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Junkers D.I
Long Fuselage Version


Roden 1/72

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Roden 1/72 Junkers D.I (long fuselage version) Kit #041
Scale: 1/72
Contents and Media: 56 parts in injection moulded plastic; markings for two aircraft
Price: USD$7.96  from Squadron.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Amazing representation of the metal skin, fine detail, and simple construction
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Robert Baumgartner

 Roden's 1/72 scale Junkers D.I is available online from Squadron.com




When others were thinking about wood and fabric, Professor Hugo Junkers was thinking about metal. His idea of an all-metal, cantilever-winged aircraft was revolutionary at the time. His experiments produced the Junkers D.I., which first flew in May 1918.

It was entered in the second Fighter Competition, which also started in that same month. Despite good flying characteristics, it failed to impress the Front-line pilots evaluating the machine. This is not surprising as there was a bias against low wing monoplanes and they recommended the type as a machine only for attacking observation balloons. The reason being that its metal construction made it invulnerable to ground fire.

The D.I did get production orders however, when Idflieg was eventually convinced of the merits of the project. It is believed that 40 aircraft were built and that those aircraft that made it to the front had the shorter fuselage.





Roden's 1/72 scale Junkers D.I Long Fuselage Version comprises 56 plastic parts contained on three sprues of light grey plastic.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

One of these has been seen before and it is the much-loved sprue Z. It contains the LMG 08/15 machineguns, seat, Mercedes engine, a spare BMW engine, and a spare parabellum with ammunition drum.

The sprue has not suffered from its extended use and the detail remains as delicate and sharp as ever.

The Junkers D.I was built in both long and short fuselage versions. Roden have decide to do the former and this is found on sprue A. The representation of the corrugated skin has to be seen to be believed. All lines are beautifully rendered with a subtlety that really looks good in this scale.



Structural framework is present on the inside, which in no way compromises the aforementioned detail with any sink marks.

The wings continue this high standard on sprue B. The trailing edges are very thin on all flying surfaces with both elevators and ailerons supplied as separate pieces. Other items are just as well done and due to their finesse, should be cleaned up as much as possible while still on the sprue.

The outlines of the main components compares very favourably when judged against photographs and Ian Stair’s plans in the “Windsock Datafile” on the subject.

Assembly should be a breeze due to the simple design of the aircraft itself. Roden provides the usual necessary components for a basic cockpit, which can be enhanced if desired. An ejector pin mark is present in this area but this is essentially hidden when the fuselage is closed up.

The engine does need a little trimming in the frontal area for it to fit in the fuselage but this is clearly pointed out in the instructions. The fuselage is made up in four parts instead of the usual two that modellers are use to dealing with. A quick dry fit revealed no major fit problems on my example. Just be sure to take your time and glue small sections at a time.

There are positive location points for the wings and tailplane so the rigidity of these items will not be an issue.





A well-printed decal sheet is included that allows the modeller to choose between two options. The printing was in perfect register and the images are contained on some very thin carrier film:



1) Junkers D.I. 5180/18

This long fuselage example was the “type –test” machine that was put through the “non-destructive” procedures at Adlershof.

The camouflage is believed to be green and mauve upper surfaces with pale blue under surfaces.
Purists will no doubt add the undercarriage bracing wires that are not shown in the instructions.

2) Junkers D.I. 5187/18

The instructions illustrate this aircraft in the familiar irregular pattern of green and mauve upper surfaces with light blue lower surfaces.





Excellent subject choice from Roden. The almost non-existent rigging makes this an ideal starter kit for those that wanting to enter this era of aviation.

Now all we have to do is ask nicely if Roden could produce the short fuselage version. That way the modeller can represent the machines flown against the Russian Bolshevik troops in 1919.

Highly Recommended

Thanks to Squadron.com for the review sample.

Review and Images Copyright © 2003 by Robert Baumgartner
Page Created 13 October, 2004
Last updated 13 October, 2004

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