Super Wing Series No.5
Price in the UK around: £63.00GBP
Review by Geoff Coughlin (June 2017)
Get this and many other impressive Zoukei-Mura kits direct from the manufacturer. Thanks to ZM for supplying our review sample.
And now ZM has produced the F-4S…
Happy days indeed! You may have seen my initial in-box review of the ZM F-4J release in SMNs Aircraft-Here Now and if you did you’ll know that the kit promised a lot and boy, did it deliver!
You may then have seen Aurelio’s stunning full build article of that ZM F-4J kit and you’ll know that it confirmed what a superb model kit the F-4J is and here are 3 photos of Aurelio’s completed model to show you…
Now you can see what all the fuss is about – presuming you like the ‘Toom’? If you don’t, I’m surprised you’ve got this far!!
Here’s a little bit of info about the lineage of the F-4J and F-4S (courtesy of Wikipedia)
The USN and USMC received the first definitive Phantom, the F-4B which was equipped with the Westinghouse APQ-72 radar (pulse only), a Texas Instruments AAA-4 Infra-red search and track pod under the nose, an AN/AJB-3 bombing system and powered by J79-GE-8,-8A and -8B engines of 10,900 lbf (48.5 kN) dry and 16,950 lbf (75.4 kN) afterburner (reheat) with the first flight on 25 March 1961. 649 F-4Bs were built with deliveries beginning in 1961 and VF-121 Pacemakers receiving the first examples at NAS Miramar.
The F-4J had improved air-to-air and ground-attack capability; deliveries begun in 1966 and ended in 1972 with 522 built. It was equipped with J79-GE-10 engines with 17,844 lbf (79.374 kN) thrust, the Westinghouse AN/AWG-10 Fire Control System (making the F-4J the first fighter in the world with operational look-down/shoot-down capability), a new integrated missile control system and the AN/AJB-7 bombing system for expanded ground attack capability.
The F-4N (updated F-4Bs) with smokeless engines and F-4J aerodynamic improvements started in 1972 under a U.S. Navy-initiated refurbishment program called “Project Bee Line” with 228 converted by 1978.
The F-4S model resulted from the refurbishment of 265 F-4Js with J79-GE-17 smokeless engines of 17,900 lbf (79.379 kN), AWG-10B radar with digitised circuitry for improved performance and reliability, Honeywell AN/AVG-8 Visual Target Acquisition Set or VTAS (world’s first operational Helmet Sighting System), classified avionics improvements, airframe reinforcement and leading edge slats for enhanced manoeuvring.
From a model point of view then… there isn’t a lot of external difference at all that I can tell between the F-4J and F-4S models. The main difference is the inclusion of slatted outer wing leading edge sections and these are now included. Sure there are bound to be some other one-off variants, but the standard aircraft in both series are very similar and the ZM kits reflect this similarity.
A little bit of a surprise
I never really saw this one coming… with the relatively recent release of a new-tool F-4J from ZM and before that from Academy, the fact that ZM have now released a state-of-the-art F-4S Phantom II as well means we are again spoilt for choice. If the ‘Toom’ is your bag, then these are heady days indeed.
Apart from the links above to the reviews we already have for the ZM ‘J’ model, we have also completed a full build by Adam B of the Academy F-4B kit (very similar to their ‘J’ kit) and you’ll find that in Aircraft-Finished Now under Academy. There’s also a full in-box review in Here Now of that same kit.
Here are a couple of photos of Adam’s beautiful Academy F-4B…
It’s worth noting that ZM produces a number of detail accessory sets available at extra cost: colour PE for the cockpit, metal undercarriage, weighted tyres, British F-4J(UK) No.74 “Tiger” Sqn decals etc. See them here.