Short Feature Article by Dave Coward
The Sea Hornet was a naval adaptation of the RAF Hornet. It was fitted with folding wings and had provision for deck arrester and RATO gear. Air-draulic shock-absorber legs replaced the rubber-in-compression legs to eliminate bounce in carrier landings. Three versions were built: the Sea Hornet F.20 carrier-based medium-range single-seat fighter/reconnaissance/strike aircraft, capable of carrying eight 27kg rockets, bombs, mines and drop-tanks; Sea Hornet NF.21 carrier-based two-seat night fighter/reconnaissance/strike aircraft fitted with an A.I. radar scanner in a thimble radome in the nose; and Sea Hornet PR.22 carrier-based medium-range photographic-reconnaissance version of the F.20. The F.20 first entered service with No.801 Squadron, FAA and joined HMS Implacable in 1949. A total of 200 Sea Hornets were built.
As with its land-based cousin, no complete examples of the Sea Hornet remain in existence.
Eduard RAF Seatbelts
The Trumpeter Hornet F1
Like the Hornet F.1 this kit has its well-documented accuracy issues, the most notable being the nose/canopy profile. These aren’t easy fixes so I’ll just stick to building this out of the box and live with the inaccuracies: in my personal opinion it still looks like a Sea Hornet even with them. (Read Dave’s Full Build Review of the Trumpeter de Havilland Hornet F.1 1:48)
Into the ‘pit!
As is standard we start with the cockpit which out of the box is quite reasonable, just needed some aftermarket seatbelts to make it presentable. Unlike the Hornet this Sea Hornet has a second crew position for the Radar operator. Like the front cockpit the detail is Ok with just the addition of seatbelts really required.