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Julien

F-86D Sabre Dog - 1:32 Kitty Hawk

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F-86D Sabre Dog
1:32 Kitty Hawk


box.jpg


The F-86D Sabre, or "Sabre Dog" was developed by North American Aviation from the highly successful F-86 Sabre. Surprisingly the F-86D only has a 25% commonality in parts with the "Sabre". Along with other projects at the time such as the F-84F from the F-84E it was easier to get funding for a development of an "existing" aircraft as opposed to a new design! The F-86D was to dispense with guns as its armament and it was designed around the then new 2.75 inch Folding-Fin Aerial Rocket (FFAR) or "mighty mouse" as it was known. These would be housed in a ventral tray which would deploy under the aircraft for firing. The F-86D would feature a nose mounted AN/APG-36 all weather radar in the nose which would force the engine air intake to be relocated under the nose. Compare to the original Sabre the F-86 would be longer and wider. A clamshell canopy was introduced in place of the rearwards sliding canopy of other models. Thrust was provided by a General Electric J47-GE-17 which featured afterburning, this would later be replaced by an uprated J-47GE-33.

A total of 2504 D models would be built. The design would be exported with the Mighty Mouse replaced by four 20mm cannons under the F-86K designation. The D model design would later be upgraded with new electronics, better wings (in the form of extended wingtips & leading edges), with an uprated engine. This would be designated the F-86L. In all the USAF, Japanese Self Defence Forces, Royal Danish Air Force, Hellenic (Greek) Air Force, Philippine Air Force, Republic Of South Korea, Republic of China (Taiwan), Turkish Air Force, and The Yugoslav Air Force would use the F-86D.

The Kit
The Kitty Hawk F-86D is the first time this iconic aircraft has been kitted in 1:32 scale. The kit arrives in a smaller box than you would expect, however it is crammed full of parts. You get seven sprues of light grey parts, a clear sprue (thoughtfully packed in its own card box for protections), a small PE fret and 2 sheets of decals.

sp8.JPG


Shockingly enough the construction starts with the cockpit. The first item to be made up is the ejection seat. This is a complex affair with a total of 11 parts being used. The seat looks to be a good representation of the unique seat made for the Dog. Following construction of the seat, the electronics area behind it is assembled and attached to the main cockpit tub. Decals are provided for the panels in the cockpit, though the modeller can choose to paint them if they wish. Following this the control column and rudder pedals are installed. The next step is to complete the front landing gear and its wheel well. This is formed on the underside of the engine intake trunking. The wheel retraction gear forms part of the walls of the well and these are glued to the underside of the trunking. The well for the mighty mouse rocket tray which sits behind the wheel well is then constructed along with the rear section of the intake trunking. The two sections of trucking with their sub assemblies attached are then joined up.

sp3.JPG


sp4.JPG


Construction then moved onto the engine. Even though most of it will not be seen a full engine is provided in the kit. The engine is a model in its own right. The forward inlet cone and fan are constructed. The individual burner cans (8 of them) are constructed and then added to the engine section. The rear fan section can then be constructed. The front engine system is then attached to the intake trunking and the completed cockpit from earlier attached to the top of the trunking. As mentioned a lot of the engine will not be visible. It could be left out as model in its own right, however it seems to provide a lot of structure for the supporting fuselage, and if left out the modeller would need an intake blank and rear blank as well.

sp9.JPG


Next the instrument panel is built up. Again decal is supplied if the modeller does not wish to paint this area. The instrument panel is attached to the front fuselage sections which are then closed around the completed engine/trunking section. A rear bulkhead mounts the engine section inside the fuselage, while the cockpit mounts the front section.

