Price: Around £7.49 GBP (May 2015)
Kit ref: 04938
Review by Geoff Coughlin
Our thanks to Revell for supplying our review sample. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model stores. For details visit www.revell.de/en
An OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopter from the 1st Infantry Division takes off on a mission from Forward Operation Base MacKenzie, Iraq. It is armed with an AGM-114 Hellfire and 7 Hydra 70 rockets
A little bit of background
The Bell OH-58 Kiowa is a family of single-engine, single-rotor, military helicopters used for observation, utility, and direct fire support. Bell Helicopter manufactured the OH-58 for the United States Army based on its Model 206A Jet Ranger helicopter. The OH-58 has been in continuous use by the U.S. Army since 1969.
The latest model, the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior, is primarily operated in an armed reconnaissance role in support of ground troops. The OH-58 has been exported to Austria, Canada, the Dominican Republic, Taiwan, and Saudi Arabia. It has also been produced under license in Australia.
Also… take a look at the accompanying image of the real helicopter (courtesy of SSgt Shane A. Cuomo, US Army) and notice all that excellent grime and dirt – what a brilliant weathering project this Revell Bell OH-58D Kiowa kit could make!
The Revell Kit
Revell are proving prolific these days with plenty of new-tool kits being released and also some of the very old-tool models such as those from the original Matchbox brand product line. Now you may have your own views of the older former Matchbox kits but generally they had a good fit and offered a reasonable representation of the type, as we have here with their re-release of the Bell OH-58D Kiowa military helicopter.
This release is offered with new decals.
You can see here that the manufacturer’s model has made up into a fair representation of this small military helicopter.
Box and contents
The light blue-grey sprues are packaged well and no damage is apparent. Taking the main components first, they are quite well tooled, feeling quite hard and brittle-like. No distortion was apparent and a dry fit of the fuselage promises a decent fit and overall shape looks pretty good. Inevitably perhaps the main issue looks to be the heavy panel line detail typical of the original kits, although there’s nothing to stop you filling them in with Milliput and perhaps adding some finer scribed panel detail if you can’t live with what’s on offer?
The cockpit is spartan when compared to references although does include a control columns, basic seats and internal cockpit detail only bear a passing resemblance to the original, with decals supplied for the main instrument panels although this is quite reasonable in this small scale.
Some excess flash is formed around some of the smaller parts that will need to be cleaned up and removed to ensure the best fit possible.
Rotor head detail is quite nice with a fair representation of the detail there.
The clear parts look clear enough with the canopy split into separate sections as are the windows and these will need careful gluing to locate them accurately. Through careful painting of the kit parts and adding some scratched seat belts and a harness it should look acceptable.
The Revell instructions follow their usual exploded stages format. Location of parts is clear but colour paint coding is for Revell paints only. However, the colour names are provided and this will help you to match your own choice of paints. This is a basic model and so should present little difficulty in working out where all the parts are located, even for inexperienced modellers.
The decals seem good, being newly created and manufactured. Certainly colour saturation and register is good and all markings are accurate and sharp in their detail. This is probably the best part of the package; good quality decals will make a world of difference to your completed model.
Basically, if you are into small-scale modelling, especially helicopters, then this kit is worth a look. If you’re prepared to spend a lot of time you can get good results.
SMN Quick summary Star rating out of 5
|FEATURE||STAR RATING (out of five)|
|Quality of moulding||**|
|Level of detail||**|