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1/35 Revell OH-58 Kiowa, Croatian Air Force

During War for independence (1991-1995), despite imposed embargo on weapons, Air Force managed to purchase 7 Mil Mi-24D/V Helicopters. First ones arrived by the end of 1993 and after intense crew training were first time introduced to the public in 1995 and successfully used in combat operations afterwards. After the war they were gradually written off and last unit was withdrawn from service in 2006 as Croatian Air Force did not plan operating helicopters with combat capabilities in long-term future.

Despite long-term agenda, ten years later Croatian Air Force accepted US offer to co-finance the purchase of 16 used OH-58D(R) helicopters previously belonging to Minnnesota National Guard. Helicopters were units produced between 2010-2012 with 100-600 flight hours. First Kiowas were delivered to CAF in December 2016 and entered operational service in 2017. Helicopters are part of 393rd Squadron. In January 2020, one unit crashed during training flight killing crew of two.

This is my second . I assembled Academy for my self (https://imodeler.com/2022/07/1-35-academy-oh-58-kiowa/) and this one is commissioned model (). There are no differences between two manufacturers, in fact I mixed up the sprues so probably both models are half Academy half Revell. Assembly went smooth and I can't find any flaws in kit itself, no matter which brand you choose and it's well worth $35. This is out of the box kit, no addons except for "remove before flight" tags. Model does not resemble exact version of Kiowa in service with CAF. There is a conversion kit by Werner's Wings (https://wernerswings.com/), but the price, shipping and customs fees of conversion kit (about $70) discouraged me from converting to exact version.

11 additional images. Click to enlarge.


8 responses

  1. Great job on the Kiowa, Boris!
    Thanks for the history and kit info!

  2. That is really nice weathering and shading...well done!

  3. Looks great! I have kids living in Croatia now, so my interest is piqued every time I see a model with "Croatian" in the description...

    • Your daughter lives in Zagreb if I remember correctly. You'll be seeing more Croatian markings since I gradually plan on assembling all active and retired aircrafts in service with Croatian Air Force. To complete CAF collection I still need Mi-8/17 Hip, Mi-24 Hind, UH-60 Blackhawk, Dassault Rafale and Antonov An-32. I bought 1/48 Rafale B but it'll have to wait few years for assembly since first ordered units will be delivered to CAF in 2024 and I don't want to build "what if" version.

  4. Very nice result indeed, Boris @grgast

  5. Nice job, Boris (@grgast). I know this kit is not one of the easier kits to build, but you have made it shine.

  6. Cool build! Always loved the Kiowa!

    Here's a couple I shot at Varaždin

    • Excellent shot. I just hate how I suck at photography. I painted my model with dark olive drab over black primer and is almost as real helicopter, but when I start taking pictures I just can't tune ambient light to show exact color tone.

      Speaking of love for Kiowa, I love all variations of Bell-206 helicopter. It's unbelievable that there are no more kits of Jetranger in larger scale on market.

      2 attached images. Click to enlarge.

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