Hasegawa 1/72 F-18F Super Hornet "VFA-103 Jolly Rogers"
|PRICE:||2200 yen SRP in 2007|
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||2007 Limited Edition|
Designed and initially produced by McDonnell Douglas, the Super Hornet first flew in 1995. Full-rate production began in September 1997, after the merger of McDonnell Douglas and Boeing the previous month. The Super Hornet entered service with the United States Navy in 1999, replacing the Grumman F-14 Tomcat, which was retired in 2006; the Super Hornet serves alongside the original Hornet. The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), which has operated the F/A-18A as its main fighter since 1984, ordered the F/A-18F in 2007 to replace its aging F-111 fleet. RAAF Super Hornets entered service in December 2010.
In September 2014, Boeing readied plans to close its St. Louis production lines for the Super Hornet and F-15 in 2017.
The F-18F replaced the Tomcat in those VF squadrons that were not disestablised when the F-14 was taken out of fleet service. So far, no other company has produced an equivalent kit of the two seater in this scale aside from perhaps Italeri's pre-production kit. Unlike years past, the cost of producing a model kit is so high that Hasegawa and others waited for the definitive production version before spending the money on tooling.
To give you some idea on this kit, it has about 98% commonality with their F-18E kit. The main differences being the fuselage with the two seat format and the additional seat, stick and instrument panel required by that variant. There is also a longer canopy which has a seam that you will need to remove.
So you get a standard Hasegawa cockpit with an acceptable pair of seats and decals for the instruments. The cockpit sits atop a lower forward fuselage piece that includes the nose gear well. One does have to open holes in the fuselage and wings for various pylons so keep that in mind when building it. There is also a piece that fits in the back with polycaps so you can simply push the horizontal stabilizers in place after painting everything. The intakes look simple but are a bit of a challenge to get installed properly. It is the curse of F-18 kits.
Wings have upper and lower pieces on each side with the flaps and ailerons molded into the top wing. Landing gear are properly complex and it looks like you can model them closed. Burner cans fit on the back of the fuselage and there is little depth to the exhaust. Unlike some Hasegawa kits, this one comes with not only fuel tanks, but also some weapons, specifically a pair of late model Sidewinders and some AIM-120s. The racks for bombs are also provided but you'll have to sources those from a weapons set. Note that the wing racks are slightly angled outward. Canopy can be modeled open or closed. In all, a very standard Hasegawa kit.
Markings are for three planes. The only real difference in the markings options is the nose number, air wing code, and the serial number. All of the planes are painted as you see on the box art and range from 2005 to 2006. Hasegawa has provided both the inside and outside tail surfaces as decals with the black background. In case you wish to paint the fins black, you have that option as well. The black cockpit surround will also need painted.
While it is not a shake and bake kit, it is one that goes together fairly well if you are a careful builder. I have built another boxing which you can read at this link. If you like the plane or want one in your collection, this would be a good representation of the type. I should also mention that I don't think this kit has all the upgrades that have been added to the super bug. I seem to recall that the vents atop and below the exhaust area were changed, but I'm sure there are aftermarket.
March 2018 Copyright ModelingMadness.com. All rights
reserved. Thanks to me for getting this one. If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please
the editor or see other details in the
Contributors. Back to the Main Page Back to the Review
Back to the Previews Index Page
Copyright ModelingMadness.com. All rights reserved.
Thanks to me for getting this one.
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note to Contributors.
Back to the Main Page
Back to the Review Index Page
Back to the Previews Index Page