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In-Box Review
1144
U-2R DragonLady
In-box look at Cyber-Hobby's long lived spy plane.
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by: Matthew Robeson [ SCVROBESON ]


Originally published on:
AeroScale

Here's another foray into small scale modeling for me, and this looks like a very nice kit of a very famous and long-lived spy plane. So I'm from California, the U-2 means a lot to us, since they were based at Beale AFB up in the north of the state. This kit represents the U-2R, so not the ultimate Senior Span edition, but still an older airframe, upgraded to new technology.

Worst thing right off of the bat is the side opening box. I know, it's a small scale, but there is no reason a top-opening box can't be don. At least the art-work is good, and the color instructions are right on the back of the box, so you can see your decal options.

Box content
This kit was molded very heavily with slide-molding, and I approve of that. The front fuselage section is all one large piece, as it the mid-fuselage, to allow for proper intake shape and depth. I think that's an amazing technique, and means that shouldn't really be any awkward seams to deal with.

After you get the fuselage bits, you see the massive wings, each supplied in one piece, with luckily no molding issues. Taking the wings out shows how big these planes were, but they were in essence very high-altitude gliders, so the large wings were necessary.

Going through the small bags, you will trip over the cockpit, and Dragon did not skimp here. The consoles actually have molded on detail, no flat panels. You really won't see much of anything once it's sealed up under the canopy, but at least we'll all know it's there. The ejection seat is also quite well, so big props to Dragon for putting detail everywhere.

The canopy is nice and clear, but is sadly molded in one piece, so it would require some really careful saw work it get it split to show off your interior.

The instructions are typical Dragon fare, so good, but a bit jumbled at times. But if you've built and kind of Dragon kit before, you should be fine with it.

Decals
There are two decal options, one RAF, and the other one is Chinese. I'm not sure why they didn't include anything US, but that's just me. Both planes are simple and black, so you want to weather them a bit to break up the large blank canvas of black paint.
SUMMARY
Highs: Great interior detail, and very nice use of slide-molding for the fuselage.
Lows: Side-opening box, so not very sturdy, and instructions get jumbled at times. Also, one piece canopy is an annoyance.
Verdict: Nice, relaxing kit for anyone who may be facing modeler's block, so wants to get something done over a weekend. Since it's just one color, painting should be a snap. I would recommend this kit to anyone with an interest in small-scale modeling, or the Co
Percentage Rating
90%
  Scale: 1:144
  Mfg. ID: 4636
  Suggested Retail: $25.00 USD
  Related Link: History and Development of U-2
  PUBLISHED: Dec 04, 2012
  NATIONALITY: United States
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 89.90%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 86.19%

Our Thanks to Dragon USA!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.
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About Matthew Robeson (scvrobeson)
FROM: , UNITED STATES

Copyright 2017 text by Matthew Robeson [ SCVROBESON ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of TankRat's. All rights reserved.


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Comments

I think you'll find that the one based at RAF Mildenhall is actually USAF, not RAF. The USAF's U2s usually carried minimal markings (and even spurious ones, to throw off potential Soviet spies) during the Cold War.
DEC 04, 2012 - 03:51 PM
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