Everybody knows here the Battle of Britain history, there's no doubt. Of course the most important plane of the Battle (which for many had won the Battle and saved the Empire) was the Spitfire but the workhorse of those days was the Spitfire's older brother: the Hawker Hurricane. I also bet that everybody heard about Poles fighting in the Battle. The first squadron which got the "operational” status on 15th of August was the 302nd. Unfortunately, assigned to the 12th Group far from London (based at Leconfield and Duxford), didn't take the major part in the fights. The second squadron, assigned to the 11th Group, was the 303rd, based at Northolt had an opportunity to fight in all the major and important carnage's of September 1940.
Techmod have lately released the set of decals dedicated mostly to the Polish Hurricanes from the 303rd Polish Sqn during the Battle of Britain (two schemes) and with one scheme of the 306th Polish Sqn from November 1940. We have the following machines in the set: V6665, 303rd Sqn RF-J, flown by Flt.Lt John Kent, Northolt, September 1940 V6684, 303rd Sqn RF-H, flown by Sqn.Ldr Witold Urbanowicz, Northolt, September 1940 V7118, 306th Sqn V-UZ, Ternhill, November 1940 The first two planes had Rotol type propeller with the blunt spinner taken from the Spitfire. Painted with Dark Green, Dark Earth and Sky colours. RF-J had an interesting diagonal band in the unknown colour (probably dull red) around the tail section of the fuselage. The second Hurricane is RF-J which is believed to be the airplane of the polish commander of the squadron Witold Urbanowicz. The machine is famous mostly to the inscription and drawing behind the cockpit with the Hitler’s „face” and the Polish inscription „126 Adolphs” - it was an occasional painting made to commemorate 126 enemy planes shot down by the squadron after the Battle of Britain. The last plane included in this set is V7118 coded V-UZ from the 306th Polish Sqn. This machine has the pointed spinner and is painted with the black port wing and engine cowling on the lower side. The plane has interesting layout of the code letters: first the individual letter of the plane, then the squadron code letters. What is characteristic for 306th the UZ letters are decreasing together with the decrease of the fuselage. The small Polish chequerboard is not placed on the engine cowling but on the rear part of the fuselage, what is also not the obvious position of the emblem.
The instruction is just a single sheet in A4 format, printed on both sides with colour profiles of each plane. There are port and starboard sides of the planes, lower and upper surfaces individual for each scheme (depending on the A or B painting scheme), schemes for painting the propellers and lower nacelles of the engines showing the places of individual letters. There are also separate schemes without camouflage, just with roundels and fin flashes, showing the positions of stencils. In this section we can also find the short list of the useful literature and references. The table with colours suggested by the producer for painting are given as the Federal Standard numbers.
The sheet have the size of 18x26cm. Quality is typical for the latest TechMod releases. Thin and subtle carrier film which is very transparent, no misalignment in prints. Colours are vivid and saturated. I'm just a bit afraid about the bands on the tail: the red for RF-J and sky for V-UZ. The red one is cut into two pieces so it may require some additional work to position it nicely and adjust the joint of the halves together and to the fuselage curvature. The problem with the “sky” band is that the modeller will have to match is with the colour of the lower surfaces. It means you will have either to paint the plane with exactly the FS colour given by the TechMod or paint the band yourself (that's what I would do).
I am really impressed by the quality of the large scale TechMod decals. I don't know how to explain this but I have the feeling that the sets in 1/32 scale are much more subtle and delicate than in other scales. Maybe it's the illusion of the size: thickness of the carrier film is the same but as they are larger the decal itself looks thinner. I hope you don't think I'm getting mad and judge the set basing just on the illusions. These decals will be very useful for the Polish Air Forces enthusiast, no doubt in it, but I hope it will find a good use for all modellers who wants to commemorate the struggle and effort of the Polish pilots during the Battle of Britain or the workhorse plane of the Battle.
Thanks to TechMod for providing the decal sample for this review.
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Highs: Very good quality, nice choice of planes, allows to fully decal the modelLows: Partition of the red band may cause some problems while applying on the model, see the textVerdict: Useful, interesting, complete set of necessary decals, highly recommended for large scale modellers