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Old 09-11-2015, 05:06 PM   #1
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Default Gone but Not Forgotten

Models have the unconscionable habit of slipping away forevermore, here one day, gone the next. And unless we throw a little love their way and remember them, they tend to get ignored.

So to pay tribute to these honored treasures, those that are no longer in production and no longer available—anywhere, I offer you several graphics to celebrate their greatness. It’s my way of thanking Corgi and Hobby Master and other manus for enabling our zinc addiction.

No reply is necessary (unless you wish to share your enthusiasm, too, which is more than welcome).

Let’s start with Hobby Master's superlative, showstopping CF-104 RCAF, HM1011 …

The color combo is stunning: The metallic finish is near perfect; its white wings, red wing tanks, red horizontal stabilizers, and striking RCAF emblems really—and I mean really—pop.

Canadians have a penchant for elegant, if not dazzling, aircraft paint schemes, and this hot rod jet is no exception. If you can find one (and that'll prove difficult, believe me), don't hesitate. Pull the trigger. You'll thank yourself.
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Old 09-12-2015, 12:12 AM   #2
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

I am very happy that I acquired mine
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Old 09-12-2015, 09:36 AM   #3
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

For pure glitz, the Northrop XB-49 stands among the world's most silvery wanna-be warbirds. And let me tell you, Dragon did itself proud with this rendition, even if the model is 1/200 scale.

I've gotta thing for late-'40s/early-'50s aircraft, the ol' '49 first in line. The Flying Wing was the jet version of the XB-35, its prop-driven kin, and was so futuristic it looked almost alien.

For all its eye-popping appeal, however, the XB-49 suffered from several complications, including teething difficulties, schedule issues, and budget overruns (sound familiar?). But the death knell came from Stuart Symington, the then Secretary of the USAF, who unscrupulously awarded the bomber contract to Convair, Northrop's arch competitor. Symington, (surprise, surprise) later became Convair's president.

The model itself is a wonder: The shape and contour are spot on, and the paint job is superb (love the subtle panel variations). If you've dithered on this splendid little model, don't. Grab one (if you can find it).
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Old 09-12-2015, 09:49 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Richtofen288 View Post
For pure glitz, the Northrop XB-49 stands among the world's most silvery wanna-be warbirds. And let me tell you, Dragon did itself proud with this rendition, even if the model is 1/200 scale.

Fully agree. If i collected 1/200, i'd be on top of this. An absolute stunner.

The HM chrome F-104s I'm less excited about. The chroming process seems to me to cause the mould to kind of lose its "crispness" (gloss finishes,especially white ones, seem to do this too). I had this RCAF one but sold it on, but kept the JASDF chrome one.

That said, I'd be all over a chrome plated re-issue of the "really george" F-104 or the similar F-100, even though neither would be, strictly speaking, accurate.
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Old 09-12-2015, 10:39 AM   #5
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

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Originally Posted by Richtofen288 View Post
Models have the unconscionable habit of slipping away forevermore, here one day, gone the next.
Unconscionable indeed--- especially for those of us looking for deal on them on eBay!!


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Old 09-12-2015, 10:42 AM   #6
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Fully agree. If i collected 1/200, i'd be on top of this. An absolute stunner.
Yup!

I have the cheapie (but surprisingly great) little Italeri B-2 and now really want to add a couple of the old Northrop wings to the collection too...and, if I ever succeed in talking myself to trying plastics, maybe an N-1M too. Have the dragon Valkyrie from this line and am reasonably pleased with it, as well. Will never forget reading about the comments an old Jack Northrop said when he was shown the model of the B-2...

Ditto-ing your comments about chroming, too. Can understand it for model cars, but for planes it always gets a "thanks but no thanks" from me... Richtofen, I'm curious though, if you like this Canadian 104, what do you think of the newer Cold Lake two-seater? I know it's not really consistent with the theme of the thread, but always thought it would look great next to another oft-forgotten classic, (albeit one that's got some attention on this board recently), the CF-105, of which I have RL 201...

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Old 09-12-2015, 10:49 AM   #7
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

Also:

Richtofen, are you making these images yourself? If so you are quite talented!
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Old 09-12-2015, 04:54 PM   #8
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Yup!

