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  1. M35 Armament Subsystem for AH-1G Cobra (5144 for ICM/Revell) 1:32 CMK by Special Hobby ICM’s recent AH-1G Cobra kit in 1:32 has also already been seen in a Revell box, and although it is a good kit, with resin, Photo-Etch (PE) and now 3D Printing, the limitations of injection moulding have been well-and-truly topped, allowing greater detail to be added to kits by aftermarket producers. This set is to upgrade the detail in the M35 armament sub-system for the Cobra, which is a derivative of the M61 Vulcan multi-barrelled minigun, but with shorter barrels, mount and mechanism for remote operation from the cockpit. As usual with CMK's resin sets, they arrive in the familiar clear vacformed box, with the resin parts safely inside, and the yellow-themed instructions sandwiched between the header card at the rear. This set also includes some 3D printed parts in a light orange resin, with a total of sixteen parts overall. The two largest resin pieces are replacement tops for the ammunition panniers either side of the fuselage, with the rest of the parts going to make up the gun mount, breech, and the six barrels that are made in two lengths, one resin, one 3D printed, separated by spacers. The largest 3D printed part is the ammunition feeder-guide that leads from the panniers to the breech of the gun. This part is extremely well-detailed and more delicately moulded than the kit parts. The gun’s mount attaches under the port winglet in the same manner as the original kit assembly. Review sample courtesy of
  2. AH-1G Cobra Update Sets (for Special Hobby) 1:48 Eduard Special Hobby have launched a new range of 1:48 Cobras recently, much to the excitement of anyone that’s got a soft spot for the type, as there hasn’t been a new kit in years. Eduard's new range of sets are here to improve on the kit detail in the usual modular manner. Get what you want for the areas you want to be more of a focal point. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE), 3D printed SPACE, Löök and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Update Set (491279) Two frets are included, one nickel-plated and pre-painted, the other in bare brass. A complete set of new layered instrument panels and side consoles with added levers for the cockpit and the extensive instrument panel for the rear cabin are in full colour, with a floor skin for both crew; added armoured side panels for the seats; an oval vent no the side of the fuselage; extra equipment in the rear shelf, and additional cockpit internal detail for the canopy roof and openers. The two ammunition paniers are detailed with extra parts that need some 0.3mm rod added as rollers and a replacement part for the ammunition feed that leads to the gun. On the underside of the tail boom a pair of oval surface panels are added appliqué style after removing the moulded-in detail. This will also make hiding the seams a much easier task, without caring if the kit detail is demolished during the process. Zoom! Set (FE1279) This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above. Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements. SPACE 3D Printed Cockpit Decals (3DL48067) The Eduard SPACE sets use new 3D printing techniques that lay down successive layers of different colour resin, creating highly realistic almost full complete panels that are supplied on a decal sheet. They can depict metallic shades, plus glossy, satin and matt colours too, which really ups the detail on everything they print. In addition, a small sheet of nickel-plated and pre-painted PE is included for the aspects of the set that lend themselves better to this medium, such as seatbelts and rudder pedals. The PE sheet has two sets of seatbelts for the crew, plus backing parts for some of the decals to give them even more of a 3D look. The instrument panel decals are applied over the kit panels after removing the moulded-in detail, as are the side consoles. An equipment box is folded up from PE and covered by individual surfaces from the decal sheet, with another decal on a support on the windscreen frame. The same process occurs with some additional instruments on the other panels. Seatbelts STEEL (FE1280) These belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting. Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE. As well as the two sets of crew belts there are comfort pads for under the furniture. Masks (EX862) Supplied on a sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the canopy, with compound curved handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape. In addition, you get a set of hub/tyre masks for the wheels on the optional towing rig, allowing you to cut the demarcation perfectly with little effort. Masks Tface (EX863) Supplied on a two sheets of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with everything above, but also give you another set of canopy masks tailored to fit the interior of the glazing so that you can paint the interior and give your model that extra bit of realism. Review sample courtesy of
