Finished the first kit of 2019, an Italeri H-21. I’m glad this came out in 1/48 scale as it, with the H-13, were helicopters of my youth.
At the start of the year, I had some lofty goal to build two per month. What was I thinking?! Going to have to play catch-up now!
The kit overall will take some work to turn it into an AMS masterpiece. There were a number of fit problems all around; the canopy to the fuselage, the cockpit in the fuselage, and the engine and bulkheads. Other than sanding the fuselage seams I didn’t put too much work into the fit. The place the rear rotor attaches also looks like it had something wrong with the molding.
After assembling the kit it was sprayed with my favorite lacquer primer from the can which produces a dark grey finish. To try something different I then took some thinned Vallejo white primer and pre-highlighted sections of the kit. I then sprayed the kit Vallejo Russian Green (it looked the best to me for a 50’s Army color) and you can see the results of the pre-shading worked pretty well.
The decals went on great over a coat of Future and settled down very well to Solvaset. I put most of the stencils on as the yellow just looked right on Olive Drab. I had to cut the main stars and bars as I put the rear landing gear on first to paint them with the kit but the S&B go on under the rear gear mounts. Oops!
A raw umber overall wash and when dried a coat of Testors Dullcoat to finish her off!
One other warning. I broke four of the six rotors. They are very fragile. Managed to drill them out and add brass tubing to support but handle with care.
Fun to finally add a 1/48 chopper to my collection, one that I used to see at the airshows at Lowery AFB in Denver growing up!
The Flying Banana. Yet another heavier than air machine from my youth. I used to think that the twin rotors were so cool compared to the other helicopters of the day.
Receive this from my daughter for Christmas. She and my wife have been great making Christmas special with a kit or two
I am building this out of the box. The kit, although well designed, is simple. Italeri has provided a few perks like photo etch seatbelts and some grating and engine bay details but generally, the overall insides are simple. Given all the space exposed, there is a real opportunity for making a really cool super-detailed model of this kit but that’s not in the cards for me for this one. There are other kits to get to.
The cockpit and insides build up pretty quickly after some painting. There is a boatload of ejector pin towers and recesses that would need to be dealt with to make this a super kit.
The engine compartment is also visible on the real aircraft so Italeri provides a rudimentary engine and bulkheads for the rear of the helicopter including a grating on the top and doors that can be positioned open on the bottom. Again, a canvas for the AMS modeler.
Here is the interior mostly put together.
Before I can put the interior together I need to put the 9 oval windows in from the inside and I want them masked. I tried first to put a piece of masking tape over the hole where the windows go and then cut out the mask shape but the results are too jagged. Instead, I use my favorite window masking agent, Parafilm. Cut a small piece of Parafilm, stretch it out, apply it to the window then carefully trim off the excess.
I will then mount the windows and after painting the Parafilm will just peel off. It’s magical!
Next up, sealing her up!