Richtofen, I'm curious though, if you like this Canadian 104, what do you think of the newer Cold Lake two-seater? I know it's not really consistent with the theme of the thread, but always thought it would look great next to another oft-forgotten classic, (albeit one that's got some attention on this board recently), the CF-105, of which I have RL 201...
Funny you should ask, Books. Believe it or not, I just scored a Hobby Master HA1054 CF-104D Starfighter—TODAY! And boy, let me tell ya, I'm well chuffed about it (as our British cousins would say).

In fact, I couldn't find this little dickens anywhere—eBay, Aikens, The Flying Mule, you name it, I searched there—until I stumbled into one at Trains & Planes Ltd., England, the last one they had.

Yikes!!!

Ordered it posthaste, and now that gem will land on my doorstep next week. Paid waaay too much for it, but at least I got my mitts on one. Love the camo job. Looks totally lethal.


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Also, are you making these images yourself? If so you are quite talented!
Thanks for the compliment, my friend! The answer is: Yes, I produce those images myself. On Photoshop.



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Old 09-12-2015, 05:57 PM   #9
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Funny you should ask, Books. Believe it or not, I just scored a Hobby Master HA1054 CF-104D Starfighter—TODAY! And boy, let me tell ya, I'm well chuffed about it (as our British cousins would say).

In fact, I couldn't find this little dickens anywhere—eBay, Aikens, The Flying Mule, you name it, I searched there—until I stumbled into one at Trains & Planes Ltd., England, the last one they had.

Yikes!!!

Ordered it posthaste, and now that gem will land on my doorstep next week. Paid waaay too much for it, but at least I got my mitts on one. Love the camo job. Looks totally lethal.




Thanks for the compliment, my friend! The answer is: Yes, I produce those images myself. On Photoshop.




Wow, congrats on the score! If I was (very) rich I'd buy a natural metal one and send it along to complete the triad, just out of a sense that collections everywhere should be as good as possible. Or the camo single seater, your choice.

As things stand, however, I should probably instead announce --not to you specifically, but to everyone-- that the personal diecast fund is a bit embarassed at the moment, and that donations of CWs or other models, and/or cash or gift cards, would very gratefully be accepted

Contributions to the "OMG I'm about to become homeless, but will at least own lots of new Tomcats" fund would be especially appreciated

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Old 09-12-2015, 05:58 PM   #10
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

As for the amazingly perfect timing of the comment, well, I can't claim any credit for it...I'm afraid it was just blind luck.

...to the best of my knowledge, Tomcatters is our only resident psychic here...

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Old 09-12-2015, 09:59 PM   #11
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

Just received the CF-18 AETE model here myself. Nice to have in the collection.
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Old 09-12-2015, 10:19 PM   #12
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Just received the CF-18 AETE model here myself. Nice to have in the collection.
I like that one too!

Personally can't wait for everybody to shaddup about it, because it'll never make it to my collection. Much like those damn 1/48 Mustangs, and the Moonbeam I want so much But anyway, yes, I like this one a great deal, would be very happy to add it to my CF-105 and CF-101 someday...

...you know, once those diecast charity funds start flowing in, in force
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Old 09-12-2015, 10:50 PM   #13
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Petes has moonbeam and The AETE on sale at under 50 bucks right now. Just sayin......
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Old 09-12-2015, 10:52 PM   #14
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I like that one too!

Personally can't wait for everybody to shaddup about it, because it'll never make it to my collection. Much like those damn 1/48 Mustangs, and the Moonbeam I want so much But anyway, yes, I like this one a great deal, would be very happy to add it to my CF-105 and CF-101 someday...

...you know, once those diecast charity funds start flowing in, in force
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Old 09-12-2015, 11:01 PM   #15
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Petes has moonbeam and The AETE on sale at under 50 bucks right now. Just sayin......
I know, but I've already committed myself to the Hawkeye, and if I buy a single 1/48, it's all over.

Pretty sure if I ordered Moonbeam, I'd open the box and find a note with "Game over, man. Game over" scrawled on it...
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Old 09-12-2015, 11:03 PM   #16
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Thanks for the distraction, Aardvark! It's definitely what is needed 'round these parts, these days...

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Old 09-13-2015, 09:56 AM   #17
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I've always loved the Me-262’s intimidating, sharky profile. Pictured below is War Master's 1/72 Messerschmitt Me-262A-2A flown by Test Pilot Hans Fley, 1945.

