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Found 62 results

  1. Being a big fan of the USAF 'Century Series' jets of the 50's I was delighted when KittyHawk models announced their new 1/48th scale McDonnell F-101A/C Voodoo and 15th July 2014 my kit arrived thanks to the always reliable MJW Models. I started it immediately with lots of enthusiasm but it turned out to be a hard slog for various reasons so now six months later I can report it almost finished. Two have already been featured on BM thanks to Jurek Greinart and Sebastien so I am not the first. As always I am not a 'premier division' scale modeller, I tend to work in fits and starts based on enthusiasm levels for the half dozen models I have on the bench at any one time and I have a low attention span. So, how did she turn out? This kit was a challenge to say the least (more later) but the end result is a large and impressive aircraft dating back to 1960. I chose to build my Voodoo as an F-101A Voodoo serial 54-1446 operated by the 91st TFS / 81st TFW out of Bentwaters in Suffolk, East Anglia. The KittyHawk kit gives the modeller four decals options and initially I was going to go for the showy F-101C serial 56-0007 with very 'hi-vis' yellow markings however I had a painting disaster so I went for the more subdued blue markings. Now pleased that I did. I do have to say that I am proud to have completed this kit, when the first reviews came out I remember that one well known reviewer commented that this Voodoo was 'unbuildable' and, yes, she was a challenge for various reasons but I have built her! The sun came out for a short while this afternoon so I decided to take these photos to show off the Humbrol 27001 Metalcote 'Matt Aluminium' which has gone on well and shows off the Voodoo's unique lines. This build is not quite completed because I have lost the ejection seat! Not sure how I managed that, it must be in a box somewhere, I did consider taking a seat out of a previously built old Monogram F-101B but little point in breaking up that model for one seat. A few visible faults, the nose cone has a very poor demarcation between the black and aluminium, the nose gear is tilted slightly backwards and you can see where the entire nose section forward of the cockpit broke off at late stage in construction! The view from the rear is perhaps a little bit better, one of the strong points of this kit for me are the distinctive afterburner cans which make her look exactly like the earlier F-101A/C models. Several commentators have compared the KittyHawk kit unfavourably with the earlier Revellogram F-101B however the cans in that kit are quite primitive compared to these. One very weak area was the airbrakes, these have to be filled in with large amounts of filler then sanded down and if you are like me and detest filling/sanding this is a serious down for this kit. Please to say that I seemed to have overcome this hurdle fairly well and the airbrakes don't seem to attract too much attention. I understand that AM replacements are available if needed. So, knowing now what I know, would I buy this kit again? Oh yes! Without hesitation. Perverse it might seem but I really had a sense of satisfaction when I put this together - faults and all - and if you look at the build and say 'That's wrong' or 'What were you thinking' I humbly agree, the faults are all mine, but I really got a kick out of tackling this beast. Looking forward to the RF-101C 'Long Bird' later this year, the ultimate Voodoo. I would seriously look at purchasing replacement airbrakes as well as a cockpit detailing set to replace the decals supplied with the kit So my last photo... Now where could I have put that ejection seat? ;-) Michael
  2. KittyHawk is working on a 1/48th North American FJ-2(?)/3/3M Fury kit - ref. KH80155 Source: https://www.facebook.com/song.wang.5076/posts/1917304511861498?pnref=story V.P.
  3. Well I finally finished my attempt at the Kittyhawk Voodoo. my thanks to Nikolay Polyakov and bentwaters81tfw for there advice, knowledge and inspiration. The kit is a mixture of good and bad, partially as a result of trying to produce the whole F-101 family from a set of moulds. So the intakes are just plan wrong for the A/C models and needed cutting back to the earlier, squared off shape, the slime lights needed removing but mainly the fit took a lot of work even to get it to my botched up state. I used Caracal decals for the scheme, as I tried a few of the Kittyhawk ones and didn't like the colours, though the stencils were fine. As always the Caracal decal were fabulous to work with. The machine I chose to depict ids from a photo on another thread from Bentwaters81tfw and show how they looked later in their brief career. It seems the front section was painted silver, the mid section was Air Defence Grey and the rear was left natural metal. It was a therapeutic job masking and painting this . I'm glad I got the kick up the rear to build this stash sitter but I don't think it will encourage me to buy another one. I've also just noticed I forgot to finish decaling the serial number on the port side. I have been looking at the thing all afternoon but it took a photo for me to spot this!!!! As always thanks for looking.
  4. Silver Fox

    F-101A Voodoo

    Have been avidly following the thread by Nikolay Polyakov with his fabulous build of this kit. Sadly he seems to have gone off air, which was a shame as he was inspiring me to build this stash sitter. So it is time for me to step out of his shadow and take the lead. I'd also like to publically than Bentwaters81tfw for his fabulous photos of the type throughout its operational life, which have decided me on the machine I want to model. Here was where I left it on the thread I haven't taken any photos recently not expecting to post a build thread. You can see the issues with the fit, the lines of filler show the major joints. the starboard panel below the cockpit coming had to be sanded until paper thin and I was scared that I would literally tear it. by this stage I had already removed the slime or formation lights from the nose and tail mouldings as they were not fitted to the A model. So this is where I was in early June. Here we are today. the machine I want to do is from very late in the types usage. The nose has been repainted but the tail and wings are still in the original natural metal. The centre section is finished in ADC grey. The intakes have been cut back and squared off as have the splitter plates as Kittyhawk chose to give this early model the same intakes as the later B model. I make no pretence at accuracy as I cut where I though based on photos rather than plans. The wing parts fit together really nicely, but the strange hook like tabs forced the wings away from the fuselage so they had to be opened up to get a better fit. Generally the fit of the individual section isn't at all bad, but the five major components, tail, centre section, nose and wings is problematical, probably because the manufacturer is trying to get A, B and RF models out of the basic moulding. This has some positives as my kit has a full weapons suite for the B model included so I have some nice Genies and Falcons for my Revell Monogram kit. Next on the to do list is the undercarriage which I felt was too fragile to stand up to all the filling and sanding I knew I would need to do, test fitting of the main legs looks good but some work be need in the nose bay.
  5. Kitty Hawk is to release a 1/35th Sikorsky HH-60G Pave Hawk kit - ref. KH50006 Source: https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1614705148581765&id=736521713066784 3D renders V.P.
  6. Mornin' folks Just a thought, well a question to be honest: You may remember that I bought m'self the Kittyhawk Bronco a couple of months back, last week, I started idly cutting a few of the larger parts off the sprue just to check the fit etc, and - I'm being absolutely honest here - without trying to, or meaning to, I found after an hour that I had built three of the major sub-assemblies. Which brings me to this - given that it's definitely NOT a main-stream subject would there be any interest here at Britmodeller for a review-as-I-build type article ??? - Just my thoughts as I bring the thing together, not as any sort of expert, (I'm definitely NOT that), just as an ordinary modeller who happens to like the subject. OK, thassit, over to you. Ian.
  7. I wanted to complete this build in time for the arrival of the first F35b in the UK. Boy I cut it close. This build was designed to show off the complex internal bay systems and array of weaponry it could carry. Using the KARL cockpit and weapons bay sets really enhanced the detail, along with the dream hobby engine nozzle and eduard PE set for the lift fan and brimstone missiles. All in all I enjoyed the build but need to source a new canopy as I am not totally happy with the finish.
  8. Can't resist coming in with this. I started basics a while ago alongside building my Airfix P-40B at Christmas but it's well below the 25% rule. I have previous with this kit, in ended in it eventually becoming damaged and binned so I'd like to get this one done and added to my other pair of P-40s.
