Manufacturer: Pavla (Czech Republic), available from Squadron Mail Order, 1115 Crowley Drive, Carrollton, TX 75011-5010, 972-242-8663.
Kit: No. 72022
Comments: Mixed media, 63 parts (35 injection-molded plastic, 20 photoetched brass, 3 vacuum-formed, 2 resin, 1 photo film), decals.
Pros: Well formed plastic parts, excellent photoetched details, good decals.
Cons: Poor fit, no location points for main gear struts, fuselage too shallow, gear struts too long.
"Out of the clear blue of the western sky comes . . . Sky King." What man/child from the 1950s hasn't heard that famous TV introduction? For the first few years, the Songbird was a Cessna T-50 Bobcat, later replaced by a Cessna 310. The T-50, also known as the UC-78, AT-8 and AT-17 by the USAAF, Crane by the Canadians, and JRC by the U.S. Navy, will perhaps forever be known by the appellation "bamboo bomber."
Pavla's plastic parts show fine surface detail and slightly overdone simulated fabric surfaces. Decals are provided for USAAF, USN, and RCAF machines. Two well-detailed resin radial engines are provided. The jewel of the kit is the photoetched fret containing pilot and copilot seats, control wheels, landing gear oleo scissors, and pitot tubes.
Pavla's Bobcat is a simple kit complicated by fit problems. The main gear struts are too long, and there are no mounting holes for the main gear struts. Parts fit is poor, especially at the nacelle/wing and wing/fuselage joints. When compared to photos it is obvious that the fuselage isn't deep enough, causing the nose to be too pointy and the cabin windows too small.