a bit of historyD-1 „Cykacz” was the first, still experimental, airplane designed and built in Poland after the Great War. Newly formed country, destroyed by the World War I and later the Polish-Bolshevic war in 1920 has been struggling in almost every possible aspect of its existence. In the autumn of 1924 then still a student of the Aviation Section at the Polytechnic of Warszaw, Jerzy Dąbrowski, designs and builds his first airplane. It was ready few months later. D-1 was powered by the just 16hp Blackburn Tomtit engine. It first flew on 25th February 1925 with Zbigniew Babiński at the controls. The engine sound was very characteristic and the plane was named „Cykacz”, I think it can be translated as „Ticker” in English.
The airplane was very small. Its wingspan was just 5m, length 3,7m. Cockpit was so small that the pilot could get inside just up to his waist, flying with his upper halve outside the cockpit. Engine throttle lever had to be moved outside as the pilot could not operate it in a typical manner. You can see the lever protruding from the fuselage port side. The airplane flew about 40 times, until 1926. In the early 1930's it still could be seen standing in the hangar corner. Jerzy Dąbrowski continued his career. One of his later achievements, probably the most successful and most recognizable, was the bomber PZL.39 Łoś (eng. „Moose”).
about the modelAs far as I know there is just one option to choose from in any scale. The kit was released as a resin casting by a small company „Tenzan” from Kraków in short series. It is a 1:48 scale kit. It consists of just about 20 parts, however you won't need more to build a complete kit. The castings were quite good. I just needed to do some slight cleaning from the casting blocks. There's not much to improve in the kit. I have added some symbolical plumbing and control cables in the cockpit. Two things which for sure are worth a bit more time are adding these few rivets on the fuselage and improving the engine cowling. Real plane had a characteristic ventilation gap between the spinner and engine cowling. To create it I had to sand down the cowling, thinning its edge and adjust the propeller shaft length as it will be the only point holding the propeller in its place.
Having the major parts in place the kit was primed using a car part primer straight from the can and polished here and there. Real plane was covered with linen and plywood. After some typical preshading I painted the Gunze Radome for the linen and masked it. The same paint was used as the base for plywood, but the colour was highly lightened. Some fuselage panels were painted in a bit different shade. The structure of wood was made using a tiny piece of sponge and artistic oils applied „freehand”. The only thing I payed attention to was the keep the direction of „wood” on the particular panel. Other details were painted and finished using a common techniques, there's nothing worth mentioning.
Pilot figure is also a resin casting. This one was released by another Polish company – Toro. It's a one-piece kit, you just need to clean it from the typical remains of castings and paint in the way you like. Mine was painted with Lifecolour and Vallejo acrylics in just few hours. Standing next to the airplane gives a good imagination of the plane size.
Many thanks for visiting my feature. I hope you enjoyed. I am awaiting your comments and opinions on the forum.
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