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Paul A H

Kamov Ka-58 Stealth Helicopter - 1:72

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Kamov Ka-58 Stealth Helicopter (03889)

1:72 Revell

 

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There isn't much one can write by way of introduction to a fictional subject, save for the fact that this kit is supposed to represent what a modern, Russian stealth helicopter might look like. The model follows the general design ethos of the Kamov design bureau, with a contra-rotating rotor and winglets to hold an array of armament options. For some, the idea of a model of a fictional subject will hold little appeal. For others, the application of coolodynamics will prove irresistible. I certainly remember a much younger version of myself drooling over the Italeri F-19 Stealth Fighter and the MiG-37 Ferret. As you may have guessed, this particular tooling was originally designed and manufactured by Russian outfit Zveda, a great many of whose kits have found their way into Revell boxes over the years. The kit it typical of early Zvezda. It has engraved surface structures but is somewhat lacking in fine detail and has a somewhat rough finish.

 

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Assembly begins with the tandem cockpit. The seats are not brilliant compared with modern kits, but they could easily be swapped out for a pair of K-36 if you can make them fit. Remaining details include dual control columns and an instrument panel. Decals are provided for the instrument panel and side consoles. Once complete, the crew compartment can be sealed up inside the fuselage pod, which is split horizontally like most modern 'stealth' shapes. The twin cannon pod must also be added as this point (at least if you want to be able to articulate it later) because it is held in place by an internal plug. The model can be finished in wheels up or wheels down configuration, with some different parts used depending on the option chosen. The landing gear bays contain basic structural details, but curiously the designers have made no attempt to incorporate stealth features to these parts, such as saw-toothed edges. The two large bays under the central part of the fuselage are for internal weapon stowage. Eight anti-tank missiles are provided on two extendable pylons, while rockets and air-to-air missiles are provided for the hardpoints under the winglets. The canopy can be finished in open or closed configuration, but the lack of detail in the cockpit would put me off the former. The main rotor is reasonably detailed for the scale and the rotor blades themselves have a fairly convincing stealthy shape. 

 

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Two different options are provides for on the decal sheet. The first is an all-over black scheme that seems to represent a demonstrator or prototype aircraft as depicted on the box artwork. The second is a two-tone grey disruptive pattern with blue undersides. The decal sheet is nicely printed and, surprisingly, a decent amount of stencils are included. 

 

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Conclusion

 

Although starting to show its age, this is a pretty decent model. The design is not as outlandish as some of the fictional stealth models of the eighties, which means it won't look out of place in a line up of real choppers. While it lacks the detail of the latest kits from Revell (and Zvezda), if the subject appeals to you then I don't think you'll be disappointed. 

 

Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit

 

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