Roden 1/32 SPAD XIII

By Masaki Tsuda

I recently finished building Frank Luke’s SPAD XIII.

Frank Luke was America's second highest ace in WWI. He shot down 14 balloons and 4 planes just in 10 sorties in 8 days. After making an emergency landing behind enemy lines, he refused to surrender, returned fire with a pistol, and was shot dead.

Roden's SPAD XIII is a little difficult to assemble in some respects, but the proportions are good. One of the shortcomings of Roden's kit is the quality of the decals. The decals for the unit markings of the 27th Aero Squadron, to which Frank Luke belonged, were not similar to the real ones, so the decals were printed by tracing photos of the real markings. The checkered pattern on the wings was also corrected to four rows, although the kit has three rows. I used photo etching hexagon mesh for sides of the engine cowling and stole Vickers guns from spare parts of Copper State Model’s Nieuport kits.

The Frank Luke figure was sold on Amazon, and although I don't know the manufacturer, the quality is very good.

I also built a Hispano-Suiza 8Ab engine. This is an independent engine kit by RODEN. It is very finely crafted. I highly recommend this kit to everyone. I want more engine kits to be released!

© Masaki Tsuda 2024

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This article was published on Thursday, May 02 2024; Last modified on Saturday, May 04 2024