New Ware 1/48 NOTS


NW 013




One aircraft


Scott Van Aken


Set is resin with decals


Quoting from the instructions: " The US Navy's 'space program' in the 1950's consisted of several largely independent space projects run by different internal bureaus and laboratories. The NRL (Naval Research Laboratory) ran Vanguard, while NOTS (Naval Ordnance Test Station) at China Lake, CA was secretly conducting an independent military satellite program called  'Project Pilot', whose existence was not acknowledged until 1994.

Project Pilot used a six-stage air-launched system capable of orbiting a 2.3 lb satellite. The first stage was a Douglas F4D-1 Skyray. NOTS LV (stages 2-6) had a total length of 14.4 feet and weighed but 2,100 lbs. A total of six orbital attempts were made between July and August of 1958. It is possible (though no one is exactly sure) that launches one and three were successful in putting satellites into orbit.



The kit is basically the non-F4D-1 parts of the launch vehicle. The resin is superbly molded and free of any blemishes or air bubbles. Really there isn't much to it. Ten pieces make up the nose, combustion chambers, nozzles and fins. There is a small decal sheet with markings specific to the plane that was used. The rest of the markings will have to come from the Tamiya Skyray kit. No special launch pylon is needed as it used a standard drop tank pylon and that is supplied in the kit.

The rocket itself is colored da-glo with black and white sections. The instructions are a single sheet, but very well done. All color information is given and the final item itself should look spectacular when placed under the wing of the equally colorful China Lake Skyray.



Like the unusual, then here it is. Seems to be pretty straight-forward to me. The set is only available via mail-order from New Ware in the Czech Republic. They have a web site at  Tell them you read about it in Modeling Madness.

Review kit courtesy of my kit collection.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly by a site that has over 100,000 visitors a month, please contact me or see other details in the Note to Contributors.