Profile Photo
Tony Dill
1 article

Chopper Bravo: Huey UH-1H based on the 1/48th Italeri kit UH--1D"Slick"

January 16, 2019 · in Aviation · · 4 ≡

In Cape Town, South Africa where I live we are plagued by mountain/bush fires in our summer, the so-called " Fire Season". Traditionally this has always been part of our lives, and in recent years an organization called Working on Fire has come into being.
If I may:

"Working on Fire is a government-funded, job-creation programme, focused on implementing Integrated Fire Management in South Africa. We employ more than 5000 young men and women, who are fully trained as wildfire firefighters and are stationed at more than 200 bases across South Africa. Our firefighters are recruited from marginalised communities and trained in fire awareness and education, prevention and fire suppression skills."
For those who are interested:
WOF also operate fixed wing as rotary winged assets in this fight against these fires, namely the good old Huey.
I have had chance to view them in operation at close hand and also take many detail photos.
In March 2015, ZS-HBV crashed fatally
Quoting from Aviation Safety Network
"The helicopter went down in mountainous terrain while water bombing the area. The pilot sustained fatal injuries. "
"The CAA found that the seasoned pilot struggled to regain control following the loss of tail rotor thrust, caused by a fracture of a control cable. It said the wear on this cable went undetected due to maintenance staff failing to perform daily inspections after January 20 last year. "

That's the background to my build of Chopper Bravo.
Some of the photos above are supplied by WOF and most are taken by myself
Build photos to follow...
Thanks for watching guys

Reader reactions:
3  Awesome

6 additional images. Click to enlarge.

4 responses

  1. Looking forward to the build. I fought two forest fires during the '80s in British Columbia, one involving helicopter insertion on a daily basis. Scary stuff

  2. Looking really well done, Tony.

  3. 🙂 … Greetings … 🙂 :
    Interesting subject Tony, looking forward to this build.

  4. Thanks for checking in guys, I really appreciate it.

    Well its time for a confession on my part, I had actually started building this model before I was directed to this most excellent site by my good friend Marc Barris.
    So...that means that I do not have many or rather any photos of the early part of the build, which is rather a pity as it not a really good kit by any means
    What i found along the way was extreme oversimplification, fit that is perhaps better described as non fit.
    If you trace this kits lineage you will find that is was first issued by the now defunct Italian company ESCI. I possessed this issue at one time, and the very interesting and very strange thing is that it offered 2 decal options, US in Nam and a South African Air Force Version. The SAAF never used them, being instead reliant on French types such as the Alouette, Super Frelon and Puma.
    But the Rhodesian Air force did.
    The first photographs were taken after I had the the interior together and glued within the shell.
    In the photo note that the engine cover is not fixed, hence the very large gap, though in fact later the fit would reveal itself to be less than perfect
    My next step was to note that the small door behind the pilot/co-pilots position was removed, so plastic card and filler were applied.
    The door gunners seats were removed, so this was a pretty simple thing to do, just filling in the locating holes.
    The Cabin seats were retained to a measure. I have no definite proof what the configuration in Bravo was as I have interior photos of her, but on two others that I photographed, one had both rows and the the other only had the forward facing ones.
    So pretty much an educated guess is called for...
    Whatever, they are a lovely red so add a touch of colour
    The last two partial interiors are of Romeo and LCY...

    Thanks for watching all this

    4 attached images. Click to enlarge.

Leave a Reply