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The Avro Lancaster
including the Manchester

Part One - Wartime Service

by Richard A. Franks

Valiant Wings Publishing
Airframe & Miniature No. 20

S u m m a r y

Publisher and Title:

Valiant Wings Publishing
The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester
Part One - Wartime Service
Airframe and Miniature No. 20
by Richard A . Franks
2022

ISBN: 978-1-912932-17-7
Media: 272 pages in A4 portrait mode, many photographs and walkaround ones, colour profiles, historical manual drawings, line drawings and model details.
Price:


GBP£28.95 plus shipping available online from Valiant Wings

GBP£28.95 plus shipping available online from Hannants

and stockists worldwide.

Review Type: First Read
Advantages: Beautifully produced on quality paper, well bound so that it can be opened flat, masses of great information - photos, drawings and colour schemes - and excellent lists of all things a modeller needs to produce the next masterpiece.
Disadvantages: None noted.
Conclusion:

This really is an exceptionally useful volume that should be in every AVRO bomber modeller’s library, regardless of which scale one works in, and I look forward to the second volume which, I presume,  will cover post-war, foreign, test and civli aircraft.  I recommend it wholeheartedly.


Reviewed by Graham Carter


 

FirstRead

 

This is the latest edition in this popular series of modelling and technical books. It is a solid A4 272 page volume, well bound with a glossy card cover and printed on quality glossy paper that allows excellent reproduction of images and drawings. The cover is adorned with another of Jerry Boucher’s commissioned illustrations, this time of Mk. III Lancaster LM739, HW.Z, “Grogs the Shot”, from 100 Sqn over the Dutch coast during a food drop in 1945.  While primarily aimed at the modeller with over thirty pages taken up by kit reviews and builds, there is much to appeal to the historian and technically-minded person as well.

 

 

Following the now-familiar path, the book is divided into two broad sections, followed by four Appendices. The structure is:

The volume begins with a forty-page preface tracing the background to the Lancaster from early 30s bombers, with a lot of photos, concluding with coverage of the service users, their codes and operational summaries.

 

 

Airframe Chapters contain some 73 pages , covering 

  1. Manchester prototypes and production, 

  2. Lancaster Prototypes and B. Mk.I

  3. Lancaster B.Mk.II

  4. Lancaster B.Mk.III

  5. Lancaster B.Mk.VI, and 

  6. Camouflage & Markings and colour profiles

Each of these chapters is illustrated with a variety of B&W photos and sketches to demonstrate variations in the airframes all well annotated, and the final section features a number of colour profiles by Richard J. Caruana.

 

 

Miniatures Chapters then fill 142 pages and consist of :

  1. Manchester and Lancaster Kits, with reviews of major kits available in 1/144, 1/72, 1/48 and 1/32 scales

  2. Building a Selection, containing builds by Steve Evans of the Blackbird models Manchester conversion of the Airfix 1/72 kit, the Hasegawa 1/72 Special Mission Tallboy kit, the 1/48 HK Models Lancaster B MkI and the Tamiya 1/48 Mk I/III kits. These are in-depth builds backed up with excellent colour images, construction tips and explanations.

  3. Building a Collection - the familiar set of annotated isometric drawings by Juraj Jankovic to illustrate the changes as each variant was produced, in some cases illustrated with contemporary images. Once again I do feel that a few underside drawings would be helpful here and there.

  4. In Detail - the tour de force of these volumes is the mass of well-annotated B&W and colour images of parts of the airframes, inside and out to illustrate features of these aircraft. In some cases there are technical manual drawings as well. All aspects of the airframes are illustrated, from the nose, canopy, cockpit, turrets, engines, bomb loads, undercarriage and flying surfaces. These are an invaluable resource for both the modeller and the technophile. Much of this material is probably available in on-line material or other volumes but it is so useful to have it all in one place.

There are then four appendices covering, in alphabetic lists by scale ( two full close-types pages!), all of the kits that have been available, Accessories (four pages), decals (four pages )and a two-page bibliography. The work that has gone into compiling these lists is quite astounding and the extent of these lists gives one a good idea of how popular these aircraft are as modelling subjects. 

 

  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
  • Valiant Wings Publishing The Avro Lancaster Including the Manchester Book Review by Graham Carter: Image
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Finally, the rear of the book concludes with a fold-out double-sided four-page sets of 1/72 scale drawings - eight pages in all - showing side, upper and lower views of different variants, including some details of engine  variations.

 

 

Conclusion

 

This really is an exceptionally useful volume that should be in every AVRO bomber modeller’s library, regardless of which scale one works in, and I look forward to the second volume which, I presume,  will cover post-war, foreign, test and civli aircraft.  I recommend it wholeheartedly.

Thanks to Valiant Wings Publishing for the sample.


Review Copyright 2023 by Graham Carter
This Page Created on 20 April, 2023
Last updated 20 April, 2023

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