Some interesting facts: On July 25, 1944, an Me-262 attacked a British photo-reconnaissance Mosquito over Munich, becoming the first jet used in combat. The Schwalbe went on to score heavily against Allied Bomber formations; but of the more than 1,400 Me-262s produced, fewer than 300 saw combat owing to Germany's ravaged surface transportation system, scarce fuel supplies, spare parts shortages, and too few trained pilots. Turns out the 262 was so fast and slippery, P-51Ds could catch it only during its landing approach.

These lovely little masterpieces pop up on eBay occasionally, though they never last long. If you haven't purchased one yet, do! The model is hefty, and the silver finish borders on excellent. The conspicuous rib and spar lines, however, are just a tad overcooked.
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Old 09-16-2015, 08:57 AM   #18
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Next at bat on our gone-but-not-forgotten warbird team is Altaya's Saab AJ-36 Viggen, which, in my opinion, rivals Corgi and Hobby Master for excellence.

That’s not to say all Altaya models are top-flight, ‘cause they’re not. But this model hit the ball out of the park.

Altaya’s Viggen represents the 13th Flygflottilj (Fighter Wing) (Bråvalla Air Force Wing) of the Swedish Air Force (F 13) based at Norrköping, Sweden, circa September 1980. It's 8 3/4 in. long, 5 1/2 in. wing tip to wing tip, sports a metal fuselage, plastic everything else, and can be displayed "in flight" on a stand or earthbound on landing gear. Pretty cool for such a reasonable price ($29.99 back in the day).

For me, the model’s exceptional camouflage job is accurate, right down to its colors, patterns, and shapes. Plus its overall accuracy is remarkable.

Regrettably, availability is problematic. A year ago you could find this Viggen in Spain or Portugal, but supply dried up. So if you luck out and find one, snatch it.
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Old 09-18-2015, 01:29 PM   #19
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Have you ever spurned a particular model because you considered the original warbird unappealing? I have: I used to think the Blackburn Buccaneer was ugly as sin and not a particularly useful aircraft to boot.

But boy was I wrong. On both counts.

Looks wise, once I saw the Buc' in the flesh I was hooked. I'm not sure what changed my mind, maybe its pleasing portliness or lovely, ovoid intakes and posterior clamshell airbrakes. But whatever it was, I fast became an aficionado.

Service wise, Corgi’s AA34109 represents one of 10 S.2Bs deployed to the Red Flag training exercise near Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, ’77, where it tangled with USAF jets like a pro. Ground crews painted the warbirds in desert camouflage but left their rear fuselages gray/green. Several of these Buccaneers later distinguished themselves in the first Gulf War.

So there’s nothing undesirable about the S.2B, quite the contrary. And she looks fabulous, portliness and all.

If you search hard, you can still find this model, but it's getting scarce. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in brawny, gorgeous warbirds.
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Old 09-18-2015, 03:17 PM   #20
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Yeah the 'Bucc' was never one of my favourite aircraft growing up but it has grown on me over the years and I've ended up developing a grudging respect for it. It was certainly a very capable aircraft in it's day....even if it hit a few branches on the ugly tree!

I've not ruled out one reaching my collection at some point.
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Old 09-20-2015, 11:49 AM   #21
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For my money, Norm 90J Air Defense Camouflage transmuted Luftwaffe Phantom IIs into sharks, JAW’S next-of-kin. Venture too close and they’d swallow you whole—a little shakin' an’ tenderizin' an' down you’d go.

On 21 April 1961, the 43rd anniversary of Rittmeister Manfred Von Richthofen’s death, Federal President Heinrich Lübke conferred the nom de guerre "Richthofen" on Jagdgeschwder 71. In 1974, the Wing received its first F-4F Phantoms; and in 1988, JG-71 ditched its secondary role of Fighter Bomber Attack for all-out fighter protection over Germany’s northern skies.

If my recent, useless search for the HA1915 is any clue, finding one will prove more than difficult. In my humble opinion, this particular model (and its doppelganger, JG-74 “Molders") represent two of Hobby Master’s finest Phantoms. So smile if you own one!
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Old 09-20-2015, 05:20 PM   #22
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Have you ever spurned a particular model because you considered the original warbird unappealing? I have: I used to think the Blackburn Buccaneer was ugly as sin and not a particularly useful aircraft to boot.

But boy was I wrong. On both counts.

