Heller 1/72 He-112




$5.00 when new


Two aircraft


Scott Van Aken




During the fighter competition of the mid 30's that saw the Bf-109 come to the fore, one of the other competitors was the Heinkel He-112. Though the aircraft was generally better in all areas to the 109, two factors were against it. First was that Heinkel was thought to be more of a bomber manufacturer than one who did fighters. Secondly, though a super aircraft, the Bf-109 was less expensive to build and as still goes on today, the government will sacrifice a bit of quality to get more of a cheaper product.

The He-112 was then released to be available for export, and except for a small number rushed into Luftwaffe service during the Munich Crisis of 1938, that is where the brunt of production went. Though small numbers were sent to Japan, it was Spain, Romania and Hungary that had the greatest use of the fighter. The Japanese did not like the rather high wing loading so soon relegated the planes to technical schools.

 Though the aircraft was quickly outpaced by newer fighters, they did see use until the end of the war. A few Romanian aircraft were still in use post war, not finally being retired until the late 1940s.


Heller's kit of the 112 is one of the better done during their hey-day of kit production in the 80's. Though it is a raised detail kit, that does not detract at all to the detail level. The kit is really simplicity in itself. There are not a huge number of parts and only one real option. The cockpit consists of a seat, stick, and instrument panel along with the usual floor and rear bulkhead. There is some detail on the side walls. The canopy is single piece so cannot be opened unless you bring out the razor saw.

Wheel wells are open and could stand to be boxed in if desired. The weakest part of the kit is the landing gear attachment. It is very flimsy and will undoubtedly break at some time in the kits life. The only option is for an early or late exhaust. The early one is a simple collector while the later version is separate stacks. This is accomplished by a replaceable panel on the side of the nose and works quite well.

Markings are provided for two aircraft. One is a Luftwaffe plane during the Munich Crisis. You'll have to paint the red tail band and find a swastika in a white circle from an aftermarket sheet as this boxing does not provide it. The other is for a Romanian plane around 1942. With this version, you'll have to paint the rudder stripes and yellow ID markings. Both appear to be in RLM 71 over RLM 65. The instructions use only Heller paint numbers.



Overall, this is a very nice model. I built one about 15years back and don't recall any real problems other than the weak gear attachment point that I mentioned. Though not currently in the catalogue, it is not that difficult to find and worth your time to search it out. It is also the only injected 1/72 kit of this plane that is available.

Review kit courtesy of my kit collection.

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