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1/32 Bristol M.1C


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1/32 Bristol M1c

“Wartime Colours”

Special Hobby 


Available from Special Hobby for € 43,-






I think it was 3 years ago when I walked the stalls at Telford while spotting the 1/32 Alley Cat full resin Bristol monoplane kit. Such a cute subject that would look so cool next to my Fokker Eindeckers! Not being a huge fan of full resin kits, I decided to contain my enthusiasm and wait till I could get this cheap > cheaper. There was one thing about the Alley Cat kit that worried me. The heavy resin wings that have no support other than the rigging. I imagine the EX-line rigging I use would have no to little effect… When I first saw pictures of the Special Hobby kit on the net I got confused. It was mastered with a combination of old fashioned craftsmanship and 3D cat drawings that were 3D printed. Alfred Riedel posted his progress on a model forum and at first I mistook them for the Alley Cat kit. Not expecting two companies to offer this subject!

But I should have known better. After all: This didn’t stop companies from dual producing a He219, Do335, Ar196, etc…


Some photo's of MPM's mid-time production:






The Bristol M1c

I wont go into deep detail about the history of this aircraft, but a few facts are in place in order to get an idea of the background of the Bristol M1. This plane came late in the first world war, but did see some action. The M1a and M1b were prototypes, with the M1c being the production type. All in all 125 were built and powered by the Le Rhone 9Ja engine, good for 110hp. It was armed with one Vicker .303 machine gun. It did actually see some action at the end of the first world war on the Macedonian and Middle East front. It performed pretty well, which we can only assume after downing a Fokker DVII! What made the Bristol M1c special was it’s streamlined design. It’s bullet shaped fuse, large propeller hub and elliptical wings. All reducing drag. The position of these wings also made internal rigging obsolete. This plane didn’t only look cool, it was cool. Therefor it is no surprise that this plane was chosen as the personal mount for senior officers… Since the Bristol M1c was developed at the end of the war, it also served as training plane in the inter-bellum. This resulted in a bright array of colour schemes. If colours suit your fancy, you can pick up the “Checkers and Stripes” version of this kit: SH32060.


On to the kit!

When opening the small box a compact single sealed package is revealed. Four sprues, decals, photo-etch, instruction booklet and some resin and transparent film. I am quite familiar with Special Hobby kits, so I can safely state that detail in this kit is quite above their normal standard. Perhaps as a result of Wingnut Wings raising the bar? Who knows… I have to admit that I sometimes catch myself judging WW1 kits based on the WnW norm. The detail on the fuse (stitchings, crisp lines, surface detail) almost matches that of a WnW kit. Detail is sharp, which can best be judged looking at the Vickers gun, wheels and seat cushion. Bare in mind that not all of this kit was made on a computer. The fuselage was hand crafted, detailed with photo etch and other hand made details. The same goes for the wings. Looking at the model forum Alfred Riedel shared his work, you can see that the cockpit frame, wheels, gear and engine were made with 3D software. See image above.





Four sprues give us:

• Fuselage, wheels, gear, gun and tail

• Wings, ailerons

• Engine, prop, cowling

• Cockpit, firewall



Fuselage Sprue:












Wing sprue:










The engine is a model in itself. Cilinder heads and pusher rods are moulded separately with crisp detail. Just add your ignition wires and you’re good to go.







Cockpit parts:














Two resin parts resemble the whicker seat and electrical generator prop.

The detail of the resin seat is one of the best I’ve ever seen. Minimal to no clean up is needed, which is good news for a resin part with 50 small holes in it J








The photo etch fret provide us with the seat belts, Vickers front end and turn-buckles. This just shows us that no after market is needed for this kit. However: I will replace the seat belts with HGW ones’ and the Vickers gun by an even nicer Gaspatch one. And while I’m at it, I might replace the prop with a real wooden one. But again: none of this is needed to give you a beautiful rendition of the Bristol M1c.






A small piece of transparent film is supplied to make the windshield. To be quite honest I think this would be a better option for a number of WnW kits! Much more realistic and clear. There are two options supplied. One for a single Vickers setup, as used in scheme A and B. And one for a different set-up, as in scheme C. Scheme C however is not supplied in this kit. The instruction tell you to visiti the CMK website. www.cmkkits.com, but here I could not find the elusive scheme, called: C4956. If you can.. drop me a line!




The decals are clear, true in colour and printed by Aviprint from Czech Republic. The detail is of high quality, which can best be judged by looking at the instruments. Too many times you see decals let down in this area. Another thing I look for is the carrier film. This is kept to a minimum, keeping the decals thin and leaving not too much excess around the edges.







The instructions are printed in colour and provide clear views of what goes where. Isometric 3D line drawings were used for these, which beat hand drawn vague route options any day of the week IMHO. I also like how the rigging instructions are worked in between the construction steps, instead of in one last step, like WnW tends to do. This latter method making it sometimes difficult (despite the quality of the drawings) to see what wire originate and goes where… Note: this being an RAF plane, you’ll need flat wire for the rigging, alongside round wire for the control cables.




Colour schemes


•   Bristol M.1c, C4907, RAF No.150 Squadron, Ambarköy Airbase, Macedonia, autumn of 1918.  This machine was flown by Lt. K. B. Mosely and shot down n Albatros D.V on june 9th 1918. A few months later Lt. J. P. Cavers shot down to LVG’s in this same plane.

•   Bristol M.1c, C4918 RAF No.72 Squadron, C flight, Mirjana Airbase, Mesopotamia Spring 1918.  Brown fuselage, propeller tips and upper wings. The underside of the wings and wheel hubs in natural linen, grey cowling and spinner. Also note the brown outline along the wings underside natural linen.










Conclusion / Verdict

Another high quality WW1 kit that keeps raising the bar on WW1 subjects. At the moment it seems WW1 subjects get better treatment than more modern subjects! The plastic mouldings in this kit are superb. No flash to be found. No sink marks or ejector pin marks in annoying places.


Upsides: Very complete kit. Great detail. All you need to build a nice model of the Bristol M1c.

Downsides: As far I can see: nothing. Only thing I can think of is the mysterious scheme C that is not included and not to be found on the CMK Kits website.


From 1 to 10 I’d rate this kit as an 9.


Highly recommended


Our sincere thanks to Special Hobby for the review sample. To purchase directly, click HERE.


Jeroen Peters

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