Looks wise, once I saw the Buc' in the flesh I was hooked. I'm not sure what changed my mind, maybe its pleasing portliness or lovely, ovoid intakes and posterior clamshell airbrakes. But whatever it was, I fast became an aficionado.

Service wise, Corgi’s AA34109 represents one of 10 S.2Bs deployed to the Red Flag training exercise near Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, ’77, where it tangled with USAF jets like a pro. Ground crews painted the warbirds in desert camouflage but left their rear fuselages gray/green. Several of these Buccaneers later distinguished themselves in the first Gulf War.

So there’s nothing undesirable about the S.2B, quite the contrary. And she looks fabulous, portliness and all.

If you search hard, you can still find this model, but it's getting scarce. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in brawny, gorgeous warbirds.

Big fan of the Pooch Bucc. And have been steadily catching up. I guess the above release did not initially appeal to me. But it has grown on me and I regret not picking it up when I could.

Its on the catch up list now along with a FAA Bucc.
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Old 09-20-2015, 06:21 PM   #23
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Big fan of the Pooch Bucc. And have been steadily catching up. I guess the above release did not initially appeal to me. But it has grown on me and I regret not picking it up when I could.

Its on the catch up list now along with a FAA Bucc.
Christian, I promise—if you find a "Red Flag" Bucc and snag it, you'll thank yourself. Photographs don't do it justice; the dual camo scheme is not only unique but entirely appealing.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:56 AM   #24
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Both in temperament and soul, the pilot-trainer/light-attack Strikemaster was a pint-sized pugilist able to lug 3,000 lbs. of external ordnance, including air-to-surface rocket pods (unguided), conventional drop bombs, napalm bombs, and machine gun pods. Sling drop tanks under its wings and the warbird flew forever.

The Strikemaster provided emergent Botswana, Ecuador, Kenya, Kuwait, New Zealand, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Yemen, and Sudan air forces a capable, cost-effective alternative to more pricey trainers. Singapore took delivery of 16 Strikemaster Mk 84s and, by all accounts, loved them. For decades, the warbird enjoyed a solid reputation until fatigue-induced wing cracks forced its retirement.

Why this pugnacious little bulldog appeals to me I’m not sure. Perhaps it’s its swollen cockpit, the pudgy nose, the pair of shallow, smallish, half-moon air intakes hugging its sides, the bulge these assemblies create. I also like the plane’s conformal wingtip fuel pods and orange/SEA camo getup. SkyMax Models definitely outdid itself.

As of this writing, two are for sale on eBay, one in Greece, one in England, both for around $50 (not including shipping). If you want to grow your international collection, this model is a worthy candidate. But don't wait: they're getting hard to find.
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Old 09-22-2015, 08:28 AM   #25
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The Skymax Strikemater is a little beauty. I past up on it years ago when they were everywhere but was lucky to pick up the RSAF version only a year ago for like $20 retail brand new.

I personally like the old RSAF roundal and top hat (?) marking below the cockpit

You can also probably add the RNZAF strikemaster as well, again another nice little SEA camo model and I believe they used them as frontline aircraft as well (?)
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Old 09-22-2015, 09:38 AM   #26
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The Skymax Strikemater is a little beauty. I past up on it years ago when they were everywhere but was lucky to pick up the RSAF version only a year ago for like $20 retail brand new.
i heartily recommend the saudi one which is a work of art and possibly still available here and there.
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Old 09-24-2015, 10:41 AM   #27
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SkyMax Models is showing signs of life with its newest release, a USN Douglas TBD-1 Devastator (SM8006). Everybody thought the manu was morto, but evidently it was taking a protracted snooze.

One of this new model's antecedents is SM8001, another TBD-1 Devastator, Ensign George Gay’s mount in the Battle of Midway, 4 June 1942. After launching a torpedo attack against the IJN Kaga, Gay made for the USS Hornet when five A6M Zeros smoked his plane in a hail of machine gun and cannon fire. The downed, waterlogged ensign subsequently got a ring-side seat to the enemy fleet’s thrashing.

The ol' Devastator pioneered a number of firsts for the U.S. Navy: first extensively-used carrier-based monoplane, first all-metal naval aircraft, first to sport a fully enclosed cockpit, first with hydraulically folding wings. By 1940, though, the Devastator was comparatively slow and unmaneuverable, making it a death trap. Every Devastator hurled against the Japanese carriers at Midway perished.

