u m m a r y
|Contents and Media:
||3 sprues in "limited
run" injected plastic, 1 photoetched fret, 15 resin parts, 1
sheet of decals, 1 clear film (instruments) and 5 parts in clear
||USD$21.46 from Squadron.com
||Pleasing resin castings and
photo-etch; nice engraved detail; fit appears better than some
larger, well known brands.
||Some small areas of flash.
||Recommended for experienced
modellers (due to the multi-media nature of the kit)
by Dale Smith.
The Bristol Blenheim started its life as a design
for a fast, twin engined transport aircraft capable of carrying six
passengers and 2 crew . It was initially developed in 1935 by the Bristol
Aeroplane Co. Ltd.
The Bristol Type 142 was faster than any RAF
aircraft then in service and soon came to the attention of the British Air
Ministry. Certain modifications were made to the basic design resulting in
the Type 142 M . These modifications included the fitting of a gun turret
in the upper rear fuselage, and the moving of the wing from the lower to
mid fuselage position so that the airframe could accommodate a bomb
The Blenheim Mk 1, as the aircraft was now known,
first flew at Filton on 25 June, 1936. 150 aircraft were ordered by the
RAF with further orders being received from Finland, Lithuania,
Turkey and Yugoslavia. The first aircraft were delivered to the RAF in
March 1937and went to 114 (Bomber) Squadron. A further 434 airframes were
ordered in 1936. During later years it was replaced in frontline service
by the Blenheim Mk IV, however was still used in the training and second
line order of battle bombing missions.
The Blenheim was used very successfully later in
WWII as a night fighter, being fitted with a belly pack containing 4
.303in machine guns with 2000 rounds of ammunition, as well as the first
types of airborne interception radar.
MPM's 1/72 scale Blenheim Mk. I is molded in a
light grey limited production style plastic with very little flash.
Detail is very nicely engraved and I was unable
to locate any sink marks or malformed parts. All the parts have a very
smooth finish, not like some other limited run kits I have reviewed that
would require considerable sanding down during construction.
The injection molding gates on the parts are a
little larger than, say, a Hasegawa kit, but will be very easily cleaned
up during construction. The light grey resin parts supplied include 2 x
engines, 2 x different style rear turret machine guns (single or twin), a
resin upper fuselage turret base for the differing Finnish version, and 2
styles of propeller spinner.
Certain detail items are supplied on an etched
fret (by Eduard) such as seat belts, instrument panel, rudder pedals and
an instrument side-panel for the cockpit. A film for the instruments is
Click the thumbnails below
to view the images full-sized.
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Three decal marking choices are supplied:
3rd Flight, 42
Bomber Squadron, Vartsila AFB, Finnish Airforce 1941.
90 Squadron, RAF,
1938. Aircraft serial K 7059 / TW.
Royal Yugoslav Army
Air Force, 1938.
Colour painting instructions are called out
during construction with referral to the Humbrol range of paints and the
their catalogue numbers. Some FS numbers are quoted in the camouflage
painting instructions as well.
During the review process, a number of parts such
as the fuselage halves, wings, and engine cowlings were removed from the
sprues, cleaned up and dry fitted with very pleasing results. I was
impressed with the fit considering the limited run nature of the kit.
Another area that was interesting is that the entire nose and nose glazing
area is supplied as two halves in clear styrene that when joined, are
added to the fuselage assembly (see pics). This assembly only needs
careful masking before spraying to obtain an acceptable result. Careful
with the glue though, as you'll have a difficult time cleaning up any
blemishes on the inner surface!
MPM are making quite a name for themselves lately, producing unusual
subject items as well as popular aircraft in a limited run production
process that is producing remarkably high quality at an affordable
The multi-media nature of the kit isn't for everyone, and beginners may
struggle with the resin and photo-etch, however the more experienced
modellers will revel in the MPM kits. This Blenheim kit will build up into
a realistic model and is highly recommended.
My thanks to Squadron Mail Order for supplying the sample.
1/72 scale Blenheim Mk.I is available online from Squadron.com
Review Copyright © 2001 by Dale
Page Created 30 April, 2001
Last updated 22 July, 2003
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