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 Hobby Craft 1/72: F2H-3 Banshee (Banjo)

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Join date : 2017-02-18
Location : California

PostSubject: Hobby Craft 1/72: F2H-3 Banshee (Banjo)   Thu Feb 23 2017, 00:43

I really like the early Post-War jet aircraft and, after building the Fury a month or so ago, needed another one to add to my collection. I managed to snag an early Hobby Craft kit of the McDonnell F2H Banshee (aka: Banjo) in 1/72 scale.

The Aircraft

The F2H Banshee entered service as an improved design of the McDonnell FH Phantom jet. It had greater speed, range and armament. The first production version of the Banshee, the F2H-1, entered active duty with the US Navy in 1948.

A short time later the F2H-2, featuring better performance, entered service with the Navy and saw action during the Korean War.

Toward the end of the Korean War the F2H-3 version appeared and was the last significant version of the series. The fuselage was extended by eight feet to allow for more internal fuel storage. It was now equipped with all-weather radar for fleet defense. The four nose-mounted 20mm cannon were moved downward for both the new radar and to increase the ammunition it could carry. More external hard points were added for the increased bomb-load it could now carry.

It was retired from US Naval service in 1959.

The Kit

The kit can be be detailed in two different aircraft markings. I am sorry to say I tossed the instructions before writing down the other version. Embarassed But I chose to do mine in the livery of USN Squadron VF-41. I was able to locate a photo of the actual plane and learn the name of its pilot (Capt. Paul Anderson), but the pic was to poor to do any great detail work. Here's a link to the pic if interested:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/black_aces/9470962079/in/set-72157634994151075

The kit itself was of average quality. I didn't find much I had to clean and the parts were clearly labeled. No drama for a change. Wink Where the kit did fall short was in the instructions and, of course, the decals. unbelievable

The instructions lacked any paint detail except for the outside of the aircraft (and only in general terms even then). So I had to do a lot of checking back and forth on the Internet for the cockpit details, etc. Even then I might be wrong owing to changes in versions, deployment, etc. So I did my best.  Rolling Eyes

The decals were horrible. Thin to the point you could read through them. I had lots of breakage which required a lot of patience to piece together.  pale







Because one of the biggest changes to the Banshee was the addition of a radar unit, I scratch-built one and added it to the front panel in the cockpit.



I did make a big mistake by not reading, and registering the info, the instructions ahead. I should have realized I could not put the decals on the bottom of the model _after_ I installed the rocket hard point. Doh! Mad Stupid me! Rolling Eyes



Conclusions

An okay model marred by poor instructions and horrible decals. Otherwise it was not a total waste of time and looks good next to the Fury I built. The Banshee was one of the great early jets that did yeoman service in the early jet Navy.




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