The model itself is a masterpiece featuring corrugated wings, an exquisitely detailed “greenhouse” canopy, and painstaking paint and tampo applications. Unfortunately, the SM8001 plunged into the black hole of ultra-rareness and vanished forevermore.
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Old 09-24-2015, 11:19 AM   #28
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Agree with you on the Bucc Richthofen, although I much prefer the all green/grey AA34102.

But on the F-4F I think there are much nicer Spooks out there. Like with the real thing, that yellowish nose cone is the sore spot. A black radome would have given it a much meaner look.
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Old 09-25-2015, 10:09 AM   #29
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What can you say about the most-produced supersonic jet in history? A roaring success? Absolutely. A one-time terror of the skies? In some skies, yes it was. An engineering triumph? Most certainly: It was the first Soviet aircraft to successfully unify fighter and interceptor characteristics. Without question, the Mig-21 is a hunk of sizzling speed, firepower, and punch able to take on any bad boy. And remarkably, though it first flew in 1955, the jet still serves in many air forces today.

Egypt purchased the Mig in the early '60s, eventually swapping them for F-16s and Mirages in the '80s. The model below represents aircraft 8454, a survivor of the 1973 Yom Kippur and 1977 Egypt/Libya wars.

I don't know about you, but for me the model's desert camo and brilliant orange-swatch combo really pops! Hobby Master should be congratulated for producing such a sensational replica.

I searched eBay and elsewhere for HA0127 but came up empty. Too bad, too, 'cause this is a must-have model for collectors hooked on Middle East conflicts and blistering, red-hot warbirds. It would look terrific sitting next to an IAF F-4, but good luck trying to find one.
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Old 09-25-2015, 05:06 PM   #30
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This and the Iraq 21 are by far HM's best 21's, it's a shame HM didn't make more Arab or even try African nation 21's as they had the best camo schemes
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Old 09-26-2015, 10:22 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Richtofen288 View Post
SkyMax Models is showing signs of life with its newest release, a USN Douglas TBD-1 Devastator (SM8006). Everybody thought the manu was morto, but evidently it was taking a protracted snooze.

One of this new model's antecedents is SM8001, another TBD-1 Devastator, Ensign George Gay’s mount in the Battle of Midway, 4 June 1942. After launching a torpedo attack against the IJN Kaga, Gay made for the USS Hornet when five A6M Zeros smoked his plane in a hail of machine gun and cannon fire. The downed, waterlogged ensign subsequently got a ring-side seat to the enemy fleet’s thrashing.

The ol' Devastator pioneered a number of firsts for the U.S. Navy: first extensively-used carrier-based monoplane, first all-metal naval aircraft, first to sport a fully enclosed cockpit, first with hydraulically folding wings. By 1940, though, the Devastator was comparatively slow and unmaneuverable, making it a death trap. Every Devastator hurled against the Japanese carriers at Midway perished.

The model itself is a masterpiece featuring corrugated wings, an exquisitely detailed “greenhouse” canopy, and painstaking paint and tampo applications. Unfortunately, the SM8001 plunged into the black hole of ultra-rareness and vanished forevermore.
This is the plane that got me into collecting die cast in earnest. I couldn't believe someone would actually make one, and an outstanding well done example.
I hope Skymax can see fit to make a couple more wartime versions. I think the grey one announced will languish like the last one is still.

Something like this does it for me more than all the fast jets and supersonic aircraft with push button warfare where they hardly see the enemy up close and personal. It blows the mind what these torpedo pilots had to go through.

Anyways, how many "screwtops" can you buy, while we wait for a Betty that actually saw some fierce battle and was probably shot down in flames with all crew likely in a horrible but quick death like the Devastator?
Just saying'
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Old 09-26-2015, 10:57 AM   #32
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Yup, you've got great taste Richtofen.

You're a good writer too--- and that's why I've decided to skip reading anything else you write here in this thread! Way too compelling, so I'm just reading the pictures real quick and then skedaddlin' before the interest gets too strong.

