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Lysander Mk.III Kit

Eduard 1/48 Lysander Mk.III Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review August 2016 Manufacturer Eduard
Subject Westland Lysander Mk.III Scale 1/48
Kit Number 8290 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch, Resin
Pros Very nicely detailed kit Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) $49.95

First Look

Lysander Mk.III Kit
Lysander Mk.III Kit
Lysander Mk.III Kit
Lysander Mk.III Kit

In the mid-1930s, the British Army was looking for a liaison aircraft to replace the Hawker Hector. The Air Ministry released the requirement to selected companies and Westland was not on the initial list of invitees. When they did receive their opportunity, Westland's designers went beyond the specification and interviewed the pilots to see what capabilities were the most important. The key features they wanted were visibility, low-speed handling, and short take-off and landing (STOL) capabilities.

The resulting design, internally designated as P.8, featured a high, advanced aerodynamic wing with leading edge slats and slotted flaps. The design also featured an adjustable tailplane for low-speed pitch trim authority. Powered by an air-cooled Bristol Mercury engine rated at over 800 horsepower, the aircraft could take-off and land in very small fields, climb at over 1400 feet-per-minute, had a useful load of nearly 1800 pounds, and a range of 600 miles.

Compared to the German equivalent - the Fieseler Storch, the Lysander was twice as fast, could climb about 50% more per minute, and had more than double the range. While the empty weight of the Lysander was also twice that of the Storch, that also made the aircraft more tolerant of less-than-ideal field conditions where a stray gust of wind could flip a lighter aircraft on the ground.

Eduard has re-released their beautiful Lysander Mk.III kit which had been originally produced under the brand name 'Gavia' ( look here). Today, the contents of the Gavia kit would be considered an Eduard 'Weekend Edition' as it was a nice, simple styrene kit. This time however, Eduard has stepped up the game with some contemporary additions to the box. Let's take a look:

As before, the kit is molded in light gray styrene and presented on three parts trees, plus an addition tree of clear parts. In this updated version, Eduard has added one fret of color-printed photo-etched parts, one set of yellow tape masks, one set of resin parts, and a nice set of marking options.

The cockpit is nicely laid out with the tubular airframe structures visible in the cockpit replicated nicely in this kit - detailed, but not over-engineered and complex. If you add the photo-etch detailing with the nice two-part instrument panel, that nice (large) HF radio set, and even the color-printed seatbelts and shoulder harnesses, the interior of this model is going to be quite appealing!

Some of the past reissues has included a second photo-etch set that includes pushrod details for the engine and a few other interior and external enhancements, but that fret is not included in this release. You can find it available separately (photo-etch set 48367) should you wish to have that in your build.

As with the Gavia release, the five-piece transparent cockpit enclosure can be posed closed-up or opened. The rear section can be posed with the rear canopy slid open while the pilot's port-side window can be carefully cut to pose the access panel open for pilot access.

The kit has a pair of exhaust ducts and Brassin Lewis gun with ammo drums provide in gray resin.

The kit also comes with a set of Eduard's famous yellow masks which will come in VERY handy in masking off all of those window panes! Thank you Eduard!

Markings are provided for five aircraft:

  • Lysander Mk.IIIA, V9437, 309 Sqn (Polish), AR-V, Dunino Afld, Scotland, 1942
  • Lysander Mk.IIIA, V9374, 613 Sqn, ZR-F, UK, 1941
  • Lysander Mk.III, T1429, 26 Sqn, Gatwick AB, 1940/41
  • Lysander Mk.III SCW, V9287, 161 Sqn, Tempsford AB, 1942
  • Lysander Mk.III SCW, V9367, 161 Sqn, MA-B, Tempsford AB, 1944

It is nice to see this kit periodically reissued as this kit remains the best Lysander kit in any scale.

My sincere thanks to Eduard for this review sample!