  3. AH-1G Cobra Spanish & IDF/AF Cobras (SH48202) 1:48 Special Hobby The AH-1 Cobra was the first production Gunship or Attack Helicopter to see US service as a new type of weapons platform. During the Vietnam war the US Army began to see the need for armed helicopter to escort its unarmed UH-1 Hueys into combat. Fortunately, Bell Helicopters had been independently investigating helicopter gunships as early as the late 1950s, so in 1962 Bell was able to display a mock up concept to the US Army, featuring a 20mm gun pod, and a ball turret mounted grenade launcher. It was felt by the Army to be lightweight, under powered and unsuitable. Following this the US Army launched and Advanced Aerial Fire Support System (AAFSS) competition, which gave rise to the Lockheed AH-56 Cheyenne heavy attack helicopter that proved to be too advanced and therefore risky for its time, eventually being cancelled in 1972 after 10 years of development (some things never change). Despite the failure of the AAFSS programme, Bell stuck with its idea of a smaller, lighter gunship and invested its own money developing the AH-1 further. They used all of the proven components they could from the UH-1 platform, adding these to a newly designed slender fuselage that had a minimal front profile. When The US Army later asked for plans for an interim gunship for Vietnam, Bell was in a fortunate position to be able to offer the ready-made AH-1, or the Bell 209 as it was then called. Given the work Bell had already done, the programme was completed in a relatively rapid eight months and won the evaluation battle against the competition. In 1966 the US Army signed an initial contract for 110 aircraft. Some slight modifications were made to the production airframes. The heavy armoured glass canopy was replaced by Plexiglas with an improvement in performance. Wider rotor blades were fitted and the original retracting skids were replaced by simple fixed units. The G model was the initial 1966 production model gunship for the US Army, with one 1,400shp (1,000 kW) Avco Lycoming T53-13 turboshaft. Bell built over 1,100 AH-1Gs between 1967 and 1973, and the Cobras would go on to fly over a million operational hours in Vietnam, approximately 300 were lost to combat and accidents during the war. The U.S. Marine Corps would use AH-1G Cobra in Vietnam for a short period before acquiring more damage resilient twin-engined AH-1J Cobras. The M-35 Gun System was a single M195 20mm cannon (a short-barrelled version of the six-barrel M61A1 Vulcan) on the port inboard pylon of the AH-1G, with 950 rounds of ammunition stored in boxes faired to the side of the aircraft. The system was primarily pilot controlled, but featured dual controls so it could be either pilot or gunner controlled. For this purpose the pilot was provided with a M73 sight. The AH-1 went on to serve the US Army until it was replaced by the AH-64 Apache. The last one leaving active service in 1999. The Kit This is a new tool from Special Hobby and brings us a long-overdue update to some of the older kits of the type on the market. This first edition depicts the Spanish Navy and Israeli Defence Force (IDF) airframes, and arrives in a standard top-opening box in Special Hobby’s usual blue and white theme, and inside are eleven sprues in various sizes in grey styrene, a large clear sprue with a choice of canopies for upcoming versions, a decal sheet and their usual glossy A4 instruction booklet with spot colour throughout, and colour profiles of the decal options in the rear. There are a number of red Xs on the sprue diagrams, as they have been tooled with future boxings in mind, so after you’re done building it, you will likely have a number parts left over. I’d also recommend checking the sprues for parts that have come off the runners during shipping, as a fair few were loose in my bag, so don’t go tossing it in the recycling before you’ve checked them over. Detail is excellent, as we’ve come to expect from SH, especially in the cockpit, the exterior surface and the rotors, and the instruction booklet takes you through the build process with colour and scrap diagrams used to clarify the process. Construction begins with the cockpit, which will be highly visible through the crystal clear canopy parts, and this starts with the twin tub (no, not a 60s washing machine), into which the quilted rear bulkhead, twin pilot controls and tail rotor pedals are fitted, followed closely by a pair of instrument panels with decals and deep coamings to reduce glare coming though the big windows. The panels are different for front and rear crew, but their seats are very similar with armoured wings and sides on the cushioned seat, made of four parts each. Remarkably quickly we’re starting prep of the fuselage halves by drilling out a number of holes, adding the nose cone and tail fin, taking care to align them carefully as well as choosing the right one. There are two tails on the sprues. The rotor-head is installed on a flat plate, allowing the head to rotate if you’re careful with the glue, then it is inserted into the fuselage along with the cockpit tub and the short exhaust trunk, closing it up and leaving it to set up so you can deal with the seams. With that done, the cockpit is outfitted with more armour panels on the internal sidewalls and on the