Construction began with the engine, the famed Hispano Suiza mentioned on the box. About a dozen pieces for the main construction of this V-8 engine, along with many little details from there. Brass, black, and some aluminum accents bring the engine to life and give it the final appearance, sadly I forgot to get a pic of this.
From there we move inside to the cockpit and the framing around it. Most of this process was a wooden brown paint, with various little details like dials made out of PE and same with seatbelts. There were many small fiddly bits that somehow didn't get lost to the carpet monster and when completed created a very cool little assembly that I almost didn't want to hide. From there the fuselage halves fit around it, this is where I encountered a fitment issue but with a bit of work, it snapped together well enough. The engine was also added to the frame, starting to look like something now!
Attaching the upper wing was a little more work than I had initially thought it would be. There are 8 mounting points that must be positioned just right to fit and hold the upper wing, of which none really 'click' into a solid location to give it anything to base off of. Working quickly with Tamiya extra thin I glued the lower bars onto the lower wings and the top side of the fuselage in roughly the position they should sit. Then after a few minutes to set up I fitted the upper wing down, forcing the supports into a position where needed and adding a touch more glue to hold it all home. A lot of checking from a top and the front view was needed to get the angles correct.
Before adding any PE to the bottoms of the wings I went ahead and attached the landing gear struts to help make sure that no PE bits got damaged sitting on the desk. Control horns were added to the elevators, ailerons, and rudder and a few bumps on the body itself like the exhaust brackets to replace the injection-molded lumps from the factory. The machine guns were also built at this point, and man was that tiny work!
Painting and decals
Painting could have been much better had I not insisted on building the entire thing first and then trying to go at that, but I made due anyways. Most of the body is a darker green with tan on the lower part of the wings and bottom of the body, Bits of wood were painted for the struts, prop, and landing gear, with bare metal where appropriate. I didn't attempt to replicate the wood grain on this one, again learning was the goal for future builds. As mentioned in the post-build review above this particular one was decaled for Lt. C.H.R. Lagesse of the 29th squadron in Saint Omer, France in 1918.