Comparison build: 1/48 Monogram He-111 H, and ICM 1/48 He-111 H3, Stab/Stg.3 North Africa 1942/’43

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  • Chuck A. Villanueva said 7 months, 1 week ago:

    Wow that is a different approach by ICM, I haven’t touched the Monogram HE-111 for quite awhile in fact probably when I first picked it up. Quite a few years ago. I think will bring it down from the stash in the morning. Though I will not start it but just for curiosity sake and watch your WIP with extreme interest.

  • Jeff Bailey said 7 months, 1 week ago:

    Go Louis, GO!

    You are truly an inspiration to this olde DAT. I haven’t been able to finish the TWO kits I’ve been fooling with for about a year. You have an entire squadron of aircraft built (give or take a couple – HA!) complete with ground forces!

    As to this build, the ICM looks really interesting. Long ago, in a Galaxy far away – or at least here in Indy in the mid 1960s, THE first multi-engined aircraft I built was one of the “not very good, but the only one available” Airfix 1/72nd He111 kits. I rather liked the shape of the wings but marveled at the asymmetrical shape of the glass nose. Not long after, the great “Battle of Britain” movie came out featuring the Spanish Casa He111s in the aerial cast along with the Spanish Bf109s and the awesome Spitfires and Hurricanes. I saw that great movie my first time while I was in London for a week’s vacation (holiday) after spending the summer of 1970 in Oberammergau, Germany (in Bayern or Bavaria to us English speakers) working at the Hotel Gasthof Turmwirt carrying bags, pouring & serving Bier, guiding English-speaking tours, and translating Deutsch to English or vice-versa for the many guests who visited there for the Passion Play that year.

    I love the ‘111 and look forward to this comparison build! The fact that these kits are both in 1/48th scale is like icing on a cake! Like you, I sold off my many 1/72nd kits years ago and decided that 1/48th would be the best for me. Actually, 1/32nd or even 1/24th would suit me (and my limited skills) better but – A) I have none, and B) haven’t enough room to keep any if I DID have them!

    As I said earlier to cheer you on: Go Louis, GO!

  • Bernard E. Hackett, Jr. said 7 months, 1 week ago:

    That is some interior on the ICM kit. It’s like building the original. Real industrial strength bridge building on that center section.

  • Louis Gardner said 7 months, 1 week ago:

    Thanks Chuck !!! I have been wanting to build this kit as soon as I got it. I also wanted to build the Monogram kit at the same time as a comparison, so please keep following along.

    Thanks Jeff for the encouraging words. The older I get, the worse my eyesight has become. This is why I sold off all of the 1/72 kits. As far as storage goes, had I not located a display case at a very inexpensive cost, I wouldn’t have room either.

    Bernard, now check out the interior details ………… This one looks like the real thing to me. Now I don’t know how much will be visible after the fuselage is closed, but the details are there for sure. I’m loving this kit so far………………

    Last night I made more progress on the Heinkel…………..

    It involved building the cockpit section. I varied from the kit instructions just a little. I’ll show you why as we go through the process.

    The previous building work left off at step #9. I left off three small items that should be painted a different color from the RLM 02 and RLM 66. One part was a small round knob numbered D2-30, a compressed air cylinder D2-9, and something that looks as if it could be a relief tube, part #D2-17.

    I can add them easily after the interior is painted.

    The instructions would have you build the front cockpit as a separate unit and install it after it has been completed. I did not do this, because I wanted to make sure mine fit into the front bulkhead of the bomb bay.

    Building started with the cockpit floor, the “Port” side console, and control linkages that are under the pilot’s seat. This carries you through to step #13.

    Here I am pointing at the locating tabs with my trusty wooden tooth pick. These are the reason why I decided to build my plane this way. The side consoles and cockpit floor key into these slotted locating tabs.

    The next step is to install the Starboard side cockpit wall. Again my trusty tooth pick is put to good use as a pointing stick………….. Now I know the cockpit is in perfect alignment, and everything fits……….