  9. Resin Upgrade Sets for Special Hobby P-40/Kittyhawk Kit 1:72 CMK We've just taken delivery of the first examples of Special Hobby's new P-40/Kittyhawk kits, and rather good they are too. Special Hobby seem to have taken a leaf out of another great Czech manufacturer's book by releasing a veritable feast of resin goodies to go with the new kit. Pretty much everything you could think of is represented here. Without further ado, let's take a look and see what's what. P-40E Engine Set The first set contains a complete Allison V-1710 V12 engine for the P-40E. The set comprises the engine itself, as well as the prominent chin-mounted radiator, the firewall, engine subframe and replacement parts for the kit's plastic engine covers, which have to be cut away in order to fit the engine. All of the cutting follows panel lines, so it should be within the abilities of most modellers to be able to use this nicely detailed part. P-40 Undercarriage Set This set includes a choice of two different main landing gear bay inserts for the Special Hobby kit, as well as the fabric cover for the tail wheel assembly. The resin has a clean, crisp quality which will add a little extra zip to the finished kit. P-40E/K/M/N Armament Set This set includes six .50 cal machine guns, as well as the structural detail for the gun bays and replacement covers for the wings. As is the case with the engine set, the modeller is required to remove panels above and below the wing in order to expose the additional detail provided with this set. All of the cuts are along panel lines, which should be within the capabilities of most modellers. P-40 Control Surfaces This set provides replacement landing flap and ailerons for the main wings, as well as complete replacement horizontal tail planes with separately case elevators. While the latter are a straight swap for the kit parts, the former will require the removal of more plastic from the wing. Get a fresh scalpel blade and a ruler and whatever you do, make sure you don't slip! P-40 Cockpit Sidewalls and Control Column This set does not require the removal of any plastic from the kit. Instead, the parts are a straightforward (and more detailed) swap for the kit parts. Just drop them in an enjoy! P-40 Wheels - Diamond and Hole Tread These wheels are another straight swap for the kit parts. Naturally they are much more detailed than their plastic counterparts, with a lovely crispness to the tyre tread. Flat spots can be filed where the wheels are removed from the casting blocks. P-40/Kittyhawk Seats There are four replacement seats available, for theP-40 E, K, M and N-1; P-40N-5 to N-40; Kittyhawk I, Ia, II, IIa and III; and the Kittyhawk IV. Most, but not all, have harnesses cast in place. Conclusion CMK can be relied upon to turn out some good quality resin, a fact to which these sets testify. Detail is top-notch, casting is flawless and I have no doubt that the fit will be equally good. If you have the new kit, or are planning on acquiring it, then it's good to know that these sets are out there and that you can pick and choose which to pick up. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  10. Finally finished it! Quite an awful kit which requires lots of extra work and some aftermarket goodies - Eduard PE's and Matra Magic II missiles, Master pitot tube, L'Arsenal resin Raphael SLAR pod and Colorado decals. But in the end it's a great looking jet Best regards from Czech and happy New Year to everyone. Andrew
  11. North American OV-10D Bronco 1:32 KittyHawk History The OV-10 Bronco, a rugged, manoeuvrable, twin-turboprop, multi-mission aircraft, served with the U.S. Air Force and Marine Corps (OV-10A). The U.S. Navy also used the OV-10. The Navy squadron VAL-4 "Black Ponies" flew them with much success in the Vietnam War. Internationally, the OV-10 served with the military services of West Germany (OV-10B), Thailand (OV-10C), Venezuela (OV-10E) and Indonesia (OV-10F). Designed and built by North American at Columbus, Ohio, the Bronco complemented the performance requirements between jets and helicopters. Faster and more tactically versatile than helicopters, yet slower and more manoeuvrable than jets, the Bronco utilized tactics not possible with either. The OV-10D night observation system (NOS) featured a unique night observation and target marking system that included forward-looking infrared (FLIR) and laser designator/ranger. With uprated 1040 SHP turboprop engines and fibreglass propellers, NOS provided greater range, improved performance and greater survivability. In military operations, the Bronco's outstanding capability to find and hit battlefield targets close to friendly troops made this an aircraft effective against conventional and guerrilla forces. The effective application of the Bronco's versatility, however, did not end with purely military functions. Civil action applications added significantly to the cost-effectiveness of this economical aircraft. Military applications for which the Bronco was particularly suited include anti-guerrilla operations, helicopter escort, close air support, armed reconnaissance and forward air control. In addition, it could be used for utility missions such as cargo paradrop, delivery of up to six paratroops, medical evacuation, smoke screening and psychological warfare with leaflets and loudspeakers. For peacetime operations, the guns, bomb racks and armour could be removed quickly, and the aircraft became a high-performance STOL utility vehicle. Potential applications included aerial mapping, geological survey, spraying, disaster relief and patrol work. Ruggedness and simplicity of operation were emphasized in the design of the Bronco. The fuselage was mounted under the wing and provided tandem seating for pilot and observer. The canopy design afforded better visibility than that of most helicopters. Each crewman was equipped with an LW-3B ejection seat system, also designed and built at Columbus, which was capable of zero-speed, zero-altitude ejections. Armour protection, a bullet-resistant windshield and self-sealing fuel cells were provided for operations in a hostile environment. Twin engines, dual manual flight controls and rugged and simple construction also contributed to survivability and safety. The OV-10 was equipped with seven external store stations and four 7.62 mm guns installed in the sponsons. A variety of conventional ordnance could be delivered in addition to 2,000 rounds of ammunition. The seven external store stations consisted of four sponson store stations, one centerline station and two external wing stations. Sponson accessibility provided rapid loading of stores and ammunition. The wing stations could carry the LAU-7/A launcher for mounting either rocket packages or missiles. The centerline store station also had the capability of carrying either a 20 mm gun pod or a 150-, 230- or 300-gallon (568-, 871- or 1136-liter) external fuel tank. The Model This is their second new tooling of 1:32 aircraft from KittyHawk and an interesting choice of release it is too. Arriving in a very attractively designed box, with one an artists representation the aircraft in flight over the desert, presumably during the first Gulf War. The box is quite deep and its easy to see why, as on opening it is full of styrene. The kit is contained on eleven large sprues of light grey styrene, with one of clear styrene and a small etched brass sheet and a metal weight to prevent the model being a tail sitter. The main sprues, unlike previous kits are not folded over but adjoined at the centre, one so theres no need to snap them apart before inspecting the parts. Detail looks very refined, with engraved panel lines and raised areas where required. The styrene feels quite soft so take care when removing from the sprues. There is no sign of flash and only a few moulding pips, all the styrene looking very clean indeed. The clear parts are very well protected from damage by being in their own separate cardboard box. Construction of the kit is quite complex as there are a lot of sub assemblies and open panels. In fact it seems like most of the fuselage, including the sponsons have poseable panels. The instruction diagrams are very nicely drawn and clear to read, which is always good. The build begins with the construction of the two ejection seats, each made up of eleven parts, plus the etched seatbelts and lap straps. The cockpit tub is a single piece item, onto which the central bulkhead is fitted, along with the two joysticks, throttle and undercarriage levers. The rear instrument panel is then assembled from its five parts are glued into position, along with the two side console aft of the front cockpit and the lower binnacle in front of the pilots position. The rear bulkhead and ejections seats are then fitted. Beneath the cockpit floor is the nose wheel well, which once it is fitted with the front bulkhead can be glued into place. At this point the instructions call for the nose gear to be fitted. This assembly is made up of the main oleo, moulded with one half of the wheel yoke and the whole axle attached. The two piece wheel/tyre is then slid onto the axle and the other half of the yoke attached. The oleo is then fitted to the main leg attachment and fitted into the wheel well, followed by the retraction jacks and nose wheel bay door. Of course you could leave the nose undercarriage off until after painting. Construction now moves on to the assembly of the NOS sensor housing, which looks like an upside down gun turret. This assembly is made up of six parts and when complete is position into the slot in one half of the fuselage. The rear equipment bay roof is fitted out with black boxes on top, then sandwiched between the fuselage halves along with the cockpit assembly and equipment bay floor. The wing centre section is assembled from a single piece upper section and two lower panels. The poseable flaps, made up of three parts each can then be fitted along with the anti IR unit fitted on top of the upper wing centre section. This assembly is then fitted to the top of the fuselage, whilst eh cockpit is further detailed with the inclusion of the pilots instrument panel, complete with coaming and added control boxes, the windscreen and the two curved post to which the glazing will attach. Something else fitted at this point, but probably best left till later are the fitting of the access steps, unless the modeller is choosing to have them closed up. The sponsons are next in the process, each one assembled from a lower section into which the machine gun bays are fitted along with the machine guns, ammunition tanks and ammunition belts. The upper sponson panels are then fitted, as are the outer tips. The modeller has the option of leaving the gun bay doors off should he wish. The completed sponsons are now fitted to the fuselage, along with the centre pylon, nosewheel bay doors and a host of aerials. The rear equipment bay door comes in two halves which when joined is finished off with the bulkhead with associated equipment moulded on to it. The main overhead canopy section is them fitted out with quite a complex gun/bombsight and fitted to the fuselage, attaching o the wing centre section and the rear edge of the windscreen. Id imagine that construction of the fuselage had to be perfect in order to get this part to fit without any gaps fore and aft, which would be difficult to cure. The nose door above the NOS sensor is also poseable and is constructed from two halves, onto which the hinges and pitot probe are added. If it is to be posed open the there are two gas struts provided. If its going to be close, leave the hinges off. The four access panels of the canopy are to be fitted now along with their gas struts, but again, probably best to