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Albatros W.4



Roden's 1/72 scale Albatros W.4 is available online from Squadron.com


S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Roden 1/72 scale Albatros W.4
Scale: 1/72
Contents and Media: See text below
Price: USD$7.96 from Squadron.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Excellent research, attention to detail, delicate parts.
Disadvantages: Sink marks on radiator grill.
Recommendation: Recommended


Reviewed by Robert Baumgartner




Despite its extensive use in the areas of the Baltic and North Sea, the W.4 has largely been neglected in the modeling world.

Since Roden had already released an Albatros D.I/D.II, it seemed logical to assume that a W.4 was just around the corner. Finally it is here, and a most welcome addition it is too.



The kit represents the earliest version of the W.4. The three kitted machines are from the first production batch.

The parts closely match Ian Stair’s plans in the Seaplane issue of Windsock magazine, as well as comparing favorably with published photographs.

The box contains five sprues of light gray plastic, three of which are new. The parts have excellent detail and no ejection pin marks need cleaning up. Sprues A and Z are the familiar ones and despite their long usage, these molds do not appear to have deteriorated. The generic early Albatros fuselage of previous releases is supplied with the instructions clearly illustrating which details need removing for this variant.
As usual, the spares box gets more goodies in the way of an engine and machine guns.

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

The W.4 gave the pilot a superb view from the cockpit thanks to an increased wing gap. As such, longer struts are needed and these are supplied on sprue M. These struts are near scale thickness so extreme care is needed not to break them. If you do manage to break one, spares from the aileron wing linkage intended for the “late type” W.4 will help. A new exhaust is provided as well as control column and rudder bar.

Being a seaplane fighter, we must have floats. Sprue K contains these and they are of the correct first batch type. Easy assembly is assured thanks to the floats already having the spreader bar molded between them. Windhoff radiators are present but those supplied will need their sinkholes filled. Sadly this will affect the nice grill detail.

The wings are found on sprue H and feature Roden’s lovely subtle rib effect. The cross sections and trailing edges are wonderfully thin, the latter being the cause of a little flash. This is easily eliminated as part of the normal cleaning up process. The larger tail plane is also catered for, complete with molded on control horns.
Further evidence of the late W.4 can also be found with the aileron-fitted lower wings and upper wing radiator.


Markings are provided for all three of the initial production batch with “747” being the prototype. The other two are numbered “784” and “785”.



All three examples are finished with a varnished plywood fuselage and natural linen flying surfaces. The floats are assumed to have been painted in the same gray green colour that was used for the nose panels and spinner.

Due to the nature of the aircraft, the decal sheet is not as large as some of Roden’s other releases. My example was well printed and in perfect register. Take care when using the decals though, as past experience has shown them to be prone to silvering and not wanting to adhere to their intended surface.





This is a great kit of a much-ignored subject. With other later versions of the W.4 to come, Roden will allow the modeller to collect the complete series of this important seaplane.


Thanks to Squadron.com for the review sample.

Review and Images Copyright © 2002 by Robert Baumgartner
Page Created 30 December, 2002
Last updated 22 July, 2003

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