Hog: 1/48th Monogram UH-1C Huey
Strange how it is a real challenge to find a decent 1/48th scale model of some very iconic aircraft. I put the UH-1 Huey helicopter in this category. The old 1/48th Monogram UH-1C Huey "Hog" (Iroquois) kit (reworked and re-released in the early 1970's) is one example of a Huey model that presents its challenges, both in fit and accuracy.
Notable Kit Features:
Decent shape representation (it still looks like a Huey)
Nice surface details for the age of the kit
Low parts count
Weapons package comes with the gunship kit
The UH-1 Huey helicopter is one of the most recognized aircraft around the West, becoming the "poster boy" of the Vietnam war and then living on in later types with various militaries world wide. The air assault scene from "Apocalypse Now" increased the fan base in a way similar to what the movie "Top Gun" did for the F-14 Tomcat. The UH-1 Huey would make its way into a lot of model builder's collections, and I am sure more than a few were lost on low level sorties in households since this kits release. “We’ll come in low, out of the rising sun and about a mile out we’ll put on the music… My boys love it!”
This kit is really neither a B nor a C model as some aspects were changed and others were left alone, in Monogram's rework from a B to a C version
You will need to add weight to keep the nose down
Parts are generally thick (particularly true of the "glass")
Assembly of the fuselage with its separate roof requires patience
Details are passable but lacking in the interior and engine area
Vertical fin is not the correct shape for a C version
Weapons are simplified (especially the belt feeds to the guns - probably best to just go with rocket pods alone and maybe replacement ones at that)
Kit Additions / Modifications:
Added pilot figures
Added weight to nose and floor area
Used third-party decals from Microscale
This Huey was finished in a coat of helicopter olive drab. I think the main rotor should have been black with yellow tips (but no longer have my references) The upper windows were overpainted in green (as was the case on many hot climate Hueys) Tail planes were red and nose anti-glare panel black. The most complicated part of the paint job was getting the tail rotor red and white stripes done. Not my best work, however it still gets attention on the shelf as a lot of people recognize this one as something they know. :)
The After-Build Report:
I wouldn't necessarily recommend this old 1/48th Monogram UH-1C Huey Hog model as a way to get an early Huey model into your collection, however I would be a bit hard pressed to suggest what kit you should use in 1/48th, due to lack of decent options! The much more recent 1/48th Hobby Boss is an Easy Assembly kit with simplified construction, limited details and no weapons (which is the role the C model played in Vietnam). Let's see if Pilot Replicas comes to the rescue with their UH-1B model due out in 2023 - fingers crossed!
Completed build #22 - December 1985 (then re-finished in April 1987) using the 1/48th scale Monogram #5201 kit.
Feel free to comment or ask any questions - Keep on building, gain experience, challenge yourself if you like, but try not to stress yourself out over the build - it is supposed to be an enjoyable hobby after all - Cheers
P.S. Admittedly I have lost two UH-1 in crashes. One a complete write-off and the other heavily damaged in a rough landing - "Sh*t gets real when the doors come off"