Newsletter n°05

Balnot, June the 14 th, 2018

This is our fifth Newsletter on the Bizerte project. You are receiving it because you registered (with an email address) for a Bizerte kit in 1/72 nd scale (and/or a book).

Follow up, next Newsletter on: autumn 2018

1 - Kit :
1.1 Technical points

The Special Hobby Sunderland kit in 1/72 nd is not yet out, but it's progressing.

Special Hobby had said in Fall that we would meet again in Nuremberg (end of January 2017) to exchange informations on the Sunderland progesses. The release of the SH Sunderland kit, more exactly the hull problem resolution, was a prerequisite to launch the Bizerte project.

As we are probably going to re-do the Aerovac kit, with a new hull (see below) and small pieces in injected plastic, the release of the Sunderland is no more a prerequisite.

1.2 Subscriptions

We are still at too low a level to launch the project without risks. Number of injected kits we would have to order to SH is 2.400, the gap between the this number and the number of kits requested is too large (but.... see next §)

1.3 Alternate technical solutions

We are thinking about having the biggest parts (hull, wings) done with an alternate technical solution (thus – not in injected), which would allow us to pass a smaller order, and have the smallest parts still done by injection with a smaller order too, so we would still have in injected these parts :

  • clear parts
  • seats, all inernal parts, machines guns, etc.
  • struts,
  • floats,
  • engines, propellers

For sure we will study these possibilities, more exactly we will study the most obvious solution, which would be to have the big parts done by vacform. Obviously we would no more be in the original project, but that original project will probably not be carried to an happy end, excepted if we get really soon a huge raise in requests. The vacforms parts might be done from the old Aerovac kit, which was usually seen as accurate, excepted for the forward hull, whose profile, according to Gérard Bousquet, should be improved..

We wish to tell you more soon, and for sure will request the approval of the persons which were interested in the first project. Many registered persons in the first project would probably not go for vocform pieces, but the smaller number of kits, hopefully, will allow us to go for the project.

If we go for 1.000 pieces, this would mean one box and three decals only (one french, one german, one Vichy probably).

We don't know for the moment if we would go for a choice between three decals (one french, one german, one Vichy probably), probably a cheaper solution or give the three decals in each box.

1.4 Travel to Prague (17th and 18th of April, 2018)

The travel to Prague allowed to check the status on FRROM projects (please see the site – the Renard R-31 and CASA C-212 in french colours will be available at end of June). We compared the Aerovac kit to plans and photos. The differences between the kit hull and the real thing were bigger than expected, so will probably have to do a new hull (fuselage). We have no price yet, SH for the moment has not found the original mold. SH is looking for it, we will then get get a cost for the various parts (initial parts, injected parts, new hull/ fuselage, decals, probably clear parts, builsing notice …).

As we will probably get more units of the additionnal injected sprue (« small parts ») than we will have full kits, we might sell separately the « additionnal » parts, with the new hull, decals, etc. Some people having already bought the Aerovac Bizerte might be interested in these additionnal parts (on the Aerovac kit we have, there are no decals, for example).

2 - Other topics – the book
The book on the Bizerte should have been published by Artipresse, possibly with a part taken by FRROM. Artipresse will go alone on this book.

Gérard Bousquet, the Bizerte book author, seems not to have made any progresses on the sorting and legending of pictures (april 2018). This has really to be done before starting to edit the book.

Z - Summary

This chapter will contain technical informations on the aircraft variants given in the Newsletters (we might or might not go for these variants).

Z.1 Hull

The standard Bizertes (Nr3 to 37) did have an improved hull, differing from the hulls used on Nr1 and 2 and Saigons (same hull on Nr 1, 2, and the two Saigons - TBC). As the hull is a quite big part of the kit (and therefore costy), we should produce only the hull for Nr 3 to 37. The long canopy was used from Nr3 to 37 and will be provided in the kit

Z.2 Enginess 
We wish to study the fitting of alternate engines :

  • on the prototype (but... we will not go for the prototype – hull differences)
  • on another plane, for trials (Hispano Suiza engine). The trials proved unsatisfactory but the engines were kept during quite a long time (then replaced by standards G&N engines)

For sure, preparing to go for alternate engines will complicate a bit the project. If we go for the simplified version, we will not provide the HS engines nor the prototype engines.