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Curtiss H-16


Roden 1/72

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Curtiss H-16 Kit No.049
Scale: 1/72
Contents and Media: 232 parts in injection moulded plastic; markings for four aircraft
Price: USD$24.97  from Squadron.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Superbly moulded parts, fully detailed engines, amazing trailing edges.
Disadvantages: Unclear rigging diagram.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Robert Baumgartner

 Roden's 1/72 scale Curtiss H-16 is available online from Squadron.com




After the release of the Felixstowe F2A, the next logical step for Roden would be to do the license built US version.

Essentially this was the same aircraft with Liberty V12 engines being used in place of the Rolls Royce Eagle power plants.

These items are contained on two “Z” sprues, and are miniature kits in themselves.

The Liberty will be in full view as it sits exposed between the wings so it is important that they look “busy”. There is no problem here as each engine and radiator assembly amounts to nearly 40 parts! The detail is very crisp with little or no flash on any of the pieces.

The rest of the 232 plastic parts are contained on sprues already seen in the previous F.2A (early) release. None of these have suffered with age and were free of any blemishes or surface imperfections.

There are a total of 10 sprues in the usual soft grey plastic. A new clear one is added to provide for the angular windscreen seen on this variant.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

The well-printed decal sheet provides for 4 options, each with enough colour differences to please all tastes.

In the cockpit there are the usual items such as seats, control columns (with steering wheels), floor, rudder pedals and a representation of the internal structure, which is found inside the fuselage halves.

The wings on this kit are outstanding. They exhibit some of the sharpest trailing edges you will find in plastic and have excellent subtle surface detail. The rib positions are represented quite delicately and thankfully there is no “fabric” detail, which would not be correct for a model such as this.

Don’t be put off by the three-piece upper wing. Previous experience has found that this can be butt joined without the need for pinning. Liquid glue was applied to the parts and after pushing them together the melted plastic was allowed to ooze from the joins. This was sanded smooth when dry and the panel line reinstated with a scribing tool.

The ailerons come as separate parts as do the elevators and rudder. Some of these items have overly pronounced rigging location points that will need to be filled for a more realistic effect. Again, the trailing edges were found to be superb.

The instruction sheet calls for the wing cellule to be completed before sliding it into slots located in the assembled fuselage. While this may be convenient, it does result in a tough sanding and painting job when the rear top deck goes on. It’s a nice try by Roden but the more conventional approach works just as well. This involves attaching only the lower wing in the grooves and then adding the rear top deck. The cleaning up of the join is then much easier, as is the painting of the fuselage.

There is plenty of armament provided, this being in the form of some beautifully detailed Lewis guns. Eight are supplied along with twelve magazines.
Bombs are not forgotten and here we have two that can be hung under the wings

Another difference from the F.2A that needs to be catered for is the propeller. Sprue Z contains this two bladed part as well as the balanced rudder.

To aid in the displaying of the finished model, Roden supply a 17 part beaching trolley.

The instruction sheet is quite comprehensive and shows the construction sequence clearly enough. Where there may be a problem is in the rigging diagram. For an aircraft as complicated as this, reference to the box art is also essential (as the instructions mention). Many areas are still hidden so an oblique diagram of some of the wire runs wouldn’t go amiss.

The decal sheet is a vast improvement over other offerings from this manufacturer. My example showed all items to be in perfect register.



The carrier film was very thin and of the preferred gloss type. A “spare” decal was removed and tested on a freshly painted surface. There was no cracking or silvering detected so I will use these with confidence.



Marking Options

Markings options provided on the sheet are:

a) Curtiss H16, A-1032 Lough Foyle, 1918

Basically this is an all over gray scheme and will appeal to those that want a hassle free finish.

b) Curtiss H16, A-845, US Navy

This US Navy scheme will probably prove to be the most popular. The chrome yellow wings and tailplane/elevators will provide a spectacular contrast to the gray body.

c) Curtiss H16, Killingholme, 1918

For something a little different, the colour scheme here is a brown body with dark green upper wing surfaces over linen under surfaces.

d) Curtiss H16, Felixstowe, 1918

This aircraft provides a more testing paint job. The fuselage is finished in a light buff over brown with the addition of a green fin. The upper surfaces of the wing are also painted in this later colour leaving the undersurfaces in linen.




As with other kits in this family, the Curtiss H-16 is an impressive model.

The sheer size and detail of what is presented in the package will allow the builder to complete a stunning project straight out of the box.

Highly Recommended.

Thanks to Squadron.com for the review sample.

Review and Images Copyright © 2005 by Robert Baumgartner
Page Created 02 February, 2005
Last updated 02 February, 2005

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