C & H 1/48 TF-102A Conversion






 Two aircraft: 116 FIS and 62 FIS


Fred Krause


For the Monogram/ProModeler kit


C&H Aero Miniatures has filled a gap for modelerís interested in jet aircraft by releasing a 48th scale conversion for either release of Monogram's F-102A kit into a TF-102. I obtained my copy via the Internet by placing a winning bid for it on ebay. It has also been featured in a recent issue of FSM magazine, but no way of contacting C&H is provided. I paid $50 for the conversion, which is what the list price in FSM was.

Upon opening the box, and inspecting the instructions, it becomes clear that the people at C&H spent a lot of time researching the TF-102. The conversion includes; a large one piece nose section, a cockpit tub, instrument panel, two ejection seats, a new nose gear bay roof, two intakes, a canopy hinge, two end frames for the canopy, a set of interior canopy details, an instrument panel combing, and an interior windscreen piece that also aids in attaching the windscreen to the fuselage. Also included is a nicely vacu-formed canopy, a nine page instruction booklet, and to my surprise, a set of very nice decals. My copy only had one control stick. Weather this is intended, or a mispackaging, I donít know, but I will use the stick from the F-102 kit. (More than likely intended as my F-100F conversion had only those items not supplied with the Monogram kit. Ed) The panel lines on the nose section are accurate, and finely engraved, unfortunately, a little too finely, and will most likely disappear under a coat of paint. There is no intake trunk whatsoever, but after reading the instruction booklet, you discover why; there would be no way to fit the cockpit tub, and nose gear bay in the nose section if there were intake trunks. I thought of adding some after the tub is installed, but will scratch build some intake covers instead. There is nowhere to add weight to the nose to prevent tail sitting, but the weight of the nose piece should be sufficient, as it is solid forward of the instrument panel.

Overall, the level of detail is very good, with the cockpit tub being especially nice. The instrument panel appears to be put together from a pair of the kits panels spliced together. My example is just slightly askew, but it should be hard to tell once installed in the tub. Fit is hard to determine with the parts still on their carries.

The decals provide appear to be of high quality, akin to Superscale or Experts Choice. Markings are provide for a 116th FIS Washington ANG a/c in the standard ADC gray, and for a 62nd FIS a/c in the Southeast Asian scheme. A painting diagram for the SEA scheme is also provided. Other aftermarket decals could easily be substituted for those provided, and the conversions used to do a single seater.

The most difficult part of this conversion will be adding the 52 vortex generators to the canopy. Two strips of plastic are provide for this, along with full size drawings of the generators, and a scale placement diagram. Tips for easing the difficulty of the entire conversion are also provided in the instructions.

This looks to be a really great conversion of an often overlooked aircraft, and I canít wait to get going on it! Iím also thinking of getting another, for a future project. The biggest problem seems to be locating one, as no means of contacting C&H is provided with the conversion. eBay may be your best bet, or try WT Hobbies in Dallas. They have been the oneís auctioning these on ebay.