Italeri 1/72 UH-1F/AB 204B Kit First Look
By Michael Benolkin
|Date of Review||April 2006||Manufacturer||Italeri|
|Kit Number||1201||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Nicely detailed kit||Cons|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$13.50|
When Bell developed the first production turbine-powered helicopter, the US Army initially designated the aircraft as HU-1 (hence the name Huey). The aircraft was quickly given its baptism of fire in operations in Vietnam, but it was a huge success in proving out the air mobility concept as well as heliborne close air support, medivac, and search and rescue (SAR) missions.
The US Air Force developed their own version of the UH-1 (redesignated after the 1963 McNamara directive) in that they wanted more power as well as the larger cabin of the UH-1D. The USAF version would be designated UH-1F, and this version was popular among European forces as well, license-built by Augusta-Bell of Italy as the AB-204B.
Here is another re-release from Italeri. The 1/72 UH-1F kit is molded in olive drab styrene and presented on two parts trees, plus a single tree of clear parts. This release has the standard fuselage shape of the UH-1D, but accurately captures the unique side-exhausting engine configuration of the UH-1F. In addition, unlike the previous Hueys, the UH-1F has its tail rotor on the opposite side.
The kit features a reasonably detailed interior that even has seatbelts/harnesses molded into the crew and passenger seats. Since the aircraft was intended for the SAR mission, a rescue winch is also included.
While the pilots' doors are molded shut, the main cabin doors can be positioned open or closed.
Markings are provided for a three examples:
- AB 204B, 15-29, Italian AF
- AB 204B, 4D-BY, Austrian AF
- AB 204B, 225, Royal Netherlands Navy
This is a nice kit and the molds are definitely in great shape. Recommended!
My sincere thanks to Testors for this review sample!