The new Mountford Langley kit comes in a plastic see through package about 2"x2"x8". The package has a hole for it to be hooked on a toy or hobby store display. There is a bag of metal parts, metal flight deck and resin hull with adequate directions. The parts include three of each aircraft: top wing assembly required; a port and starboard side piece fitting from hull to flight deck (girders solid with scribing except for the largest ones as shown on photo); and four very poorly cast guns, which oddly have shields, unlike any U.S. weapons. The hull and flight deck are sharply cast. The model is 1:1200 scale, typical of UK produced models. 

MFLang2Cato.jpg (9026 bytes) MFLang3Cato.jpg (17349 bytes)

The most critical feature of any model is the hull. If that is wrong then the model is unalterably flawed. Unfortunately, on this model there are several significant and critical flaws in the hull. First, the hull begins itís inward curve towards the bow much too early, thus making the forepart of the ship too narrow for too long a distance (photo #2). Add to that the fact that the stern is misshapen (see photo #3) and thus the after part of the hull is not symmetrical. These two flaws alone doom this model. But there is more. At 1:1200 scale, the hull is about 1/10th of an inch too long. Not that critical. But it is also about 1/20th of an inch too narrow. This may not seem like much but the effect is deadly. Instead of an 8.3:1 length to beam ratio, it is about 9.2:1, and obvious. The flight deck masks the narrow hull a bit, but the flight deck is also longer and slightly narrower than it should be because of the hull. The cast side parts do not properly fit into pre-drilled holes. The directions say: "...deck support. These 3 pins could be removed if it is found the fixing is a bit tight." Typical British understatement. The details are very reminiscent of 1960s era 1250s. "Hangar" deck hatches are way too high. Ship's boats very poorly done and are just caricatures. Hull cast girders all solid, although the thin braces are nicely done (see photo# 5). Photo #4 shows how the aft most girders are cast at a slant-yet another defect. 

MFLang4Cato.jpg (12638 bytes) MFLang5Cato.jpg (11726 bytes)

Mountford also makes separate packages of 5 each aircraft made of resin with no wing assembly required. The aircraft are decent, both the metal ones with the kit and these separate resin packs. (The metal aircraft require putting the top wing on). The resin ones are solid between the wings inboard of the strut.

In sum, sadly, the old Delphin/Hansa issues of CV and AV are still better. Not much better, but at least the dimensions are correct and the hull looks right. But this model comes 30 or 40 years after the original models were produced and model making has generally gotten so much better over the years. At best, this is a war gaming model, and nowhere close to a state of the art 21st century model. 

Mountford is a relatively new entrant into the world of 1200 scale models. It appears that they have the talent and manufacturing capability to be a valuable contributor to the hobby. But they need to devote a lot more effort into creating better quality models before they can be consider a serious participant.

Cato

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