port side exterior, adding a number of appliqué panels in two parts. The underside of the fuselage is bereft of detail until you add the two armoured panels under the cockpit, and glue an insert into the hole in the underside after drilling out a pair of holes from within. Two small intakes are added to the sides, followed by the main intakes above that slot into recesses on the fuselage sides. The Cobra has wings! Little ones that are essentially weapons carriers, and these both have a separate wingtip and root mounted ammo pod under each one, the port pod later feeding the M35 gatling gun and a link between the starboard and port pods. At the rear you have a choice of two styles of tail stabilisers, one covered in rivets, the other nice and smooth. Speaking of the tail, the boom is covered in nicely rendered raised rivets, as is correct for the type. Two pylons attach to the underside of the winglets, one in the tip, another fitting into two holes. There is a choice of exhaust ring types, the Spanish one having a short circular type, while the Israeli airframes have a longer, upturned unit that is made from two halves. The Israeli bird also has a half-moon upstand near the outlet, and both types have a clear part mounted on a tapered turret. Speaking of turrets, with the fuselage flipped on its back, the nose turret is next, with a pair of inserts added into the main turret part, and a 7.62mm gatling gun in one aperture, plus a 40mm grenade launcher in the other that you’ll need to drill out the muzzles on. The tip of the nose cone is separate, and has a pitot probe added near the top, then it’s time to add a few antennae and clear lights, plus the BIG gun, which has a separate hollow muzzle part, ammo feed and two other small parts, which is suspended from the underside of the port winglet, and linked to the ammo pod as mentioned earlier. The skids with the thicker supports and a safety skid on the rear finish off the main fuselage for now, after which the spinning parts are made. The Cobra had a twin-blade tail rotor that slots straight into a hole in the top of the tail fin, with an M-shaped control mechanism fixed to the centre, and a couple of clear parts added to fairings nearby. The main rotor sits on a chunky axle, over which an angular washer slides that is joined to the base by a pair of actuators. The two main blades are moulded as a single item, and are first detailed with additional parts before they are glued to the top of the drive-shaft, and supported by a pair of long control rods linked to the blades to adjust their incidence. A scrap diagram shows the various parts in false-colour to help you get everything correctly aligned. It is lowered into the top fairing later and glued into place, but first the canopy is completed. The Cobra’s canopy opens on both sides, and has the long narrow top is fixed first, with the windscreen moulded-in. A small instrument is glued to the side of the screen, 3.5mm up from the bottom, after which it is glued onto the fuselage. The pilots exit from opposite sides, so after the sloped starboard section and port rear section are fixed in place, the two openers can be mounted in the open position and supported by props to achieve the correct angle for them. In addition to guns the Cobra could carry rocket pods, and two each of the seven-shot M157, M158 and four of the 19-shot M200 pods are included on separate sprues, the M157 & M200 pods cylindrical and with detail inserts in both ends. The bare tubed M158 pods have two ends, a central section and a curved cover at the top that is attached to the pylon. The final assembly is the optional towing equipment pack. This consists of a pair of graft-on wheels that attach to a pair of pegs on the upper rear of the skids, lifting them off the ground, and a pair of towing bars that also have castors near the skid-end to facilitate movement when they’re off the airframe. The bars attach to the front of the skids, then its down to you to find a suitable towing vehicle if you wish. Markings There are four markings options in the box, two each of Spanish and Israeli machines, painted blue and olive green respectively. From the box you can build one of the following: 007-8 Z.14-8 (72-21464) Arma Aerea de la Armada Española, 7 Escuadrilla, Base Naval de Rota, Spain, 1973-84 01-702 HA.14-2 (71-15091) Arma Aerea de la Armada Española, 7 Escuadrilla, Base Naval de Rota, Spain, 1973-84 No.126, Evaluation Unit/First Attack Helicopter Sqn., Chel Ha’Avir, Basis Tel Nof. Israel, 1975-6 No.130, Evaluation Unit/First Attack Helicopter Sqn., Chel Ha’Avir, Basis Tel Nof. Israel, 1975-6 Decals are by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Conclusion A welcome new tool of this gutsy attack helo that stayed in service for a long time and was used by a wide variety of operators. Great detail and simple construction add to the appeal. If you're masking phobic, you'd do well to view our review of the inside/outside masks by Special Masks, here. