1/48 Monogram A-26C Invader

Gallery Article by Sean Langley on June 13 2018



Here's my latest, Monogram's A-26C from the ProModeller A-26B box, with a replacement fuselage courtesy of the boss of Britmodeller. Additions are Quickboost engines, True Details wheels, and Albatros decals.

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You're probably familiar with the Monogram pattern of good detail and much less good fit. In this case - apart from the usual - there are two areas of particular concern.

One is the engines. Like many from Monogram, this kit's engines seem to have melted, so I went for the Quickboost jobs. There the problems start. An A-26's nacelle is pretty much a smooth cylinder. Quickboost include cooling gills that are too narrow, giving it a pinched waist, and the kit cowlings meet them with a noticeable step. So I bought Quickboost cowlings, assuming they'd fit better, but in fact they were looser - you could have passed the engines right through them. In the end, I mounted the resin engines onto the kit's nacelle parts for the least bad fit. (And wired them fully.) My advice: the engines are worth having, but don't waste your money on the cowlings.

The other dodgy bit is the fin. The assembled tailplane slips into a slot between the fin and the tailcone. While the contours of the tailcone match left to right, the slot on the right is lower than on the left. The effect is to dip the whole tailplane to the right, and also to cant the fin a few degrees that way. My solution was to lift that side with a couple of plies of thin card and fill the resulting gaps. I think I've got away with it.

The decals were thick and stiff, which gave me a few problems. I had to bin the rudder stripes and paint them instead, as they were far too big.

But the kit's good points: a nice interior, clear transparencies, a good dihedral angle on the wings. All in all I like it and it looks good on a table, especially in these colours, which are for l'Armée de l'Air in Algeria in the late 1950s. They seem to have kept their aircraft fairly well, so I've made the paintwork look tired rather than eroded.

Next: something that fits!

Sean Langley

Photos and text © by Sean Langley