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Truro Model Builder

Loaded for Bear... or not?

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The thread on the Hasegawa weapons sets has got me thinking about all that 'fundungus under the wings' -(c) Captain J. Black RN, HMS Invincible 1982.

 

How do you like your jets? Clean as a whistle, with nothing to break up the aerodynamic streamlining? Or loaded down as much as possible? Or how about an everyday fit, with just a couple of fuel tanks and maybe an AIM-9 acquisition pod?

 

For me, I tend to go more for the everyday look, though it does depend on the context I am building the model in, and of course the accuracy of the weapons fit. Just because the Tornado GR.1 could carry a bucket of instant sunshine in the shape of a WE177B, it would not be accurate to put one on a Gulf War I aircraft, for example. And of course some aircraft just don't look right unless they are configured in certain ways; an A-37 Dragonfly looks positively naked without every hardpoint in use, for example.

 

What do you think?

 

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guessing it depend..(ofcourse it does...lol)

 

Phantoms'look ace with a basic load, as do F-16's.

Mirages look best nekkid

Tomcat's look best nekkid aswell

Typhoon(jet)looks best full fat

Rafale....difficult one...so elegant

F-15...nekkid

Lightning...nekkid

and so on and so on

 

but I prefer to build them oprationally, so put some hardware on always....

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I always try to put some kind of representative load on my jets, either operational or training. For me it also has to be a realistic load, i.e. one that is actually used or cleared and could be used, with weapons on the correct stations and on the correct launchers.

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I always try to represent the jet or prop aircraft as it was most commonly seen. Phantoms in vietnam= loaded for bear off yankee station but usmc phantoms never carried aim-9's in the south as they were strictly supporting mud marines. F-16 desert storm or curren sand box conflicts loaded for bear. In a standard CAP after 9/11 just tanks amraams and winders. So for me it depends on where/when im representing the aircraft to be. 

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Since my interest is in the aircraft itself, I almost always build them clean. I'm not doing dioramas, which also explains why I do minimal weathering. Personally I think of them as fairly pristine museum examples. 

 

Ultimately, this is a decision for the individual modeller. 

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I prefer typical loads especially when I do some models which had some operational use. like:

- F-16CJ as used in Libya (AIM-9, AIM-120, HARM and all the pods)

- Rafale as well in Libya (with Apaches, and some MICA)

- A-4 in Vietnam (AGM-45 and Mk82)

- F-104 in QRA loadout

- Jag GR.1a Desert Storm

Agree that most heavily airplanes look like a Ferrary with a luggage rack on the roof, but that's what they were built for!

 

Alex

 

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Here in the States when showing your work in competition, there seems to be a desire to show a decent load out on the aircraft. I think it gives more detail to the judges and they seem drawn to it. Just my thoughts, others may disagree.

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Depends if you are "going to war" or day to day training operations.

 

In the first instance its HE bombs and live missiles, in the second its practice bomb carriers, acquisition missiles ACMI pods etc

 

The day to day stuff is always more common!

 

Selwyn

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I just try to find a photograph of what I'm modelling and load it up accordingly. For example, I am just completing an F-4B with just a centreline tank and empty inboard pylons  because that's how the photographs show it. Whereas the FGR.2 I am building next will be fully loaded for a QRA because that's the way the picture I have of it shows it. You pay your money and you take your choice.

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I'm with the 'everyday use' side of this with just the occasional stray into a full warload.

Mind you I was just looking at this picture of a Red Arrows Hawk with a gunpod and sidewinders!

http://photobucket.com/gallery/user/tommercerphotography/media/bWVkaWFJZDozODQwNTM5OQ==/?ref=

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4 hours ago, Scimitar said:

I'm with the 'everyday use' side of this with just the occasional stray into a full warload.

Mind you I was just looking at this picture of a Red Arrows Hawk with a gunpod and sidewinders!

http://photobucket.com/gallery/user/tommercerphotography/media/bWVkaWFJZDozODQwNTM5OQ==/?ref=

These are of course drill sidewinders not operational missiles seen on this red arrows hawk, so strictly peacetime!

 

Selwyn

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Thanks Selwyn,I never noticed that despite knowing it was a PR photo!

Wonder if they ever did an APC and got to using the real deal?

 

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Certainly Hawks deployed on Exercise as part or the Mixed Fighter Force or whatever it was called back in the day.

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Just my personal preference, but I think ALL aircraft look better with the kitchen sink hanging off them. Others may disagree, of course....

 

Cheers.

 

Chris. 

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Having given this question some thought - I like modern(ish) US jets (F-4, A-4, F-14, F-15, F-16) 'loaded for bear' but prefer my Cold War UK jets (Lightning, Javelin, Buccaneer, Swift) 'clean'.

