1/48 scale ICM #48244, Dornier Do-17Z-2 kit review… we have another winner!
A little while ago I posted an article on the new 1/48 scale ICM He-111. In that article I mentioned doing another review on the Do-17.
This will give me an opportunity to try out the new format that Martin and his staff have been working so diligently on. I can say this about the new Imodeler website: It is much easier to upload your pictures. I was able to take all of my photos and upload them at one time using my cell phone. This is a remarkable improvement that I like a whole lot! Thanks guys for the hard work you do.
So with this introduction, lets get to it.
The ICM Dornier Do-17Z was released a year or so ago. Up until then, the only other choices we had in 1/48 scale was the Classic Airframes kit, which is getting harder to find at decent prices, and the much older Hobbycraft kit, which many have shown to have a banana shaped fuselage and lacking a lot of details in the cockpit. Since I have several of the older Hobbycraft kits in the stash, it is a welcome addition to see that ICM has taken the time to give us a new modern release.
In typical newer releases, ICM has packaged the new Dornier kit with a nice and sturdy inner cardboard box that has a folding lid. I wish that more kit manufacturers would provide a sturdy box like this one – I have too many kit boxes in the stash that have partially collapsed due to having other kits stacked on top of them. I don’t think this would be a problem with the way this kit is packaged.
The box cover fits very snug on top of the inner white cardboard box. Care must be taken to remove the outer lid, (that has the art depicted on it), or you can tear the corners of the outer box.
Once you remove the outer cover and open the folding lid, this is what you will find inside: The light gray parts are all packaged together in a single re-sealable plastic bag. I did find that two small parts were affected by this method (more on this later in the review).
Thankfully no parts were scratched. They are packaged rather well overall.
My sample had the clear parts packaged separately in their own re sealable clear plastic bag. This is a nice touch.
The remaining model parts were very well molded using a light gray colored plastic. No flash was present anywhere throughout the kit. There shouldn’t be any flash considering this is a brand new mold.
There are six light gray plastic trees. They are lettered starting with “A”, and go to “E”. There are two “D” trees provided since these contain common parts for the engines and bomb load.
The instructions are very nicely printed, using a combination of glossy paper and color ink to guide you through the 20 pages of instructions, that cover 84 assembly steps.
The way the instructions are written remind me of the style that Airfix has adopted with their new releases.
Here’s the first page of the instructions. A short history of the plane, and specifications are included on the front page.
The instructions are written in Cyrillic (Russian) and English.
There is a Model Master paint reference chart for the colors used at the bottom of the first page.
The typical Luftwaffe colors of RLM 02, 65, 70 and 71 are the primary colors used throughout the build.
There are also a set of “Universal” symbols listed at the bottom of the first page, to designate things like “Optional” or “Assembly Step”.
The next two pages show you how the parts are laid out on the plastic trees, but do not include part numbers. The illustrations are well done, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble figuring out which part is shown.
Parts not for use are highlighted with a pinkish colored outline, that can be seen in this photo below.
The assembly sequence appears to be very well laid out, (but I have yet to build this one, so I can’t really comment as to how it will go together).
In typical fashion, the assembly begins with – yep you guessed it. The cockpit.
The bomb bay is the next step.
The option is provided to install a long range fuel tank in the front bomb bay if you so desire.
The bomb bay doors can also be assembled in the closed position if you want to go that route.
A full bomb load is provided. I’ll be building one of mine with the bay doors open and a full bomb load carried. I may install the long range fuel tank in the second one just to be a little different.
The control surfaces are molded separately, so they can be posed. However the flaps are molded closed. Some work will be required should you decide to drop the flaps. No inner details are molded into the upper and lower wing halves to depict the inner surfaces off the flaps. So if you want to drop the flaps, some scratch building work will be needed to add these missing details.
Since we are talking about the wings, the upper wing is molded as one piece. The lower halves glue in place and the completed wing is installed as a unit as shown in this instruction assembly photo below.
The engines and exhausts are little models in themselves. Two different style of exhaust pipes are included, so you will have to check your references to see which style of exhaust was used on your particular build. One style has individual exhaust stacks, while the other has two collectors that exit separately.
You will have the option of building this plane with the cowlings opened or closed. Here’s another illustration from the kit instructions.
Four different planes can be built using the kit supplied decals.
Here you can see two of them.
The top plane is in RLM 70 and 71 over 65. It is coded as “U5 + BH” It is from 1 / KG 2 operated in Greece, during May 1941.
The second plane has a winter white wash applied over the upper surfaces, and has a RLM 65 lower. This plane is from 15 (Kroat) / KG 53, flown in Russia during the winter of 1941-42.
It is coded as “A1 + TZ”
The third plane is shown in the top of this next photo. Again we have RLM 70 and 71 over RLM 65. This particular plane was flown by 7 / KG 3 and participated in the “Blitz” from France in August 1940. This one has the fuselage codes of “5K + HR”, and is illustrated on the box art.
The last plane also operated from France. It was with 3 / KG 76 and also operated during August 1940. This one too is in RLM 70 and 71 uppers over RLM 65. It is coded as “F1 + BL”
Since we are talking about the kit decals, here’s a photo showing how they look. Mine appear to be well printed and in register. The carrier film also looks to be thin.
