The Dutch-manufactured Fokker D.XXI was a low-wing monoplane that saw action during the defence of Holland in May 1940. The type had a much longer and very successful operational career with the Finnish Air Force against its Soviet counterparts, during both the Winter War and Continuation War. Its rugged design with a radial engine and fixed undercarriage made it very suitable for the harsh Northern conditions, especially as the wheels could be replaced with skis for winter use. Initially I was going to build this 1:48 scale Special Hobby kit more or less out of the box with some additional details like opening the landing flaps, cockpit canopy and gun bays in the wings. However the resin Bristol Mercury radial engine from Vector supplied with the kit was so finely detailed that it seemed a waste to hide it away inside the closed cowling. With the cowling now removed, the model looked slightly odd with the engine protruding from the front of the fuselage. So I decided to remove the panels in front of the cockpit as well, exposing the area directly behind the engine and uncovering the internal fuel tank. After that the model construction was straightforward.