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MiG-17 Warpaint No.124


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MiG-17 Warpaint No.124

Guideline Publications




The MiG-17 "Fresco" began life as an improved version of the MiG-15 to address its problems that arose as the mach number approached 0.92, when things got hairy for the pilot.  The resulting airframe was different enough that it was given the new designation, with variably swept thinner wings with three wing-fences, a small ventral fin for stability and other improvements that gave a higher top speed with the same thrust as its earlier relative.  It entered service after some initial faults were fixed in 1951, still using the sneaky copy of the British Nene engine that had powered the MiG-15, but that was later replaced with an indigenous engine that introduced an afterburner to further bring back some terror to the pilot, with the Fresco F and onward using this for the reinvigorated type.


It fought in Vietnam against supersonic American fighters, where its comparative manoeuvrability and a nose-full of cannons allowed it to make a good account of itself, particularly after a reverse-engineered radar-ranging gunsight was introduced into the equation.  Many were sold to Soviet aligned states and stayed in service there long after the more advanced supersonic replacements had ousted them from Soviet service






This book by author Nickolay Yakobovich and translated by Kevin Bridge covers the birth and development of the airframe in great detail, as well as providing tons of excellent pictures of many airframes in military service, many of which are in colour due to the spread of colour film over the years, plus 1:72 plans and profiles in the centre, penned by Yurgey Yurgenson.  There are also profiles showing the radar-equipped versions that looked a little Tapir-like to my eyes.  The book is in the usual Warpaint format of portrait A4(ish) with a soft card cover and 64 pages plus content printed on the four glossy pages of the covers.   A short introduction details the birth of the type and its subsequent upgrades, which extends throughout the book in the following fashion:


  • Colour Profiles
  • Introduction
  • The MiG-17F
  • Series Production
  • Indigenous & Foreign Analogues
  • Colour Profiles
  • Interceptors
  • Fighter Bombers
  • Reconnaissance Aircraft & Pilotless Targets
  • Prototype Modifications & Flying Laboratories
  • Colour Profiles
  • 1:72 Scale Drawings
  • The MiG-17 in Frontline Service
  • Colour Profiles
  • The MiG-17 Overseas
  • Licensed Production in China
  • The Lyuska Transition Model
  • Museum Exhibits with Photos of Preserved Examples
  • Colour Profiles
  • Liveries & Markings
  • MiG-17 in Detail
  • A short Technical Description of the MiG-17
  • Colour Profiles






The pages include a lot of useful pictures with informative captions of aircraft on the apron, on the field and even after crashes, with appropriate photos and drawings dotted around.  In the short "In Detail" section there are many close-up photos with some items numbered that will be a boon to modellers as well as people that like to know what everything does.



The Warpaint series always gets a thumbs-up due to their inability to produce a bad one, which I'll keep repeating until I'm proven wrong.  This is an excellent book that will see plenty of use by anyone interest in, or building one of these early Soviet jet fighters.


Very highly recommended.




Review sample courtesy of




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