Amodel 1/72 DH.100 Vampire Mk.3/5/6/9/52 Kit First Look
by Michael Benolkin
|Date of Review||July 2012||Manufacturer||Amodel|
|Subject||DH.100 Vampire Mk.3/5/6/9/52||Scale||1/72|
|Kit Number||72264||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Very nice kit of this familiar-looking aircraft||Cons||See text|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$17.30|
The Vampire was the UK's first operational single-engine jet fighter and was the first jet fighter in the world to land on an aircraft carrier. The distinction for the first operational single-engine jet fighter went to the He 162 Volksjager.
The weight penalty for using a twin-boom structure was offset by obtaining the optimum thrust out of the early jet engines by not forcing them to breath down or exhaust out of long fuselage ducts. The overall design is one of simple functionality, with the least amount of weight to carry a pilot, guns, fuel and an engine aloft.
Production of the Vampire extended over 20 years in several countries, with over 5,000 aircraft built. Few jet aircraft can boast of a production run of that size, much less mass production of the UK's first operational jet fighter!
Amodel has produced the venerable Vampire in 1/72 scale and from what I can tell, this kit looks nice. I'll leave it to the experts to address any accuracy problems. The kit is molded in light gray styrene and presented on six parts trees plus one small tree of clear parts.
Among the features and options in this kit:
- Nice cockpit
- Canopy and windscreen are one piece
- Positionable speed brakes
- Positionable landing gear
- Optional external tanks
The kit has the basics of a nice cockpit that can really be brought out with just a little work. Unfortunately the canopy and windscreen are molded as one piece, so you cannot position the canopy open without some careful surgery.
Markings are provided for five examples:
- Vampire F.3, VT829, 604 Sqn, RAF, Ta Quali, Malta, 1952
- Vampire FB.5, NZ5767, 14 Sqn, RNZAF, 1970
- Vampire FB.6, 216, Advanced Flying School, SAAF, Pietersburg, South Africa, 1973
- Vampire FB.9, NZ5753, 75 Sqn, RNZAF, 1953
- Vampire FB.52, VH-6, HavLv 3, Finnish AF, 1957
This looks like a nice kit of the Vampire and provides a nice array of Marks to choose from straight out of the box. Given the modular design of the kit, I suspect we'll be seeing more variants of this early jet fighter in our future.
My sincere thanks to HobbyTerra for this review sample!