Heller 1/72 Alpha Jet ”Patrouille de France”
This is my Heller 1/72 Alpha Jet, finished as a ”Patrouille de France” bird.
The Dassault/Dornier Alpha Jet is a light attack jet and advanced jet trainer co-manufactured by Dassault Aviation of France and Dornier Flugzeugwerke of Germany.
Both the French Air Force and German Air Force procured the Alpha Jet in large numbers, the former principally as a trainer aircraft and the latter choosing to use it as a light attack platform.
The Patrouille Acrobatique de France ("French Acrobatic Patrol"), also known as the Patrouille de France (PAF), is the precision aerobatics demonstration unit of the French Air and Space Force, officially commissioned in 1953.
Using the French Aerial Aerobatics (French: Voltige Aérienne Française) unit of the French Air and Space Force, the mission is to represent it and lead the ambassadorship role of French aeronautics overseas.
I built this Alpha Jet wheels up and with a pilot in and mounted it at a cusom made base, as to represent it in flying condition.
The Heller kit is, as usual, a sweet little kit and, sans the canopy, has a good allaround fit, presenting no issues putting it together.
The paint scheme is striking in reality and I tried to represent it as best as I could.
The canopy proved to be a tad (but niticeable tad...) narrower than the fuselage. I tried to fair it with white glue and microtouchups.
I did some scratchbuilding improvenents at the cockpit, especially at the rear Martin Baker, as it would be quite visible, since usually only one pilot flies in aerobatics:
The base is an aeroengine gear, with a stainless steel wire welded on and bent accordingly.
This model is going to be packed, along with some "nutritious" traditional Greek goodies and be sent to a most beloved French friend and ex-collegue, as a Christmas present.
Full build thread here, should you be interested:
Thanks my friend Allan @kalamazoo for hosting me in your GB and for commenting/supporting through my build. Also, thanks my friends Erik @airbum and George @georgeswork, for following along.
Some in-progress shots are below.
10 additional images. Click to enlarge.