Price: £24.99 RRP
Review by: Dave Coward (January 2012)
This kit has come somewhat out of the blue from Italeri.
When I first heard about it, my initial assumption was that it was a ‘re-pop’ of an older kit, but a quick look at the box showed the words ‘100% new moulds’, so I thought I best have a look at what we have on offer.
The box art is nice and colourful, with an air of quality to it and the box itself is nice and sturdy. The side illustrates side-views of the 3 options available to the modeller.
The only major disappointment came on opening the box; there isn’t a lot in it for the princely sum of just a penny under £25, though maybe that’s just indicative of the cost of a newly produced kit these days.
What you do get are two green sprues of parts, a clear sprue, a set of decals and the instructions.
The plastic on the sprues is nice and crisp and moulded in an olive green colour. There is minimal flash on the parts and the surface detailing is recessed, with some raised panels where required as on the real thing.
A nice touch is the fact that the main rotor blades are pre-bent in a drooped state as you would find on a parked up helo. I quite like this, but if you want to build the kit in a rotor running configuration you’re going to have to do some careful bending.
There are no crew included so you will have to raid the spares box if you want this option.
Talking of the cockpit, one rather glaring omission is a lack of decals for the instrument panel. The cockpit doors (there is the option to have them on) are left off on this helo and, with no crew to partially hide the panel, it is very easy to see inside so a set of decals would have been good here.
Weapons options are limited to rocket pods but the real thing is used primarily as a recce bird, so its armament is usually minimal anyway.
Click on the Thumbnails to enlarge images.
The instructions come on a fold out sheet and are logical in their build sequence and clearly illustrated.
The colour call-out cover several paint manufactures (Italeri and Model Master), but they also stipulate the relevant FS numbers, which is always welcome (Revell please take note!).
The decal sheet is quite small, but to be honest there are not a lot of markings on the real thing. The decals themselves are of good colour consistency and are all in register.
They appear to be quite thin, but there is a lot of carrier on the large white letter on the training unit option; care will have to be taken to avoid silvering here.
Options are as follows:
- US Army Aviation, Unit Unknown, Iraq 2005
- Us Army Aviation, E Troop 1/7 Cavalry, Bosnia 1998
- US Army Aviation, 1/14 Avn Reg., Fort Rucker(Alabama), 2010
Overall this kit is a bit of a quandary.
It’s a nice subject that has sadly been neglected and will go nicely with that Apache and Blackhawk, but for the price some PE would not have gone amiss for the cockpit, cable cutter and seat belts.
I will recommend it purely from a kit point of view, but you will have to decide yourself whether you consider it value for money as I’m undecided.
FEATURE STAR RATING (out of five)
Quality of moulding ***
Subject choice ****