Iliad Design 1/48 Beechcraft 17

Iliad Design have released a neat set of 6 decal options for the 1/48 Beechcraft17, which you might know better as the Staggerwing. The only modern kit available is done by Roden. You might see one done by AMG, but that’s just a rebox of the Roden kit. Looking at the reviews for this kit online, the only build review I can find suggests that a good set of replacement decals, such as these, might be a good move.

The decal set arrived form Iliad decals in a stout cardboard envelope. The subjects of this sheet are:

  • D17S in 2 colour RAF camouflage with yellow under surfaces. Used byt he Dutch government in exile.
  • UC-43 in olive drab with a white tail and neutral grey under surfaces. Unit unknown.
  • UC-43  in olive drab with neutral grey under surfaces. Wright Field July 1944.
  • D17A of the Antarctic Service Expedition in “Stearman Vermilion” with wings and horizontal stabilizers in “Galatea Orange”.
  • D17R of the Nationalist Govt of China in overall white used as an air ambulance.
  • D17A of the Chinese Nationalist Air  Force camouflaged in dark green with light grey under surfaces carrying red crosses.

The set contains just the large decals and it appears the only decals supplied with the Roden kits that you will need is the instrument panel, unless you use the Eduard PE set. This set from Iliad Decals is almost a complete replacement for what Roden supply with their kits.

The contents of this set are:

  • 1 double sided colour sheet of instructions
  • 1 20 cm x 12.5 cm decal sheet
  • 1 6 cm x 3.5 cm decal sheet

The instruction sheet is well done and covers everything you need to know. The front of the instruction sheet shows the port sides of all 6 aircraft and a short description of them. It names all the colours used. On this side of the sheet you’re also told how to paint all 6 propellers and which 2 had a DF loop fitted under the nose. Over the sheet your shown top views of all 6 and a few painting idiosyncrasies of some of them. You’re also give approximate FS matches for “Stearman Vermilion” and “Galatea Orange” which is nice to see. The decals used under the wings are shown in faded in these views so you know where they go. The 2 views of the RAF camouflaged aircraft look like they will be enough to also paint the starboard side. There is a faded blue decal for the upper wing of a/c 310826 which is probably more realistic for the aircraft after it had been in service for a while but you can use the non-faded decal if you want to represent the aircraft earlier in its service.

The decal sheets, as you can see in the photographs and the video, are perfectly in register and the colours appear to be correct too. The backing film is minimal to non-existent except in places where it is needed to line things up, such as the text in the “U.S. Antarctic Service” text.

This set is available for $12.00 from Iliad Design’s site.

This is a very nice decal set with some interesting and colourful options for the Roden kit. From what I gather investing in this set may well save you some trouble with the Roden decals. The decals are well produced with clear colourful and informative instructions.

Many thanks to Iliad Design for the review sample.

Paul Tosney – Editor
ModelBuilder International

Paul Tosney

Paul has been with Model Builder International since almost the beginning. He started building models as a boy, and took a hiatus, but started building again a few years ago. He builds pretty much anything, but mostly WW2, with a smattering of modern and the occasional SciFi model.


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