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Revell 1/72 scale conversion

by John Chung




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I have wanted an Israeli something in my display case for a very long time now. Anything. Anything that carried the IDF/AFís signature camouflage pattern, which is simply so distinctively colorful compared with many of its western (namely American) counterparts.

Besides, building something other than grey-on-grey jet seemed exciting enough, not that I donít like grey, I just donít mind being a bit adventurous. I can hear many a chuckle and head nodding from the prop builders at the moment.





I started this kit with the intention to build it out of the box, which only went as far as taking the parts out of the box. Yep.


Revellís 1/72 F-16 series was and still is a welcomed addition to the Viper family in the scale, superceding the much older Hasegawa F-16 family. Many has been said about the new Revell rendition of this popular electric jet, so I wonít delve into it further other than to say it is probably one of the best kits available in terms of balance between detail and value. The only notable issues I encountered were the slightly tricky intake assembly and the ill-fitting radome. The thick and distortion-plagued canopy was a bit of an annoyance too.

Besides the basic kit, I elected to introduce the following additions. In the cockpit the forward instrument coaming was elevated and a new HUD was added. The seats were dressed with lap belts, ejection handles, and some detailing and reshaping of the parachute box. I also added the handles on the canopy framing with stretched sprue, and the pressure seal around the cockpit was done with electrical tape.



The main undercarriage bay had scratch built plumbing and wiring, and more wiring were added to the main and nose gear struts. The trailing edge flaps were dropped. Various antennas specific to Netz II aircraft were added on the dorsal hump as well as the intake chin locations. And lastly, AOA probes on the nose and static discharge wicks on the trailing edges of the wings, vertical and horizontals were added.


For every aircraft type there is always something in a model that I canít afford to leave off. Personally, a decent looking nozzle is a must have for any PW-engined F-16 model, and sadly, the kit part is somewhat weak. I chose to use the Aires 1/72 F-15 exhausts and scratch built the feathers, which worked out better than I expected.


I elected to include blue AIM-9D and Mk.84 training rounds on the wingtip and center wing stations, respectively. The Sidewinders were modified kit parts with new fins, and the Mk.84 was taken from the Hasegawa weapons set and had the fins thinned considerably. The inboard wing stations were occupied with 600 gal tanks from Hasegawaís 1/72 F-2 kits, and the outboard wing stations were modified to appear with the missile adaptors installed, only without the rails. The centerline tank was from the kit. I also wanted to include the Pave Penny targeting pod commonly seen on many IDF/AF Netz and Netz II aircrafts, and since none are available to my knowledge, I scratch built it.


Painting, Markings and Base


Paints were custom mixed acrylics using Gunze and Tamiya paint lines for the yellow and brown.

The green was Model Master enamel Sky type ĎSí and the lower fuselage grey was again Gunze acrylic.

IsraDecal IAF-48 F-16A/B sheet was used which went on relatively well except it didnít react as well to settling solutions as well as hoped and silvered at several locations. Iím sure it must have just been me since IsraDecals are typically of really high quality.





Well there you go, Iím glad to finally have something Israeli on my display case. And perhaps next time Iíll try a bit harder towards that out of the box goal.


Much thanks to Yoav Efrati of IPMS/IL for his kind assistance in providing pointers and references for Israeli F-16s.



Additional Images


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Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2007 by John Chung
Page Created 18 December, 2007
Last Updated 31 December, 2007

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