Wild Weasel Hun: 1/48th Trumpeter F-100F Super Sabre
Trumpeter did and excellent job capturing the overall dimensions, surface panel lines and rivets as well as most of the details of the F-100F with this 1/48th scale kit.
Notable Kit Features:
Cockpit detail is impressive (although throttles are missing)
Ejection seats are good but no harness / buckle detail and additional tubing / wiring could be added
No internal canopy structure details
Boarding ladder provided (which is amusing as there does not appear to be an open canopy option)
Very clear canopy parts
Full length air intake duct
Separately molded ailerons, stabilator, and rudder
Positionable flaps / slats and speed brakes
Good gear and wheel well details
Straight and angled air refueling booms
Inverted Y-type Sidewinder pylons or standard option
TERs and Sidewinders provided
Straight or stowed pitot booms
JP gets full credit for pushing this project to the forefront by generously providing the subject kit (that's how much he likes the 'station wagon' versions of certain fighters). From that point there was only the decision of which Wild Weasel crew's aircraft to depict. I was debating between the "First Kill" and the "First Loss". JP chimed in with the strong suggestion to go with the success and there we have it: First SAM site kill, F-100F s/n 58-1226, 22 December 1965 in the area of the rail yards at Yen Bai, North Vietnam - Pilot Al Lamb, EWO Jack Donovan.
Wild Weasel Detachment, 6234th Tactical Fighter Wing, Korat, Thailand. The first Wild Weasel aircrews are (Front row, L to R in pilot caps): Capt. Walt Lifsey, Capt. Sandy Sandelius, Capt. Ed White, Maj. Garry Willard, Capt. Jack Donovan, Capt. Allen Lamb, Capt. John Pitchford, Capt. Maury Fricke, unknown and Maj. Bob Swartz (not pictured are Capt. Les Lindenmuth, Capt. Donald Madden and Capt. Robert Trier
The build was straight-forward with no notable issues that weren't easily dealt with
Kit Additions / Modifications:
This kit was built out of the box with few additions aside from seat belts and the custom tail markings to depict this "SAM Killer" crew aircraft.
The paint scheme applied to this aircraft is the USAF standard for combat theater planes of the time, TAC Jungle FS 30219 Tan / 34079 Dk. Grn. / 34102 Med. Grn. over FS 36622 Lt Gray). Weathering was kept minimal as these Wild Weasel aircraft did not serve for long before being replaced by more capable aircraft for this dangerous role. Weapons are accurate for this mission (believe it or not), no wonder the term "YGBSM" came up. The F-100F Weasels paid a high price in Vietnam, as 5 of the 7 F-100s were eventually lost.
Photograph of Capt. Allen Lamb (l) and Capt. Jack Donovan (r) snapped just before they took off on the first SAM kill mission.
The After-Build Report:
I definitely recommend this kit for intermediate or better modelers (beginners may find the separate controls a bit challenging). It was nice to see a modern kit produced of the Hun series in 1/48th scale. After building this kit I picked up the F-100D for the stash, to refresh my old Monogram builds at some point in the future. Trumpeter also produced a 1/48th "C" version which includes the F-102 afterburner nozzle.
Thanks again to JP for getting this one on the display shelf at The Hangar here.
Completed build #223 - December 2018 using the 1/48th scale Trumpeter #02840 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 suppose to be an enjoyable hobby after all - Cheers