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Fw 190V-18

MPM 1/72 Fw 190V-18 Kit First Look

By Ray Mehlberger

Date of Review August 2008 Manufacturer MPM
Subject Focke Wulf Fw 190V-18 Scale 1/72
Kit Number 72033 Primary Media Styrene, PE
Pros Interesting variant Cons  
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (Euro) 14.00€

First Look

Fw 190V-18
Fw 190V-18
Fw 190V-18
Fw 190V-18

Although the Fw-190A had proved an extremely effective fighter, operational experience had shown that the power of its BMW 801 engine tended to drop off at altitudes of 22,967 ft and above. Therefore in 1942, an attempt was made to improve the high-altitude performance of the aircraft, with the Fw-190B and C versions.

The first prototype for the planned Fw-190C version was Fw-190A-0, No. 0036, SK+JS. The Daimler-Benz DB-603A engine, which developed 1,750 PS at take off, was selected as the power plant. The new 10.24 m span wing as used on the Fw-190B was also used on this aircraft. SK+JS had two MG-17’s over the engine and two MG-151/20’s in the wing roots.

Although the turbo-supercharger intended for the C series was not yet fitted at this stage the machine already had excellent performance at altitude. The test program ran under the designation Fw-190V-13(C-0). There then followed the Fw-190V-15, V-16 and V-17. The Fw-190V-18, No. 0040, CF+OY, was considerably different, having a pressurized cabin and being powered by a DB603G engine with Hirth 9-2281 turbo-supercharger which drove a four-bladed propeller. The new engine had a large air intake below the fuselage, and necessitated the fitting of enlarged wooden vertical tail surfaces. The machine was later fitted with the DB603A-1 engine under the designation Fw-190V-18/U1.

Although the aircraft was an extremely effective high-altitude fighter, the Hirth 2281 turbo-supercharger proved to unreliable for service use, and the project was abandoned.

MPM is a model company based in Prague, Czech Republic. MPM stands for Models for Plastic Modelers. MPM is associated with Special Hobby, Condor and Cooperativa brands.

The kit comes in an end-opening type box. The boxart shows Fw-190V-18 flying above cloud cover at sunset. It is in a scheme of overall gray (RLM 02) on the sides of the fuselage and underneath. The wing tops have a splinter of black green (RLM 91) with the gray. There is a bare metal panel above the exhaust pipes and the cowling and chin air-intake are also bare metal. The aircraft carries the fuselage code CF+OY, the letters being black and the cross as the white skeletal type. White skeletal type crosses are also above and below the wings. The swastika on the rudder is a white outlined type. On the decal sheet this is cut in two diagonally and has to be pieced together into the whole. On the boxart the swastika is obliterated by a wing of the aircraft in front of it, that also blocks out the fuselage code. The code letters are repeated, again, under the wings in larger black letters.

Inside the box is a single light gray tree of plastic parts in a sealed cello bag, a fret of brass PE parts and a photo-negative of instrument panel dials in another small sealed cello and the decal sheet and clear vacuformed canopy part in a further small sealed cello bag. Very nice packaging. The instructions complete the kit’s contents.

The instructions consist of an unbound booklet of 8 pages in 8 ¼” x 5 5/8” format.

Page one begins with black and white line drawing of the Fw-190V-18 in profile, followed by the history of the aircraft in English and German.

Page two begins with “Advice for lesser and more experienced modelers on building our models” in English and German.

Page three is the parts tree illustrations and a listing of Humbrol brand paint colors suggested to decorate the model. The top of the page has some international assembly symbol explanations.

Pages four through six have a total of 6 assembly step drawings. The international assembly symbol explanations are repeated at the top of all these pages.

Page seven has a 4-view illustration for the paint scheme of the Fw-190V-18.

Page eight has listing of model kits in the MPM, Condor and Cooperativa brands. MPM’s address in Prague is at the bottom of the page, along with their telephone and fax numbers.

The light gray parts tree holds: the fuselage halves, the wing halves (the bottom wing half being full-span), the turbo-supercharger housing, the main wheels and their landing gear legs and doors, the tail wheel, the horizontal tail surfaces, the four-bladed propeller, the tail wheel, the pilot seat with it’s head rest, the dash board and two long exhaust pipes (30 parts)

The single clear cockpit vacuformed part is molded solid and would take surgery to pose it open. There is no pilot figure in the kit. Parts show some flash.

The brass PE fret holds: foot pedals, seat and shoulder belts, instrument panel with a photo negative to put behind it for the instrument faces, landing gear scissors, air intake screens etc. (17 parts).

The decal sheet, already described above, carries the marks for the only Fw-190V-18 built and flown. It also has numerous stencil marks on it too. This sheet is done by Propagteam, who does all the decals in MPM aircraft kits and their sister company Special Hobby’s too. These are said to be very good and very thin and that they work great.

The detail on the model is of the engraved variety. However, it is rather lightly done and a coating of paint could very well obscure it. Those of us with AMS might want to scribe these lines a bit deeper. The rudder and flaps are molded solid and would take surgery to re-position them.

This is a limited run kit that very few were produced of. They tend to disappear fast off the market after they are first released. This is a unique version of the famed Fw-190. I recommend it to modelers that like prototypal aircraft subjects. It looks to be an easy build for modelers that have had at least some experience with limited run kits and PE parts.