Spirit of St. Louis was the plane that Charles Lindbergh flew across the Atlantic in May 1927. Originally designated Ryan NYP, the high-wing, strut-braced monoplane was designed by Donald Hall of Ryan Airlines based on the Ryan M-2 and was named after the city of St. Louis, because the city participated financially in its construction. For my model, I chose the appearance of the machine from Charles Lindbergh’s promotional tour of the States and Latin America in 1927-1928.
In the past, it was only possible to build Ryan NYP in 1/72 scale from the Frog kit, which was also repackaged by AMT, Novo, Krugozor, and maybe more brands. In 2014, the RS Models company made all civil aircraft builders happy and released a completely new kit of this historic aircraft. I bought the kit in 2020 and started working on it in the summer of 2022.
The kit itself is relatively simple and does not have many parts, and it also contains etched parts, mainly for the cockpit. As I was a bit unsure about the placement and appearance of some details in the cockpit, I searched the Internet for photos of the real machine. In addition to several replicas, I managed to obtain photos of the actual Lindbergh machine, which is on display at National Air and Space Museum (Washington, DC). The photos on the mentioned page are beautifully detailed and will greatly help edit and add details and the coloring itself. Unfortunately, when studying them in more detail, you will come to the fact that the manufacturer of the model took the appearance of some details from some other machine, probably from one of several replicas. These include, for example, seatbelts and modern whell brakes that the original aircraft did not have, a different type of spur, a different position and count of the cooling holes in the fairing, and other details. I mainly modified and added the interior details, pitot tubes, aileron rods, new spur with a different foot, added some cooling holes, and added tappets and cables to the spark plugs for the engine. Painting job was quite simple, whole aircraft was sprayed with GSI C8 Silver, the nose was masked and sprayed with GSI C157 Super Silver. Then I took a soft pencil no. 8B and just drew small circles on the super silver surface. After that a high gloss varnish was sprayed, I think it looks quite satysfying to this scale… The size and appearance of the lettering and flags on the nose of the plane are also different on the model, but I found that out just when I was applying decals, and in addition, this correction would be very difficult. The kit also offers a variant of the machine without flags from the tour and two versions of a machine flying in Japan, which are more colorful. The model in the display case represents this real aircraft well, which is enough for me.