Revell 1/35 H-13H Sioux Kit First Look
|Date of Review||December 2016||Manufacturer||Revell|
|Kit Number||5313||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Nice details||Cons||See text|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$16.95|
The Bell Model 47 was a light helicopter that was developed during late WWII and first flown in December, 1945. The type was produced between 1946 and 1974 with over 5600 examples built. Used in a variety of roles from transport to crop duster and from traffic observation to trainer, the Bell 47 is a versatile aircraft still flying today. The US Army adopted the type as the H-13 Sioux and was also used in a variety of missions, the most recognizable being the MEDEVAC helicopter used to shuttle injured soldiers from front-line aid stations to Army hospitals during the Korean War and a regular part of the TV series MASH.
Revell has recently reissued the H-13H in its 2-in-1 boxing and I thought it was worth looking at this kit. First released in 1996, this kit has been mistakenly identified as being produced from the Academy/MRC tooling and that is incorrect. The Revell kit is a distinctively different tooling as you'll see when we look at the Academy/MRC kit soon. Molded in green styrene, this kit is presented on four parts trees plus a separately molded tail boom and one tree of clear parts.
Among the features an options:
- Nicely molded tail boom
- Nicely detailed engine
- Skids feature positionable wheels
- Nicely detailed cockpit
- You'll need to add your own lap belts
- Optional pilot figure in seated position
- One-piece bubble canopy
- Choice of mission configurations:
- Rocket platform
Markings are provided for the following aircraft:
- H-13H, XM-1 Weapons System
- H-13H, MASH
- H-13H, Arctic/Jungle Ops
While the kit is a bit heavy-handed with some details, the tail boom is nicely done. Add some wiring and plumbing for the engine and some crew restraints in the cockpit, this will build into a nice model with minimal effort.
So how is this kit different than the Academy kit? First, the Revell tailboom is a multipart affair that will take some care to assemble. For that reason, the skill level of that kit is listed as Intermediate. The tailboom in this kit is molded as one integral unit with one insert after the engine is installed. The Academy kit has the early single fuel cell atop the frame behind the rotor mast, this kit has the distinctive twin tanks mounted on either side of the rotor mast. This kit has positionable repositioning wheels, the Academy kit does not. This kit has different shaped entry openings than the Revell kit. In short, this kit represents the later H-13H while the Academy kit represents the H-13C/E.
While the aftermarket community has largely ignored the Revell and Academy kits in this scale, there are sufficient generic sets that can assist such as the generic crew restraints from Eduard and instrument faces by Airscale. There are numerous good photo references online though the hardcore Bell 47 fan will want a copy of The Bell 47 Helicopter Story which is the best reference of this subject available in print.