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  4. AH-1G Cobra Inside/Outside Masks (M48005 for Special Hobby) 1:48 Special Masks If you’ve spent time making your new AH-1G Cobra model from Special Hobby (reviewed here), you should probably consider making the best of the clear canopy using this new masking set from Special Masks. It arrives in a flat pack with a card backing and a sheet of kabuki-style tape sheet inside that has been pre-cut with masks specifically for the new model. these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the canopy, with compound curved handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape. The masks are duplicated in a slightly smaller form for the inside of the canopy to allow the modeller to paint the interior for a more realistic-looking finish. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  5. P-39 Airacobra Wheels (4441 for Hasegawa or Eduard) 1:48 CMK by Special Hobby Kit wheels are generally moulded in two halves, which means you have the resultant joins to deal with, possible mould-slip issues on single part wheels, and sometimes less than stellar detail due to the moulding limitations of styrene injection technology, especially in the tread department. That's where replacement resin wheels come in, with their lack of seamline and superior detail making a compelling argument. They are also usually available at a reasonable price, and can be an easy introduction to aftermarket and resin handling, as they are usually a drop-in replacement. This set arrives in Special Hobby’s yellow themed blister pack, with a header card and the instructions forming the slot-in back to the package, and holding the resin in place within the blister, using a sheet of clear acetate to separate the Photo-Etch (PE) parts to the rear. Inside are two main wheels and a choice of two types of nose wheels, plus two front hubs for the main wheels, with all but the hubs on separate casting blocks. The PE parts are caps for the narrow-tyred nose wheel, covering up all that nice detail. All the wheels are attached to their casting blocks at their flat-spots where the tyre is slightly deformed to give the impression of the weight of the aircraft on its undercarriage, so clean-up will be simple, and after a wash in warm soapy water, they’re drop-in replacements for the kit parts. The interior of the main wheels and the outer hubs should be painted first, then the hubs can be glued in place after a little bit of weathering to bring out the details that will be seen through the spokes, which should have the flash removed with a sharp blade or awl before use. The balloon tyre equipped tyre is simply dropped in between the two arms of the yoke, while the shallow tyre just needs the PE covers adding with a dab of super glue (CA). Conclusion Once painted, they will give a much better impression of realism than any kit wheels, raising the level of detail for a comparatively small outlay in time and beer tokens. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  6. This is an old Revell model. I'm very pleased with how it turned out in the end. They said only aftermarket. Here's the picture.
  7. Hi All! I built another quarantined plane. Eastern Expres/TOKO. Completed in a week. Pleasant viewing!
  8. Based on the Italeri kit for the Bell OH-13S, I build the H-13E used in Korea almost exclusively for MedEvac applications. For this purpose, the engine and tank had to be modified, the entire grid frame shortened, baffles attached to the tail fin, the instrumentation modified and of course the distinctive stretchers with the protective hoods on the outriggers had to be built. Also the engine had to be modified, because early models were not equipped with Lycomings, let alone turbo engines. After all a wild mix comprising of a detail set from CMK, a small set of etched parts from JADAR-Model, parts from the Pavla kit, a 3D printing as well as self-build parts from thin sheet metal, medical supplies, finest nylon yarn, lead wire, rod and sheet were used for the model. The whole misery is described here in this build report in the German "Flugzeugforum". (You need to be logged-in to see the pictures, unfortunately.) But it is worth it… Since the helicopter was in massive use in the Korea-war, there are no well documented individual models, which were flown by a later known pilot, for example. My H-13 is a typical representative of these helicopters, which were memorialized in the film and the TV series M*A*S*H. I have built an average type from all available picture material. Not even a list of assignable serial numbers could be found, and I actually even bothered the manufacturer Bell (now Textron) with it, but they say that they have nothing to do with the old military models anymore. It was the first time ever that I took part in a competition with this model and actually made second place in 1/72 against very good modellers in 2017… But you better form your own opinion.
  9. Bell AH-1J SeaCobra, at Cavanaugh Flight Museum, Dallas, Texas. Pics thanks to Nigel Heath.
  10. Hi folk's,I was spending the last of my Christmas money on a couple of thing's on King Kit and had just enough left to cover a last build for this GB(yes definitely the last) I've not built or even seen this little kit but a look at a couple of on line reviews shows it to be a decent enough build so this replaces the Twin Otter which sadly failed.
