Hasegawa 1/72 F-100D Super Sabre
KIT #: JS-035
PRICE: $3.00 in a bag with no decals
DECALS: None provided
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken


The North American F-100 Super Sabre is an American supersonic jet fighter aircraft that served with the United States Air Force (USAF) from 1954 to 1971 and with the Air National Guard (ANG) until 1979. The first of the Century Series of USAF jet fighters, it was the first USAF fighter capable of supersonic speed in level flight. The F-100 was designed by North American Aviation as a higher performance follow-on to the F-86 Sabre air superiority fighter.

Adapted as a fighter-bomber, the F-100 was supplanted by the Mach two-class F-105 Thunderchief for strike missions over North Vietnam. The F-100 flew extensively over South Vietnam as the air force's primary close air support jet until being replaced by the more efficient subsonic LTV A-7 Corsair II. The F-100 also served in other NATO air forces and with other U.S. allies. In its later life, it was often referred to as the Hun, a shortened version of "one hundred".


Back in the early 1970s, Hasegawa pretty well held the lead in terms of the USAF's Century Series fighter kits in 1/72 scale. True, today, these things are woefully inadequate in terms of detail and most modelers will shun this one. However, they are pretty inexpensive as things go, especially when ordering direct and do make into quite passable models for one's display shelves.

This is one of the original boxings and comes in a dark olive drab. The cockpit is quite Spartan consisting of little more than a seat with radio bits behind it, a floor and a pilot to put into the seat. The instrument panel is molded in with the panel anti-glare panel and takes a decal for instruments.

The instructions don't indicate any nose weight, but I'd add some just to be sure. Both the intake and exhaust pieces are somewhat shallow, but no worse than what you'd get on the ESCI kit. You only get the early exhaust so if modeling something from its later history where it had the F-102 burner can, you'll have to source that from somewhere else. The kit has a single piece canopy to cover your pretty empty cockpit. Wings have a full span lower wing with upper halves and separate fences on the outer wings. All of the pylon holes are already opened up.

Wheel wells are equally Spartan as the cockpit with no real detail. Fortunately, the inner gear doors will cover up much of that. The speed brake can be positioned down if one wishes. There is also a separate tail bumper. Gear legs are fairly well done, though a bit light on detailing. The nose gear on many early kits had issues with alignment on the nose wheels, but it seems that that has been corrected. You get two different refueling probes, an early straight one and later curved version. Note that not all 'foreign' planes had this so if modeling one of the options, that will require the holes being filled.

The kit comes with the long 335 gallon fuel tanks as well as the small 200 gallon versions. Note that the centerline has what is shown as a 'practice bomb'. I'd fill those holes and not use this bit. There are Bullpups for the inner pylon or one can attach dual Sidewinders. The Sidewinder pylon is wrong as it should be a Y shape, but the kit provides a T. The Sidewinders themselves are rather basic.

According to the instructions this kit originally came with two SEA camouflaged planes with the 131 and 308 TFS with an overall silver 8 TFW plane. Instructions are completely Japanese though not difficult to decipher. All of the SEA camouflage colors show they need to be mixed, though I've no idea what paints are represented.


To me, all kits deserve a chance to be built and so I thought I'd tackle this one. I had a few left over bits from a Trumpeter F-100C that I thought would be useful. This included the Y missile pylons, missiles, and a tail hook, items not included in this kit.

First thing was to glue together some subassemblies. In this case it meant the fuel tanks and the wings. Note that the holes for the kit pylons are already open so if one wants to not include those items, the holes will need filling. I was less than jazzed about the butt fit of the fuel tank fins onto the tanks themselves.

I then painted and installed the cockpit into a fuselage half. This is little more than a seat shape with attached radio rack that fits onto a plate. The pilot is supposed to cover the fact that there is no real detail in there, not even a control stick. The fuselage halves were glued together after I put in some nose weight, and the usual filler and filing/sanding was done. At this stage I also attached the burner can. As a note, you do not get the F-102 burner can so are limited to active duty F-100s. I also glued on the intake and smoothed things out best I could.

The instrument panel/anti-glare section was then attached and after it was masked, the canopy installed. This was followed by the wings, but without the upper strakes as those need to be attached after decals are applied unless you are doing an SEA painted plane. Once I ensured that the plane didn't need any additional nose weight, I glued on the lower gun openings piece and the tailplanes. This seemed like a good time to do some painting.

I first primered everything with Tamiya's extra fine in a spray can. This was followed by Alclad II aluminum. The rear section was painted with various dark metallic shades. I also painted all the gear, gear doors, speed brake and such while the bits were on the sprue. The metallic makes the mold seams easier to see as those and the fairly obtrusive ejector towers that are typical on these older kits need to be removed before installation.

Eventually the airframe was painted with Alclad II. The rear hot section was masked off and that was painted with a variety of darker metallics. I also masked off the gun radar section and an area on the upper fuselage. I had filled the gear wells with Silly Putty after painting them with chromate green. That was removed and it was time to attach the landing gear.

The lower nose gear leg is super flimsy and broke rather quickly. This was reattached and then built up with super glue to give it some strength. As usual, the nose gear axle was off set on either side, making level nose wheels impossible without a major rework of the nose gear. I attached all the landing gear legs and then glued on the wheels. I used the left over nose wheels from the Trumpeter F-100C kit as they are more detailed than the Hasgawa ones.

For markings, I used an old Microscale sheet (72-254) that had markings for 354th TFW. Despite being probably 40 years old, I had no issues with the decals. I used a set of USAF logos I'd copied from another sheet and printed out on my inkjet. The US Air Force and insignia came from the Trumpeter kit while all the rest of the markings came from the Microscale sheet. The nose band did not fit square and the red turbine warning stripes are too short.

With all the decals in place, I started adding the rest of the bits. Hasegawa's missile pylon is fantasy, but I had the ones from the Trumpeter kit I could use. I also used the Trumpeter refueling probe. Both of these required some additional holes to be drilled to fit properly. I used a pair of AIM-9Bs from the Hasegawa Weapons set as the Trumpeter ones were a later version and the kit ones are just poorly done.

The gear doors were attached (some of them repeatedly). The main gear door arrangement is very tricky as the Hasegawa instructions are useless. I used photos from the 'net to get these at least close. The large nose gear door disappeared about halfway through the process and I did not bother making a new one. I'm sure it will eventually turn up and I'll glue it on then. The drop tanks and brace were glued on followed by the nose probe (which was slightly curved). Last item were the wing fences. I then removed the masking and did the usual touch up painting.

Frankly, I'm somewhat surprised that Hasegawa continues to release this kit and that it is still in their catalogue. I guess it has enough home market sales to make it a viable offering, but the truth is that it is long in the tooth and more modern releases (including the somewhat ancient ESCI kit) are better builds. The Italeri kit suffers from an additional frame in the canopy and the Trumpeter kit has that very oddly shaped intake to deal with, things that neither the ESCI or Hasegawa kit suffer from.

To make a bit more accurate Hun I had to use spare bits from the Trumpeter kit, which is one of the nice things about that kit. However, as you can see from this, though not a contest model by any means, it does build into a model that looks good on one's display shelf and I guess that is what is really important.



18 January 2019

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