Testors – SBD Dauntless, 1/72
The Testors SBD Dauntless kit is a re-box of the old Hawk kit. Considering its age, it’s not completely awful, but it’s not great either. The dimensions are not accurate, but having said that, it is recognizable as a Dauntless. Not a bad kit for a beginner to practice on, but on my example the propeller was not usable. This and the wheels molded into the wings made me decide to attempt to show it as if flying.
This wings comes in a single piece, and as mentioned the wheels are displayed as retracted. Holes are provided to add the undercarriage legs. I painted the empty crew area in black paint as I did not feel like adding detail, then the two main fuselage half’s were joined. The single
piece wing was attached to the fuselage, and the crew area floor painted black.
The horizontal stabilizers were also added at this point, and the plane was set aside to dry thoroughly.
Suprisingly little filler was need, and as seen here was mostly where the rear wing joined the fuselage. Care is needed not to fill in the holes representing the dive brakes.
The engine is molded into the cowl, and does not look very effective.
The benches are the only provision the kit makes for the crew. The join between wing and fuselage upper surfaces is again, surprisingly good considering the kit’s age.
The crew are overly simplified. Painted brown to represent leather flying jackets and helmets (could also be painted in khaki), yellow was painted to represent the life preservers.
On their respective benches, the pilot and gunner don’t look so bad with head and shoulders showing. Note the national star marking on the fuselage, showing green filler.