  11. Does anybody know of any decals for the Defence Helicopter Flying School Griffin HT1 1/72 scale. Cant seem to find anything on the interweb Rodders
  12. X-1 Mach Buster (8079) 1:48 Eduard Bell built the X-1 as their attempt at breaking the elusive sound barrier as it was known then, although it was having problems with control at high mach numbers due to the lack of surface area on the elevators. After agreeing to share data with the Miles company that were developing the superior Miles M.52, the US reneged on the deal after Miles had naively given their data over, after which the Bell engineers fitted an all moving elevator to their design, while the British government cancelled the Miles project. This left the Americans free to break the sound barrier without any competition, reaching 1,000mph in 1948 with the well-known Chuck Yeager along for the ride. The rocket propulsion system was later improved with added fuel tank capacity and achieved 1,450mph. The Kit This is a reboxing of the 1998 plastic with some additions and subtractions from the original Profipack boxing. Inside the box are two sprues of dark grey styrene, a single clear part, a sheet of nickel plated and pre-painted Photo-Etch (PE), a bag of resin wheels, a small sheet of pre-cut masking material, decal sheet and the instruction booklet, which is printed on glossy paper in full colour at A5 size. This is one of Eduard's early kits and as such it has a "Classic Airframes shine" to the parts, and they aren't of the same detail and quality of their modern uberkits, and as such they should be considered as somewhere between short run and mainstream – "long run" maybe? This is a simple kit however, and the lack of locating pins on the fuselage halves shouldn't worry any but the most cautious novice. Construction begins in the cockpit, and with the choice of three different instrument panels, all of which are pre-painted, and a set of seatbelts that are also pre-painted, this part of the build shouldn't take long. You will need to add a bit of nose weight behind the cockpit to make it sit on its nose wheel, but after that, you can close up the fuselage and add the wings. A choice of either the original ineffective elevators or the later Miles inspired units are included, which depends on which decal option you choose. Before you put on the canopy, your choice of instrument panel is added along with the rudder pedals, which looks like it could be a bit fiddly, although you do also have the escape hatch to peer through during fitting of this assembly. With that done, the faceted windscreen can be applied, and this is where those masks come in handy, saving you the tedium of cutting individual masks for each pane. The escape hatch can be added closed if you wish, hiding away the little PE handles on the inside, or you can leave it off, but as it is not tethered, you'll have to come up with some way of keeping it with the model, such as a base, or gluing it to a wing. The landing gear on the original was simple, which is replicated by the kit parts, with the addition of some very nicely 3D mastered resin wheels to replace the soft detail of the original parts. The gear bay doors however are a little agricultural, but this can be remedied by either applying a little modelling skill, or getting the PE Upgrade set that is now available under the code 48908. Markings The decal sheet is printed in-house, and the quality has improved since they began this practice. The sheet is in good register, sharp, and with adequate colour density, having a closely-cropped glossy carrier film. From the box you can build one of the following two airframes at different points in their careers: 46-062 Muroc Dry Lake Base, 2nd half of 1947. 46-602 Edwards AFB, 1950. 46-063, Muroc Dry Lake Base, late 1946. 46-063, Edwards AFB, October 1947. Conclusion It may be a little old-skool, but it is still a welcome re-release of this important little aircraft. With a little care it should build up into a creditable replica of the real thing, ably demonstrated recently by our member Orangesherbert, or Simon as we prefer to call him. You can see some more pictures here. Recommended. X-1 Overtrees (8079X) If you don't need the decals, resin and PE parts for what you have planned, the Overtrees offer you the option of purchasing just the two grey sprues and the windscreen without the expense of the handsome box, instruction booklet etc. It comes in a plain white box, as below: X-1 Photo-Etch (8079-LEPT) If you change your mind about the PE, or you have an older boxing that you'd like to get the pre-painted instrument panels for, this little set is just ziplok bagged on a white card to keep it safe, as below: NOTE: Overtrees are available only from Eduard's website, so please bear this in mind when ordering. Review sample courtesy of
