Kit No. 72-247
Decals: Two versions – United Airlines Flight Research aircraft; and the 247D racing version piloted by Col. Roscoe Turner and Clyde Pangborn in the 1934 MacRobertson Trophy Race (London to Melbourne).
The Boeing 247 is molded in white and consists of about 107 parts, including pieces for a full cabin interior for the airline version, or parts for the eight auxiliary internal fuel tanks that replaced the cabin seats in the racing version that flew from London, England to Melbourne, Australia while competing in the long-range 1934 MacRobertson Trophy Air Race. The kit has fine raised panel lines and can be built with the landing gear extended or raised, although no stand is provided and would have to be scratch-built. The finished model will measure about 9 inches in length.
There are individual control columns for the cockpit, and a decal for the instrument panel. The instructions are not in the traditional step-by-step format, and at first glance appear to be abbreviated. In fact they provide a series of crystal clear, simple to follow illustrations for assembling the key components: cockpit, passenger cabin, and landing gear. Most helpful are photographs of the interior for the racing and passenger versions to give the modeler a sense of what the interior is supposed to look like before the fuselage is sealed up. If the kit is built with the landing gear down, the separate part for the door on the fuselage can be cemented in the open position.
The instructions feature a very detailed paint guide and just enough in the way of schematics to assist with decal placement. While the instructions seem to economize in illustration, they make up for it with abundant text which includes tips on how to enhance the appearance of the model, such as painting the backs of the landing lights silver before cementing them to the wings, drilling out the ends of the exhaust pipes, etc.
This is a great kit from the Golden Age, representing one of the first major airliners flown in the United States. It is the only kit of the Boeing 247 I have seen, and provides sufficient options and detail to remain an attractive subject, three decades after its introduction.