Heli-Kit News #68, 20-Dec-99

1. Coming soon from Eduard is #72-317, an etched brass detail set for the Italeri (& Revell) Vertol H-21.

2. Here's an impartial look at a couple of the recent decal sheets from Aztec Decals which were listed in HKN #63:

"The sheets are from the new Latin Eagles series, Ecuador part 1 and Peru part 1. The decals are very crisply and accurately printed with bright colours which look to be very opaque. There is some very fine artwork and printing to be found on these sheets. The decal coverage extends to minor stencilling on some aircraft but even on those without minor stencilling, assuming that such markings are to be found on the real aircraft, the camouflage schemes are so 'busy' and colourful that any such small markings will not be missed."

"The instructions are clear and colourful with FS.595 equivalents given for external camouflage colours. No interior details are offered. Brief information on the number of aircraft procured and squadron service is provided for some types. Each sheet has a short list of references to useful publications and web sites."

3. This photo is a link to a fine set of reference pictures of one of the AH-56 Cheyennes at the US Army Aviation Museum, Fort Rucker, Alabama.

4. Maarten Schönfeld tells me that he has made a resin conversion to make the Italeri UH-1B into an Agusta Bell AB.204. This conversion part is a replacement for the rear of the engine compartment, with the characteristic side-mounted exhaust stack, with all the associated details like bulges, louvres, and an anti-collision light.

"This part is usable for helicopters of the Italian Army, Swedish Army and Air Force, Norwegian Air Force, Dutch Naval Air Arm, Austrian Air Force and maybe others too. No other conversion parts are included like winches, floats etc., as these are much easier to create by oneself or may be obtained from other kits."

"I do not know the exact price of the conversion part but it will be around DM 5, shipping not included. I am aware of Italeri's plan to bring out this AB.204 version next year, but the work on this conversion part had already started last January, when Italeri's plans were still unpredictable."

This same resin part is also being advertised by the Swedish SIG of the UK IPMS, who have obtained a number of them from Maarten.

5. The Mil Mi-9 Hip-G from Ciro is now available, #72-03. This is the KP Mi-8/17 kit with additional detail. Also now available from Ciro is #72-04, a Mi-8 detail/update set for the KP Hip, which includes a detailed resin cockpit, plus replacement engine compartment and external fuel tanks, with additional metal parts.

6. The WWP Sea King book I briefly mentioned last week is from Wings & Wheels Publications, a Czech organisation whose first helicopter publication was "UH-60A Black Hawk in Detail - A Photo Manual for Modellers", published in 1994. This is an excellent source of detailed reference photos and drawings, both internal and external. The inside cover advertises a forthcoming second title in the series, "MBB 105 in Swedish, Holland, Germany and Czech Service". As far as I know, this book never saw the light of day, which seems most unfortunate since reference material on this subject is not easy to come by. Now it seems the second title will feature the Sea King instead, though it can't be more than a quick look at a few variants if it is to follow the same format.

7. The various new Lynx update sets from Airwaves / ED Models say they contain BURP rotor blades, and I've been repeating this error up to now. To set the record straight, the word is really BERP. This is an acronym for British Experimental Rotor Programme, a joint initiative between Westland and the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD).

Thanks to Drew Graham, Chris Wilson, Pete Tasker, & Maarten Schönfeld.