Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Build your own stealth helicopter!

Listening to: The Crossing - Big Country (1983).

Found the other day. Less than 8 weeks after it's unplanned revelation, Hong Kong based model company Dragon is releasing a kit of the Stealth Black Hawk (probably) variant used on the Bin Laden raid (link).

Although since all they reliably have to base it on is the one piece of intact wreckage (posted about here), and a few educated but speculative drawings (the people who really do know what it looks like aren't telling) it's accuracy is hopeful at best and possibly why it is only being released in the teeny 1/144 scale so far rather than anything bigger which would require more investment.

If it is anything like what happened when the first model kits of the F-117 were produced in the late 80's, it will make for amusing comparisons if/when the real thing is revealed some time in the future. And the guys that designed those kits had an actual image of the entire aircraft to work from:

That was the first officially released image of the original 'Stealth Fighter' back in 1988 (I posted about it a few years ago here). And probably deliberately, the image both obscures in plain sight some details, and exaggerates a couple of others. This caused a bunch of errors in interpretation, usually tending toward making the aircraft look shorter and fatter than it really was, resulting in a brief generation of weirdness as publishers and kit makers rushed to get definitive versions of something that had been rumoured for years into the marketplace without realising their mistakes. It took a few years for accurately shaped drawings and models to emerge.

Only time will tell what Dragon has got right :).

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