Amodel 1/72 Ye-7RD Kit First Look
|Date of Review||June 2014||Manufacturer||Amodel|
|Kit Number||72221||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Only kit available of this rare bird||Cons||Some flash and molding issues|
|Skill Level||Experienced||MSRP (USD)||$29.00|
Not as famous as its interceptor ancestor, the Ye-7RD still played an important part in the story of the venerable MiG-21 and in Russia's aviation history. Essentially a heavily modified MiG 21PFS with lifting fans embedded midway through the fuselage, the Ye-7RD was actually created to answer the need for a new design of the MiG-23 (NATO codename: Flogger).
The Ye-7RD was used as a technology test bed to compare the advantages and disadvantages of the RD36-35 lift engine versus the R21F-300 and R27F-300 power jet engines. Making its maiden flight on 16 June 1966, the aircraft had its moment of glory in the following year at the famous Domodedovo Air Parade (now show). The technologies tested proved to be of interest to Yakovolev and were incorporated into the design of the Yak-38 series of STOL aircraft. As for the Ye-7RD, it was transferred to the Moscow Aviation institute as an educational aid.
Amodel's limited edition release of the Ye-7RD is comprised of 64 pieces on 5 parts trees with one tree for clear styrene. Highlights include:
- Engine burner-can assembly
- Lifting turbine compressor faces
- Optional position lifting turbines vent cover
- Basic cockpit with separate HUD
- Separately molded assortment of blister antennas
- Humbrol color callout chart
- Decals for one test aircraft
Being a limited edition kit, I was not surprised to see some flash on a few of the parts, which can easily be removed with a few scrapes from a hobby knife. There were a few dimples in the fuselage unfortunately, right below the cockpit on either side of the fuselage.
Detailing is basic and there is room in the cockpit and wheel wells for either resin upgrades or scratch-built improvements, although the pieces to pose the canopy open are not provided.
Flash and molding issues aside, I find this to be an exciting subject and it will be interesting to build it as if it had been an operational fighter alongside the MiG-21 during the 1960s. Now, if only Hobbyboss/Trumpeter, Kitty Hawk, Panda, or even Revell-Germany would create this in 1/48 scale…