Zlin Z-242 in 1/72 scale: modelling report
The Zlin company from Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic) developed the small Z-242 prop private aircraft in the 1970s. First flight was made end 1978 and it was powered by a Walter M337 six-cylinder engine. The cabin is for two persons and it has a fixed 3-point landing gear. The "L" version was powered by a Lycoming 4-cylinder engine with 200 hp in a wider cowling driving a 3-bladed propeller of either Hartzell or Muhlbauer. The Z-242L first flew in February 1990 can also fly aerobatic manoeuvers. Max take off weight is about 1090 kg and max speed about 250 km/hr. Some Zlins were sold to small air forces to be used as trainer.
A 1/72 model of this small aircraft was released bij AZ Model, the first release came in 2008 which had a vacu canopy and some resin.
A later release #7608 came in 2019 with a injection moulded canopy and no resin and decals for:
-1- Z-242L of the Bolivia air force in a grey scheme;
-2- Z-242L of the Hungarian air force in a grey scheme;
-3- Z-242L of the Peru air force with a nice white and orange scheme.
The instructions are OK with schemes shown on the carton box with Humbrol enamel colours.
The short run kit has about 40 parts in 2 grey sprues and a small sprue with the single piece canopy hood (not shown). The parts need to be carefully separated from the sprues and sanded. Some shrinkage in the wheel fairings was filled with putty.
A small detail set #AZA7037 was additionally purchased with some etched metal parts like antennas and seat belts:
I also bought decal set #KPEX020 from KP with decals for the armed forces of Mexico, Croatia AF, Peru and Yemen. Note: the Yemen scheme has still a factory company registration and it is unclear if a few were ever delivered to No 1 squadron Al Anad with codes 2101, 2102 and 2107.
I bought a few kits.
The kit assembly needs care and quite some sanding the soft plastic. I installed the seats at a later stage. The canopy is one piece. If you want the large canopy hood open, a vertical cut needs to be made VERY carefully with a razor saw in the canopy. The forward section slides to the front.
The gear struts are very vulnerable, so I did not add nose weight but will use a small transparant piece of sprue to keep the nose down.
The wing has a rather thick rear trailing edge, sand on a flat surface with dry-wet sandpaper.
A missing transparant light panel was made in the leading edge. a piece of transparant was glued in the made opening and sanded in shape. Polish to a clear sheen.
(The missing small trim tabs will be added later on).
When assembling the engine cowling (in STEP 12), set the blanking plate #27 a bit more aft. The hole for the propeller was drilled a bit larger. Do not yet install lower fairing #18 until after puttying and sanding which was needed.
A base coat was airbrushed with Revell Aqua 75 steingrau to check for any flaws and to get an even base coat. Some repairs still needed.
The paint scheme can now be airbrushed as desired.
The canopy hood was split with a razor saw and the frames painted white. The rear section was fixed.
I painted the cabin interior light grey with coloured seats that also got seat belts. The instrument panel is from the extra etch set.
This model was made as a Croatia Air Force trainer with decals from set #KPEX020. The overall gloss white colour was airbrushed with Gunze Sangyo H1 acrylic. The anti glare panel was masked off and airbrushed black.
Decals than were applied with very nice trim.
The gear struts were set, note that the fairings are not at 90 degrees but a bit tilted on the real Zlin. Wheels were painted.
The other small missing details added from scrap and with the extra etched set are:
- small pitot tubes below the right wing
- various antennas
- small trim tabs from plastic strip
- flap actuator rods below the wing
- entry steps
The propeller was painted light grey and sometimes has no painted tips. It was set in place.
A small piece of transparant strteched sprue was set below the tail to keep the model on its nose.
Finally a gloss coat was airbrushed to get an even sheen and protect the decals. The canopy hood was fixed with white glue slided open forward.
Check of the final Z-242 model dimensions:
[ area: 56,594 sq.km | population: 4,1 million | capital: Zagreb | GDP USD 15,000 nominal per capita]
The Croatia air force "Hrvatsko ratno zrakoplovstvo" is part of the armed forces. From 2007 some 5 Z-242Ls were delivered to replace the old Yugoslavian UTVA-75 trainers of which dozens were used.More information at my MiG-21 page here....
A second Zlin Z-242L AZ Model kit in 1/72 was made in a livery of the Mexico naval aviation.
Model assembly was similar as described above but the canopy hood was set closed as per kit.
The overall yellow colour was airbrushed with Gunze Sangyo H4 acrylic with dark blue panels with Gunze Sangyo H328 that all needed masking.
The decals at particularly the wheel fairings need care and some blue paint as well. The canopy hood needed some white glue to close the gaps and paint when dried. The propeller spinner is aluminium. Add the smaller details as described above.
[ area: 1,972,550 km2 | population: 127 million | capital: Mexico city | GDP USD 10,000 nominal per capita ]
Mexican naval aviation began in the 1920s with a Mexican TNCA "A" float biplane based at Las Bajadas. Roles are coastal patrol, search and rescue and liaison. During the Second World War aircraft flown were Vought Kingfishers, Catalina's and Grumman Ducks for U-boat ptarols over the Caribbean. In the seventies types were a HH-227, Bell 47G and Alouette II with Bonanza and Cessna 150 trainers. In the 1990s even Russian aircraft were purchased like Mil helicopters and an AN-32. 3 ex-Israeli Grumman E-2C Hawkeyes were acquired from 2004 but only briefly flown due to poor maintenance.
Some 30 Zlin Z-242L were acquired for training and additional Mi-17 helicopters. Other naval service types are CASA C-212, CN235 transports and helicopters like Cougars and Bo-105.
There are over 10 naval service bases were air craft are operated.
More information about the Mexican air force can be found on my F-5E page here...
Zlin Z-242L, coded ME-402 c/n 0751, a trainer based at La Paz, Baja California, Mexico
Mexico naval flying school. The extra KP decalset #KPEX020 has the markings.
Zlin company website
Back to 1/72 Prop Models
(c) Copyright "designer"/ All rights reserved. Your comments are welcomed by webmaster
Created this page Sept 10, 2023