Douglas C-47/Dakota/DC-3 Landing Gear

Published on
Review Author(s)
Product / Stock #
Base Kit
Airfix (2014 New-Tool)
Provided by: Scale Aircraft Conversions - Website: Visit Site

First, my thanks to Ross, the CEO of Scale Aircraft Conversions, for providing IPMS/USA with so many examples of his new products. I am certainly not paid to say any of this, but Ross and his crew have taken the metal landing-gear market by storm. Their cautious first releases were met with a chorus of “whys?” That was, until their metal was proven (a bad pun, but true).

My personal epiphany came after building the Revell 1/32 Ju 88 kit. The owner of my local, now-defunct, hobby shop tried to convince me to use a set of SAC gear, but I passed based on the cost. Of course, the kit’s plastic gear failed after two months. I had second thoughts, but I was not convinced to try the SAC products until a similar fate befell my 1/48 Roden T-28; the kit’s gear legs were so accurately scaled, the thin, soft-plastic of the nose-gear leg couldn’t hold the weight of the CMK resin engine I had installed.

Although I was tempted to spend over $60 to try and cast my own set of gear in metal, the pitfalls and learning curve quickly convinced me that a scant $20 spent on a set of Scale Aircraft Conversion metal landing gear was worth the savings in money, time, and energy.

SAC has continued to provide new gear sets for the latest releases. In this case, they have cast a set of gear for the new-tool Airfix C-47. This kit is absolutely fantastic and includes a complete interior. The boxing I used also includes markings for either a 1944 paratrooper version with invasion stripes or a colorful arctic MATS bird.

SAC’s set contains six main-gear parts (the basic gear frame), two strut parts for the tail gear, and two frets of four additional braces for the lower gear. The braces are very delicate. I was not feeling very gentle when the time came to install them, so they only appear on one gear leg. All parts are duplicates of the kit parts, so they fit right into place. While the detail is the same as the plastic, the metal gear benefit from serious additional strength. This is important for this kit in particular. When modeling the ski-equipped version, the skis put enough stress on the main gear that if you even tapped a ski…. The metal gear makes a big difference.

Ultimately, the molding is accurate, there are no flash lines, and the parts require only a bit of cleanup on some of the mounting points before the can be superglued or epoxied into place. This set rates 10 out of 10. I hope Ross and the SAC crew continue to deliver gear this great!

Once again, my thanks to SAC for providing this set and to IPMS/USA for the chance to review it.


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