leave these till the end of the build. Each of the Two Garrett-AiResearch turboprop engines, may be visible if the access panels are to be left open, as such they are both complete representations of these powerplant. Each engine consists of two halves for eth main casing, ancillary parts, cowling fitment rings, engine bearers, exhaust and gearbox assemblies. The complete engines are then fitted to the engine bulkhead which also has a number of ancillary parts fitted. The main undercarriage assemblies are next, each consisting of two wheel/tyre halves which are fitted to the axle of the single piece main oleo. If should be noted that the oleo is in fact flat , as if the nitrogen has leaked out and is indicative of the fact that the subject from which the model was copied may have been a museum ship. Therefore the main oleo gas strut needs to be cut away and carefully lengthened to give the model the correct attitude. With the main legs altered to suit the retraction actuators are fitted into the main undercarriage bays which consist of the roof, sides plus the front and rear bulkheads. The engine/bulkhead assembly is then fitted to the front of the bays and fitted to one half of the tail booms. Before the booms can be closed up a couple of panels need to be fitted from the inside. When closed up the upper boom aft of the wing trailing edge is fitted, as is the engine intake panel at the front. The booms are then fitted out with the engine oil coolers, main wheel bay doors, blade aerials and propellers, which are each made up of a two piece hub, three separate blades, backplate and spinner. Moving onto the out wings, each is made up of upper and lower panels onto which the two piece ailerons and out flaps are fitted as are the pylons and several etched parts. On the upper wing the modeller has the option of posing the unusual airbrakes extended or retracted, with each blade of the airbrakes being an item of PE. The outer wing assemblies are then fitted their respective tail boom the outer wings/booms are attached to the inner wing sections at the same time the three piece horizontal tailplane is attached between the two vertical tails of the booms, all the while ensuring everything is perpendicular with each other. The Bronco was used in a variety of armed roles and KittyHawk have provided a nice varied selection of weapons in the kit to arm your model. These include:- Two AIM-9L Sidewinders, with optional nose sections to build AIM-9Bs One 260l drop tank Two 130l drop tanks Two four barrelled 5 Zuni rocket pods Two seven barrelled 2.75 rocket pods Two Mk82 500lb Snakeye bombs with slick tails Two Mk82 500lb Snakeye bombs with retarded tails Decals There are two sheets of decals one large and one small. The smaller of the two contains the instrument panel decals as well as propeller manufacturers marks and the footstep lines. The main sheet comes with a set of stencils for one aircraft and markings for the following options:- OV-10D of the US Navy in Field green over light grey scheme OV-10D of the US Marines, VMO-2. Ser No. 55479 in a wrap round two tone grey scheme OV-10D of the US Marines, VMO-2. Ser No. 55468 in two tone tan/brown uppers over grey scheme. The decals look very well printed, with good opacity and colour density, in register and without too much carrier film. Conclusion For some reason Ive always like the odd looking OV-10 and with its elongated nose, the 10D is even odder looking. But for some reason it just look right for the job it was designed for. I have always wanted a kit of one, but never thought one would be released in this scale, so this reviewer is a very happy bunny. I realise that having poseable panels is not to everyones taste, but from the builds Ive seen they dont appear to cause too much trouble should you want them closed. Alternatively with all the open panels it is superdetailers dream. There arent too many colour options around for this version but which ever you choose it will certainly stand out in any collection. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
  12. After the F-5E/F Tiger II (link), Kitty Hawk has the project to release 1/32nd Northrop F-5A/B Freedom Fighter kits. Source: https://www.facebook.com/736521713066784/photos/a.736556396396649.1073741827.736521713066784/1623005921085021/ V.P.
  13. AH-6J/MH-6J Little Bird Nightstalkers 1:35 KittyHawk The Hughes OH-6 was developed from a US Army technical specification calling fir a light observation helicopter (LOH) which need to fulfil the roles of personnel transport, escort & attack, casevac and observation. The prototype first flew in 1963. The helicopter entered service in 1966 and almost immediately went to war in Vietnam. Crews soon nicknamed the helo "Loach" after the LOH acronym. Out of the 1419 built for the US Army 842 would be lost in Vietnam, mainly due to hostile ground fire. Following the disastrous attempt to rescue the American hostages in Tehran in 1980 the US Army's 160 Special Operations Aviation Regiment began developing a special aviation task force to prepare for what was then to be a second attempt at the rescue. They identified a need for a small helicopter to land in restrictive locations, and be transported by Air Force Transport aircraft. The OH-6A was selected for this and given the name Little bird as it was much smaller than the MH-60 & MH-47 aircraft they had. In the end there was no second rescue mission but the Army decided to keep the unit it had formed, and this would eventually become the 160th Aviation Battalion. The helicopters used for transport would become MH-6, and the armed ones AH-6. Later when Hughes would become part of MD helicopters a newer helicopter based on the OH-6 the MD-500 would arrive. This would feature a five bladed rotor and T tail. These aircraft would be produced as version for the Special Operations teams starting with the MH-6E. This would lead later to the AH/MH-6J. This improved helo based on the MD500MG would be used for transport and attack, it features an improved engine, FLIR, and GPS/Inertial navigation. The Ah-6 can usually be seen equipped with a lightweight universal mounting platform which has two M134 mini guns and two M260 7 shot Hydra 70 rocket pods. However they can carry a variety of other weapons including Hellfire missiles, stinger missiles, 40mm grenade launchers or .50 cal machine guns. The Kit A brand new tooling from KittyHawk who seem to be bringing us helicopters we want just recently. The kit arrives on three sprues of light grey plastic, a clear sprue, two smallish sheets of photo etch, and a small decal sheet. Even in 1/35 scale the helicopter is not what you would call large, hence the "Little Bird" name. It is interesting to see there are 6 rotor blades on the sprue, that and the fact the kit is moulded with cutouts for the larger back door would leave us to believe a H-6M is on the cards from KH as well. Construction starts with not with the cockpit but with the engine and its mounting. The 16 part engine is first constructed, this is then attached to its mounting. The engine bay is then made up and the engine added. The modeller can now breathe easy and move back to the cockpit / cabin interior. The centre instrument console is built up with instruments and MFDs being supplied as decals. In this scale I think PE might have been better suited to this. The cyclic controls are also connected to the centre console at this point. The forward bulkhead is then made up with the pilots seats added, PE seatbets are supplied here. Collective controls and other parts are added at this point. The rudder pedals are now made up and attached to the cabin floor. The modeller is now faced with two choices for the back of the helo. Either the cross member support and side planks are fitted for carrying troops, or the lightweight universal mounting platform is added for mounting weapons. The weapons support is the more intricate structure as it contains the weapons mounts and ammunition boxes. The mountings and centre console are then fitted to the cabin floor. If fitting for weapons then an additional ammunition box is mounted in the back. The engine and bay assembly is then added to the cabin floor. Moving on to the fuselage halves holes need to be opened up for various parts, once done the cabin assembly can then be fitted into them, and they are closed up. The main nose glazing can then be added along with the front doors. Its worth noting that in most pictures of these helos the doors are not fitted, but consult your references as always. The clamshell doors for the engine compartment can now be added. These do have detail inside of them and it would seem a shame to close them up and cover all the engine detail. If making an armed helo then the next stage deals with the various armament options, though it would seem only the mini guns are dealt with in instructions? again here its really upto the modeller to consult their references as the weapons fits differed from mission to mission. If fitting the mini guns then the PE sheet has detailed feed chutes for these, but they are supplied in plastic, though the way they run in the instructions is not the same as photos I have seen. The skids are built up and added next. Various and multiple aerials are added to the fuselage along with the back doors (if you want to fit them). The tailboom and tail rotor is then made up and added to the fuselage. The last item then to finish is the main rotor assembly. The mount is made up and then the five blades are added to the hub. The blade which are nicely curved fit onto pins on the hub which seems a positive step. The whole assembly can then be mounted to the top of the helo. Clear Parts These arrive in the now trademark cardboard box for added protection (something other kit manufactures should take note of). At first glance they do not look that great, and certainly not as good as the UH-1 I recently reviewed. The large single front part does appear slightly pebbly at first, but when held the appropriate distance as would be used on the model the appearance does improve some. Decals Decals are provided on one small sheet as these aircraft due to the nature of their work dont carry many markings, Decals are provided for 4 machines; MH-6J - 95-25371 US Army in Somalia. AH-6J - 16 th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, US Army. AH-6J - 90-25362 US Army in Somalia. AH-6J - 90-23635 US Army in Somalia. Conclusion A comprehensive kit of an iconic helicopter which is let down slightly I feel by the instructions. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
  14. Just finished, my Airfix Defiant and Kittyhawk. The Defiant is the outstanding kit that I've tackled recently, maybe ever. Beautifully designed and detailed with near-perfect fit, it was a pleasure to build. The turret is an extraordinary model in its own right. The decals are very good as well. The Kittyhawk is the old Otaki mould which has been in the stash for years. I can't remember where I bought it - I guess secondhand, maybe I was sorry for it with its squashed box. I thought it would be a quick and easy build but both fuselage halves were distorted around the removable engine bay hatches, so I had to use the hatches to coax them back into shape. Then I dropped it on the kitchen floor! The impact shattered the filler on the wing roots so I had to start again there. I did think of the Japanese toolmaker making the zillions of tiny countersunk rivets - what dedication. The worst part was the cockpit glazing which was not very satisfactory. I was surprised that the kit decals were fine after so long. Both are from the box apart from an Eduard harness in the Defiant and a tape one in the Kittyhawk and are brush painted with Humbrol and Revell enamels.
