Mavag Heja, Special Hobby, 1:72 (a.k.a. Re.2000)

  • 18 posts
  • Last reply 5 days, 17 hours ago
Viewing 1 - 15 of 18 posts
  • Csaba said 1 month, 2 weeks ago:

    I have had this kit for… Well, I have no idea. Long. 10+ years for sure. Maybe even 15.

    Heja was the Hungarian license produced version of the Italian Re.2000. The Royal Hungarian Air Force used the original Italian planes on the eastern front, but the Hungarian made planes were used for training only. There are only a few records of real missions. One of these happened in April 1944, when the allied forces started their strategic bombing campaign of Hungary. North of the lake Balaton lies a small grass airfield, still in use by a flying club. During the war, it was one of the airforce bases, used by Ju-86 bombers and later by various training squadrons. On 13.04.1944, a group of P-38 fighters attacked the airfield, and the Hungarian trainers scrambled to intercept the allied planes. The Hungarians were outnumbered, and their planes were absolutely not on pair with the twin engined Lightning. However, all of them managed to return to the base, some of them with some damage. One of these planes was the V5+39.

    The colours of this plane are debated. On the photos, it looks like a single tone upper camouflage, but the typical version was a brown-green wave pattern.
    The authors of the book “Hungarian Fighter Colors” also concluded that V5+39 had a single tone upper camouflage.

    I focus now on my Po-2 build, but I should be able to finish this kit. Typical early Special Hobby, a lot of resin and fiddly parts.

    Archive photos: Fortepan.hu under Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-3.0 licence

    4 attached images. Click to enlarge.

  • Spiros Pendedekas said 1 month, 2 weeks ago:

    A great entry, Csaba!
    It would be lovely to see this beauty built!

  • Pedro L. Rocha said 1 month, 2 weeks ago:

    Here’s a 1/72 project that I’ll be watching with interest, the reason is because I have the newer and bigger brother of this kit, the Regina 2000 early version box from SH. I must say that B&W pic is very good for details, especially weathering. Looking forward to see progress

  • Csaba said 1 month, 2 weeks ago:

    Yes, the quarter scale kit is much better than this one. There are many differences between the Italian and Hungarian license made versions. Special hobby addressed many of them, but a few smaller ones were left out.
    The decal sheet could be better as well, because the national insignias are wrongly proportioned. I plan to cut my own masks, should be a quite straightforward task.
    I stopped the build back then, because I wanted to create the riveting lines. You can also see those large rivets on the photos.

    About the photos: Fortepan.hu is a non-profit private collection of old film photographs, scanned directly from the negatives ( great resource for reference material of the siege of Budapest in 1944-45, or the Hungarian revolution in 1956) The quality of these two photos is indeed very good, but unfortunately the exposition of the original photos is somewhat off. The plane seems to have a single color upper camouflage, but if you start playing around in a photo editor, you can find artifacts similar the typical wave/ring pattern. I will go with the green top/blue bottom option, since that version is the most commonly accepted, but I am not fully convinced that it is the correct one. The brown/green pattern was quite low contrast, and the wrong exposition might trick our eyes.

  • Erik Gjørup said 1 month, 1 week ago:

    Csaba, thank you for the info – great stuff! Only problem is that now I may have to get me one of these in quarterscale too. . . .

  • Csaba said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Just to get some motivation – finally my book arrived from Italy. The corona restrictions did not make it easy, and took a long time to get here from northern Italy. But that’s how it is in these days.
    This book is simply amazing, very detailed technical drawings, cockpit, subsystems, even drawings and some details of the Hungarian made variants.

    1 attached image. Click to enlarge.

  • Spiros Pendedekas said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Re.2000 blueprints: how better can it get?
    Love it!

  • Pedro L. Rocha said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Csaba looking at your cockpit photo I can tell you that it’s better than the 1/48 version 🙂
    A book like that is for a superdetail project, may I ask you if it has some details about the riveting of the airframe?

  • Csaba said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Pedro, yes, it has riveting details on the drawings. I have been thinking about doing it on this model as well, at least on a simplified, 72nd scale compatible level. The book is indeed for rivet counters, but it is also a nice piece for my aviation book collection.

  • Csaba said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Pedro, I remember that the common judgement of this kit was that it is simply “impossible to build”, mainly because the cockpit “does not fit”.
    It took a few dry fitting rounds, but actually the resin parts click into their place inside the fuselage. I believe those modelers made a common mistake, and superglued everything together, without dry fit. The resin cockpit parts has no alignment pins, and it is easy to align them wrongly. Once the superglue is hardened , there is no way back.

  • Csaba said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Oh yes, and the resin parts are indeed really nice, but actually incorrect for the Hungarian made versions. There were a few modifications inside the cockpit as well, mainly around the instrument panel.

  • Erik Gjørup said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Just a bit off-topic, but WOW Csaba – the Fortepan site is a real treasure for pictures of not only Hungarian planes, but such a lot of stuff – thank you for pointing it out! I even saw some air-to-air color pictures of hungarian Ju86. . .

  • Greg Kittinger said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Looking forward to this!

  • Csaba said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Erik, that page is one of the best non-profit initiative I have ever seen. Architecture, history, art, police archives, family photos and the list could just go on forever. They really try to save the old negatives, sometimes literally collecting them from garbage cans. There are a lot of hidden gems, such as the Junkers photos, or the Heja shots above.

  • Csaba said 6 days, 9 hours ago:

    This has been the state of the kit for a few years. The fuselage and wings are assembled, the engine got a primer metal color, aaaand pretty much that’s all.

    Today I worked a little bit on the preparation. I changed my mind, and decided to build the V4+81, an earlier Mavag Heja. There are better photos available and also a color profile has been published in the “Hungarian Fighter Colours Vol.2” from MMP Books.
    I had to print my own decals for the registration numbers, and I also created a set of masks for the national insignia. Unfortunately Special Hobby got the proportions of the black and white sections completely wrong. I placed an almost 25 years old Propagteam decal sheet next to the kit decals, you can see the difference.

    Probably not a big deal for most of the modelers, but that was one the first issues I spotted after opening the kit. The insignias on my own decal sheet are only for reference, I will use the masks.
    The standard size of the insignia was either 80×80 or 100×100 cm, depending on the plane and the location. It seems that the Hejas had the smaller on the fuselage and the larger version on the wings.

    1 additional image. Click to enlarge.

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