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Luftwaffe WWII Too Late Props: 1/48th Monogram Do 335A-0 Arrow (Pfeil)

Updated: Oct 11, 2023

Issued way back in 1974, this 1/48th Do-335A is a classic Monogram kit. Pretty basic by today’s standard, it is still a nice kit for the price. Full disclosure, I don't consider raised panel lines and a bit of work to get a kit shelved, reason to ditch a kit. If the basic shape and fit are present and accounted for, I am good to go. Note: This rule applies for a "nice-to-have" type (as opposed to a "must-have" type, in which case I will lean towards paying a higher price for a better kit). Do whatever suits you, if this build type is not your cup of tea, build whatever makes your day. This kit does seem to have the correct shape and dimensions (reportedly better lengthwise than the Tamiya kit).

Notable Kit Features:

  • Well detailed instructions (complete with little check-off boxes)

  • There is an option to build a hypothetical 2-seat night-fighter version (or just a 2-seat version if you want to stray from the instructions and modify the rear pit)

  • Optional open engine panels to add interest (or perhaps make you break out the filler if you want to close them)

  • Decent half-cast engine feature

  • Nice raised detail for the cockpit panels (typical of Monogram)

  • Separate flaps which can be positioned

  • Old-school raised panel lines (This kit is from 1974 after all)

Build Inspiration:

I don't often build non-operational or experimental types (I have to limit the collection someplace) however, I came across this kit at a very reasonable price and my "buy" threshold cut in. (Like a true styrene-junkie, sometimes I can't help myself ;) The aircraft's seldom seen puller-pusher layout as well as its late-war paint colours inspired me to finally get this kit out of the box and onto the shelf.

Heads-Up Report:

  • Thick cockpit glass

  • Several gaps in parts fit that require patches / filler

  • Rear fuselage vents on both sides create empty see-through aspect unless corrected

  • Gaps at the bottom wing to nose gear well and fuselage join

  • Poor-fitting panel on nose of aircraft will require styrene gap fill and filler fix

  • Poor fitting ventral intake will require sanding and reshaping

  • Way too shallow wheel wells

  • German night fighters had four ‘toasting fork’ aerials on the wings, two for the lateral beams on the port side and two for the vertical on the starboard side, therefore modification will be necessary to build the fictitious night-fighter

Kit Additions / Modifications:

  • Added basic seatbelts to the pilot's seat

  • Placed plastic card in the rear fuselage cooler area to eliminate see-through fuselage aspect

  • Cut open posed the rear engine’s oil cooler exhaust duct in the open/dropped position

  • Added nose weight (to do away with use of kit tail prop-up piece)

  • Added steel pin to flaps mechanism (Admittedly I broke the kit plastic here)

  • Used steel pin for engine hatch prop-open panel

  • lightly sanded flat wheels to produce "weighted" look

End Result:

The use of styrene sheets plus the application of thick gap-filling cyanoacrylate glue to fix several areas to get here, will strip this kit of high-praise however, for an inexpensive kit (from the 1970s) you are able to produce a good result (with average skills). If you want to rid the kit of its raised panel lines and then re-scribe the lines, you could really make something stellar with this kit. I still think "as-is" the Monogram kit is worth building if you want to have this type in your collection, go for it.

Completed build #240 - December 2020 using the 1/48th scale Monogram #7538 kit.

Feel free to ask any questions - Keep on building what you want, how you want - Cheers

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