Zvezda 1/72 Mi-26 Halo Kit First Look
By Fotios Rouch
|Date of Review||February 2009||Manufacturer||Zvezda|
|Kit Number||7270||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Best kit of this heavy helicopter||Cons|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$52.99|
The Mil Mi-26 Halo replaced the Mi-6 Hook in the heavy lift role. It first flew in December 1977 and to this day it is still the biggest and most powerful operational helicopter. It is powered by two Lotarev D-136 turbines at 11,400 shp each. The Mi-26 is also the first helicopter with an eight-blade main rotor. It can carry up to 20 tons of cargo or about 90 troops.
About 300 Halos have been built and are being operated by about 20 countries (Russian Army, Russian Ministry of Emergencies, Mil-Avia, Ukraine, Belarus, Cambodia, Congo, India, Kazakhstan, North Korea, South Korea, Mexico and Peru.
When I bought the SouthFront kit of the Halo, I was pretty sure this would be it and it would be very unlikely that some other company would get engaged in such a big project. Was I pleasantly surprised when I noticed in the news groups pictures of the mew Zvezda rendition of the Halo! The SouthFront kit is pretty rough and very much a kit that would require a lot of skill and patience. By contrast the Zvezda Halo is a magnificent kit full of nice details, fine engraved panel lines and is very well molded. Zvezda has been producing some very high quality kits such us the Tu-154 and the Tu-160 in 144th scale.
This is a very big model, almost half a meter long, and I would not have been surprised if Zvezda had chosen to brake down the fuselage in small portions to minimize the tooling costs. Yet they chose to keep the fuselage in two big left and right parts.
There are six sprues in the box making up 238 parts. The surface detail on all the parts is up to par with the latest offerings from Revell for example. The rotor blades have been molded with the characteristic droop evident when the rotor is not spinning. The rotor is also very nicely detailed. There is a very well detailed interior and even crew figures are included.
The rear cargo ramp can be built open or closed. The boarding hatches on the fuselage can also be posed open.
The clear parts are pretty good but it would still be a good idea to dip them in Future.
The decals are well printed and contain stencils, door outlines, and instrument panel faces. The decals options for two aircraft:
- United Nations, Uganda October 2003
- Russian Frontier troops at Tajikistan, 1993
This is the definitive Halo. It should build fast and easy. The price is very reasonable for today's markets and if you shop around you can get one for about $40.