Gloster Gladiator - by Jim Maas
Jim Maas built this very nice model of Gladiator # 166 from the Roden 1/48 kit, with decals from
Mike Grant (see below). Jim reports, however, that Mike Grant no longer produces the 1/48 decals, so if
you wish to make your own 1/48 Latvian Gladiator, you may have to look elsewhere.
This particular aircraft was initially assigned to pilot Emils Briedis in the summer of 1938, and he
was still flying it in the summer of 1939.
This is a very clean build, and I am particularly pleased to see the rare squadron badge on the tail.
Irbitis / VEF I-16 - by Piotr Dmitruk
Piotr has built the 1/72 Czech Master Resin kit, and has also provided build photos of his excellent work.
The CMR kit can be built with any one of three markings options - as the Latvian-marked original version of the aircraft, a highly speculative Red Star version as
it might have appeared during the first Soviet occupation of Latvia, or the well-documented AW+10, representing the aircraft as it appeared while it was
being evaluated by the Luftwaffe.
A review of this kit can be found at Internet Modeler.
Letov S.16 "Smolik" - by Luc Montjovet-Basset
This is a build of the KP kit, and it appeared in Avions magazine #68. In his review of the kit, Luc notes that while the kit
is not up to today's standard of short-run kits, the dimenions and silhouette are essentially correct. The decals do not include a
Latvian version, so he used the decal set produced by Propagteam. My favorite feature is the asymmetrical application of the national markings.
A nice build and, if you can read french, well worth acquiring the original magazine article.
Sopwith Strutter - by Steve Perry
This is Steve's model of the venerable Strutter #2. This aircraft is one of the most
important in Latvian aviation history, and it is no surprise to me that Steve did it justice.
In his own words: "It is made of several strutter kits.
I did hollow out the celon covered opening and added interior wood & wires then covered
it with clear tape. " The decals are from Blue Rider.
I have seen many different shades of green presented as "Latvian Aviation Green" and
have not seen any real proof of which is correct. If I had to pick a shade, however, I would
select the same one which Steve used here. It certainly looks right to me. [GDZ]
- A review of Mike Grant decals, suitable for making a model of a Latvian
Gladiator, can be found here.
- Blue Rider decals (affiliated with Insignia magazine) offer a number of Latvian 1/72 decals: Blue Rider.
- Propagteam's Letov S.16 decals can be found at Propagteam
Kits of Avro 504s
Model kits of VEF/Irbitis aircraft:
I-12 single seat version (Kora 7255)
I-12 two seat version (Kora 7254)
I-15a (Kora 7264)
I-15b (Kora 7256)
I-16 (Czechmaster CMR1086)
I-16 (MTS 1:48 Resin)
Review of the MTS 1:48 Resin kit of the Irbitis I-16.
Review of the KORA 1:72 Resin kit of the He-4 (Svenska S.IIa)
If anyone else has good photos of a model of a Latvian airplane, I would
certainly be pleased to add them here. Please contact me at Zulis@aol.com