(Amodel - Nr. 72259)
After releasing a Bo-105 CBS (stretched Version) in civilian EMS colours last year, Amodel now came up with a military variant of this German helicopter.
The German Army Aviation purchased 100 BO-105M for liasion duties in 1976. Two years later, they were suceeded by an order over 212 Bo-105P for the Anti-Tank role. The initial variant had horizontal weapon carriers for 6 HOT-1 missiles and looked very much like (except for the arnament) their civil counterparts. But in detail, the military variants got an improved fuselage structure, wider horizontal stabilizer, strengthened main gear box, improved power regulation, different avionics, improved pilot's seats and different engine cowlings.
In 1990, they underwent a combat efficiency improvement programme where the previous HOT-1 were replaced by HOT-2 missiles. Also included in the programme was the development of new, lighter and angled weapon hardpoints. Furthermore they aircraft got improved rotorblades, a new oil cooler system and an enhanced missile control and sight to give the "Panzerabwehrhubschrauber" (PAH) a night combat capability. The helicopter was then designatied Bo-105P PAH1A1.
The Spanish company CASA also assembled the BO-105 in a license production for the Spanish Army Aviation (FAMET). They used the helicopter also in the anti tank role, as liasion helicopters and as cannon carriers. Other military users of the Bo-105 were/are Albania, Nigeria, Indonesia, Philipines, Iraq, Lesotho, Chile, Uruguay, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, and Sweden. In some of the countries mentioned here, the Bo-105 was already taken out of frontline service. The German Army plans to retire the last Bo-105 in 2017 in the liasion role, the anti-tank platform was already replaced by the EC665 Tiger.
Amodel, a company from the Ukraine well known for "no pain-no gain" kits surprises sometimes with new developments which were thought to be completely out of their range. This is also the case with the Bo-105 of which the PAH is now the second variant.The quality of Amodel kits represents clearly the standard of former eastern block short run production. But whereas earler kits made a mostly daunting first impression, this does not apply for their Bo-105 kits. The level of detail and the way it is produced is certainly not comparable to Revairfixgawamiya but one has to admit that they getting better and better. This is especially illustrated with the clear parts. In earlier times they were more like glass bricks without any claim for transparency. Nowadays they are still a bit too thick but the development is promising.
The Amodel kit can not deny its relationship to the Airfix kit. Some parts like the rotor system, instrument panel, controls seem to be copied from the original kit.
Unfortunately, although Amodel supplied the kit with the most recent type of weapon hardpoints, they were not consequent enough to think about all the other changes which were necessary to represent a correct combat efficiency enhanced PAH1A1. Please see below for the specific items.
The decal sheet is rather tiny and slightly off register which becomes apparent with the tail rotor warnings. The font type for the German versions are not correct either.
Well, Amodel kits are certainly nothing for those kind of modelers who are not able or willing to put some extra effors in their models during the build. What you get is mosty a civvie Bo-105 CB with a missile sight and the HOT-2 tubes. With some changes and scratchbuilt modification this is a basis to work with but nothing for the rather unexperienced beginner.
Spacek, Jaroslav; Frantisek Koran. BO-105 in detail. WWP Present Aircraft Line No. 10. Prague: 2003.
Reviewed by Felix Troschier - 18. March 2014
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