheet.
Though the plastic of the kit is not new, it is nevertheless of very good quality. The detail is crisp and the parts almost free from flash. To sum up, the kit doesn't show its age at all.
While some parts are marked as "not to use", there are not many options in the kit. Apart from the possibility to do an aircraft equiped with one or two machine guns, there is nothing more. In this Weekend boxing, only one Vickers machine gun will be needed so one will end up in the spare box.
The model is really simple and shouldn't be too difficult to build, even for someone who does not build WWI subjects regularly. The main parts are composed of two wings, two fuselage halves, one two part cowling, the rudder and the horizontal tail planes. The representation of the fabric on the wings is somewhat "dated" but under a coat of paint it should look alright.
A lot of smaller parts are destined to the cockpit, such as a floor, bulkhead, rudder pedal, instrument panel, seat, lever, handling stick etc... Some holes should be drilled into the pilot seat's back and aftermarket seatbelts added for it to look more accurate. The engine is a single piece and while not very complex, a perfectly acceptable representation of the real thing.
The interplane struts are nice but one will have to be careful when placing them between the wings. Indeed, there is a mistake in the instruction in that parts A26 and A27 are shown on the right side and A28 and A29 on the left side. In reality it should be A26 and A28 on the right side and A27 and A29 on the left side.
The undercarriage sub assembly looks good but with the addition of scratchbuilt bungee cords will be even better. Two "windows" will have to be opened in the rear fuselage next to the tailskid since they have been forgotten by the Czech manufacturer.
A small windscreen made of clear plastic is provided in the kit.
The instructions are printed in black & white only on an A4 sized paper sheet folded so to constitute an A5 sized four pages booklet. Page 1 features a plastic parts layout diagram and a color table (Gunze), pages 2 and 3 are dedicated to the assembly steps and page 4 is a painting and marking guide. Some indications for the rigging are provided but some photo references would be probably better. However, some faint locator marks are present on the plastic parts that show where the cable turnbuckles have to go.
Only one marking option is present in the kit:
- Hanriot HD.1 4386, 81 Squadriglia Caccia, IV Gruppo Aeroplani, Italy, 1917/1918.
While not as spectacular as other WWI machines, the sheme chosen is really nice with Silver doped under surfaces and a two tone Khaki/Green upper camouflage. The markings are colorful though, with Italian roundels in six positions, a tri-color rudder, a big "81" in three positions and ace playing cards artwork on both fuselage sides. The decals are excellent and look as if they have been produced by Eduard. If this is the case, it's their best effort to date.
ConclusionEduard's 1:48 scale Hanriot HD.1 is still a good kit after more than ten years in service and it's nice to see it available once again in this attractive Weekend boxing. It can be recommended to anyone wanting to tackle it's first WWI model given it's simplicity, but will also please the more demanding modellers with only some minor scratchbuilding work involved.
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