  15. HansReggelsen

    P-40 = Tomahawk/Kittyhawk?

    Hi all! I have figured out which P-40 type is called what in RAF service: P-40 B/C = Tomahawk P-40E (4 guns) = Kittyhawk Mk. I P-40E (6 guns) = Kittyhawk Mk. IA P-40F (shorttailed/Merlin-engined) = Kittyhawk II P-40L (longtailed/Merlin-engined) = Kittyhawk II P-40K = Kittyhawk III P-40M = Kittyhawk III P-40N = Kittyhawk IV So far - so good. I also understand that there weren't many Kittyhawk II (P-40F/L) delivered to th RAF. Now here's my question: Would a P-40F/L delivered to the RAAF be called a Kittyhawk II? Or was it still a P-40F/L Cheers Hans J
  16. Greatly abbreviated WIP here This is the Kittyhawk 1/32 Bell Airacobra kit converted to my interpretation of an RAF Airacobra MK1 The WIP lists all the changes I made Kit was painted with Xtracolour paints using masks by Maketar for the codes and national markings Exhausts and wheels came from Mastercaster, and all gun barrels came from Master save for the 20mm cannon barrel which is aluminium tubing Whilst the kit does not fall together out of the box I had little trouble with the assembly Thanks to all those that fallowed the build Bruce IMG_0068 , IMG_0065 , IMG_0063 , , overall view ,
  17. Gday All Latest project to hit the Cutting Mat is the Kittyhawk P-39 Airacobra. kittyhawk boxart , Ive always liked the look of the P-39 in RAF colours, so will be doing this kit as a Mk1. American aircraft - to me - always look better in pommy colours anyway! Something like this hopefully. P -39 Collection - A Cash Peter Arnold 050c_zpslqoqxkgy , The kit looks fantastic in the box, hopefully it builds up nicely too. Kittyhawk allow you to build a model with engine cowlings, gun access panels, cockpit doors, radio access panels, oil tank hatch and radiator flaps open. In addition, landing flaps can be displayed in the lowered position as well as separate elevators and rudder. I plan to take advantage of all of this! Despite this multitude of open panels, I decided I needed more. Quite a few photos I saw of Airacobras being serviced show not only the main rectangular cowling that Kittyhawk supply as a separate part off, but also the triangular panel behind it, so the first thing to do was separate this with the aid of a scalpel cowling removed , YIKES!!! Thats quite a large hole Of course this then meant I had to actually build the additional structures you might see. Why do I do this? Anyway, some interior structure was knocked up using plastic strip. , Im certainly not a super detailer or even decent scratchbuilder. It took me about six goes to get that bulkhead the right width! To me it looks a little over scale, but the strips were the only sizes I had, and , yes, I know I should have laid the stringers down first, then done the ribs but honestly, once its all said and done, I don't think you will notice. I just wanted some structural components visible rather than a blank opposite wall. I also purchased the Eduard sets for the kittyhawk kit. On the exterior set Eduard supply the fastening framework for the cowlings so I combined both to outline the open panels on the one side. The centre divider has a plastic strip behind it. The other fuselage half has the cowling and radio hatch glued in the closed position with no fit problems , To Be Continued Bruce
  18. UH-1D "Huey" 1:48 KittyHawk Lets face it, IT’S A HUEY! The Bell UH-1 Iroquois is the Iconic Helicopter following its use by the American Army in Vietnam. Thanks to this it can now rank alongside such aircraft as the Spitfire and Mustang, and is recognisable by most people not just aviation enthusiasts. The Bell 204 was developed to a 1952 US Army requirement for a medical evacuation helicopter, trainer and utility helicopter. Originally designated as the HU-1 (Helicopter utility) troops quickly shortened this to Huey and it has stuck ever since. While the original Huey was a success the Army wanted a Helicopter which could carry more troops. Bell stretched the Huey by 41 inches and was able to fit in four extra seats next to the transmission taking the total to 15 including the crew. The extra room enabled 6 stretchers and a medic to be carried in the Medevac role. In place of the original single window main door the newer longer main door would feature twin windows. The new helicopter would be called the 205 by Bell and the UH-1D by the Army. Many armed forces all over the world would use the Huey. Notable users would be Germany and Japan. The D model was license built by Dornier. The Army used it as a utility Helicopter, and the Air Force for Search & Rescue. Japan would use the UH-1H which was a D model with an improved engine. The Kit A brand new tooling from KittyHawk, who have done their best to make it the best 1/48 Huey. It arrives on three sprues of plastic, one clear sprue, one sheet of photo-etch and 2 sheets of decals. Construction starts with the main cabin in the crew area. The collective and cyclic sticks are added along with the rudder pedals. The main instrument housing between the pilots is built up and installed along with the main instrument panel. Following this the transmission housing is also built up and installed at this time with the transmission and rotor head linkage on top. The two seats behind the pilots are built up and added at this time. The other rear seats are now built up and added along with the armoured pilots seats. Seat belts where needed are provided as PE. Next up the doors and windows are added to the main fuselage sides. The engine exhaust is added along with wells for the cargo hook area. Next up the engine deck is built up and the turbine engine added. Now the engine deck and main cabin interior can be added into the fuselage sides and the main fuselage closed up. The tailboom is made up as is the cabin roof. These are then attached to the main cabin. The solid nose parts are also added at this stage. The main glazing is added along with the engine covers with PE mesh areas. If using the door guns these can now be made up, added to their mounts and attached to the fuselage. The skids are made up and added along various aerials cable cutters as required. Lastly the main rotor is assembled along with the tail rotor and these are added on. Clear Parts These arrive in the now trademark cardboard box for added protection (something other kit manufactures should take note of) they are clear and with no defects. Decals Decals are provided on one many sheet, and a supplementary sheet for the instruments and nose art. The look to be well printed, in register and colour dense. Marking are provided for 4 US Army examples, and 3 overseas users; UH-1D - 121st Assault Helicopter Company US Army. UH-1D - 117th Assault Helicopter Company US Army. UH-1D - 174th Assault Helicopter Company US Army. UH-1D - 170th Assault Helicopter Company US Army. UH-1H - Japanese Ground Self Defence Forces. UH-1H - Taiwanese Air Force. UH-1D - Hubschraubertransportgeschwader 64, Luftwaffe, Althorn Conclusion A comprehensive kit of an iconic helicopter. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
