The P-166 in scale.

Review of the Albatross, 1:72 Broplan vacform scale model.

This 1:72 vacform scale model is the Piaggio P166 'S' known in South Africa as the Albatross. Broplan do offer interesting subjects, whom nobody else is going to make however, some serious work is required to build them.

In case of the P166 all the major components are vac formed. The wheels and prop blades are plastic. All parts need extensive clean up. The instruction sheet shows only the basic construction information. There is no decal sheet. For the price that one pays for this kit there is no real reason in buying it except that it is rare.

If you have never built a vacform kit before, this could take a while to build. Like I mentioned earlier this kit is bad.

Click on the thumbnails for a larger image

Here are some tips.

  • First mark the outsides of the body with a fine liner.
  • Then roughly cut out the parts with scissors.
  • Use a piece of glass and sand paper to form the parts.
  • Be careful with the clear parts in the inside of the fuselage. They can be tricky.
  • One also needs to use filler at the fuselage / wing connections.
  • Lastly glue a piece of plastic card to the inside of the body to help with the alignment of the two fuselage parts.

The aircraft that I build saw active duty with 27 squadron of the South African Air Force. The SAAF were supplied with 20 aircraft from Italy between the period of 1969 and 1973.

The South African Air Force used it in service till 1993 when some were sold to private individuals and freight companies. There are also some on displays in various SAAF museums. In late Nov 2004 one 'ex-' Albatross (887) was put on display outside Port Elizabeth airport. This aircraft has since then been mounted on a pole.

Colour scheme:

  • Fuselage underside - White.
  • Fuselage sides and top - PRU-Blue.
  • Wing underside - PRU-Blue.
  • Wing top sides and engines - Dark Sea Grey.
Decals used were from the Andercraft SAAF series. Springbok Castle decals on side of fuselage, top and bottom of wings. Aircraft serial in black numbers, also top and bottom of wings.

Good luck and keep building!

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