Bilek 1/48 Yak-23

KIT #: 4804
PRICE: $25.00 from
DECALS: Four options
REVIEWER: Martin Dolejsi
NOTES: New tool kit


The Yak –23 was the result of the development row of Yakovlev’s jets beginning with Yak – 15, through Yak – 17 and  Yak – 19. The prototype first flew in July 1947 and was send to army testing in August of the same year. The serial production began in March 1948 but only 310 aircraft were built as It was obvious that the Mig – 15.

It was developed as typical Russian intercept fighter with the ceiling of just around 10 000 meters as it was lacking the pressurized cabin. The armament consist of two 23 mm cannons and two 60 kg bombs. As usually, two-seater Yak – 23 UTI for training was designed.

 The aircraft was exported in small numbers to Romania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Poland and the production in the last two were planed but cancelled due to the better choice - Mig – 15.  By the late 50’s the type was discarded from duty.

One plane was tested in USA when the Romanian pilot defected and was obtained with help of Yugoslavia.


The kit comes in a box with a picture of a Czechoslovak aircraft in flight with no details on the face of a box. The package contains 4 spruces of light gray plastic, there is little PE with belts and instrument panels. The decals are provided for Russian, Czechoslovak, Polish and US aircraft.

The plastic parts has engraved panel lines. There are few places where they would need to be rescribed and the good choice would be to add the rivets. Another typical feature of the short-run kits are missing the position pins. The cockpit and wheel well detail seems fair although you can put some more effort. I don’t know about after market accessories but it is possible that some will come out.

 The instruction sheet is nicely done, with clear diagrams and colour guide. Interestingly the PE in the sheet seems to have different layout and there is mentioned F2 part which in reality should be E2.


 Nice although somewhat simple kit of an interesting and not very famous aircraft. And more to that, so far I know, this is the only kit of this aircraft in the “quarter” scale (RVHP resin kit is out of production for some years) so it’s the only choice.


Martin Dolejsi

June 2012 

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