  19. F2H-2 / F2H-2P Banshee 1:48 Kittyhawk The McDonnell F2H Banshee was a single seat carrier capable Jet Fighter developed by McDonell from their FH Phantom aircraft. The new aircraft was to use the newly developed Westinghouse J34 turbojet. The J34 would have 3000lbf thrust compared to the J30’s 1600lbf. It was originally the idea that the Banshee would use much of the Phantom design, however due to changes in required fuel and armament loads this was not to be the case. At this time the US Navy recognised they would have to move away from the WWII .50 Cal Machine gun round to the heavier 20mm Cannon round (Something that took the USAF longer to realise). Even though the Banshee was not to use the Phantom structure there were enough similarities that a prototype of the Banshee was available in August 1948, a staggering 3 months after Phantom production finished. The Banshee would be produced in three versions, The Nightfighter (F2H-2N), Photo-recon (F2H-2P), and the day fighter (F2H-2B, later F2H-3). The nightfighter had a 2’10” nose extension to house an AN/APS-19 radar units, and the Phot-recon version had a 2’5” nose extension to house 6 cameras. The Day fighter version would also feature eight underwing/stub pylons allowing for 1580Lbs of bombs/rockets to be carried. The aircraft also had a specially strengthened inner port pylon to allow carriage of either a MK 7 or Mk 8 nuclear store. In total upto 1953 895 aircraft would be delivered. The main users were the US Navy & Marine Corps. Overseas use would be only the Royal Canadian Navy. The Banshee being the only Jet Aircraft operated by them. The Banshee would see extensive use in the Korean War by the US. I was realised that straight winged aircraft we no match to North Korean MiG-15’s and the aircraft operated primarily in ground attack and interdiction roles. No Banshees were lost to enemy aircraft in the Korean War due to this decision. The photo-recon aircraft with the ability to operate at 48000 ft generally stayed out of the range of AAA fire. The aircraft were in high demand for their pictures often being escorted by USAF fighters. Again there were no Air 2 Air losses with only 2 being lost to radar laid AAA fire. The last use of the Banshee would be in 1955 and again for the photo birds with secret overflights of Chinese positions for a suspected invasion of Taiwan taking place. The Kit This new tool kit from Kittyhawk arrives on three large sprues of grey plastic, a clear sprue, a small sheet of photo-etch and a decal sheet. The parts are finely moulded with fine engraved panel line and rivet details. The kit can be built as the fighter or photo-recon Banshee, with the option of having the wings folded if needed. Construction starts conventionally in the cockpit. The ejection seat is built up from 6 parts with PE belts being provided. The seat is then installed into the cockpit floor with the sides and rear bulkhead being added. Decals are provided for the side instrument panels. The rear decking behind the cockpit is then added to the rear of the bulkhead. The next step is construction of the front gear well, and leg. The leg is a less than straightforward affair with 6 parts and the one piece nose wheel . The front gear well is 6 parts and is built up around the gear leg. Once the cockpit and front gear well are complete they can be added into the main fuselage. Also added in at this time is the rear mounted arrestor hook and its recess. Once all these parts are in the main fuselage is closed up. The modeller now has to decide which nose is going on the aircraft. If the fighter nose is chosen then a full complement of cannons are provided along with their ammunition boxes and feed chutes. These are built up and the nose parts closed up around them. Two panels are provide (one each side) which can be modelled open to show off the gun bay. Once the complete gun nose is attached to the main fuselage the nose cap can be put in place. If the modeller is going with the recon nose then a full camera fit is provided along with the mounting brackets and screens between cameras. Unfortunately they are no open panels to display the cameras but you will be able to see some of the detail through the camera windows. Now that the main fuselage and nose assembly is completed construction moves to the main body/wing area. First up two complete engines are made up along with their intakes and exhausts. These are then installed into the low main wing centre section along with other structural parts and then end plates for the main inner wing. The top two sections can then be added to the lower wing. Flaps are then added to the lower section. The main centre section of the wing can then be joined to the fuselage. Also at this stage the instrument coaming and instrument panel are added, with a decal being provided for the instruments. The canopy and tail planes are then added. The other wing sections are now built up. These can be attached either down or folded up as the modeller wishes. Each out wing has an upper and lower part and once together the wing tip tanks can be assembled and added. Flaps are added to each outboard section and dive brakes can also be added in the open position if needed. If the wings are to be attached straight then they can just be added on at this stage. If the modeller wishes to make them in the folded position then the folding mechanism and hinges need to be added. There are six small parts each side for this. The instructions then have you make up the main wheel units and undercarriage legs and add them after the wings, though I suspect most will do this before if adding the wings in the folded position. Lastly the gear doors are added and if needed the weapons load can be added. There are two pylons on each outer wing and four under the centre section, with bombs and rockets supplied. The holes for these are in the parts which means if you are doing the photo-recon Banshee you will have to sand these. It seems odd these were not flashed over and the modeller left to open them if needed? Decals Decals are provided for 4 examples; F2H-2P - Bu No. 125687 USMC VMJ-1 (Overall Gloss Sea Blue). F2H-2P - Bu No. 128870 USMC VMJ-1 (Grey over white). F2H-2 - Bu No. 124978 USMC El Toro. (Grey over white + large red areas). F2H-2 - Bu No. 125068 USN VF-11 - Korean War (Overall Gloss Sea Blue). Conclusion This is a welcome new tool of an important Korean War era aircraft for the 1:48th scale modeller. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops.
