GWH 1/144 Victor B.2
| KIT #:
| L 1004
| $49.99 SRP
| Four options
| Scott Van Aken
| New tool kit
The Handley Page Victor was a British jet-powered strategic bomber, developed and produced by the Handley Page Aircraft Company, which served during the Cold War. It was the third and final of the V-bombers operated by the Royal Air Force (RAF), the other two V-bombers being the Avro Vulcan and the Vickers Valiant. The Victor had been developed to perform as part of the United Kingdom’s airborne nuclear deterrent. In 1968, the type was retired from the nuclear mission following the discovery of fatigue cracks, which had been exacerbated by the RAF's adoption of a low-altitude flight profile to avoid interception.
A number of Victors had received modifications to undertake the strategic reconnaissance role, employing a combination of radar, cameras, and other sensors. As the nuclear deterrence mission was given to the Royal Navy's submarine-launched Polaris missiles in 1969, a large V-bomber fleet was deemed surplus to requirements. Consequently, many of the surviving Victors were converted into aerial refuelling tankers. During the Falklands War, Victor tankers were notably used in the airborne logistics operation to repeatedly refuel Vulcan bombers on their way to and from the Black Buck raids.
The Victor was the last of the V-bombers to be retired, the final aircraft being removed from service on 15 October 1993. In its refuelling role, the type had been replaced by the Vickers VC10 and the Lockheed Tristar. The Avro Vulcan operated in the conventional and nuclear strike roles until 1982, when it was in turn replaced by the significantly smaller Panavia Tornado.
The Victor has been fairly well represented in plastic over the decades with early kits by Lindberg and Frog as well as Matchbox and more recently Anigrand. These kits were of various scales with the Anigrand resin kit being in the same scale as this kit; 1/144.
However, many modelers shy away from the price and perceived difficulty of resin kits so it is great that GWH has decided to produce this one in a more 'modeler friendly' material. It is also an appropriate scale for big aircraft like this as it will not overwhelm one's display area as will the larger Matchbox 1/72 kit.
The detailing on the kit is excellent, as one expects from a modern tooling. There are seven sprues of various sizes, one of which contains the clear bits. The fuselage is split horizontally and into it are placed the cockpit piece, nose gear well and the speed brake piece if one wishes to model this section open. 3.5 grams of weight is recommended to keep from tail sitting.
There are other bits to fit on the fuselage such as the rear avionics cooling scoops, refueling probe and a number of antennas. The tailplane is two pieces and slots onto the fin. Moving to the wings, there is a separate assembly for each wing that includes the engine intakes with compressor faces. This item is trapped between the upper and lower wing sections. Almost all Victors needed more fuel and so there are two wing mounted fuel tanks to install.
As mentioned earlier, one can pose the speed brakes open if one wishes. These were normally closed unless in use. A separate bomb bay door section is provided and there is no actual bomb bay. Landing gear are nicely done for this scale and the nose gear includes a mud/spray shield. Though the instructions show the gear down, from the look of things, those who like to mount their models in flight can do so simply by not installing the gear and gluing the doors in the closed position.
Instructions are well done with ten steps. No 'in work' color information is provided for things like the cockpit or the inner gear doors or landing gear legs. There is, however, a huge full color painting guide which indicates that the gear area and legs are silver. Markings are provided for four aircraft. All are in the dark green/medium grey over light grey scheme. One will probably want to mask the upper camo colors. There are serials and badges for two planes from 100 Squadron and two from 139 Squadron. Additional numbers are provided if you wish to do another serial. All the markings are from the early 1960s. The decal sheet is nicely printed
I am quite pleased to see this one being offered. Like many of you, I don't have an infinite amount of shelf space so having a quality kit of this aircraft in this scale is just the ticket. I can easily see several other boxings coming out of the basic molds, including an early all white version and a tanker with all that great Gulf War nose art.
Thanks to Great Wall Hobby for the preview kit. Get yours at your local retailer.
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note toContributors.
Back to the Main Page
Back to the Previews Index Page