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SR-71A Blackbird

DML 1/144 SR-71A Blackbird Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review June 2012 Manufacturer DML
Subject SR-71A Blackbird Scale 1/144
Kit Number 4639 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Nice looking model Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $27.50

First Look


The SR-71 was a strategic reconnaissance aircraft capable of flying faster than Mach 3 and could outrun virtually any threat for many years before adversary technology caught up with the aircraft. The SR-71 evolved from the CIA-operated A-12 program and was operated by the US Air Force. Designed by Kelly Johnson's Lockheed Skunkworks, the aircraft's aerodynamics are still advanced by today's standards and it was developed back in the 1960s. Like the A-12 program, the existence of the SR-71 was kept in secret for many years and was given 'plausible deniability' when a more public version, the YF-12A Mach 3 interceptor program was put into the limelight. The program was finally revealed in a speech by then-president Lyndon Johnson to counter criticisms that his administration was not keeping up with Soviet activities.

DML has produced an impressive yet simple kit of the Lockheed SR-71A. Produced in 1/144 scale, this kit is still a fair-sized model and provides some nice details and options. Among these:

  • Positionable landing gear
  • Very simple construction

Construction is very simple and well designed. While there is a cockpit, DML didn't spend much energy on it given the limited visibility into the cockpit once the cockpit cover is installed.

Markings are provided for four examples:

  • SR-71A, 61-7967
  • SR-71A, 61-7980
  • SR-71A, 61-7955
  • SR-71A, 60-6934

I had no idea that you could get so much detail into such a small-scale kit. I'll never look at the 'simplistic' details of the 1/144 scale kits the same ever again as it is clear that DML has raised the bar quite significantly. This will make a really nice project that doesn't take lots of time or effort to complete.

My sincere thanks to DML for this review sample!