  13. X-1 Updgrade Set (48908) 1:48 Eduard If you feel that the detail on your X-1 could be improved, Eduard have thought of that and released this handy upgrade set that will do just that. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. The set contains parts for the cockpit in the form of additional panels behind the pilot, rudder pedals, and a complete replacement for the aft section of the left side console, control column details, plus a replacement access door with an improvement to the locking and handling details. Both main gear bays receive neat inserts to add a detailed skin within the bays, plus new in-scale door parts that will improve the look substantially. The nose gear doors are also replaced, although the bay is so small that no added detail is needed. Review sample courtesy of
  14. Hello again, I'd like to participate with this other Huey I'm making. Being an Italeri, my expectations weren't too high (my expectations from my own skills aren't high either). But... Good things of the kit The clear parts were thick and shiny enough not to need polishing. Clears parts fitted perfectly except for a few inconsecuential gaps. The main halves of the fuselage fitted perfectly, along with all major parts. Bad things: Having the doors closed would've required too much work, unnecessarily. A lot of guesswork to fit the rocket launchers. Exhaust piece was a total nightmare because it didn't have anywhere to hold to if you wanted it in the correct position. The building manual was WRONG in the installation of the control stick and I had glued them with CA. So anybody else who has built or who's building a 1/72 Italeri UH-1 single engine Iroquois, could you please drop a line saying if you had the same problems as I did? Anywho, onto the WIP: Front of box exclusive for Japanese market. Sprue shot My philosophy is to glue first, then paint bcz 1) glue doesn't work well with paint; 2) touching/holding painted parts is bad for the paint; 3) you'll need to repaint them anyway. Doing other stuff while the grey paint dries... Note how the grip of the control sticks fold forward, just as the manual suggests. But the manual was wrong and I wan't happy about that. Consequently, a less than desirable look to the base of the control stick. An example of how well the clear parts fit. So far so good. This was after a lot of headaches with installing the rocket launchers and the exhaust pipe, that I had to fix after taking this photo. I would've liked to finish it today but I'm tired of the problems it gave me and wanna take a break, watch a movie with helicopters or something : P And I know what you're about to say, there's blitzbuild GB and yes, I'm on my way there, too!
  15. Agusta-Bell AB.212ASW - Anti-Submarine Warfare variant of AB.212. Built under license in Italy by Agusta. This is a Turkish forces ASW fit, pics thanks to A.C.Acikgoz.
  16. Fisher Models & Pattern is to release in July (?) a 1/32nd Bell X-1A/B resin kit- ref. 3214 Sources: http://www.fishermodels.com/product/bell-x-1a-x-1b-rocket-plane-132 http://forum.largescaleplanes.com/index.php?showtopic=62873 V.P.
  17. Cunarmodel is to release a 1/72nd Agusta-Bell AB.47J Ranger resin kit - ref.CM7223 Source: http://www.italiankits.it/cunarmodel.html V.P.
  18. AZ Models is to release 1/72nd P-39 Airacobra kits - ref. 73037 - Bell P-39D Airacobra Source: https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/AZM73037 - ref. 74006 - Bell P-39 Airacobra Mk.I Soviet Air Force Source: https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/AZM74006 V.P.
  19. Bell OH-58D "Kiowa" Revell 1:72 The Bell OH-58 Kiowa is a military version of the successful Bell 206A Jet Ranger helicopter. Bell developed this back in 1960 in response to a US Navy requirement (On behalf of the Army) for a Light Observation Helicopter. The aircraft was originally rejected on favour of the Hughes OH-6. In 1967 the US Army reopened the helicopter competition as Hughes could not fulfil it's contractual obligations. Bell resubmitted their helicopter with some changes which included more cabin space. Bell underbid Hughes to win the contract. In following with US Army tradition of naming helicopters after native American tribes the new helicopter was given the name Kiowa. The OH-58D brought the most distinctive feature of the Kiowa, it's mast mounted sight. This contains a gyro stabilised thermal imaging system, and a laser range finder. The OH-58Ds would work in conjunction with Apache helicopters finding targets with their sight. In a move which has caused some controversy the US Army are to retire their entire fleet of Kiowas. These are to be replaced by Apaches and the new OH-72 Lakota. This restructuring by the Army is a move to divest itself completely of one aircraft type primarily it would seem to save money. The final flight of a Kiowa was the 8th