That Buc (also like the artic camo version), the Viggen, the Egyptian MiG-21, even that "Air Defense Diesel" you have there (good thing they weren't single seaters after all, eh?), all excellent choices...and, all ones I do not have. On top of the flying wings. Dammit!
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Old 09-26-2015, 11:01 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by Ukrainian_Falcons View Post
This and the Iraq 21 are by far HM's best 21's, it's a shame HM didn't make more Arab or even try African nation 21's as they had the best camo schemes
More Arab/African 21s would indeed be great-- however, in my opinion HM should really avoid doing ones that look like they're wearing factory fresh paint. It's just too weird to see a Syrian MiG in pristine sand color, for example...it just screams for being faded and chipped and dirty...

IMO, even if they're skipping weathering and stuff (understable as it's probably easier to screw up than do well), they should consider lightening the colors a little for a "sun drenched effect" or something on some of these
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Old 09-26-2015, 05:41 PM   #34
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Totally agree, anything from that part of the world doesn't seem to be either maintained or stored very well so yeah, defo need some sort of weathering or even damage like corgi of on their Corsair
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Old 09-26-2015, 08:07 PM   #35
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

Kind words, books. Thank you.

As for models you wish you had, I'm in the same boat. In fact, I think most everybody pines after at least one model he didn't purchase—or did but subsequently sold and cursed himself for doing it.

I sold my BoB Lancaster years ago having stupidly talked myself into it. Years later I found another and bought it, but the box was completely messed up (read: ruined), and to this day I fault myself for having sold the original set.

The moral of this story is : Don’t sell your models. Hold on to them for dear life.
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Old 09-26-2015, 08:10 PM   #36
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Oops! My bad. Clicked the wrong button.
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Old 09-28-2015, 08:15 AM   #37
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This tough little fighter was lethal below 20,000 feet, carrying two 20mm ShVAK cannons, each fed with 200 rounds. It was maneuverable and fast and deadly, giving BF-109G pilots the shock of their lives when La-5s outflew their Messerschmitts by 28 mph. Thousands of 5FNs mixed it with the Luftwaffe over Kursk and elsewhere on the Eastern Front in 1943, confirming the alarming fact that they could equal—or even best—their German counterparts.

In the west, we commonly marginalize older Russian warbirds and consider them rubes, veritable Babushka bumpkins of the warplane world. But in truth, Russian fighters and bombers were outstanding performers, especially from mid to late World War II. Regrettably, diecast manufacturers take their cue from this disposition and largely ignore Soviet machines, leaving collectors the poorer for it.

Kudos to SkyMax for producing this superlative and historically significant Russian fighter. Luftwaffe pilots on the receiving end of the La-5's 20mm cannons likely wished they'd never tangled with the bird.

Availability wise, they’re gone; they left the building. If you luck out and find one, I’d advise you to snatch it before somebody else does.
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Old 09-28-2015, 08:57 AM   #38
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I got one of these LA-5's myself.

Funny thing is unlike the Hobby Master collector site aircraft, Skymax doesn't have a story or breakdown of the pilots who flew the planes. So a little research is needed sometimes.

One is from the ace of allied aces Ivan Kozhedub with 64 victories. A must have in my book. Beautiful little fighter, not as colorful as some other LA-5's but it was important to have because of who flew it.

You're right though, other than the German captured one, most are hard to find these days.

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Old 09-28-2015, 02:26 PM   #39
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has been bookmark, this seems like a very interesting thread
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Old 09-28-2015, 02:54 PM   #40
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I picked up SM2002 for a nice price a few months ago. I actually prefer the scheme compared to SM2001. But I totally agree a Skymax Soviet La5 is a must for any WW2 collection. I just wish they had got around to the Il2 and Pe2, or even Yak series.
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Old 09-28-2015, 03:04 PM   #41
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Default Re: Gone but Not Forgotten

Would love to have two more of the Norm 90 F-4Fs for Code 3 work. The HM early Migs with the factory weathering were great. Too bad noone liked the inked panel lines.
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Old 09-28-2015, 03:53 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wildblood View Post
I picked up SM2002 for a nice price a few months ago. I actually prefer the scheme compared to SM2001. But I totally agree a Skymax Soviet La5 is a must for any WW2 collection. I just wish they had got around to the Il2 and Pe2, or even Yak series.
Yeah, I've only started collecting 1:72 WW2 single engined fighters in the past 6 months or so. This is a tooling that I would like to pick up a couple methinks.

