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Panavia Tornado IDS

Panavia Tornado IDS Book Review

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review June 2009 Title Panavia Tornado IDS
Author Andy Evans Publisher SAM Publications
Published 2009 ISBN 1-9069659-01-3
Format 68 pages, softbound MSRP (BP) £9.99 (Approx 16.50 USD)


Most modelers are aware of Scale Aviation Modeler, one of the nicest hobby publications in print (in my humble opinion) and other fine titles from SAM Publications, the parent organization. One series you may not be aware of is called the Air Data (AD). This series parallels the Modellers Datafile (MDF) series as the MDF series focuses on details of interest to the detail-oriented scale modeler, this AD series looks at the subject in action and will appeal to the aviation historian as well as to modelers wanting to find the right look for their completed subject. There are three installments in the AD series starting with the BAE Hawk (just in time for the Italeri kit) and next up is this title, the Panavia Tornado IDS.

This title covers the Tornado from inception and jumps straight into the variants and the users of the aircraft worldwide. The coverage includes:

  • Tornado Origins
  • RAF GR.1
  • RAF GR.1A/4A
  • RAF GR.1B
  • RAF GR.4
  • Operation Granby
  • Operation Telic
  • Luftwaffe IDS
  • Luftwaffe ECR
  • Luftwaffe Recon
  • Italian IDS
  • Italian ECR
  • Saudi Arabian IDS

You'll note that this release covers the strike, Wild Weasel, and reconnaissance versions of the Tornado. The fighter variant will no-doubt be the subject of a future title.

This title is well-illustrated with full-color with no black & white photos from what I've seen. The photos in each section provide a great cross-section of color schemes worn by each type and nationality, including some rather nice colorful anniversary schemes that I'd love to in decal form. The title also has a nice selection of color profiles for each type and nationality, and the author provides the proper BSC or FS-equivalent for the colors worn by each example. Nice job!

This series will definitely appeal to aviation enthusiasts as it provides a nice look at the subject without diving into tons of engineering details (which are available in other titles) and provides an up-to-date look at the type as well. Modelers will definitely want to have this one handy for their next Tornado build as there are some very nice color schemes represented as well as enough detail to build your favorite 'fin' out of the box.

My sincere thanks to SAM Publications for this review sample!