I have never used a set of decals from ICM, so I really can’t comment on how they will work. There are a complete set of stencils provided. It looks like enough to do one aircraft. Here’s a close up of the stencils, and the Unit insignias.
The instructions also provide an upper and lower view to assist with the location of these stencils. The Luftwaffe “splinter” pattern for the camouflage is also shown here, but it looks very dark and is hard to distinguish the lines in between the upper colors of RLM 70 and 71.
The clear parts are very well molded and are nice and thin.
Two different style of canopies are included. One is marked “Not for Use” and has a provision for a MG that was mounted on the opposite side of the windscreen. If you look close, you will see where they have frosted the areas that need painting. This may help when time comes to mask off these window panels.
The forward nose glass is very nice too…
I took pictures showing the fuselage plastic “A” tree with a ruler placed along the side to show a size comparison. This will build into a decent sized plane.
Here’s the wing panel “B” tree. Notice the ruler for size comparison.
As mentioned above, there are two “D” trees. These contain the engine, exhaust, propellers and bomb loads.
This is a close up of the “D” tree.
Followed by the “C” tree that contains the engine nacelles, various cockpit parts and landing gear wells. In the lower left of this picture you can see the extended range fuel tank that can be installed if you desire in the front bomb bay opening.
My kit had one part that was broken off the plastic tree when I opened the box. It was the tail wheel. Luckily nothing was damaged when the part was snapped off. Here I’m pointing at where the tail wheel should be located. It’s part number #15.
I noticed that one set of exhaust pipes also had some minor damage on my sample. But it’s nothing that is going to be a hard fix. All I need to do is glue the pipe back in position as shown in this photo below.
Speaking of exhausts, here is the other style ICM included. This one has the collector dumping into two separate exits near the top of the cowling.
In this next photo you can see the other style of exhaust. This type has individual stacks. In this photo you can also see the cowling braces that allow you to pose the cowl with the panels open to expose the engines if you desire.
The engines are nicely molded too. They look like they will be very detailed once built and installed.
Here are a few close up photos showing the details on some cockpit parts.
The instrument panel:
Gunner seats and control wheels from the center bomb bay.
The landing gear parts appear to be delicate, so care should be taken to remove these parts from the trees.
The main wheels have nice details too…
…as do the inner gear wells.
The other side wall parts shown in the picture above, glue to the inside of the nacelles.
These details are molded into the lower side of the upper wing half. This will represent the upper portion of the main landing gear wells.
The only ejector pin mold I noticed is located on the under side of the main gear mud guard. This will probably be covered by the main wheel once it is installed, and will probably not be a problem.
The crew served weapons are nicely molded too. The MG’s look the part to me. They can be seen towards the bottom of this photo shown below.
Several “snail drum” ammunition magazines for the MG’s are also provided. They are located towards the center of this picture. The spend ammunition casing and link bags are also provided as a separate part. They can be seen towards the top of the photo.
The bomb load is nicely done. One size of bomb is provided, and there are enough to fill both bomb bays.
The propellers also look very good. They are molded as one piece.
Panel lines are nicely done too. They don’t appear to be very deep or too shallow. I think “Goldie Locks” called when she said it’s “just right”. The panel lines look like this on top of the wings. The fuselage looks just as nice.
The control surfaces are individual parts and can be posed separately from the flying surfaces. The fabric looks convincing to me. Here’s a few close ups, so you can judge for yourselves.
Elevators: I know that there has been a “Corrected” resin part made to be used as a replacement for the kit supplied elevator / stabilizer set. I don’t know if the kit parts are “exact” or not. But they look “good enough” for me.
Rudders and Ailerons
There were several parts listed as “Not for Use” which caught my attention that another possible version may be coming out. It’s possible these parts were used on the other Do-17 kit that was released a little while ago.
Here they are.
This looks like an under fuselage gun pod that was typically used on Night Fighters.
and this is a “four gun” nose, also possibly used by a Night Fighter variant.
Well there you have it. They say that if something looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then chances are it’s a duck. This sure looks like a Dornier 17 Z to me, but I’m not an expert on the type. I didn’t measure anything or compare it to scale drawings. Personally I’m just happy to have a modern version of an important early war Luftwaffe twin engine bomber available for us to enjoy.
I can tell you this: It won’t stay in the “To Build” pile too long, as I have already made plans to start a build journal here on Imodeler as part of the new “Nose Art” Group Build. I’m building it as the plane with the red Devil, “depositing” his bomb while holding a pistol in one hand, and gesturing with the other. I believe that Alan Price has built a Dornier using the same markings, and posted it here as part of his Battle of Britain postings.
This one was provided by me, courtesy of my wife’s credit card. I can highly recommend this one to you. But please take a good look at the pictures I provided and make a choice on your own accord.
Now I have two cool looking ICM 1/48 kits that I have posted reviews for. Both kits are just begging to be built. This one and the Heinkel 111. I liked this new mold Dornier model so much, I had to purchase another one:-) If I didn’t have so many He 111 Monogram kits already in the stash, I would have purchased a few more of them too.
Thanks for reading this lengthy review, and as always, comments are encouraged.
Take care. Now go build something:-)