sp1.JPG


sp2.JPG


Next in the construction sequence is the building of the main wheel wells. These are 5 parts each, and once built they attach to centre section of the underside for the main fuselage section. This section and a front underside section are then attached to the previously constructed main fuselage section. The next item to be constructed is the mighty mouse rocket tray. This can be shown in the deployed or retracted position, though it would be a shame to hide the detail in what was the main armament of the Sabre Dog. If the modeller wants to display the model with the nose radome open than a radar scanner is provided for this area, and needs to be built next. The rear engine section can then be added to the now nearly complete front fuselage section. The rear fuselage sections 9left & right) then join around the engine section.

sp7.JPG


Construction then moves onto the wings, tail-planes, and vertical tail. These are of a convention upper/lower for each side, with left and right for the tail. The main wings feature separate flaps, and the all important leading edge slats. At this time the main landing gear units are also constructed. These items can then be added to the fuselage.

sp5.JPG


sp6.JPG


Finishing touches are adding the landing gear, pilot entry steps, and rear mounted airbrakes. The radio gear shelf is added into the large canopy and canopy rails added also. Drop tanks are provided, along with rails for sidewinders, for those options which were so armed.

sp10.JPG


Canopy
The large clamshell canopy is one of the distinguishing features of the F-86D and Kitty Hawk have done it proud. For a large clear part it is clear and free from distortion or moulding problems. As mentioned a nice touch is that the clear sprue is packaged in its own separate box.

sp11.JPG


Decals
Decals are provided for 6 examples.
  • 82nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron, USAF.
  • 325th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, USAF - The "Sabre Knights" Aerobatic team.
  • 181st Fighter Interceptor Squadron, Texas Air National Guard.
  • Japanese Self Defence Forces
  • Republic Of South Korea Air Force
  • Republic Of China Air Force

decal1.JPG


There is no manufacture listed for the decals. They are matt, well printed, in register and look colour dense. Kitty Hawk give the modeller a split decal for the tail/rudder but surprisingly don't give a multi-part decal for the national insignia which go over the air brakes. All of the decal options feature the National Insignia over the airbrake. This will be difficult but manageable to cut the decal out for this, however a split decal would have been appreciated. Similarly the USAF and US Insignia for the wings are not cut where they overlap onto the leading edge slats, though this will be a lot easier to fix.

decal2.jpg


Conclusion
Many of us have been waiting for a Sabre Dog to be made in 1:32 scale, and this kit does not disappoint. Highly Recommended.

Review sample courtesy of logo.gif and available soon from major hobby shops

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Many thanks, Julien, I'll have a look from close-up at the kit thanks to your review.


I know about some Taiwanese friends that'll be pleased by this kit!


Unfortunately, not for me, as the € is not at its best at the moment, compared to $....

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Thanks, It is a great kit and I am not just saying that. If I had not been able to wrestle this from Dave's hands for the review I would have bought it.

Julien

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Foolishy, Julian brought this to our club night, :cheers::drink: and was lucky to escape with his life. :fight: He took the wise precautions of not bringing the instructions or you would not be seeing this review! :wicked:

Currently available with HLJ for just over £61 + shipping

Edited by bentwaters81tfw

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That looks like a real beauty. The moulding seems to be first class.

Thanks for the review.

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Is Dave still alive?

Yep, still around. :D You have to let the underlings have some nice kits occasionally. :wicked:

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Yep, still around. :D You have to let the underlings have some nice kits occasionally. :wicked:

Nothing to do with the fact that Julien is bigger than you then? :hmmm:

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Not when I've got my heavy brass handled walking stick. :winkgrin:

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Julien

That looks great, thanks for the review out of the box, now we need somebody to build one to see how it stacks up with build quality and accuracy, very tempted by this kit and others that Kitty Hawk is producing, I am just always hopeful that there will be progression accuracy and the fit of parts compared to the 1/48 Mirage and Jaguar kits.

Ali

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Agreed it does look good.

Ali there is a build over on Charlottesville Modellers Club web site; http://www.charlottesvillemodelers.com/plastic-aircraft-models/f-86d-sabre-dog-132-scale/

I also have their Cougar to do, and that looks just as good.

Julien

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Not good Frank. Was ok in the boxing I had.

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