ICM 1/72 U-2/Po-2VS Soviet Light Night Bomber Kit First Look
By Dave Manter
|Date of Review||December 2012||Manufacturer||ICM|
|Subject||U-2/Po-2VS Soviet Light Night Bomber||Scale||1/72|
|Kit Number||72241||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Nice details, multi part engine, can be built as a wheeled or ski equipped version||Cons||None|
|Skill Level||Advanced||MSRP (USD)||$14.99|
The Polikarpov U-2 was designed by Nikolai Polikarpov to replace the U-1 trainer. The prototype first flew on January 7th, 1928, piloted by M.M. Gromov. Aircraft from the pre-production series were tested at the end of 1928 and serial production started in 1929 in Factory Nr 23 in Leningrad. Production in the Soviet Union ended in 1953.
From the beginning, the U-2 became the basic Soviet civil and military trainer aircraft. It was also used for transport, and as a military liaison aircraft, due to its STOL capabilities. Although entirely outclassed by contemporary aircraft, the U-2 served extensively on the Eastern front in World War II, primarily as a liaison, medevac and general supply aircraft. It was especially useful for supplying Soviet partisans behind the front line. Its low cost and easy maintenance led to a production run of over 40,000 aircraft.
Wehrmacht troops nicked named it Nahmaschine (sewing machine) for its rattling sound and Finnish troops called it Hermosaha (Nerve Saw). The enemy soon became aware of the threat posed by the U-2, and Luftwaffe pilots were given special instructions for engaging these aircraft. The usual tactics involved flying only a few meters above the ground, rising for the final approach, cutting off the engine and making a gliding bomb run, leaving the targeted troops with only the eerie whistling of the wind in the wings bracing wires as an indication of the impending attack.
The ICM kit of the Soviet U-2 aircraft consists of 100 grey plastic parts and 6 clear plastic parts. All of the parts feature very nice details and are molded very well. The fabric texture on the wings is very well done. The seam lines are very fine and flash is non-existent.
The marking included with the kit are for four aircraft. They are:
- U-2VS of the 213th Night Bomber Air Division, Summer 1943. Aircraft green with black camo over light blue
- U-2VC, Winter 1942. Aircraft white wash over green
- Po-2VS of the 46th Tamansky GvNBAP, Spring 1945. Aircraft green with black and tan camo over light blue
- P0-2VS of the 2nd Polish NBAP, Krakow, Lublin area, Summer 1944. Aircraft green with black and tan camo over light blue
The instructions are very well written and should be easy to follow. A rigging diagram is included on the back. The kit features a very nice, multi part engine, good interior details and can be built as a wheeled version or a ski equipped version.
My sincere thanks to Squadron Mail Order for this review sample!