    There is a small side wall (part # A-14) that goes on the floor. The fit was so good that friction alone was enough to keep this part in place. I’m pointing it out in this photo below. I glued the part after it literally snapped in position.

    The next step was to build the armored pilot’s seat. It is made up of 4 parts, and they fit together nicely. This picture shows them just after I removed them from the parts tree. They still needed to be trimmed up to remove the locating stubs.

    and the finished product. The instructions would have you glue this part in place now. I decided against this, as It would make it much harder to paint and detail the surrounding areas.

    So I left the seat out for now. However I did test fit it to make sure it aligned up with the tabs in the floor.

    This is the time where the instructions would have you install the nose section. You are now at step #18. Building it the way I have eliminated any possibility of getting the sidewalls wrong.

    I jumped ahead to step #36, and built the pilot’s control yoke. The control yoke is made from two parts, D2-29, and D2-19.
    Then I installed it, as shown here in the picture below. The rudder pedals and all of the control linkages have also been installed. There are some areas on the rudder control rods that you will have to be careful with as you cut the parts off the plastic trees. Then cleaning them up to remove the mounting stubs from the control rods is a little tricky too. Just take your time and be patient, and you should be OK.

    I took these two photos after I snapped the pilots seat in place. (It was not glued in, and I removed it later.)

    Then I jumped ahead to step # 39, and built the navigator / bombardier seat. It’s made up of 3 separate parts ( D2-22, D1-5, and D2-27) and it’s fragile, so take your time with it.
    Once I was happy how it fit, I decide to go ahead and install it now.
    These last two pictures show the details of the cockpit rather well.

    There you have it………………. My progress so far on the ICM kit. We are currently at step #22, which is building the tail wheel.

    This one is going together great so far.

  • david leigh-smith said 7 months ago:

    This ICM kit looks just great, Louis. The kit(s) haven’t been made that would put you out of your depth, my friend. Your combination of work ethic and skill is staggering.

  • Tom Cleaver said 7 months ago:

    Build both one for KP, one as BoB. Let us know the result.

  • Bernard E. Hackett, Jr. said 7 months ago:

    That is a nice complete cockpit on the ICM.

  • Michel Verschuere said 7 months ago:

    Wow. Very good progress Louis, this ICM kit really looks like a charm, and your reporting style too of course!

  • David A. Thomas said 7 months ago:

    Loui, this is simply incredible progress. You are a GB in and of yourself! Looking very good, my friend and thanks for so much involvement!

  • Tom Bebout said 7 months ago:

    So far that ICM kit seems to be pretty much state of the art by today’s standards. Looking good Louis.

  • Jeff Bailey said 7 months ago:

    That pilot’s seat looks rather comfy! Of course, that would be AFTER a bit of padding is added.

    Great report, Louis!

  • Louis Gardner said 7 months ago:

    Thanks gentlemen for the compliments and words of encouragement. I have to agree that this ICM kit is state of the art so far. The fit of the parts have been spot on. I was reminded of that once I started building the older Monogram cousin last night.

    I am going to build up the ICM kit as a BoB plane and the Monogram kit will be from North Africa.

    I have both planes completed to the same place with construction now.

    It should be fairly easy to write about this comparison. The easiest way would be to simply say that this ICM kit is a great model. But I have noticed a few minor differences between the two models. The most obvious thing is the side windows in the fuselage.

    Follow along with me and I’ll explain this in my next posting.

  • Louis Gardner said 7 months ago:

    Last night I started building the older Monogram He-111. It was a trip down memory lane for me. The last time I build a He-111, it was the old / ancient Lindbergh kit that was molded in a green plastic. The box art had a He-111 that was flying and on fire if memory serves me correctly. The plane was peppered with bullet holes too, again relying on my memory. It had to be sometime in the early 1970’s when I built my first and only He-111.

    I still don’t know how or why, but I never managed to get another 111 done.

