Italian-built light floatplane for the US Navy with a span of 20 feet. and a 30hp engine. Vac kits don't come much smaller.
Glenn Martin MS-1
This was an all-metal submarine scout with detachable wings for deployment on large submarines .Only one was built.
Boeing O2B-1 - Esoteric resin fuselage designed for use with Airfix DH4 wings.
This version of the famous wartime two-seater was used by all the US services for some ten years after WW1. It is believed that this resin 'Bodyjob' was the first of Esoterics ventures into the medium. A Curtiss F11C-3/BF2C-1 conversion fuselage followed. These were well-moulded, however the material used was hard and difficult to work with.
Fleet spotter aircraft that served with the RAF between 1921 and 1925. It was based on the Arico DH9.
Some aircraft were fitted with arrestor gear and flotation bags (as on the model) though it was not used on aircraft carriers.
The 'Torpedo Truck', as the first Esoteric US Navy kit was dubbed. This kit was a little beauty; accurate, cleanly moulded with metal parts, struts,clear sheet plastic and a decal sheet that covered at least four colourful examples - one just added a little skill and a lot of love to make this model into a joy to behold. Give it five stars for a first effort.
Martin BM-1 and BM-2
The Martin BM-1 (photo left) and BM-2 (photo below) was developed in 1933 as a torpedo/bomber aircraft for the US Navy. It continued in service until 1937. The Esoteric kit can be built as either
the BM-1 or BM-2, using a good range of decals to model several different aircraft.
Vought O3U-1/SU-2 Corsair
This was a detailed RAREplane mould that was sold to Esoteric early in 1987 because it fitted in with their US Navy biplane line. A landplane or seaplane version could be built and a decal covering the many uses of this aircraft was included in the kit. It was a good progression from the O2U-1 Corsair moulding Esoteric made earlier. Note the blue Command transport, a US Marine
O3U-6 modified from standard kit, and the RAF-tested V-66.
This is a typical Esoteric fighter kit with good shape, pretty decals for several aircraft, lots of metal parts and, very comprehensive instructions. The model shown has been modified with smart spats, cowling ring and markings for NAS Anacostia commanders.
This was a useful amphibian used by the US Navy, Coast Guard and the US Army in the mid-1930s. Known as the RD-1 in Navy use and OA-4 by the Army, these were often used by high ranking staff as personnel transports. The moulds were comissioned from Gordon Stevens so the level of accuracy and detail was assured. One of the last releases from the Esoteric stable, they are really rare.
This is a model of the 'Flying Shoehorn', a name derived from the shape of its central float. It is a lovely kit, well moulded, very nice accessories and with decals. There hasn't been an injection kit of it in 20 years and it may be another 20 before one appears. An earlier version, the OA-4 with an inline engine was kitted by Esoteric and an Army version with a record-breaking insignia as shown at right, below.
Sikorsky PS-1/ S.38
This patrol/transport amphibian was truly of the 'sticks and wires' era, but the kit was one of the best vacforms ever produced. The master paterns and moulds were made by Gordon
Stevens, the metal parts and decals, which covered both US Navy and civilian Pan American markings made the kit a winner. The aircraft makes an appearance in the film 'The Aviator'.
The design emanated from the F-5L and progressed through the PN-7/8/9/10/12 experimentals until perfected and sent to production with Douglas as the PD-1. With little modification, it went on later for Martin to refine and further to Keystone and Hall.Aluminum. The kit was mastered by Gordon Stevens and has featured on several websites in recent years.
Another late-30s biplane shipboard observation for the US Navy. A simple kit but one that can be made into an accurate replica and a choice of decals.
Great Lakes BG-1
This shipboard bomber made in small numbers in the late 30s. The kit is neat and accurate with many colour schemes. The company changed its named to Bell Aircraft Co in 1938. Picture shows lead aircraft of Bombing Seven, USS Wasp with 1941 Neutrality Star insignia on nose.
A very plain kit but, nevertheless accurate and capable of making an excellent model of this stalwart trainer of the US Navy in the 1930s.
Great Lakes XB2G-1
Thie Great Lakes BG-1 kit has an extra fuselage to make an XB2G-1, a more streamlined version of the BG-1 (but not two sets of wings) It was not chosen for production but was used by Roy Geiger, Commander of the US Marine aircraft fleet for his personal aircraft.
The Curtiss N series was a development of the 'Jenny'. It dates back to 1916 though it was not officially retired until 1927. Many navy pilots trained on this
Conversion kit for the Williams Bros. Northrop Gamma
Vought Vindicator SB2U-1
Originally a RAREplane kit but later the mould was bought and a kit issued by Esoteric with a great decal sheet and many metal parts.
Curtiss XP31 Swift