As well as the Devastator.
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Old 09-29-2015, 10:19 AM   #43
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Leave it to the French to transfigure a jet fighter into artwork so brilliant and bold it redefines the exclamation “Whoa!!!” Even more, leave it to Hobby Master to flawlessly replicate that dazzling adornment on its own 1/72 Dassault Mirage 2000C (HA1603).

Dassault engineered a formidable interceptor/strike aircraft in the Mirage 2000C, which blossomed into a gifted performer. The 2000C ("C" for "Chasseur," meaning "Fighter”) represented here is a single-seat interceptor, one of 124 the French Air Force flew from 1983 onward. The spectacular motif hails from Tiger Meet 2003.

Years ago I refused to buy this model thinking it looked too bizarre, too French (no offense) for my liking, until I acquired other HM Mirage 2000s and swiftly changed my mind (it became one of my favorite diecast models). It’s an indisputable must-have for French Air Force enthusiasts, but I recommend it to everyone.

And, surprise, surprise, the HA1603 is extremely hard to find (read: impossible). Take my word for it, the model is genuine eye candy and deserves its own special exhibit, preferably next to a tin of Petrossian caviar and a magnum of Dom Pérignon 2004 champagne.
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Old 10-01-2015, 08:33 AM   #44
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It’s a timeworn cliché: Podgy, homely, or otherwise less appealing but no-less serviceable aircraft often stand in the shadows of more charismatic planes. I’m thinking of the B-24 to the B-17, the Halifax to the Lancaster, the P-47 to the P-51, the Hurricane to the Spitfire, the KI-43 to the A6M. The list continues.

The Bristol Beaufighter suffered the same ill fortune, playing second fiddle to its more celebrated sibling, the de Havilland Mosquito. But it wasn’t for lack of an enviable service record: The Beau was far from a success as a fighter, but as an accomplished bomber-interceptor it excelled. When toting radar, the Beaufighter became an effective night-fighter against marauding enemy planes. Hauling torpedoes, the Beau proved to be an effective anti-ship platform that served both the RAF and Coastal Command. Its robust design made it ideal for operating in extreme environments like North Africa and the Pacific. And its 4 x 20mm Hispano Mk II cannons and 6 x .303 machine guns made it formidable in its own right.

Still, the Beaufighter didn’t star in any movies. It soldiered on unpretentiously, routinely taking hell and thunder to the enemy.

The specimen featured below, Hobby Master’s HA2305, is unique for its forest-green motif and tail “nose art.” The model represents an RAAF Bristol Beaufighter, the Green Ghost, tasked with disrupting Japanese shipping and airfields around Labuan, an island off Borneo. I think it's a gem.

For a model that many collectors initially spurned, this one miraculously revived. These days it infrequently pops up on eBay; so if you find one, pull the trigger. You won’t be sorry.
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Old 10-03-2015, 09:22 PM   #45
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Let’s jaw about Hobby Master’s P-26A (HA7501).

This stocky little pugilist won me over at first sight. The plane is so hopelessly30s—so comically dated—I smile every time I see it.

A quick history: Boeing’s Peashooter was the Army Air Corp’s first successful mono-plane; it flew faster than earlier American combat aircraft and could outclimb contemporary biplane fighters. Many felt its toughness and temper embodied America’s indomitable spirit. Yet rapid technical advances overtook the plane and rudely tossed it into history’s dustbin, ending the Peashooter’s career with the Army Air Corps by 1941.

In my opinion, Hobby Master’s 1/48 P-26 is a study in virtuosity. The manufacturer skillfully captured the fighter’s portly fuselage, brawny yellow wings, muscular engine cowling, fresh-air cockpit, wire bracing, and gargantuan spats. The tampo applications are spot on, too. We're talkin' masterpiece.

And you’re in luck. Several have popped up on eBay lately.
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Old 10-05-2015, 08:21 AM   #46
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As of late, I’ve developed an admiration for Japan’s modern warbirds, especially the Mitsubishi F-2B. If you rammed spinach down an F-16’s throat and juiced it with steroids, you’d get the F-2B.

Knowing it’s vastly cheaper to fashion a new fighter from pre-existing technology than to engineer one from scratch, Japan selected the F-16 as the footing for a new secondary fighter. Accordingly, in October 1987, Mitsubishi and Lockheed Martin joined in holy matrimony, spent a frenzied honeymoon, and consequently birthed a bigger, better Falcon (the family resemblance is unmistakable).

