Azur - 1/72 Vought V-156F Vindicator in Aeronavale Service
U.S. Navy realized that the biplanes era is over in the 1930s. That time phenomenon, the cantilever monoplane with retractable undercarriage offered much higher performances compared to the conventional biplanes. This convinced the officials to issue new SB category (Scout Bomber) competition. The bomber role was in this case the dive bombing role. The competition winner was Vought Company prototype designated XSB2U named Vindicator. It was accepted for production and subsequently produced for U.S. Navy and Marines in versions SB2U-1, -2 and -3. France ordered modified version designated V-156F and later deployed these machines during the defence of its territory in 1940. Vought subsequently received three French orders. Eventually, the last of them was modified and delivered to the new customer, the Great Britain. French machines differed considerably from their US counterparts. French machines featured dive brakes similar to the ones that appeared on the first US prototype but omitted on the production machines.
The used armament and equipment were of French provenience. The bomb's swing arm was not fitted but the machines were equipped with wing racks. V-156Fs were assigned to AB-1 and AB-3 flights. AB-1 flight was deployed against the advancing Wehrmacht, attacking the bridges over Oise river. AB-3 flight fought in the southern France against the Italian forces.
The kit of this version contains three sprues with plastic parts, injected clear parts and decals. While the fuselage and wing parts are produced using short-run technology (the wing for French version features the dive brakes), the small parts were 3D designed and their mould was produced directly by milling. This ensures much higher quality and pushes this kit into better level kits. Moreover, the kit contains highly detailed resin parts for this French version, bomb racks, bombs and 7.5 mm Darne machinegun. Decals included offer markings for 2 machines in overall grey- blue colour and one that featured green and brown blotches over the grey-blue camouflage.