June 2015. Foreign sales of these aircraft are already lined up Lebanon currently in the last stages of a deal to acquire the helicopter and upto 1000 Hellfire missiles. The Kit This is the old Matchbox kit PK-43 first released back in 1987. You can still see MATCHBOX on the sprues though the "Made In England" bit has had the "England" removed from the mould. The kit features raised detail and slightly heavy recessed detail, though I think the infamous Matchbox trencher had retired by this stage! The kit seems to be as good now as it was back then with no flash present. Construction starts in the cockpit / cabin area. The instrument panel is constructed using decals to represent the instruments. Next the pilot seats are added to the bulkhead. Cyclic controls are supplied, but no collectives or rudder pedals. The forward and aft bulkheads are added into the fuselage halves, along with the main rotor shaft. Once these are in the fuselage halves can be closed up. Once all is closed up the engine top decking can be added, along with front canopies. On the underside the landing skids are added along with a cable cutter. The tail rotor, tail fin, and tailboom wings are added at the next stage along with the side windows and doors. The last construction phase is to complete the main rotor. This is then added along with the mast mounted sight. The last few bits added are another cable cutter and a couple of aerials. Canopy The clear parts are well moulded if a little thick for this scale. The are though clear and relatively distortion free. Decals Decals are provided for two US Army Machines based in Germany. Conclusion This looks like it will make up into a good representation of the Kiowa. Detail may be a bit sparse in places but the overall shape appears to be good. Recommended. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit
  20. Following Hughes OH-6A presented here on April, a new Vietnam aeroscout is coming from my bench. This mid ‘80s 1/48 scale model by Esci is pretty good although its age. I got a lot of work inside the cockpit, none the less outside, with an Allison engine taken from the CMK resin set and modified for a Bell machine. I used Testors enamel colors with artistic oils and chalks as weathering. As reported in Print Scale decals sheet, the example 68-16761 (callsign 'Inferno 761') of Casper Platoon is taken in 1970, just few months after delivery, so that I chose a semi-matt finishing. Following Casper Platoon official website, I got a small diorama according the Landing Zone (LZ) English homebase during Vietnam war. Pilot from Plus Model. Enjoy, Alessandro Rome
  21. Bell AH-1W SuperCobra Revell 1:48 Most modellers will instantly recognise the Bell AH-1 Cobra Attack Helicopter. The AH-1 was the first production Gunship or Attack Helicopter to see service. During the Vietnam war the US Army began to see the need for armed helicopter to escort its unarmed UH-1 Hueys into combat. In parallel to this Bell Helicopters had been investigating helicopter gunships as early as the late 1950s. In 1962 Bell displayed a mock up concept to the US Army. This Helicopter featured a 20mm gun pod, and a ball turret mounted grenade launcher. It was felt by the Army to be lightweight, under powered and not suitable. Following this the US Army launched and Advanced Aerial Fire Support System (AAFSS) competition. This competition gave rise to the Lockheed AH-56 Cheyenne heavy attack helicopter. However this proved to be to advanced for its time and was eventually cancelled in 1972 after 10 years of development (some things dont change!) Despite the AAFSS programme Bell stuck with its idea of a smaller, lighter gunship and invested its own money developing the AH-1. They used all of the proven components they could from the UH-1 platform, adding these to a newly designed fuselage. When The US Army therefore asked for pans for an interim gunship for Vietnam Bell was in a fortunate position to be able to offer the AH-1, or the Bell 209 as it was then called. Given the work Bell had already done the programme was completed in a relatively speed eight months and won the evaluation against the competition. In 1966 the US Army signed an initial contract for 110 aircraft. Some slight modifications were made to the production airframes. The heavy armoured glass canopy was replaced by Plexiglas with an improvement in performance. Wider rotor blades were fitted and the original retracting skids were replaced by simple fixed units. The rest is history as they say. The AH-1 went on to serve the US Army until it was replaced by the AH-64 Apache. The last one leaving active service in 1999. The US Marine Corps opted for a twin engine AH-1 to replace its original Cobras and thus the SuperCobra was born. The AH-1W would keep its twin rotor. The original engine would be replace by a pair of GE