flying boat"! MSW Crew-mate Jim McIntosh (JimMrr) sends us a batch of photo's of his kit based, scratch-built detailed Lohner L, reconnaissance flying boat, in this MSW On Display! "/>
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Lohner L~WWI Reconnaissance Flying Boat

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"What? An aeroplane at MSW? Sure, when it is a "flying boat"! MSW Crew-mate Jim McIntosh (JimMrr) sends us a batch of photo's of his kit based, scratch-built detailed Lohner L, reconnaissance flying boat, in this MSW On Display! "

the history...
The Lohner L was a reconnaissance flying boat produced in Austria-Hungary during World War I. It was a two-bay sesquiplane of typical configuration for the flying boats of the day, with its engine mounted pusher-wise on struts in the interplane gap. The pilot and observer sat side-by-side in an open cockpit, and both upper and lower sets of wings featured sweepback. The design was essentially an enlarged version of the single-bay Lohner E, and proved to be highly influential. Apart from licenced production by UFAG, the L provided the basis for designs from other major manufacturers. In Germany, Hansa-Brandenburg manufactured a modified version of it as their first flying boat, the FB, and in Italy, a captured example was used as a pattern aircraft by Macchi, who produced it as the L.1. In turn, the L.1 would provide the foundation for a large number of Macchi designs over the coming years.

The captured aircraft (serial L.40) was taken intact near the naval air station of Port Corsini. The captured flying-boat was copied by Macchi-Nieuport and the L.1 was built within a month. The L.1s were delivered to Italian maritime reconnaissance and bombing units based on the Adriatic. An improved version was developed as the Macchi L.2

A restored example of an Austro-Hungarian Lohner L (serial L.127) is preserved at the Italian Air Force Museum at Vigna di Valle.

Lohner L
Hansa-Brandenburg FB
Macchi L.1 - with Fiat machine gun and Isotta-Fraschini V.4A engine (14 built)

Austro-Hungarian Navy
Imperial German Navy
Italian Navy (Macchi L.1)

Specifications (Lohner L)
Crew: Two, pilot and observer
Length: 10.26 m (33 ft 8 in)
Wingspan: 16.20 m (53 ft 2 in)
Height: 3.85 m (12 ft 8 in)
Wing area: 53.0 m² (570 ft²)
Empty weight: 1,150 kg (2,535 lb)
Gross weight: 1,700 kg (3,750 lb)
Powerplant: 1 × Austro-Daimler, 120 kW (160 hp)
Maximum speed: 105 km/h (65 mph)
Range: 600 km (375 miles)
Service ceiling: 2,500 m (8,200 ft)
1 × trainable machine gun for observer
200 kg (440 lb) of bombs

the model...
This is the vacuform Wings 72 kit. I bought it for $6.00 on a whim, and now consider it my favorite model. The cockpit interior had a pair of Toko seats installed, everything else was scratch built. The seatbelts, instrument panel and stick were added as per Windsock Data file specs. The ballast caps on the rear fuselage were styrene rod cut and sanded into discs (I didn’t have a punch set at the time) all bracing rods are florist wire cut to windsock specs. This includes the engine support rack, which was a real pain to get all the angles right.

The wing struts are contrail brand strut stock cut and trimmed to specs. The rigging is my lovely wife’s hair, which she kindly donated for this project (and all my others too!). The center section of the top wing was scribed using an Exacto knife, and clasps were added using Evergreen stock.

The engine started as a spare in the Roden Fokker D.VII kit and was detailed as follows:
i.) Ignition wiring harness-PART photo etch
ii.) Exhaust pipes-Florist wire
iii.) Pushrods-stretched sprue
iv.) Oil Reservoir-sprue filed to shape with a rod cap and stretched sprue straps added
vi.) Radiator-came with the kit
vii.) Propeller- I used wooden strips ...some were soaked overnight in woodstain.These were sandwiched together when dry and clamped. I carved the blades with a #3 exacto blade and sanded. A wash of burnt umber oils was applied, and then the prop was varnished.
viii.) Prop boss-styrene discs cut from sprue using a razor saw and sanded to thickness. A micro drill was used to show all the tiny holes.
ix.) The outboard wing floats were entirely scratch built. I carved balsa cores, then coated them in a fairly thick putty coating and sanded to form. These were drilled and florist wire struts were added and the entire assembly was fixed to the wing using crazy glue.

PAINTING- The fuselage was primed using Humbrol linen, and allowed to dry for 3 days. A wash of Burnt Umber oils was applied and straking was introduced after the paint had a chance to grab the plastic. A varnish consisting of Future floor wax was used to protect the finish.

The wings were given a coat of Humbrol linen, and all ribs were pre-shaded using black. Humbrol linen was mist-coated on and gradually built out until the black was just a shadow under the linen.

All shadowing was done using oil washes. The dolly and sawhorses came from an unknown resin kit I picked up at a swap meet.

Decals came from the kit.
This is a sweet little kit that I think has been re-issued and I recommend it to anyone into flying boats....(or boats...;) )
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About the Author

About Jim McIntosh (JimMrr)

I live in a small rural town with my wife and 2 dogs in an old farmhouse they say used to have ghosts..seems ok now.I spend my free time fixing up the house(pre-1886) and studying WW2. I model whenever I can,and thank the Lord for all His blessings in my life.


An outstanding job on a flying "Boat"
JUL 24, 2008 - 02:16 PM
Having had the privilege of seeing this fine model up close at local model shows, I can honestly say that the photos do not give a good account on just how small the model is and how tightly packed the fine detail is. Well done Jim, and thanks for sharing. Frank
JUL 24, 2008 - 02:37 PM
truly a great craftsman's work, I love the fragility of the work
JUL 24, 2008 - 08:47 PM
That is a superb build and what a beautiful aeroplane. Sheer class!
JUL 25, 2008 - 08:53 AM
You guys are too kind ...Im just glad you guys like this model too...I had /have an extremely torrid love affair with her...Im really looking foreward to repairing the tail section,which I inadvertantly destroyed when I hit it with the lens of my camera taking closeups! I tend to almost forget about most of the models I build...but not this one....
JUL 25, 2008 - 12:15 PM
Hey: I just got a chance to check out your flying boat! Great job! I really like the way you replicated the natural wooden hull and propeller! Keep up the great work! And it's a vacuform kit to boot!
JUL 26, 2008 - 02:48 PM
Beautiful work, I love this aircraft Is it a boat with wings? Can a plane or to float? these works are appreciated by their originality Domi
AUG 05, 2008 - 03:57 AM
Thank you Domi,yes this is an aircraft that can land on water.
AUG 05, 2008 - 11:26 AM
Yes Domi, to all questions!
AUG 05, 2008 - 12:22 PM
Hi Guys ---Id really like some advice here that the mental trauma I suffered from crushing my Lohners tail has subsided ...Im planning my repairs....I am currently thinking of drilling the fuselage on one side of the tailstrut connection location. If I leave 1 strut slightly longer I can positively mount the tailsection. The sweaty part is the fact that I have 3 sets of 2 control cables to not only keep tight ....but keep from tearing out of their locations.( Iv already re-rigged this tail 3 times now and its enough to make me homicidal at times!) What do you guys think,am I over engineering this thing,....any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!
AUG 09, 2008 - 02:28 AM