Sikorsky H-34 G-III
by David Funke (1:72 Revell)
After the discouraging cacellation of my Transall build in 1:72, which can be considered to be total loss, I wanted to build a model just for relaxation. While opening several boxes in my stash and putting them away again, I finally came across Revell H-34. Decals were the right ones in there, I did not need any additional parts. To clarify the question of the painting, I took the F-40 profile issue at hand. I finally decided for the variant that I never particularly liked, but which is somehow great though. When I then came across pictures of the from transfer of the Naval Air Wing 5 (MFG5) from Kiel to Nordholz, where the former gate-guard H-34 was to be seen in this livery, it was clear - the silver SAR paint scheme should it be.
In service with the German naval aviation:
The Naval Air received the Sikorsky H-34G in April 1963 for use in Naval Air Sea Rescue Squadron as SAR helicopter. This was only the version G-III with special equipment for offshore use. The squadron was renamed on 25.10.1963 in MFG (Marinefliegergeschwader) 5. The H-34 of the MFG 4, which were equipped and used for submarine-hunting and mine detectors were passed in the summer of 1968 for use in the SAR MFG Holtenau. In order to meet the SAR tasks, MFG operated five branches on Sylt, Helgoland and Borkum, with a 15min-readiness. Up to now, the SAR helicopters of the Navy flew with Sycamore, H-34 and SeaKing 10,000 missions of which 85% occurred in the civilian sector. Approximately 7,000 people have been saved.The SAR service brought, albeit rarely, its own casualties. The H-34 WE+552 ditched on 16.03.1967 after 20 min flight in the North Sea due to engine problems. Despite a major search operation went on, only two crew members were found dead, missing the other two crew members and the wreck is still unaccounted for.On 01.04.1975, after 12 years, the last H-34G III retired from the Navy aviaton and was this type was eventually replaced by the Westland Sea King Mk.41.
Source: Wache, Siegfried. F-40 - Flugzeuge der Bundeswehr. No. 6, Sikorsky H-34 G-1, II, II. Arbeitsgemeinschaft Luftwaffe, Arnsberg: 1987.
About the model:
The kit from 1996 can be built well despite small flaws and its room for further detailing. The interior from the box was enough for me. Detail freaks will certainly add harnesses, stetchers ans collective levers here. As with my model, all doors were closed anyway so this work were became unnecessary.The construction went well and it had only a minimum of filler was needed on the bow. Small flaws of the kit are next to the rather "naked" main rotor head of incorrectly rotating tail rotor, but I can live with that and kept it as it is. Only changes or additions were attaching hydraulic lines to the rescue hoist and the tubing of the emergency floatation gear.The model was painted with Revell silver and a cloudy coating of bright orange on a yellow background. After the gloss paint coat, the decals and their sealing a washing followed with a final matt varnish. The Orange surfaces were like the SAR titles weathered with yellow and white pastels.
For questions or suggestions, please feel free to drop me a line via david funke at msn dot com.
Published on 30. April 2013
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