Fly Models has released a multimedia kit of a very obscure subject: The “Rotachute”.
This aircraft was a combination of an autogiro and a parachute, intended to deliver airborne soldiers to the battlefield in an alternative way to the parachute. From what I read online, the main reason behind this aircraft was due to a shortage of silk during the war. You can find some other interesting stories about this contraption online, including pictures of the prototypes being towed by different trucks (diorama anyone?).
In a diminutive open-side box you get 14 injected plastic parts and 9 photoetch ones. There are no clear parts as the original aircraft had none. The decal sheet is miniscule. While the box calls this model “Rotachute Mk.IV”, it might be possible to build the Marks III and V from this box.
The plastic parts are molded in tan. The parts have no flash, but there are some mold lines that would benefit of a pass with a fine sanding stick. Many parts are small and delicate. Removal from the sprues should be done with care. You might have an easier time with a few small parts if replaced by very fine plastic rod or wire.
The photo-etch fret is fantastic, with tiny and sharp detail that would look great once assembled.
The instructions are clear and concise, with color callout along each step. Instructions also refer to some parts being made of “plastic wire”, which I presume is “stretched sprue” or scratchbuild parts.
If you are into obscure items, this is your model. Kudos to Fly Models for releasing a unique and off-the-beaten path subject.
Given the multimedia nature of the kit, plus delicate and fragile parts, I would recommend this kit to experienced modelers.
I would like to thank Fly and IPMS/USA for the review sample.