Revell 1/72 He-111H-6






Three aircraft


Scott Van Aken


Italeri kit reboxed by Revell


The Heinkel 111 was the mainstay 'heavy' bomber of the Luftwaffe until replaced by the more capable Ju-88. The success of early versions in the Spanish civil war encouraged continued production and modification. Early victories against the less capable Polish, Danish, Dutch, Belgian and French air forces only heightened the Luftwaffe's feelings that they had made a good choice. However, it was during the Battle for Britain that the vulnerability of the plane was brought to the forefront. It wasn't fast enough, didn't have the needed range and definitely didn't have enough defensive armament to confront a determined and well-equipped enemy fighter force.

The war in the Mediterranean and Russia brought the plane back into some notoriety as the defenses there were not as fierce as they were over England. Those not used as level bombers were used as torpedo bombers as well as glider tugs and as fast transports. Despite the types obsolescence, it was in production until 1944, mainly because of the total failure of the 'Bomber B' program and the continuing problems with the He-177. The type was also converted for some unusual uses, including air launching V-1 missiles and a twin version, the He-111Z that was used to pull the huge Me-321 gliders.



Though boxed by Revell, this 1976 model is indeed the Italeri kit. Despite the over quarter-century age of the kit, it is still a very good one. Surface detailing is raised panel lines and fine rivets. Cockpit detail is adequate with some sidewall detail as well as the usual seat, instrument panel and stick. You also get a pilot and bombardier, each with separate, poseable arms. Interestingly, the rudder and elevators are separate, but not the ailerons. Machine gun types are optional as well, which is interesting. You can also display the plane wheels up, though no display stand is offered. Another option is that of external bomb or torpedo racks. You also get a pair of 500KG bombs or LT F5b torpedoes.

Instructions are quite typical of the time with several construction sequences and paint callouts for each step as needed. Colors are generic, though experienced Luftwaffe modelers will have no trouble with them. You get three different markings choices. One is a torpedo bomber with KG 26 in a Mediterranean scheme as shown on the box cover. Next is a KG 53 winter scheme, also shown on the box top. Finally, another KG 26 plane can be built, this in the normal RLM 70/71/65 scheme. Decals are fairly well printed, but mine were off register making the insignia in need of replacement. Despite their age, the decals had not yellowed, which speaks well for their usefulness.



Well, new this kit isn't, however when one looks at the alternatives for this version of the He-111 in 1/72, one only sees Airfix and Matchbox as possible alternatives (though I'm sure a reader will find one I missed!). The Airfix kit is even older and while the Matchbox kit is an easy build and shaped properly, it isn't in the same league with this kit. Until something newer comes along, this has to be the choice for most modelers. This kit is still listed in current catalogues under the Italeri label for $19.00.

Review kit courtesy of me and my wallet!

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