T700-401 turboshafts. These give the AH-1W a maximum speed of 190 Knots with a range of 365 miles. Armament is one 3 barrelled 20mm gattling gun in a chin turret with provision for 2.72" & 5" rockets, TOW missiles, Hellfire missile and AIM-9 sidewinder missiles for an air-2-air capability. The USMC continues to believe in the SuperCobra for its use with them being updated to the AH-1Z. This features integrated digital avionics, helmet mounted displays. A four bladed main rotor which is bearingless and features composite technology will be a main noticeable change. The Cobra lives on! The Kit This kit is a re-box by Revel of the 1993 Italeri kit with new decals. The it arrives on two main sprues with a small clear spure. Detail is sparse and mainly raised. Construction starts in the cockpit. The clear part for the HUD Is added to the pilots console. This along with the two seats and a rear bulkhead are added to the cockpit tub. Also added are the pilots control column & cyclic control to the read cockpit. To the gunners cockpit at the front are added a pair of control levers. Once the rear bulkhead is installed the cockpit is ready to go. The next step is to build up the chin mounted 3 barrelled 20mm Gatling Gun. With careful construction the gun will be able to move. The three barrels are assembled and added to the mount. Construction then moves to the main fuselage. The two halves are mad up by adding the engine parts to the fuselage parts. Sensor housing are then added to the front and rear of both sides. The gunners weapon sight is made up along with the engine exhausts for each side. The sight, turret and cockpit tub are then added into the fuselage sides. The tail plane, and tail rotor mounting pin must also be added at this time. Once these parts are installed the fuselage halves can be joined. Once the main fuselage is together the canopy is added along with cheek pods at the front. The exhausts are added along with the chin mounted sensor pod. To each side are added the stub wings to carry the weapons and the main landing skids. Construction then moves onto the weapons pylons, and the weapons themselves. Flare dispensers are constructed and added to the stub wings. A combination of rocket pods and Hellfire missiles, or rocket pods & sidewinder missiles is recommended. The finishing off is accomplished by building and attaching the main twin rotor blades and an assortment of blade aerials, cable cutters and other antenna. Canopy Surprisingly a one part canopy is a provided. Why surprisingly? the picture on the instructions shows the model posed with the canopy open, and canopy jacks are provided. In order to open the canopy as suggested the modeller will need to cut the various parts of the canopy open. Decals Decals are provided for three different USMC Aircraft. They are well printed, in register an look dense. #162571, HMM-163, USS Tarawa LHA-1 1989 - Grey/Green Camo #162537, VX-5, Naval Weapon Center, China Lake 1988 - Grey Camo #162541, HMT-303, Camp Pendleton, 1991 - Desert Camo Conclusion This is by no means an uber kit, however it looks like a SuperCobra and should build up to a good looking model. Recommended if you would like an AH-1W in your collection. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit
  22. Bell UH-1 Iroquois "Huey" pics by Mike from the Vietnam War remnants museum.
  23. Bell OH-58 Kiowa, pics thanks to DL Munne.
  24. Hi Everyone, With 2 out of my 3 part built kits nearly finished now, I am picking kits out of my stash to work on while I am off work. The 1st one that I have selected is the Revell 1:72 Bell AB 212 / UH-1N helicopter. The kit has the following features : - Highly Detailed Surfaces - Detailed Cockpit - Detailed Passenger Cabin, choice of seats - Rotating Rotor - Detailed Main and Tail Rotors - Separate Sliding Doors - Engine Cowling's for the Twin Engine Version - Antennae and Cable Cutters - Missile Pods for the USAF Version Decal Sets for the USAF and Civil Defence Versions: - Bell 212, c/n 30879, D-HBZS, Christoph 12 , Luftrettung - Bundesministerium des Inneren, 2007 - Bell UH-1N, 69-16670, USAF, 90th Missile Wing, F.E. Warren AFB, Wyoming, 2005 The kit contains 132 parts spread over 2 sprues in white plastic plus 1 clear sprue. I will be building this kit as 69-16670, Bell UH-1N USAF. Anyway here are photos of the sprues. Anyway more photos when I have some progress to show. Rick
  25. Hi, A small break in Japanese series. More close into the mainstream. Bell piston fighters of WWII: P39L Airacobra and P63C3 Kingcobra, Heller and Toko (short run), respectively. Both in 1/72. Airacobra is in markings of 98 sq. 81 Fighter Gr USAF, Tunis 1943 Kingcobra is from unknown (to me) unit of VVS, likely 1944. Comments welcome Regards Jerzy-Wojtek Airacobra: And Kingcobra:
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