 

So, I guess I'm not fixed to one style. I have the Trumpy Fulcrum incoming soon and shall probably do that clean cos I love the lines of that aircraft - and the same goes for TSR.2 of which I have a couple awaiting attention.

 

Kev

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On 8/10/2017 at 9:38 AM, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

I always try to represent the jet or prop aircraft as it was most commonly seen. Phantoms in vietnam= loaded for bear off yankee station but usmc phantoms never carried aim-9's in the south as they were strictly supporting mud marines. F-16 desert storm or curren sand box conflicts loaded for bear. In a standard CAP after 9/11 just tanks amraams and winders. So for me it depends on where/when im representing the aircraft to be. 

 

The Marine F-4s did at times carry AIM-9s, and AIM-7s, in the war especially early on when they weren't sure there wasn't going to be an air to air threat or if missions went North later on:

 

Two F-4B Phantom II Jets, Da Nang Air Base, 10 January 1968

 

F-4B_Phantom_VMFA-115_over_Vietnam_1971.

 

Jari

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Yes sir they did but most of the marine birds i build are from 68-72 so highly unlikely in that time period. I am expanding to early war period currently. Unless they were on duty at Yankee station as my original post said. 

     I am currently gathering what i need for a near future build of a marine A-4 ( sometime in the next 6 months). It will be from about the spring of '66. Though the A-4 was capable ive seen photo's from china lake in the testing stage of the A-4. Skyhawks never carried Aim-9s until the later 1970's with the OA-4M's. Now all of my marine photo's of F-8 Crusader bombtrucks including the Model of the VMF(aw)-232 from '66 i just finished didn't carry any Aim-9's  that i saw. Lets not forget the Marines were the last to get anything. I have spoken to more than one Mud Marine that served in Vietnam and they were still using korean era armored vests and harnesses. The Marine Aircraft had to use leftover WW2/Korean munitions as there was a shortage going on in '66 due to the very rapid escalation by Johnson in '64-'65. The airwar burned through existing stockpiles and had to wait for munitions factories and supply chains to catch up. This shortage included both the US Navy and Air Force and to a much lesser degree the US Army. I found many photo's of multiple and triple bombracks with incomplete loadouts as well in that time frame. I'd also point out the U.S.S. Forrestal incident to back my point up. In '67 they were using WW2/Korean era HE explosive and other types due to the shortage of bombs then in existence. When the Zuni misfired and started the fire. The old bombs which were 500 & 1000 lb's & weren't designed to withstand the fires heat. They cooked off in about 60-70 seconds taking out almost the entire ships fire fighting crew. So i say please if not familiar look the story up.

      I may be incorrect but by '66 after 18-24 months of being in country i would think that it would've been pretty clear that the NVAF wasnt coming south. They were too busy being bombed in '66-'67 during "Operation Rolling Thunder." If they did i hardly think they would've made it far. What with all the Air assets over the South including the early warning types like EC-121's and E-1 tracers, and Air Force and Navy aircraft also involved in earth moving operations. 

     Suffice it to say we're both correct in this situation. We just have differing views on the subject. I will continue the no Aim-9/Aim-7 policy on my Marine birds and i encourage you to build them as you like. I use photo's but not as absolutes except for placement of markings. Just because a photo shows something that day, it doesn't mean that the loadouts stayed the same. Theyre good for getting an idea as to whats available and can possibly be used. Not good if so rigid you cant have a little leeway when building and designing an ordnance layout for a particular kit. 

 

Dennis

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Actually the A-4s that were attached to the smaller ASW carriers did carry AIM-9s for CAP:

 

A-4B_Skyhawk_of_VA-153_Det.R_in_flight_1

 

and i have seen another pic of a A-4 with a Sidewinder and bombs going out on a mission. Of course most times they carried air to ground ordnance, as did Marine assets.

 

Jari

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I like to keep it clean or light in most cases, so as not to clutter the lines of the aircraft. I look at pictures of real aircraft until I find a load configuration I like and then build my model accordingly.

 

Some aircraft look great clean while others need a bit on them.

 

The Saab Draken, Viggen and Gripen all look great clean as do most members of the Mirage family.

 

Eagles, Vipers and Hornets all need a bit of something to my eyes; a standard air-to-air load for QRA duty usually gets the job done for me when I build them.

 

Strike aircraft such as the F-111, Tornado or A-7 all need something under the wings; a pair of drop tanks if nothing else. The strike Tornado simply doesn't look right without the countermeasures and ECM pods hanging from the outboard pylons.

Edited by upnorth

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Dennis here are the official reports from various Marine units during Vietnam war, scroll down the list on the left to find a particular squadron:

 

http://www.recordsofwar.com/vietnam/usmc/USMC_Rvn.htm

 

the weapons were mainly listed by their code ie D-20-20mm, D-1 - Mk-81, D-2 - Mk-82 etc, i have a list that i can post later if you like.

 

Jari 

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