Profile Photo
Richard Mcstay
58 articles

Harrier GR-7

June 12, 2017 · in Aviation · · 48 Comments

Hi again folks, I've finally finished my favourite aircraft of all time! This is the kit of the GR-7. The kit was a Xmas present from my parents, not last Xmas, the one before. I wanted to get a bit of practice in first with some other kits before I attempted this one though so I left it in the cupboard for a bit.

I started building the old 1/72 Airfix GR-7 when I was a kid. I remember brush painting it green. It was almost finished, and I was chuffed to bits with how it was coming along. I put it up on top of the tall cabinet out of harms way, but the cat got up there and knocked it off. I remember it being in bits, so I got upset and gave up with it!

The was unfinished business for me so I've had another go in later life. I decided to go for the winter camo scheme rather than the all grey scheme's suggested by the kit. I googled some pictures of the actual aircraft and also some of the painting instructions from the new Eduard 1/48 Harrier kit to use as references.

I had a few problems with the decals on some of the other Trumpeter kits, but this time they were spot on. I've had problems in the past setting decals on top of matt Tamiya acrylics even after copious amounts of clear varnish. I used Mr Hobby paints with this one and it seems to have solved the problem I think.

I used an Eduard photo etch kit for the cockpit and seat belts, but other than that it was built out of the box. I glued a lead fishing weight inside the nose as a ballast, but it seems to have come loose and is rattling around in there now! Hopefully that won't cause any damage if I don't touch it too much. When I say touch it, I mean fly it round the living room making the sound effects!

The kit has been criticised on a few occasions for inaccuracies, mainly with the ordinance. I read that Trumpeter have mixed a couple of their kits together to make the GR-7 and the weapons sets are actually from the AV-8B. The missiles also don't seem to attach anywhere on the rails confirming this. I had to use tiny dots of super glue to attach them, making the final model really fragile.

One interesting fact I read is that the RAF GR-7's didn't actually have any cannons in the gun pods! They were left on the aircraft empty though as they provided a good balancing weight for vertical landing. I think they were later replaced with weighted fins.

It wasn't the easiest kit I've built neither, but I think that's more to do with the actual shape of the aircraft rather than the kit. The front landing gear has to be set in place before you glue the two sides of the nose together, so it was a balancing act at times when painting. There was a bit of putty needed here and there but nothing too drastic, it was still an enjoyable build and I'm happy with the result for my current abilities. It is a shame to see the Harriers out of service now with the RAF. I'm sure the F-35 will be superior in all aspects, but the Harrier will always be my favourite!

Thanks for looking!

19 additional images. Click to enlarge.

48 responses

  1. Richard, Very nice, your camo and weathering look great. I really like the scheme and having it all loaded up and ready to go !

  2. Excellent build Richard! Love the scheme you chose - I've recently snagged some similar images off the net in preparation of a similar build in 1/72. It looks awesome with all that ordinance hanging off of it. Great job on the paint and weathering.

  3. Fantastic work, Richard...I really like what you've done here. Two thumbs up! 🙂

  4. Very nice work. An excellent result.

  5. Winter camouflage make the Harrier look really nice, great job on all aspect.

  6. What an excellent build of your Harrier. I specialy like the winter camouflage. Just wonderful! It sure is a big bird in 1/32 scale. I still got a 1/72 in the stash waiting.

  7. Great build, I to like these aircraft(have 1 in1/72) I like the cool way they can take off,love all the fine detail well done.

  8. Wow! Richard, the Harrier looks fantastic, excellent scale model dude. I remember how bloody loud the plane was spooling up when I saw one at an airshow in the late 80s. Bravo! 🙂

  9. One of my favourite aircraft too along with the Jag which I was lucky-enough to work with for seven years in the 1980's.

    Love the model, definitely a kit that I'd put on my list in the near future (but after I've built my Airfix GR3, GR9 and Hasegawa AV-8B+ !).


    • Thanks Ian, much appreciated. You've still got a few to do then!
      The next one I want to do is the Kinetic Sea Harrier 2. Looks like a top notch kit, but I've got a cupboard full of kits to clear out first!

  10. A great build sir! Ditto on how loud the are.

  11. Very nice indeed, well done

  12. Great job on this kit, Richard, the colour scheme and the ordnance are the right choices for sure, I'll have to build one someday, not sure which kit though.

    • Cheers George! The Eduard 1/48 looks like a good one, but it's limited edition so you will have to be quick. I think I'll do a Sea Harrier next time round.

  13. Excellent job on the Harrier. The weathering is nice and subtle and the winter colors look great on this plane! I normally build 1/48 but have the Trumpy F-100, F-105 and Lightning F.1A in 1/32 (and Hasegawa F-104) and they're enough to make me wish I had more space to build all the Trumpy 1/32 kits! The Harrier looks just as nice, and since it is a small jet, I think I can squeeze in another 32! (I think I'd want a GR.1/AV-8A with the original wing though. Something about the purity of being the first in line, like the Lightning F.1 or a Lamborghini Countach before the wings and fender flares!)

    • Cheers Josh, thank you very much! I was starting to think I'd over done the weathering a bit, but they look even dirtier in the reference pics.
      In retrospect, I wish that I'd started building all of them in 1/48 so they were all the same size. I've had to accept that a 1/32 Flanker is too big...

  14. Wow! It looks beautiful, Richard! I love the winter paint & all the weapons mounted, like you did! Great job.

  15. Wow Rich !, I should've commented as soon as you posted this but was in a rush at the time, what can I say you absolutely nailed this ... ,you deserve a prize for this one ,really mate this is as good as it gets, if I built a kit as good as this I'd pack it and go onto stamp collecting cos I couldn't top it...

  16. build, Richard. Really looks the business.

  17. This as fine an example of the 'carbon fibre death provider' as I've ever seen - the painting job is first rate; I'd be very proud of this build.

    Can't find a citation for this (and you've probably read it) but it's a lovely little poem...

    The Harrier stood at the Pearly Gates
    So proud, erect and bold
    But meekly asked St Peter
    For admission to the Fold.

    St Peter asked “What have you done
    “That I should ring the bell?”
    “I was a British Harrier
    And served my country well”

    The Gates swung quickly open
    And there he saw inside
    A hundred and more Harriers
    With God standing by their side

    God smiled widely at him
    And clasped him to his breast
    “Oh Welcome mighty Harrier
    Come take your well-earned rest.”


  18. Very nice realization !

  19. Nice work Richard - love that winter camo scheme!

  20. This is simply a perfect one! the details, the camo scheme, the building quality and its whole appearance, i can say I love it! i've long time planned to build a Harrier, i think your build gave me the final inspiration to make it happen, thanks 🙂

  21. Profile Photo
    said on June 14, 2017

    Your GR7 is a cracker. I have the 1/24 sea harrier I hope to get round to it sometime.

  22. Sorry for the delay Richard but this is a beauty mate.
    Well done indeed, very nice build .

  23. simply superb!
    a treat to watch...

  24. Absolutely superb. The best rendition of winter camouflage I've seen. Beautifully weathered as well.

Leave a Reply