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Michael Smith
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Junkers Ju.88 A-4

September 20, 2021 · in Aviation · · 13 · 2.3K

This build is of a 1967 boxing of the 1964 kit, alas, without the “F 20 Spin-a-prop motorizing kit!” I had read in numerous Detail & Scale books about Frog kits, but had never built one, as such. So when I saw this one for $14.99 I passed up a newer and better version for what I assumed would be a cheap and easy build. The cheap part went out the window when I realized I could not build what I wanted - a 1940 or 1941 version in the dark green/black green camouflage without getting aftermarket decals. While the 1942 Russia winter decals implied that the aircraft could have been in that scheme before winter, other sources showed the aircraft in this scheme in the Mediterranean in 1943. So I opted for a sheet of after market decals - specifically Techmod 72111 which had two options in that scheme, one of which was a 1941 unit on the Eastern Front.

The kit is terribly basic - close to being a toy - and doesn't lend itself to anything but a basic build. The biggest problem I ran into, though, was the paints I used. There is just almost no difference between the Tamiya Dark Green and Black Green, so I spent a lot of time with washes trying to increase the contrast. If I do another aircraft, I'm likely going to switch to another manufacturer and see if I have the same issue.

This is the worst kit and the worst build I'd done since I started the hobby again. But since the goal was to learn about a German medium bomber I knew little about, it was still time well-spent. But I'm ready for a modern, well-engineering kit next!

Reader reactions:
9  Awesome

13 responses

  1. It looks really nice, Good job !

  2. I forget where I read it, but RLM 70 and RLM 71 are really close in hue and darkness.
    Love it!

    Brian Riedel

  3. Looks great. Older kit or not.

  4. The final result looks great, Michael: you did an excellent job breathing life to this oldie of s kit!
    RLM 70 and 71 are too close, as rendered by a number of paint manufacturers (and maybe this was at times the case in reality). I usually use a lighter green, in place of the "standard" 71, in order to have some notable contrast: not such a puristic approach, but looks "contrasted" to the eye!

  5. To me you build a great looking Ju88, Michael @mcsmith1964
    From the picture I would say that the colors look quite ok.

  6. You made sense a few pieces of plastic that were waiting in the box more than 50 years! Well done.

  7. That turned out great, Michael. I really like it. Could you post some more photos? I’m working on a Soviet release of the Frog Maryland now. I thought it would be done in a week, but life got in the way. Frog kits were the real exotics when I was a kid in Chicago. We had plenty of Airfix and Heller kits, but Frog was rare. Nice to see that Ju 88 built. It looks better to my eye then either the Airfix or Revell 88 kits from the ‘60s.

    • I'll try to take a few more, but candidly I'm terrified of how bad the model is! The decals are really good, but it became clear that no amount of work was going to salvage this near-toy, so I focused on just getting the colors and finish right, more or less, so I could move on to the next project. It looks okay on the shelf, but it's likely to be one of the first to get moved to one of the lower shelves. But - again - not trying to win a contest. Just interested in what such an old kit would work like. It is way better than the ship models back then.

  8. I have a lot of these old kits in my stash, and really enjoy working to bring them up a degree or two from their original "in-box" state! Sometimes it's nice to work with fewer parts and some ingenuity, vs. 20 sprues of plastic for a 1/72 aircraft! Anyway, this came out very nice. Keep them coming!

  9. I really like building old kits, and you have really brought out the best in this one, Michael (@mcsmith1964). When I build old kits, I sort of draw the line at old Airfix and Frog kits, which are sometimes just big blobs of plastic. Try an old Monogram or Revell, :o)

  10. 🙂 ... Greetings ... 🙂 :
    Turned out good Michael.
    Nice clean work.

  11. Nice build, it looks really nice! I myself like to build the older kits and try to bring them up a few notches. I enjoy the scratch building that goes into the cockpits and other areas. Some I do use some after markets parts. This Ju-88 I agree is not Frog's best work but they do have others that will surprise you with its overall looks.

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