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 REVIEW: Hobby Master HA4702 USN RA-5C Vigilante, RVAH-9 "Hoot Owls", USS Nimitz 1977

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Join date : 2017-02-18
Location : Vancouver

PostSubject: REVIEW: Hobby Master HA4702 USN RA-5C Vigilante, RVAH-9 "Hoot Owls", USS Nimitz 1977   Sat Mar 11 2017, 21:00

Hobby Master 1:72 Air Power Series
North American RA-5C Vigilante
USN RVAH-9 Hoot Owls, AJ601, USS Nimitz 1976-77

Production Limited 700 Units

August 2015 Release

This is the second RA-5C release by Hobby Master and this time represents an aircraft assigned to RVAH-9 "Hoot Owls" during the very first Operational Cruise of the USS Nimitz during 1976-77. Since this cruise began in July 1976 - A special "Bicentennial Hoot Owl" emblem was applied on the forward fuselage for the duration of the cruise. Decals for this particular aircraft exist, however the special Bicentennial Owl has never been properly made. It took a Veteran from the RVAH community to provide the missing detail for this release.

Sister Aircraft #156621 during the 1976-77 USS Nimitz Cruise.

Actual Aircraft

Special Bicentennial "Hoot Owls" Emblem and the regular RVAH-9 Emblem.

This particular aircraft (Bu No 156299) has some good history. On December 18th 1967 (Before the aircraft was remanufactured to 156 Series standard), Commander C.C. Smith and Lieutenant John E. Calhoun III launched from the USS Ranger (CVA-61) for a mission over Hanoi. On this day they made a historic discovery, the exact location of the "Hanoi Hilton" Prisoner of War Camp. They received the Distinguished Flying Cross for this mission.

Once again Hobby Master's Vigilante tooling stands head and shoulders above anything available in the plastic kit world. Unlike the best kit available (Trumpeter) - Hobby Master's RA-5C has a correct forward fuselage hump shape, correct exhaust nozzles, and the proper shape to the vertical fin.

Overall, the model is excellent. Paint quality is good and all the parts fit together nice and tight. There is some excellent detail in the cockpits with instrument panels and side panels for both cockpits. A bit of a shame that all that detail stays hidden under the closed canopy only option. Perhaps Hobby Master will allow for an open canopy option on future releases.

The only real niggle I have is that the Hooter Emblem appears to be positioned a bit too low.

Overall a highly recommended addition for the U.S. Navy collection.


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REVIEW: Hobby Master HA4702 USN RA-5C Vigilante, RVAH-9 "Hoot Owls", USS Nimitz 1977
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