  20. Sukhoi Su-17 M3/M4 Fitter-K 1:48 Kittyhawk The Su-17, with its NATO reporting name Fitter was derived from the earlier Su-7 as a project to improve its low speed handling, particularly during take-off and landing. It was Sukhoi's first attempt at variable geometry wings, and when it reached service was the Soviet Union's first swing-wing aircraft in service. To keep the project costs down, the centre section of the wing remained fixed, with the outer able to swing back for high-speed flight, and forward for slow. A pronounced spine was also added to the rear of the cockpit to carry additional fuel and avionics that were necessary with the advances in aviation. The first airframes reached service in the early 70s, and were soon replaced by more advanced models with the designation M3 and M4, designated Fitter-H and –K respectively by the Allies. The M3 was based on a larger fuselage and had additional weapons options, while the M4 was further developed and was considered to be the pinnacle of the Fitter line with a heavily upgraded avionics suite including improved targeting, navigation, and yet more weapons options, as well as improved engines. A downgraded version of the M4 was marketed as the Su-22M4, and was in production until 1990! Although the Su-17 was withdrawn from Soviet service in the late 1990s, it remained in service much longer in its export guise, where it was used by both Iran and Iraq, Libya and Angola to name but a few, where it had variable success, which likely had as much to do with pilot skill and training as the merits of the airframe. The Kit A new Su-17 model has been needed for a few years now in 1:48, and this is a new tooling from Kittyhawk that dropped onto our radar relatively recently. The previous best kit was getting a bit long in the tooth, and needed plenty of TLC to coax a good model out of it. The box is fairly standard Kittyhawk (KH) fare, with a pair of Su-17s in formation on the lid, and inside, plenty of plastic in their familiar pale grey styrene. The sprues are large, and it appears that their annoying habit of folding sprues over while still warm is dying out slowly, with detail and crispness on the increase. Gone also are the large ejector-pin turrets in every intake, although a few are still there in the engine parts, but won't be seen. The fuselage is split fore-aft, which hopefully means we'll be treated to a two-seat UM in due course, but as always don't hold your breath, just cross your fingers. The usual generosity in terms of weapons and stores is still present, with almost a third of the sprues devoted to things to hang off your finished model, which is always nice to see. Inside the box are nine sprues in light grey styrene, one in clear, a small sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, and two decal sheets, one of which is substantially larger than the other. The instruction booklet completes the package, and first impressions are good – it might even get a build review if I can find the time! Construction begins with the ejection seat, which is nicely detailed with PE belts included, which show a lot more detail than previous efforts from KH, which is good to see. The cockpit is built from a series of parts, including the control column, rudder pedals, side consoles and the instrument panel, the last two of which have decals provided for the instrument details. The coaming and HUD are added to the front of the cockpit, with a clear part forming the HUD glazing. Following this the engine is constructed from quite a number of parts, with only the aft end visible if you left off the aft fuselage section, which is possible although not considered in the instructions. The exhaust nozzle is built from sections and surrounded by a ring, showing the actuators around its circumference, which when painted should give a good impression of the original. The engine and exhaust are then sandwiched between the forward part of the aft fuselage, and the aft part of the aft fuselage (confused yet?) is built up with air-brake bays and added around the exhaust. Jumping around somewhat confusingly, the tail with separate rudder is then made up, followed by the nose gear bay, which is again made from individual panels for extra detail. The gear leg is fitted at this stage, but with some care could be left off until later if you feel it would be safer to do that. The cockpit, nose bay and the intake shock-cone (including clear panel) and then trapped between the forward fuselage halves, and this is mated to the aft section, at which point the avionics spine is added in sections, which overlap the fuselage joints for strength. Detailing the fuselage with a host of small, delicate parts seems a little optimistic to this ham-fisted modeller, but if you fancy your chances, go ahead. There are a number of scabbed-on chaff and flare dispensers down the fuselage sides, which are provided with PE attachment brackets that will require a little bending to put in position, so steel yourself if you're not a big fan of PE. The twin prongs on the nose are also added, the pitot probe having all the usual vanes added from styrene parts that are VERY small, so take care not to lose them. The windscreen fits to the sill around the coaming, and the canopy is designed to be posed open, with a styrene fitment to the rear that mates with the notch behind the cockpit. At this stage of the build your Fitter looks little more than a fancy tube with a wheel at one end and a fin at the other. The wings are built as assemblies next, although I'd be tempted to leave off the gear again for fear of breakage, but the instruction advise otherwise. The main gear legs are single parts with three small ancillary struts, one of which stabilises the large captive bay door that hangs down outboard of the leg. The gear bay roof detail is moulded into the underside of the upper wing, while the walls are added separately, as are the optionally open gun bays in the leading edge of the inner wing section. The outer wings are made up from a single centre section with separate flaps and slats, which then attach to a pin in the outer edge of the inner wing section, held in place after the addition of the lower half. A small bay door, actuator jack for the gear and the aforementioned gun bay doors are added underneath, and above the two large strakes fit into their respective slots. Repeat in a mirror for the other wing, and you're done. The wing roots fit into their slots in the fuselage, where you will also find an inner main bay wall, so remember to paint that when you're doing the rest of the bay, or you'll end up cursing. The elevators are both single parts that fit on a pivoting pin, and with the addition of the inner wing flap sections that's the main build done. As already mentioned, there are a substantial quantity of weapons for the many pylons on the inner wings and belly. The decision to place all the weapons on the static parts of the airframe saved money and weight developing rotating pylon mounts such as those seen on the Panavia Tornado. In the box you get the following: 2 x BETAB-500 iron bombs 2 x OFAB-250-SZN iron bombs 4 x FAB-250-M54 iron bombs 4 x FAB-250-M62 iron bombs 4 x SAB-100 flare 2 x RBK-500-250 cluster bomb 2 x FAB-500-M54 iron bombs 2 x Fuel Tanks 1 x SPS-141 ECM Pod 2 x B-13 122mm rocket pod 4 x F2B-250-TS iron bomb 2 x KH-23 Kerry missile with APU-68 adaptor rail 1 x SPPU-22 23mm gun pod 2 x UBK-23 gun pods 2 x B-8M rocket pods 2 x S-25L rocket 2 x UB-32 rocket pods BATAB-500-ZD bunker buster bomb 2 x S-24 rocket 2 x R-73 Archer A2A missile 2 x R-60 Aphid short-range A2A missile 1 x KKR-1T Recce pod Quite a list! The parts are all well-detailed, with separate fins and nosecones where applicable, exhausts and other parts including further adapter rails all supplied. The decal sheet contains stencils for them all, with a double page giving a complete stencilling and painting guide. Markings There are a generous seven decal options with the kit, all of which is detailed in the centre pages of the instruction booklet, folding out to double size, which although it disrupts the flow of the construction a tad is an improvement on their early kits, as you at least get a full set of profiles from the major angles, and it is all of a reasonable size. These pages are in colour, and you can pull them out of the booklet if you feel the need, which I did a moment ago. From the box you can build one of the following: Su-17M3R 313 ORAP based at Vizavi Bagram, May 1988 – green/earth camouflage over blue undersides wearing red 01. Su-17M4 43rd OMShAE, Black Sea Fleet, Gvardeiskoe Field, Crimea, Jan 1998 - green/earth camouflage over blue undersides, wearing yellow 40. Su-17M4 274th APIB, Afghanistan 1988 - green/earth camouflage over blue undersides, wearing blue 23. Su-17M3 Russian Air Force, red 95 – all over natural metal. Su-17M4R 886th ORAP, 15th VA Afghanistan war - green/earth camouflage over blue undersides, wearing blue 07. Su-17M3 red 50 – green upper over blue undersides. Su-17M4 Ukrainian Air Force – green/earth camouflage over blue undersides, wearing Yellow 50. Previously, Kittyhawk's decals have been of variable quality, but there is an improvement in this sheet, although there is a small mis-registration of the white or red that affects a couple of the decals with borders, but it shouldn't notice too much. Otherwise the other colours are in good register, sharpness is better, as is colour density. The smaller sheet contains the instrument panels and some emblems that required a different printing process. Conclusion A modern tooling of this aircraft, with its aggressive look and wide use, was long overdue and this scale and now it's here. Detail is good from the box, the weapons provided are unbelievably generous in scope and quantity, and improvements to the engineering and finish of the kit appear to have been made. I haven't been over the kit with a fine toothed-comb checking each rivet yet, but I'm sure any inconsistencies will come out in the wash, as no kit made by imperfect beings such as us can be absolutely perfect. The discussion has started already in the Rumourmonger forum for those that are interested here. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops.
  21. FloydWerner

    Neville Dukes' AK578- P-40B or P-40E?

