Wing Nut Wings (WNW): 1/32 Bristol F.2B Fighter
Despite being in awe of the WW1 fighters I had stayed away from building them for many years due to the lack of decent kits in my preferred scale of 1/32, as well as, the inherent challenges of the breed. Then I heard of this fantastic, at the time new, model company that specialized only in WW1 aircraft. Not only did they specialize in this fantastic era in the history of flight, but they knocked it out of the park. That is they fabricated masterpiece molds with fantastic full color references and instructions. They engineered from the mind of the model maker considering even the finest aspects and details. They could only be purchased direct from the manufacture in New Zealand and they were considered by some to be pricey. At the time all their models were priced the same at $75.00 USD. This was all true and the company was Wingnut Wings (WNW) of NZ. So I had to give it a try and I purchased my 1st WNW bi-plane; the Bristol F.2B 2-seat fighter.
Since then I have built a few more WNW fighters but this was my 1st. It was still a complicated kit with its challenges but everything I heard about the company stated above was true and then some. It was challenging b/c of it’s overall complexity but this challenge was minimized by the fantastic overall quality of the moldings, 1st class engineering, and abundance of quality references, tips, and instructions. I no longer feel they are pricey when you compare the quality of the kit to all other modern day kits which are all in a certain price range. Actually when you consider what the $75.00 gets you it is soon apparent that it is a great value. One aspect of this is the fact that these models are complete in a manner that will satisfy the most demanding detail freaks. You don’t need to lay down another $20 to $30 in after-market parts and decals. You also dont need to spend hour after hour researching more references b/c the instruction manual and WNW on-line reference sections give you the info you need to be historically accurate with the build. There are a lot of parts to these kits inside and out but if you take your time, plan it out well, study the references and the manual, and have some basic modeling skills you will produce a high quality model. You may even develop more skills then you started with b/c there are great build tips provided on the web-site helping to produce advanced results. I have actually used some of the skills 1st applied on this kit to many other kits across all subject matter.
Well to summarize I would like to share a little information and history regarding this particular aircraft. The Bristol F.2 Fighter was a British two-seat biplane fighter and reconnaissance aircraft of the First World War developed by Frank Barnwell at the Bristol Aeroplane Company. It is often simply called the Bristol Fighter, other popular names include the “Brisfit” or “Biff”.
Maximum speed: 123 mph (197.95 km/h)
Maiden flight: Sep 09, 1916
Length: 25′ 10″ (7.87 m)
Wingspan: 39′ 3″ (11.96 m)
Although the type was intended initially as a replacement for the pre-war Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c reconnaissance aircraft, the newly-available Rolls-Royce Falcon V-12 engine gave it the performance of a two seat fighter. Despite a disastrous start to its career, the definitive F.2B version proved to be an agile aircraft that was able to hold its own against opposing single-seat fighters; its robust design ensured that it remained in military service into the 1930s. Many surplus aircraft were registered for civilian use, and dedicated civilian versions proved popular.
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