In a nutshell, the “Viper Zero” boasts of a 25% larger wing area (which bestows better payload and maneuverability), has a longer, wider nose to accommodate AESA radar, has a larger tailplane and air intake, sports a three-piece canopy, and can lug four ASM-1 or ASM-2 anti-ship missiles, four AAMs, and additional fuel tanks.

In other words, the F-2B is the F-16’s bigger, beefier, sumo-wrestling half-brother.

All I can say is, Hobby Master outdid itself producing this muscled samurai. The overall shape is accurate; the details are crisp, and the double-blue camo rocks! The furnished ordinance ain’t bad, either.

Happily, you can still find this slugger, but stock is down to ones and twosies. I understand that an American vendor (sounds like and rhymes with “Aikens) still stocks them. But don’t wait. They won’t last forever.

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Old 10-07-2015, 09:15 AM   #47
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Some waggish project engineer at North American thought slapping a Jimmy Durante nose on the F-86 would be a real scream—and did. And that’s exactly what I think of every time I see this warbird—Jimmy’s outrageous schnozzola!

But seriously, if ever a jet had a colossal proboscis, the Sabre Dog surely did, its distinctive nose radome housing an AN/APG-36 all-weather radar. I love it. Can’t get enough of it.

The Dawg became the first one-person, all-weather interceptor capable of operating in daylight, night, and all weather. The F-86D also combined two unprecedented advancements: one, a hi-tech electronic system that rendered a second interception crewmember redundant; and two, the replacement of gun armament for air-to-air rockets. It also set new world speed records—698.505 mph on November 19, 1952, followed by a speed of 715.697 mph on July 16, 1953.

By April 1958, Air Defense Command had booted the old girl out the door, fobbing it off to the Air National Guard. They, in turn, presented it to several foreign air forces, including Japan, Turkey, and Denmark.

And there you have it: The Flyin’ Honker.

Falcon’s F-86D is stunning, a faithful and satisfying replica even for the most persnickety collector and the only one, to date, produced by any manu. Remarkably, it’s still available on eBay and elsewhere, but prices are wafting upwards. So don’t delay: Buy one today! Ha-cha-cha-chaaaaaaa!
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Old 10-09-2015, 09:56 AM   #48
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What's to say about Century Wings’ F-14 Tomcats other than they're, well—FABULOUS! And this particular specimen is arguably one of the best of the bunch!

The Iranian Air Force F-14A Tomcat 3-6020 of TFB-8, Khatami Air Base, is second to none for detail and accuracy. It features swing wings, completed landing gear subassemblies that snap quickly into place, and realistic panel lines, antennas, access panels, and surface details. The opened canopy reveals a detailed cockpit interior. Plus the model boasts of selected moveable control surfaces, optional extended/retracted landing gear, detailed removable pilots, and authentic, interchangeable ordnance loads including Phoenix, Sparrow and Sidewinder missiles. And…its camo job is unique among Century Wings’ F-14s.

Purdy cool, huh?

In ancient days (1976), the United States forked over a bunch of F-14As to Iran, making that country the only foreign power to operate the aircraft. Then revolution ruined the festivities, the power paradigm everlastingly shifted, and American and Iranian relations circled the toilet. The Imperial Iranian Air force morphed into the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force, whereupon the US imposed an embargo on its newly minted enemy. Overnight, Iran found itself scrambling for Tomcat parts and additional AIM-54 Phoenix missiles. Intelligence groups guesstimate fewer than 20 of these Tomcats still fly.

This particular F-14A, #3-6020, is celebrated (in Iran) for having fired an AIM-54 on an Iraqi MiG-25, forcing it to run home for mamma. Anybody up for fireworks?

I hate to rub this in, but really, if you didn’t buy this model back in the day—you should have. This particular Tomcat is nearly impossible to find; and when it does appear it fetches a king’s ransom. If you’re an F-14 jock but don’t own this model, beg for, borrow, or pinch one (I’ll disavow I ever said that, I swear ). You might have to sell your house, wife/girlfriend, and kids in the process, but it’ll be worth it.
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Old 10-09-2015, 05:42 PM   #49
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kinda hoping HM get round to this so I don't have to do anything too drastic
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Old 10-09-2015, 06:50 PM   #50
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HM would be insane not to do an Irianian tomcat, if not this old 80's scheme, do the modern digial camo scheme for something different
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