CASA C-41A – "US Transport Plane"

Published: October 19th, 2018     
Product Image
Box Art
Reviewed by: 
Jarrod Booth, IPMS# 44739
Scale: 1/72
Company: Special Hobby
Price: $35.00
Product / Stock #: SH 72385

The CASA-212 Aviocar is a versatile transport aircraft that was manufactured in Spain since the '60's, and Indonesia until 2012. The C-41A is a military version used by the US, Mexico and many other countries within Central and South America. It exhibits excellent short field takeoff and landing (STOL) abilities, and is able to operate from unprepared airstrips.

This model is a re-release of various other versions of the aircraft. It comes in a very sturdy top opening box with a nice painting of the US military C-41A. All sprue trees were contained in one bag, with the clear parts and decal sheet in their own bags. The clear plastic bags are closed with sticky strips, so be careful when removing the decal sheet, and that you don't allow the sticky strip to attach itself to the decals. I did, somehow, and had a heart stopping minute separating them! The instruction manual is printed on good quality glossy paper, and each step is clear, accurate and in color where needed.

After looking over each sprue, it is clear that any version of this aircraft could be built. There are well over 100 unused parts, including different control surfaces, fuselage side panels, a long nose option, another set of propellers, main wheel sponsons, external fuel tanks, antennae's and clear parts. WOW!!!

The decal sheet is printed by Cartograf. They are glossy, colorful and in register.

Construction starts with the interior, including the cockpit, a choice of forward fuselage side panels (dependent on which of the four liveries you chose) and cabin windows. There is no cabin detail and nothing can really be seen beyond the cockpit. I left the cabin unpainted as the plastic is a fairly dark grey. The cockpit detail is fine as is. Four decals furnish the instrument panel which look good. It would have been nice, however, if decals were included for the center console between the pilot seats and the overhead panel. They can be seen through the large side windows.  I made simple seat belts using 3M tape painted grey with silver buckles. The rest of the cockpit was painted as per the instruction. The round cabin window diameters were a hair small, but Testors clear glue closed any slight gaps between the windows and the fuselage walls.

I added some weight in the separate nose cone and in front of the instrument panel. The fuselage halves were then glued together. I found I got a better fit from the fuselage and other parts when I deepened the locating holes a little using a small drill. They were a little shallow.

Two antennae's are removed from the fuselage roof and holes need drilling to accept new antennae's appropriate for the version you are building. The tailplanes and elevators are assembled and attached to the fuselage. If the elevators and rudder are attached carefully, they can be movable. The wings contain a single, complete upper section and two lower parts. Once the wing was assembled I found the fit to the fuselage to be one of the best I have ever experienced!!

The main landing gear and sponsons were attached. There is nice interior detail but nothing can be seen when the sponsons are glued on. More antennae's and sensors are attached to the belly, again depending on the aircraft you are building. I left the nose gear and main wheels off until the end.

The square tipped propeller option is used for all four versions in this box. They proved to be the most time consuming with masking the black rubber de-icing boots. The prop tip warning strips are provided as decals. Three liveries use all white stripes and the version shown on the box top has white/red/white stripes.

The engine nacelles, exhaust pipes and propeller spinner back plate were assembled and glued together. The nacelles needed some sanding to remove seams. These fitted fairly nicely, although I needed to trim a few mounting places to get a better fit to the wings.

I used Eduard set CX-503 to mask all the windows except the first cabin window on each side of the fuselage. These were painted over, or not there at all on the version I chose. The entire aircraft was painted white, followed by masking and painting the black nose anti-glare panel, and the rear of the engine nacelles and wings. Several gloss coats prepared the model for decals.

The decal sheet includes the wing, tailplane and tail de-icing boots, prop tip stripes, stencils and four livery options. I had chosen the forth decal choice, a green striped Evergreen Airlines Aircraft contracted by the CIA in the 2000's. This was a tough call as all four schemes were appealing. Cartograf decals are a joy to work with and these were no exception. They laid down nicely, and sunk themselves into panel lines before any setting solution was used. They are thin, but tough enough to be maneuvered into position. A further gloss clear coat sealed these in.

Final assembly consisted of adding the "breakable" parts like antennae's, pitot tubes, boarding step, propellers and wheels/nose undercarriage. A light wash was applied to select panel lines, as from what I had seen online, these aircraft were kept fairly clean. Previous boxing's offered photo etch windscreen wipers, and other details that are not part of this package. This is by no means a deal breaker, but they would have been nice additions to the large cockpit windows.

With all the options in one box, this kit represents really good value. I would recommend it to all modelers, however, a couple of builds under ones belt would be helpful when dealing with removal and addition of all the various options.

My thanks to Special Hobby and IPMS USA for allowing me to review this nice model.

  • Right Front
    Right Front
  • Top
    Top
  • Left Side
    Left Side
  • Left Tail
    Left Tail
  • Bottom 1
    Bottom 1
  • Upside Down Right
    Upside Down Right
  • Left Front
    Left Front

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