Review by David Harvey

Review Type
First Look
1/72, 1/48 and 1/35
Contents and Media:
Highly Recommended



This decal sheet covers the both the Blackhawk and the Kiowa in Australian service. The schemes covered are:

a. S-70A-9 Blackhawk A25-208 UN/Australian Army in East Timor in 2000. This aircraft had been 'zapped' by 162 Recce Sqn with their marking.

b. S-70A-9 Blackhawk A25-101 RAAF, Amberley Air Base 1986.

c. Bell 206 B-1 Kiowa A17-044 161 Reconnaissance Squadron, Oakey QLD, 1995.

d. Bell 206 B-1 Kiowa A17-039.

These decals are usualy sold as Blackhawk decals with no mention of the fact that they have Kiowa decals with the set. In 1/35 this is of no real concern as there is no kit available of the Kiowa 206B-1 at this time.

The decal sheet contains all of the decals required to produce the Australian version of each aircraft. If you obtain the correct type and size of black numbers you can go on to produce any of the remaining aircraft in the fleet if you wanted to.

This set is good in that it provides the Air Force markings for the Blackhawk for the limited time that the RAAF had them. As with all models you should check images of the aircraft you are modelling as the Blackhawks in East Timor did not all have the UN on the white square next to the aircraft number. I have photos of them both with, and without, the UN marking at around the same time.

The Kiowa decals are missing an important part of the detail required to identify which Squadron the aircraft come from. 161 Recce SQN identifies it's aircraft with the unit mascot, the possum, whilst 162 Recce SQN identifies them with the marlin. These markings are usualy painted with the camouflage colours of the aircraft and appear on both sides of the tail underneath the aircraft number. This marking is usualy applied when the aircraft is delivered to the Squadron by the unit tradesman using stencils. Until 161 Recce SQN left Sydney at the end of 1994 they even had their own paint booth in which they resprayed the aircraft as required.

If you wish to model a Kiowa in East Timor you will need to put the UN number on the tail boom and UN on the fueslage behind the rear door on both sides of the aircraft. There are also a few other markings that are missing from the set, they are all small information markings eg 'no push' on the fueslage area above the whip antenna.

The instruction sheet is quite clear in the location of the decals and the paint scheme for each aircraft. They also have a 'Modellers note' page that gives all of the little detail to make a good model of the aircraft. A slight difference in the painting of the main blades for the Kiowa, the blade colour was not always the standard green/black. It varied upon where the rotor blade was supplied from and could be a variety of colours. This also applies for the tail rotor as I have seen them plain green or black and white stripes amongst others (see picture above).

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