Author Topic: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Story & Photos  (Read 20297 times)

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
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Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra
« Reply #25 on: August 08, 2015, 01:24:35 AM »
Aaaand, trying to fit the canopy is a nightmare..... :-X

There's nearly nothing to support the central panel and it's the key reference for all the other bits. I've had to space it out and super-glue it, but now I have to leave it with the side panels off until the fumes have gone, otherwise they'll get fogged. Handling the panels has damaged the paint again, but on the up side, I've discovered that with a magnifying lens and a small brush, I actually CAN paint canopy frames freehand without masking tape.
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
  • Chaos Engineer & Evangelistic Agnostic
Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra
« Reply #26 on: August 08, 2015, 03:36:04 AM »
Yeh! Canopy on at the second attempt, with much fettling and fiddling. Got a tiny bit of misting right at the front, but it can be dismissed as fogging, right? It looks crappy right now, but partly that's intentional (the canopy door are surely the part where a rushed re-paint would start looking old quickest, right?), and partly it will go away with a little touch-up paint. I'll give it an hour then start on the decals. The mirror will have to be done last because it goes over one of them.

Ohyeahand, no ground handling trolly: I painted up the parts, but when I came to cut them off the sprue, all four jack handles (there's two spares on the sprue for some reason) snapped right off. Yes I could nick two off another kit and I may do that eventually, but it's not essential so I'm cutting my losses for today.
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
  • Chaos Engineer & Evangelistic Agnostic
Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra
« Reply #27 on: August 08, 2015, 07:04:26 AM »
Finished!



More and better pictures tomorrow: I'm off for a quiet nervous breakdown now...... :-X ::)
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
  • Chaos Engineer & Evangelistic Agnostic
Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra
« Reply #28 on: August 09, 2015, 01:04:24 AM »
Been doing touch-ups today. I want to photograph it outside, but it's been just windy enough today to make the rotor blades shake, and now the sun's at the wrong angle. Maybe tomorrow....
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline LemonJello

  • MARPAT Master
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Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Finished
« Reply #29 on: August 09, 2015, 07:24:05 AM »
That's sharp looking in that red.  Nicely done!

Offline Buzzbomb

  • Low Concentration Span, oft wanders betwixt projects
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Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Finished
« Reply #30 on: August 09, 2015, 03:57:15 PM »
great stuff.. like it a log

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
  • Chaos Engineer & Evangelistic Agnostic
Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Finished
« Reply #31 on: August 10, 2015, 04:40:38 AM »
The F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra




In the mid-1970s, the Argentine Army got into a dispute with the Air Force about the provision of close air support during counter-insurgency operations and ended up converting orders for a dozen of it's Bell UH-1 Huey transport helicopters to AH-1G Cobras. Four of these machines were shipped to the Falklands in the immediate aftermath of the 1982 invasion. Two were destroyed on the ground during the SBS raid on Pebble Island, and a third was shot down by a Blowpipe missile while attacking British ground forces. The fourth machine, operating from a remote location on an island off West Falkland, conducted three sorties but was then grounded for lack of fuel since it's base could no longer be resupplied. The crew did a good job of camouflaging it, and it wasn't discovered until after the Argentine surrender.




The fighting in Port Stanley had left the town's population in a precarious position and the British with a serious restoration task. Argentine forces had demolished the power and water facilities, and mining, both on land and in the coastal waters, made moving heavy equipment and supplies into and around the islands difficult. The innovative idea of using the captured Hueycobra as a flying crane was proposed by an Army Air Corps Gazelle pilot who's own machine had been written off by small arms fire, and who was familiar with the AH-1 due to a prior exchange posting with the US Army.




The conversion was perfomed by Army Air Corps ground crew under difficult circumstances and with limited resources. The most immediate problem was that the Cobra lacked a sling hook fitting. With no local manufacturer or engineering support, they decided to play things very safe and go for an over-engineered solution, which consisted of U-shaped steel straps attached to the stub wing mountings by short I-section bars. These straps in turn held a square plate to which the cargo hook was mounted. The hook itself and the lifting straps came from a Chinook spares kit, shipped on a different vessel, that was surplus to requirements following the destruction of all but one of the Chinooks on the Atlantic Conveyor. All unnecessary weight was removed in order to improve the payload fraction, including the turret system, the stub wings, and the cockpit armour. Two truck mirrors were mounted to the sides of the fuselage to help the pilot monitor the load.






The "Hueycrane", as it was christened, performed sterling service during the initial reconstruction phase, and then, once things were on a more even keel, it, and a captured UH-1G transport, were handed over to the Falkland Islands Government Air Service (F.I.G.A.S.). During it's AAC use, the machine had retained it's olive green paint, but with a large orange stripe painted roughly on the side. For F.I.G.A.S. service, it was repainted in the service's standard red (the only colour available) with white markings. This paint job was somewhat rushed, and deteriorted in a relatively short time.




F.I.G.A.S. found the two helicopters very useful initially, but as things got back to normal there were fewer and fewer jobs that required them and the running costs began to bite. In 1986, both machines were therefore put up for sale on the commercial market. The Hueycrane was bought by an Australian company who's stated intention was to use it for fire fighting. However no fire-fighting actually appears to have taken place and the company went out of business, the Cobra subsequently passed through the hands of a variety of owners, some distinctly dubious, but that's another story.



Model: Special Hobby 1/72nd AH-1G Huey Cobra Special Simple Set (no box or decals)
Decals: S&M Silk British Antarctic Aviation (these markings belong to a UH-1G in real life)
Paint: Humbrol Satin 174
Seatbelts: masking tape
Hook: Hobbyboss Hawker Seahawk catapult hook
Brackets and rotor mounting: scratchbuilt from Evergreen















"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Steve Blazo

  • The man likes white plastic...weird.
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Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Story & Photos
« Reply #32 on: August 10, 2015, 04:57:04 AM »
Nicely done. Great story and a well done conversion.
As I walk through the valley of death,
I have no fear, because I am the meanest mother*ucker in the whole valley.
- Gen. George S. Patton

Offline The Big Gimper

  • Any model will look better in RCAF, SEAC or FAA markings
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Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Story & Photos
« Reply #33 on: August 10, 2015, 08:40:59 AM »
Great build. How about a Chinook version?   ;)
Work in progress ::

I am giving up listing them. They all end up on the shelf of procrastination anyways.

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Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Story & Photos
« Reply #34 on: August 12, 2015, 07:54:17 AM »
Top work, I love it!  :icon_alabanza: Congratulations on an excellent model and story.

I see what you mean about the mirror placement - I had no idea there would be a real-world reference! Very cool.
Zac in NZ
#avgeek, modelbuilder, photographer, writer. Callsign: "HANDBAG"
https://linktr.ee/zacyates

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
  • Chaos Engineer & Evangelistic Agnostic
Re: F.I.G.A.S. Hueycobra - Story & Photos
« Reply #35 on: August 18, 2015, 04:51:40 AM »
Cheers folks - glad you like it.  :)
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith