Hobby Boss 1/72 Kamov Ka-29 Helix B

KIT #: 87227
PRICE: $33.99 SRP
DECALS: Two options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: New tool kit


The Kamov Ka-27 (NATO reporting name 'Helix') is a military helicopter developed for the Soviet Navy, and currently in service in Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam, South Korea, China, Taiwan and India. Variants include the Ka-29 assault transport, the Ka-28 downgraded export version, and theKa-32 for civilian use.

The helicopter was developed for ferrying and anti-submarine warfare. Design work began in 1970 and the first prototype flew in 1973. It was intended to replace the decade-old Kamov Ka-25, and is similar in appearance to its predecessor due to the requirements of fitting in the same hangar space. Like other Kamov military helicopters it has a co-axial rotor, removing the need for a tail rotor.


This is not the first Helix kit to be done, but it may well be the first of the Ka-29 Helix B to be offered. Hobby Boss has done another superb job of molding this one and the kit comes with five grey plastic and one clear sprue. The sprue with weapons and pylons has been duplicated. Thanks to all this armament, you'll need to be sure to open up attachment holes in the fuselage for all this stuff. Not sure how it would affect its troop carrying abilities to be so loaded up, but the kit does provide for a nicely appointed cockpit and a well done cabin area as well. The latter has an array of troop seats up against the one bulkhead that doesn't have the cabin door. The rather complex rotorhead is well done and fits onto a plate that is then trapped between the fuselage halves. If you are not concerned about the rotor turning, you 'might' be able to leave this assembly off until painting is finished. I'd do some testing prior to making that decision as the opening for the shaft is small.

The rest of the upper fuselage has a number of inserts for the engine intakes and engine vent panels. As mentioned, a lot of stuff is scabbed onto this helicopter so a good reading of the instructions to see what goes where is advisable. The main landing gear legs look a bit spindly as does the attachment bits for the pylons, but experience with similar arrangements shows that once dry, these constructs are quite strong. Something I really like is that the rotor blades have large sockets in the hubs that plug into the rotor head. A better arrangement, it seems to me, than the usual attachment methods. Time will tell how this works. For armament you have a plethora of rocket pods and bombs of all description as well as the side mounted cannon.

Markings are provided for two Russian Navy aircraft, both is a mix of blues and greys for camouflage. The box art aircraft, red 71 is from the 830th Helicopter Regiment in 1994 while the second option, red 23, is from the Mistral LHD Helicopter Squadron in 2010.  As a couple of additional notes. Hobby Boss protects its fragile parts by wrapping them in bubble foam and this kit is no exception. I also noticed that the blades seemed to have no droop in them. Perhaps this is the norm for this sort of blade arrangement and short blades as HB usually incorporates that feature in the molding.


Helo fans will be delighted with this one. Though by no means svelte, it has a purposeful look about it, especially when loaded up with weapons. Sure to be a super build as well.



April 2011 

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