    I'm trying to do Neville Duke's airplane AK578 as depicted on the Xtradecal sheet, Early P-40-Part 2. The problem comes in when I did some research that apparently AK578 is a Kittyhawk and not a Tomahawk. Is Xtradecals wrong? There is conflicting information on the 112 page. One place has it as a Tomahawk with the picture of only the front end. The picture is difficult to make out if it is a Dark Earth/Middlestone/Azure or TLS scheme. Then in the serial number portion of the page it describes AK578 as a Kittyhawk Mk.I. Another of my trusted sources, Roy Sutherland at Barracudacals, has GA D as a Kittyhawk as well. I'm so confused. Can any of you shed light on this subject aircraft? Is it a TLS "D" or a DE/MS/AZ GA D? I want to do this right. Or do I need to pick another aircraft. I really want to do a sharkmouthed desert scheme 112 aircraft. I'm trying to use the Xtracals as I never have and they were given to me for this build. Thanks Floyd
  22. 22 June 1995 marked the dissolution of EC 3/12 Cornouailles. Here's Kittyhawk's Mirage F1 CR/CT kit dressed up with Eduard etch, Scale Resin Wheels, Master Pitot and finished off with Berna Decals : and here it is on its display base : Thanks for looking. mike
  23. Mike

    Etendard IVP/IVM 1:48

    Etendard IVP/IVM 1:48 Kittyhawk The Étendard was the final iteration of a number of similar designs that were initially intended as a light fighter for France, with possible customers in other NATO countries, which when beefed-up was considered for naval aviation, with ruggedised prototypes constructed soon after. Named the Étendard IV, the French navy ordered IVM fighters, and a smaller number of IVP reconnaissance variantsf or operation from their carrier fleet beginning in the early 60s. They were well-liked by their pilots, as they excelled in manoeuvrability and were a joy to fly. A quick look on YouTube will find you plenty of footage of pilots enjoying themselves at the controls. Originally scheduled to be replaced by the Jaguar M, this plan was sabotaged by Dassault lobbying, who just happened to have the Super Étendard waiting in the wings. The SuE replaced the Étendard on the carriers at the beginning of the 80s, with the last airframe withdrawn from service toward the end of the decade. As France was the sole operator, there were no Étendards left flying at that point, with a few finding their way to museums around the world. The SuE has now been replaced by the Rafale M in turn after a long career, with the last flight in 2016. The Kit Having already kitted the Super Étendard, so it was only natural for Kittyhawk (KH) to kit her older sibling due to parts commonality, and here she is, fairly soon after the SuE, which you can read about here. This new kit shares many of the sprues with the SuE due to their common heritage, but this kit has been moulded in a slightly different grey. The box is standard Kittyhawk fare, and inside are five sprues, two of which are still joined together after being folded over - a bit of a pet-hate of mine, even though it is easily resolved with a pair of sprue cutters. The clear sprue is separately bagged, and the two sheets of decals are supplied in a ziplok bag that also contains the Photo-Etch (PE) sheet. The instruction booklet has a glossy cover, and in the centrefold is a 4xA4 fold-out painting and decaling guide that can be pulled off the staples for easier reference if you like. Construction begins with the seat and cockpit tub, which builds up from individual surfaces for improved detail, and a set of crew belts are added to the well-detailed seat from PE. Decals are supplied for the main instrument panel and side consoles, which have a black background for your ease. The nose gear bay is also built from individual walls, and the nose leg is added now, although it can be left off if you wish. The nose wheel is fixed between the two-part yoke, which attaches to the end of the main leg, and is braced in the bay by two more struts. The nose section of the fuselage can then be closed up, and here you have a choice of either the recce nose for the IVP with the fixed fuel probe and camera ports, or the pointed nose of the IVM with the retractable fuel probe and the blade-like ECM antenna. The main gear bay boxes and the shallower air-brake bays are then installed in the man fuselage lower surface from the inside, with the former made up from individual panels for added detail. The removable aft fuselage halves are then joined around a diagonally placed rib and the arrestor hook and fairing are glued to the underside in preparation for final fuselage assembly. Before that however, the complete basic engine is built up from two halves, front and rear faces, plus stator blades at the rear in PE, which is mated to the exhaust trunk and tail-pipe. This assembly is held inside the fuselage by a bulkhead at the front and a pair of large pins at the front of the exhaust section, allowing the exhaust to project from the fuselage. While joining the fuselage halves, a spine insert is included, as well as a lower tray at the front of the underside, which meshes with the nose section, blending the two together. With the glue dry, the remainder of the spine and both intakes are fitted along with their splitter plates, and the aft fuselage section that was built up earlier, which although it isn't mentioned in the instructions could be left off to expose the engine in a maintenance diorama, or just for the hell of it. The large tail has an insert with a large probe added to the leading edge, and has a separate rudder that is added after the two halves are mated. The elevators are both single parts, and have a PE swash-plate between them and the tail, as well as a pair of large blade antennae and their base-plates in PE too. The tail fits via a standard tongue-and-slot fixture, and a couple of little clear lights are added to the sides of the rear fairing and to the spine in front. At this point the canopy is scheduled for installation, with small pegs on the windscreen part to help with registration on the lip, and a separate canopy that can be set in the open or closed position. Now for the wings. The wings are built from the upper and lower halves, with leading-edge slats as separate parts, the folding tips, flaps and ailerons too, with a PE spoiler on the upper surface. Clear parts are added to the wingtips, and they are fitted to the root slots in the fuselage along with an additional section of the root that isn't moulded in. The main gear legs are simple struts with separate oleo-links, and a separate brake detail that fits outboard of the two part wheels. These wheels are a bit "wooden" looking, with sparse detail that might benefit from some aftermarket when it becomes available, but once on and hidden under the wings you may decide not to bother. These are fitted into the newly installed wings and then surrounded by the bay doors, which each have hinge and operating struts included, as do those for the nose. The underside is festooned with little antennae, ports and intakes/outlets, as well as a pair of optional camera bulges that run along the centreline. The airbrakes are incorrectly identified by the instructions as left and right canopies, but as it's obvious what they are, it's not a hindrance. They are made up from a styrene outer, with PE inners that have detail etched in to them for better scale effect. As a useful addition, a nifty little crew-ladder is included in the box to help you out. The weapons sprues are no strangers, and have been seen on the SuE, Jaguar and probably other kits that I can't remember too. From the box you get the following: 2 x 68mm Rocket pods 1 x PHIMAT pod 2 x Magic.2 missiles 1 x Barracuda pod 2 x twin 250kg bomb carrier (4 bombs in total) 2 x BL755 bombs 2 x Fuel tanks 2 x AS.30 missiles A full set of pylons are supplied for the weapons, with a different style for the fuel tanks, and separate adaptor rails for the Magics, plus moulded-in rails for the two types of pod. A diagram shows which pylons could take each type, but do check your references to establish a likely load if you are going for accuracy. Markings Another kit from Kittyhawk with a generous decal option count, with five available from the box. Four are in the centre pages of the instruction booklet, with the final option on the back cover, which folds out to accommodate the double-page profiles. From these options you can build one of the following: IVM White 117 of Retirement Flotille 16F – gray/grey blue over light grey blue. IVM White 118 of Retirement Flotille 16F - gray/grey blue over light grey blue. IVM White 118 of Retirement Flotille 16F, 2000 - gray/grey blue over light grey blue, with a white streamer painted down the fuselage sides and a red arrow head on the nose. IVM White 9 of Retirement Escadrille 59S, 1981 – Blue over white. IVM Retirement Escadrille 59S – NAS Hyeres – Blue over white with a red/white/blue stripe down the tail and fuselage 1961-1991. Two special schemes and three in-service airframes is a good mix, and as mentioned in the Su-17 thread, the decals are improving. The decals are sharp, in register with good colour density, but the black section of the ribbon that starts in the tail has some fine crazing if you look under magnification, which will in all probability cause no problems with application, but is worth noting. The smaller sheet contains the instrument decals and some decorative shield, and here the printing of the carrier film has drifted out of register so that the top of the instrument panels have been exposed, and great care will be needed to ensure that the delicate printing doesn't break up on application. Hopefully this is a one-off, and doesn't affect the whole batch. Conclusion Another welcome modern tooling of an important French Naval marque that will please many modellers French or otherwise. Detail is good, construction is sensibly arranged, and with five decal options and a sheet of PE completes the package. If you're PE phobic, the only folding needed is in the air-brakes, so you could always leave those closed and avoid any folding. Who will know? Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
  24. Hi everyone, What a great amount of participation this group build has drawn! Because of that, I decided to do another build myself. I'm still busy with the Maryland, but will start with this one in a couple of weeks. And this is what I will be building. Coincidently I have two decals sheets for this subject, and will see which one looks the best. And sprue shots Decals Instructions I'm planning to do it 100% OOB, and not any detail in order for it to be a quicker build than the Maryland. Like I said, I'll start in a few weeks, probably when I'm at the main painting stage of the Maryland which will leave some spare time for this. Cheers Jimmy
