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WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit

AMP 1/48 WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit First Look

By David L. Veres

Date of Review January 2019 Manufacturer AMP
Subject WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Scale 1/48
Kit Number 48004 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-etch
Pros Crisp moldings, amazing interior detail Cons Complex for hobbyists of modest experience
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $35.00

First Look

WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit
WS-51 Dragonfly HR.3 Kit

Sikorsky's classic S-51 helicopter remains an icon of 1950s helicopter design.

Now AMP/Micro-Mir offers an impressive 1:48-scale Westland-Sikorsky Dragonfly HR.3/5 air-sea SAR variant with over 125 plastic parts on seven trees, aftermarket-quality extras, thorough instructions, and markings for five Commonwealth machines.

Quality of components is uniformly outstanding. At worst, parts carry just hints of flash. And parts sport a prototypical mix of beautifully executed raised and recessed scribing.

The excellent cockpit area alone comprises, if I calculate correctly, at least 39 plastic and photoetch parts spanning eleven busy panels. Add associated external components and capacious canopy, and Dragonfly's "front office" should certainly satisfy discerning detail devotées.

Crystal-clear canopy parts include a variant door options. And an equally impressive suite of aftermarket-quality details supplement styrene trees:

  • One (1) fret of 31 photoetch metal pieces
  • One (1) set of canopy painting masks
  • Two (2) cast-resin parts
  • One (1) clear-film instrument panel

AMP/Micro-Mir's eight-page, Ukrainian-English instructions include a thumbnail history, paint matches keyed to Humbrol colors, and 30-step assembly sequence. Trees include no parts numbers. So carefully follow parts maps – and component notes above each construction step.

The kit's 42-item decal sheet includes insignia, serials, instrument panels, and a dozen or so tiny stencils. The final page and separate sheet include color & markings guides with explanatory notes for five subjects:

  • Royal Navy Dragonfly HR.3 WN493, 1959
  • Royal Australian Navy Dragonfly HR.3 WG725, museum display
  • Royal Navy Dragonfly HR.5 WG719, museum display
  • Royal Navy Dragonfly HR.3 WG723, 1955
  • Royal Navy Dragonfly HR.5 WG724, museum display

Hard to believe that AMP/Micro-Mir's remarkably detailed kit is "limited run". Everything's there: just add adhesives and time.

I just wish someone remembered to include paint notes to the color & markings drawings. I still can't find parts F126 and F127. And trust me: the small white resin parts look nice and crisp. But every attempt to photograph or scan them produced images of two white blobs!

I've always loved S-51 variants. Now AMP/Micro-Mir's quality kit means you can finally unload Fonderie Miniature's rare, hard-to-build 1/48 version on eBay!

My sincere thanks to Micro-Mir for this review sample!