Scale Trap-pings by Jim Bates
The Tiger Moth in Royal Canadian Navy Service and in 1/72 Scale
In 1948, the Royal Canadian Navy purchased three former RCAF Tiger Moths from the Ottawa Flying Club. The aircraft acquired by the Navy were Canadian-built DH.82c Tiger Moths which featured a canopy, cockpit heating, revised landing gear, and a tail wheel. Two of the airplanes did little flying with the Navy, but 8865 was flown by FRU 743 as a station hack until 1957.
Historical Tiger Moth Kits
The first 1/72 Tiger Moth was issued by Airfix in 1957. Very much a product of its time, it was short on detail and accuracy, but surprisingly was In the 1980s, Aeroclub released a Tiger Moth which consisted of the major airframe parts in short run injected plastic and th e details in white metal. Canadian modellers were ecstatic that it included a Canadian canopy and a Menasco Moth cowl bowl. In the 1990s Pavla released another short run Tiger Moth with crude plastic parts and nice resin details. It was issued as both a Canadian and British Tiger Moth. Last year AZ Models of the Czech Republic issued a revised version of the Pavla kit with much better plastic parts, but no resin details. It was a huge step up in quality, but still not quite the modern kit that the Tiger Moth deserved.
Airfix “New Tool” Tiger Moth
Issued in early 2014, the Airfix Tiger Moth is wonderful and shows Airfix at the top of their game. While only issued as a British DH.82a Tiger Moth and not containing canopy nor landing gear modifications needed for a de Havilland Canada build DH.82c, it is a beautiful kit. (Currently there are three distinct boxings, a civilian Tiger Moth, a military aircraft in camouflage over yellow, and a gift set in all over yellow.) Molded in great plastic and spread out over three sprues the kit features beautifully molded fabric detail and excellent detail for the scale. The cockpit consists of two seats, two control columns, two pilot figures, and instrument panels with dec als for the instruments. The cockpit doors are molded closed, but separate pieces are provided to fit them open. (For the RCN Tiger Moth they will need to be removed.) The engineering for adding the struts and top wing are well thought out, and should make this somewhat scary part of biplane modeling a snap. A small clear sprue provides the two windscreens, which would not be required for a RCN Tiger Moth. Interestingly, a tailwheel is included, though not mentioned in the instructions. This will make building a RCN Tiger Moth just a little bit easier. The instructions themselves are interesting in that they consist of CAD dra wings rather than the usual two dimensional instructions seen in kits. A nice little rigging diagram is included for those who wish to rig the biplane. While not quite correct to build one of the RCN’s Tiger Moths, the only surviving photo of 8865 shows the plane fl ying without a canopy. By using the tailwheel, slightly adjusting the landing gear struts forward, adding a windscreen and canop y rails, a nice facsimile of the RCN’s Tiger Moth can be built, but the modeller will be on his or her own to find some decals. Highly recommended; it is an excellent kit and at under $10 great value for the money.
included in the Airfix catalogue almost continuously from 1957 until 2012.