  25. Dassault-Bréguet Super Étendard 1:48 Kittyhawk Model Developed from the Étendard IVM, the Super Étendard (SuE) was engineered to replace the nascent navalised Jaguar M that was cancelled due to political pressures as much as anything. It benefitted from the political clout of Marcel Dassault, as well as a more powerful engines, redesigned wing and of course updated avionics, and eventually gained an order from the French Navy that started at 100 airframes and was whittled down so that only 71 were built in the end. With the first squadron taking delivery at the end of the 70s, and the Argentinians ordered a squadron-worth that would be used infamously during the Falklands War. Iraq also loaned five airframes in the 80s, and used them in the Iran-Iraq war along with their stash of Exocet missiles, returning all but one to Dassault a few years later, which placed serious doubt on Iran's claim to have shot down the majority of them. During the 90s new avionics were installed in a proportion of the fleet, which also received a new radar and a more modern HOTAS cockpit to reduce the pilot workload. More upgrades were done over time, but like all airframes (except the B-52) it reached its limit and was officially retired in the summer of 2016 after 42 years of service, which is quite a feat in the rapidly evolving world of aviation. The Kit This is a new tooling from Kittyhawk, hot (more like warm, actually) on the heels of another new tooling from a competitor. From the box you can build either the original SuE, or the Super Étendard Modernisé as the upgraded version was known, and decal options are included for both. The box as always with KittyHawk is a top opener, and inside are eight sprues in a blue/grey styrene, four of which are for the airframe, the balance for the weapons, which will be somewhat familiar if you have a stash of KH models. Additionally, there is a clear sprue, a sheet of brass Photo-Etch (PE) parts, and three decal sheets of varying sized, rounded out by a combined instruction booklet with painting guide distributed amongst the pages. First impressions are good with reference to the airframe, although there were six parts loose in the bags, some of which were truly tiny. This has to be a record for any kit I have debagged before, so perhaps take care when removing your sprues from the bag. In fairness, there are a number of small parts that are slide-moulded on the edge of one box-sized sprue, plus a couple of parts that stand clear of the main plane of the other large sprue, but a little foam around those parts would have prevented this. There are also some aspects of the build that are considered by some as gimmicky, such as the opening of the fuselage to expose the engine, and the positioning of the flaps in the down-only position, with the refuelling probe only able to modelled deployed without alteration. Others will have no problem with this however, or will put in the effort to ameliorate these things, but it is better to be aware of them from the outset to make an informed decision. Construction begins with the ejection seat, which is well-detailed and has a set of slightly simplified crew belts in PE. The cockpit tub is build up from individual panels on the floor plate, with separate rudder pedals and control column, detailed side consoles and instrument panel, which benefit from some undocumented decals to detail them further, and these are to be found on the mid-sized decal sheet in between a pair of scary tigers (seriously). The coaming and HUD are added at this early stage too, with two clear parts finishing off the glazing of the latter. Which will look good with some transparent green to the edges of the clear parts to give them a little extra realism. Although the nose gear bay is near to the cockpit, it isn't connected, so is built up separately from panels for extra detail, and although the nose gear leg is shown built up and installed at this point, it can just as easily be left off until later. As with many KH kits, the nose is then closed up around the cockpit, nose gear bay and the shallow refuelling probe bay on the nose. The ATAR engine is built up next, with front bullet, stator vanes and initial compressor face moulded as a single part at the front of the two part engine housing, and the final turbine blades with PE afterburner ring bringing up the rear. A two part exhaust trunk is then added, after which the fuselage front is begun, having a main gear bay and air-brake bay on each half. The two halves are split vertically, and brought together round a bulkhead, through which the front of the Atar engine is slotted, the rear being held in place by pegs that interface with the fuselage sides. A spine insert is added to the top, and the rear fuselage is assembled separately with an angled bulkhead at the leading edge, and the arrestor hook bay at the rear on the underside. These parts can be left loose to display the engine, or glued together for a more operational look to the finished model. The nose is then added to the blunt front of the fuselage along with two U-shaped fairings that form the basis of the intake trunking, which the splitter plates and outer trunking sections are added to. There are a number of ejector pins on the interior of many of these parts, from the engine to the intake/exhaust, so set aside some time to establish which will be seen so that you don't waste time filling/sanding back any unnecessarily. The nose cone is also added as a single part, which gives its nose that distinctive look and hides the Agave radar on the real thing. Don't forget the nose weight, as some is bound to be needed, although it isn't mentioned in the instructions. Another spine insert is dropped in behind the cockpit with a selection of blade antennae that will be better left of until later if they're to survive handling. A choice of parts for the later version is included here, so choose wisely pilgrim. The two-part canopy is added later, and can be posed open or closed at your whim with no extra effort, but check the correct angle before you do. The fuselage is tail-less at this point, which is remedied by building up the main fin with its separate rudder, choice of rear fairing for early or late version, and the low-T elevators and their swash plates from PE, as well as the large horizontal blade antenna on the sides of the fin. It fits into a slot in the rear of the fuselage, and you'll have to be careful of the long probe that sits on the leading edge. The main landing gear are built up with separate oleo-scissor links, brake details and two-part wheels, and are fitted after the wings are added, along with their bay doors and the air-brakes, which have PE inserts for the perforated sections. The wings have separate leading edges, wing-tips, two-part ailerons and flaps, plus a set of PE spoilers that can be set flush with the wing, or up if you wish. If you are fitting pylons and weapons, you'll also need to drill a number of holes on the underside to save you looking silly later. Clear tip lights and a separate leading edge strake give the wings good detail, but as the flap actuator fairings are set to pose them deployed, you will need to cut and reposition them if flaps down don't suit your plans. The wings slot into the fuselage via the usual slot and tab mechanism, with an additional section of fairing added as an insert before they are mated. The usual profusion of antennae, aerials, lumps and bumps are added hither and thither, and an optional recce pack gondola can be attached limpet-like behind the nose gear, after which only a handy crew-ladder and a profusion of weapons are still to be added. The weapons sprues have been seen on a number of kits so far, with varying appropriateness, depending on which kit we're talking about. They are well detailed for styrene parts, and there certainly is a wide choice for the SuE, but as always check your references for plausible loads and their locations, or go crazy and add a whole bunch of munitions if the mood takes you. From the box you get the following: 2 x 68mm rocket pods 1 x PHIMAT pod 2 x Magic 2 missiles and adapter rails 2 x GBU12 on a dual adapter rail 1 x AM-39 Exocet Missile 2 x AS-30 Bunker Busting Missile 1 x Buddy refuelling pod with choice of baskets 1 x ATLIS targeting pod 1 x Barracuda ECM pod 2 x Fuel tanks 2 x chaff & flare pods Two of the sprues are marked as from the Mirage F.1, while the other two are Jaguar sprues. The more Étendard specific gear will be found on one of the main sprues Markings This is where it gets confusing due to the distribution of the schemes throughout the booklet. One scheme is at the front, two to the rear, and another five in the centre, which are a lot easier to look at if you remove the centre pages by lifting the staples temporarily. So that's eight scheme. I think. From the box you can build one of the following: SuE Modernise Flotile 11F, 80 Years Anniversary, Sept 2002 – grey-on-grey camo, with a stylised French flag on the tail and spine SuE Iraqi Air Force – dark grey over light. SuE Flotile 11F RIAT Jul 1997 - grey-on-grey tiger-stripe camo with a tiger on the tail. SuE Modernise Flotile 11F Orland Tiger Meet, Sept 2007 – light grey all over with black tiger stripes and a tiger on the tail and rear fuselage. SuE Modernise Flotile 17F ISAF, 2007 – All over mid grey. SuE 0753, 3-A-203 of 2 Escuadrilla de Caza y Ataque – dark grey over light grey and Argentinian colours on the tail. SuE Flotile 11F, Cambrai Tiger Meet, 1986 – Dark grey over light, with tiger-striped Marine and 7 stencils. SuE Flotile 17F, No.49 - grey-on-grey camo. The rear page is devoted to the painting and decaling of the weapons and pods, although no stencils are supplied for the pylons, which is a shame. The decals are of good quality, although there are a few artefacts on the main sheet where the blue on the French flag appears a little pale and has bled in one or two places. The grey serials have also been fudged by using a dithered black ink, which although it fools the eye from the distance, it can be seen under magnification. The middle-sized sheet has subtle shading on the tiger motifs, and although the large tigers look odd flat on the sheet, this effect should disappear when wrapped around the SuE's fuselage. Conclusion Crisp moulding and the option to leave the rear fuselage off for maintenance diorama commends this kit, as does the choice of decal options. Plenty of weapons and gas tanks are also present, and as always with KittyHawk plastic, test fitting and fettling is the best way to get good results. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
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