New model projects: Arado

After the successful completion of my “Grand Messerschmitt project” I thought about starting another project where I build several models in parallel. For a long time I have really wanted to build the Arado Ar 196 -floatplane, an iconic representative of German maritime aircraft from World War 2. My “stash” of unbuilt kits yielded plenty of raw material for a project, and so I have decided to build the following:

  • Arado Ar 196A-2 on loan from Luftwaffe to the Finnish Air Force, sometime in 1943.
  • Arado Ar 196 V3 prototype; this will be a conversion from a twin-float to a single-float configuration.
  • Arado Ar 96B-7 captured by the RAF and used after the war a “unit hack”.
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Grand Messerschmitt project: Conclusion

I am happy to declare that the “Grand Messerschmitt project of 2021” is finally finished, with the completion of the fifth and final model a few days ago. The idea of the project was to study whether models could be built “assembly line” style, taking advantage of the economies of scale. The results are generally positive, the project was a success, but I learned a number of things too.

First, I think building five models is too many. I think the sweet spot is probably three. And second, to really take advantage of this approach, all the kits should be the same. I used three FineMolds’ kits, one Premium Hobbies’ (ex-Academy) kit, and one Airfix kit (of a completely different variant of the Bf 109, also not a good idea). One idea I have for doing this again is to take three Hasegawa Brewster Buffalo kits and build them all as aircraft of the Finnish Air Force, then there will be sufficient similarities to yield benefits. Nevertheless, in this project I was able to take advantage of painting four aircraft with the German RLM 74/75/76 camouflage, painting three identical propellers all at the same time, five sets of landing gears, etc.

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