Full Review with Dave Coward
A quick note from Geoff C…
Here’s a sneak peek of Dave’s completed model – you can’t mistake that classic shape! Nice work Dave…
Over to you Dave…
Both Tamiya and Airfix had previously released models of the FRS1 in 1982 and 1983 respectively, and whilst both were good for their time they were not up to what modellers expect today, so when Kinetic announced a new tooling it was widely welcomed.
This kit was released in 2015 and is a variant of the original FA2 released by Kinetic in 2014. It contains new parts to make the original Sea Harrier variant, the FRS1, that is best known for its role in the Falklands War of 1982.
An initial look in the box reveals what appears to be a nicely moulded kit with an excellent set of well researched decals from Cartograf that contain serial number markings to cover all the Falklands War aircraft along with schemes for both pre and post conflict. In addition, there are markings to complete several Indian Navy aircraft. There are over 50 marking options.
- Sea Harrier FRS1s of 800 Naval Air Squadron based at RNAS Yeovilton and deployed on HMS Hermes, 1981 to March 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1s of 801 Naval Air Squadron based at RNAS Yeovilton and deployed on HMS Invincible, 1981 to March 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1s of 899 Naval Air Squadron based at RNAS Yeovilton, 1981 to March 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1s of HMS Hermes’ Air Group, “Operation Corporate” – The Falklands/Malvinas War, Apr-Jun 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1s of HMS Invincible’s Air Group, “Operation Corporate” – The Falklands/Malvinas War, Apr-Jun 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of 809 NAS on establishment / enroute to the South Atlantic for “Operation Corporate”, late Apr/mid May 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of ex-809 NAS as part of HMS Hermes’ Air Group, “Operation Corporate”, late May/mid Jun 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of ex-809 NAS as part of HMS Invincible’s Air Group, “Operation Corporate”, late May/mid Jun 1982.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of 800 Naval Air Squadron, “Exercise Arctic Express”, HMS Hermes, 1983.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of 801 Naval Air Squadron, HMS Invincible, 1983.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of 899 Naval Air Squadron, RNAS Yeovilton, 1988.
- Sea Harrier FRS1 of 809 NAS deployed to the South Atlantic with 809 NAS on board HMS Illustrious, 1982
- Sea Harrier FRS.51s of 300 Indian Naval Air Squadron, 1983
- Sea Harrier FRS.51s of 300 Indian Naval Air Squadron, 2005
The kit contains a lot of parts on the sprues that are for the FA2 version so take care when assembling the kit to ensure you use the right parts – the most obvious examples being the two wing versions and the different nose cones.
There is also a large range of weapons included some of which are not applicable to this version:
- 2 x 100 Gallon External Fuel tanks
- 2 x 190 Gallon External Fuel tanks
- 2 x AIM-120 AMRAAMs with a choice of adapter rail or pylon – never used on FRS-1
- 2 x Sea Eagle anti-shipping missile
- 4 x AIM-9 Sidewinder plus adapters for the twin pylon mounting
- 2 x 30mm Aden cannon pack
- 4 x 18 round Matra rocket pods
- 2 x 36 round rocket pods
- 1 x BL755 Cluster Bomb.
All this looks very promising but unfortunately the instructions do let the side down. They are printed in black and white (colour would have been so much better for the painting and decal guide) and contain numerous errors including the fitment of weapons that were never used on the FRS1. My advice is to have good reference material and just use the instructions as a basic guide for the general construction process.
- The Harrier Special Interest Group http://www.harriersig.org.uk
- Falklands: The Air War by Rodney A Burden , M Draper
- Air War in the Falklands 1982 by Chris Chant – Osprey Combat Aircraft Series 28
- Eduard Interior PE