Not strictly a Large Scale Plane I know, but it's certainly large... therefore I thought you folks may be interested in this...
Sanger had been promising to release a 1/48th B-52 for a number of years, and kept teasing me whenever I visited the website with a message that stated the model was under construction but nothing more - I must confess I began to question whether it would ever actually be released. However, last year it was finally ready to purchase so I took the plunge and ordered one.
Any version of the venerable B-52 can be modelled, ranging from the early tall-tailed versions typified by the D-model, right through to the current-day H version. Sanger also offer a wide array of decals to accompany the kit, with many different schemes that the B-52 has worn over the years being on offer to purchase with your chosen variant.
I decided to go for a current B-52H - with 'Memphis Belle IV' nose art - as I vividly remember it displaying at one of the RAF Mildenhall airshows and taking lots of pictures of the it under some very stormy skies. I also had a very good wander around one at last year's airshow at RAF Fairford too, so plenty of resource material is at hand.
A few weeks after I placed the order, a rather large box arrived at my work (always the best option with an eagle-eyed wife scrutinising any parcels that arrive at my house!) and inside plenty of protective bubble wrap was the kit was one of the biggest kits I've laid eyes on. Only the 1/32nd B-29 I did a few years ago exceeds it in span:
The wings are massive - the 30cm/12" ruler gives a sense of scale here. Each wing is approximately 2ft so the eventual span of the finished model will be around the 4ft mark. Sparring the wings so they remain rigid is going to be quite a challenge I feel, and the thought of rubbing down all those wheel-halves doesn't fill me with joy...
I imagine, due to the difficulty in obtaining a vacuumform machine large enough, the fuselage is moulded in four sections, with a lengthwise break just aft of the rear undercarriage bays. This also allows a separate mould of the differently shaped forward fuselage for the D, E, and F versions. Again, the 30cm/12" ruler shows the size of this brute:
Here are the stabilisers and engine pylons:
This sheet contains the vertical fin, tip-tanks, various sensors as well as the different tail turrets for the G/H versions:
These are the pods for the eight Pratt and Whitney JT3D engines - unique to the H variant:
A close-up of the parts reveals some lovely fine surface and panel details:
Sanger provide a wealth of detailed drawings and plans in order to help with construction, as well as some nice looking decals:
And finally, a comprehensive set of white metal parts for the engines, landing gear, interior as well as some further detailing parts. There's a crystal clear canopy too - but only one which means very careful cutting and no room for error!
I had promised myself that I wouldn't start this until I'd finished my Shackleton project, but to be honest it's an itch I've got to scratch and I really fancy having a go at it. It'll certainly be a longer-term project as I have other builds (Shackleton included) still going on in the background, so don't hold your breath for regular updates but I'll post my progress as and when there is some.
In the meantime, I've got to decide where to start: wings and engines or fuselage...