Azur have followed up their successful quarter-scale Potez 631 with a neat kit of its stable-mate, the 630. The principal difference between the two aircraft lay in their engines - in place of Gnome et Rhônes, the 630 was powered by a pair of Hispano Suiza radials which, although marginally more powerful, proved very unreliable and condemned the aircraft to an early retirement to training roles.
Jean-Luc Formery has already reviewed Azur's Potez 631
in some depth, so I'll concentrate mostly on what's different in this new release.
The Potez 630 arrives in a very solid top-opening box with the clear parts bagged separately for protection. The kit consists of:
120 x grey styrene parts
3 x clear injected parts
55 x resin parts
20 x etched steel parts
Decals for 4 x colour schemes
A semi-short run kit, the 630 is very impressive, with a satin-smooth surface finish featuring neatly scribed panel lines, well depicted fabric surfaces and a few raised details. As with the earlier release, there's a small amount of flash and a few ejector-pin marks to deal with. Jean-Luc found a few surface blemishes in his Review - the marks on the wings are still evident in my kit, but the sink marks on the rudder have gone, so maybe he was just unlucky there...
As with the full-sized aircraft, the two kits are largely the same, the big difference being the engines. Azur's Potez 630 features a new Sprue E containing propellers and different cowlings, plus a much larger set of resin parts. The reason for the latter is that, whereas the 631 featured a simple pair of one-piece resin engines, Azur have really gone to town on the 630, with each engine comprising a separate crankcase and individual cylinder pots - 16 parts per engine.
As well as the standard French version, there's also the option for the sole Swiss aircraft delivered. This was armed differently and Azur provide a new resin belly gun-pack to replace the individual weapons of the French aircraft.
The clear parts are reasonable quality - being thin and with well defined canopy frames on the canopy. The clarity is marred somewhat by some ripples and small surface blemishes, so they will certainly benefit from polishing and a dip in Future/Klear.
Painting & Decals
Azure cater for 4 x colour schemes:
A: Potez 630 C3 No. 75, G.C. I/5, 1. Escadrille, Bordeaux-Merignac, June 1940. Overall silver (n/m?) with a very distinctive partial camouflage on the wing centre-section and around the cockpit.
B. Potez 630 C3 No. 44, G.C. II/1, 3. Escadrille, Etampes, 1939. Khaki topsides, Gris-Bleu Clair undersides.
C. Potez 632 - Swiss export version, B-1, 1939. Khaki topsides, Gris-Bleu Clair undersides.
D. Potez 632 - Swiss export version, B-1, 1944 - the same aircraft, but now adorned with prominent red and white neutrality stripes.
The decals are very well produced; thin and glossy with excellent colour-depth. The register of the roundels is spot-on on my sheet and Azur have provided a choice on how to apply the French tricoleurs for the rudders - combined stripes and serials, or separate serials to allow you to paint the stripes. The Swiss markings are provided with the crosses on a red background, so you'll need to ensure the decals snuggle down well over the fin/rudder details if you use them.
Azur's Potez 630 looks like a very neat kit of an attractive aircraft. Based on the excellent results Jean-Luc had building the earlier kit
, the new 630 can be safely recommended for modellers with a little experience of short-run models.