    Fast forward to the mid 1990’s, and I’m really getting back into the hobby. I noticed this Monogram He-111 in a local store and I promptly left with the kit under my arm, and my wallet was a few dollars lighter. I really wanted to get busy with building the older Monogram kit, (which was a brand new release back then), but one thing led to another and the model was placed in the stash pile, which wasn’t too big back then.

    Fast forward to current day and the Monogram kit is still a good one, but it’s age is beginning to show, when you compare it to the latest release from ICM.

    When I left off working on the ICM kit last, the tail wheel was the next step. So I cut the parts from the plastic trees and prepared them for assembly.

    Here’s how it looks once glued together.

    The inside of the fuselage half on the ICM kit has a triangular shaped plastic part that gets installed at the wing root area. This part adds the fuselage formers and stringers where the details were missing due to the molding process.

    Here in these pictures, the triangular piece has been installed. As a comparison, I placed the Monogram fuselage on the top, while the ICM kit parts are below. One thing that really stands out to me is the fuselage side windows. I’m not a Heinkel “Experten”, but Monogram has two side windows, while the ICM kit has four………….

    Is it possible that these planes are different versions of the H series ???

    Or possibly manufactured by a different sub contractor’s factory under Heinkel’s license ???

    The Monogram kit has you start construction with the cockpit. The first two assembly steps cover this.

    Then the Monogram kit has you add two bulkheads and the tail wheel assembly. The fuselage side glass and gondola windows are also added at this stage. Then you glue the fuselage halves together.

    Here’s a picture showing the Monogram fuselage halves.

    I started out by cutting the parts needed for the Monogram cockpit from the trees. There are not as many pieces as in the ICM rendering.

    I installed the pilot’s controls and linkages to the cockpit floor next.

    Then I added the rudder pedals and associated control rods.

    I built the pilot and bombardier seats next. The pilot’s seat is in the lower middle and has a large control wheel mounted on the side. The ICM kit does not have the control wheel.

    The seats were installed next. Now the cockpit assembly is finished on the Monogram kit…….

    I removed the fuselage bulkheads from the plastic trees, and prepped them for installation. I also assembled the Monogram tail wheel. Now everything is ready to go inside the fuselage halves for the Monogram kit.
    It’s pretty basic, (by today’s standards), but it still looks like a He-111 to me.
    This picture below shows all of the parts ready for installing in the Monogram kit.

    This next picture shows the ICM tail wheel compared to the Monogram kit part.
    The ICM part is on the left. If you look closely at the Monogram tail wheel, it has a flat spot to depict a weighted tire.

    These next pictures show the Monogram fuselage with the bulkheads temporarily installed. These will come back out once I start painting.

    These next photos show the differences between the ICM cockpit (shown on the right) and the Monogram kit (on the left side).

    The ICM kit has better fitting parts, and more details. The older Monogram kit still looks like a Heinkel 111 to me, and was state of the art in it’s time. I was surprised at the flash present on some of the Monogram parts. It wasn’t bad by any means, but my kit was a 1995 release and the molds probably had not had too much use by this time.

    Does this mean you should toss your older Monogram kit ???? I wouldn’t, as it still looks OK to me. Like anything, the more time you spend working on the little details, the better it should turn out in the end.

    Thanks for following along so far.

    I’ll try to get a new installment soon. Please stay tuned…………..

    as usual,
    “Comments are Encouraged”………………..

  • Bernard E. Hackett, Jr. said 7 months ago:

    Louis, the HE-111 does have 4 windows on the forward fuselage, the front two ones were usually painted over. Probably, there should be an outline of them showing on the exterior. The Monogram plan actually shows them, step 3.

  • Louis Gardner said 7 months ago:

    You are absolutely correct !!!! After reading your reply, I just noticed them in the illustration of step #4. There they are, plain as day.

    Had I looked closer at the outside of the fuselage I would have seen the side windows. In this picture I just added, I’m pointing at the side window outlines with the tips of a set of tweezers…………..

    I didn’t know they were often painted over……………..

    So I learned something new today !!! Awesome, and thanks Bernard.

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