1/48 Eduard Polikarpov I-16 Type 10

Gallery Article by Douglas Fede on Feb 18 2011


This Eduard I-16 was built, marked, and painted for a type 10 flown during the Spanish Civil War sometime around 1938.  Eduard presents a nice kit in the Weekend Edition.  It is a new tool with finely engraved panel lines, a clear canopy, a decal sheet for one aircraft, and instructions.  The decals represent the Popeye mascot used by the 4th squadron of the Spanish Republican Air Force.  The CM on the fuselage stands for Caza Mosca or fly hunter as these were known as moscas or flies by the Republican forces.

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The kit went together quickly but there are several fit issues especially at the wing root on top, the cowling, and the underside wing to fuselage.  In these spots, I used super glue and Mr. Hobby liquid putty to get a better finish.  The landing gear assembly was nicely detailed but I added some wire to simulate the line which pulls the gear up.  (This was the first monoplane aircraft to utilize retractable landing gear).

In the cockpit, there is some detail.  The instrument panel is represented with a decal which is fine because most of the interior is very hard to see once the kit is built.  I used a set of Eduard PE color seat-belts for the harness. 

The kit was painted with Model Master Russian Top side green and Tamiya Light blue.  The red wing tip bands, fuselage band, and rudder banner were all masked off and airbrushed although the kit does provide a decal for the rudder.  I chose a Squadron crystal clear canopy for a replacement since the kit canopy cracked while I was masking it.  It is quite delicate so use care.  Eduard was kind enough to send me a replacement as well.  Great customer service there.

The decals were thin and went on very well and later I used MMP weathering powders to simulate exhaust smoke, highlight panels, and for other detailing. 

In all, a more experienced modeler can build this kit up quickly.  Masking the small canopy, building the landing gear, and filling and sanding gaps took up most of my time.  Still, I would recommend this kit to any Spanish Civil War enthusiast. 

Douglas Fede

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Photos and text by Douglas Fede