Hi again folks, this is the Revell 1/144 kit of the B2 stealth bomber. I had originally planned on building the Testors 1/72 version and bought the kit a couple of years back, but I was a bit put off by the reviews. I eventually sold it again on e-bay as it didn't look like much fun! I found this kit down at the local model shop for £11 so I took the easy option of a quick build!
The kit goes together like you would expect a Revell kit from 1993 to go together. The parts were hard fitting with lots of gaps to be filled. I cheated a bit and left a lot of gaps underneath as I would have been on ages, and you won't see the underneath once it's in the display case. But you can't really complain too much for £11.
A total of 21 B2's were built and 20 still remain in service. One crashed on take off in 2008, though the crew ejected safely. There were originally plans to build 132 of them, but this number was decreased due to the de-escalation of the cold war, and the fact each one cost $737 million in 1997 money! It is estimated that $2.1 billion was spent on each aircraft from the research and development stages through to the production and testing. The figure for the total spend on the B2 was calculated in 2004 to have reached $44.75 billion! They are expected to remain in service till 2058 as well so you can only guess what the total spend on them will be by then.
The B2 can carry either 80 500lb JDAM's, or 16 2,400lb B83 thermo-nuclear bombs, so that is quite a payload! As far as I am aware it is the only stealth aircraft which is nuclear capable.
One thing that is really notable about the shape of the B2, is that the head on view looks rather like that of your stereotypical flying saucer. It has even been claimed that the US government played up to the whole Area 51 thing, because whilst the public were busy accusing them of hiding UFO's and aliens, they were distracted from the fact that over $44 billion of tax payers money was being spent on bombers!
Thanks for looking.