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Trumpeter F 105G Wild Weasel Model Kit Review

Article by Paul Nortness

During the Southeast Asian conflict, United States aircraft were getting destroyed by surface to air missiles and various anti aircraft batteries at an alarming rate. As a result, the US Air Force created "Project Wild Weasel" in 1965.

The idea was to use aircraft with radar seeking missiles to bait the enemy into targeting the aircraft with its radar; thereby allowing the aircraft to trace the waves back to the source and destroy it with pin point accuracy.

The first squadron of Wild Weasels flew the F-100F and after 45 days, only one aircraft remained. After that, duties fell to the F-105G Thunderchief. The 105 did this job admirably. Despite only being produced until 1964, the Wild Weasel F-105Gs remained in service for another 20 years before being replaced by the F-4G Phantom II.

trumpeter f105g wild weasel

Trumpeter released the F-105G in conjunction with their F-105D single seat version. The first thing you notice is the size of the box. It is huge! The box art is gorgeous, a great painting of two F-105Gs and a Phantom flying high over a city. One thing you can say about Trumpeter... their box art is always stunning! Opening the box is just as impressive. The sheer size of this model is enough to make your jaw drop. If you have not built a big 32nd scale model kit before, you are in for a treat with this one. Note that the picture below is not even the entire fuselage!

trumpeter f105g wild weasel 1

The surface detail is typical early Trumpeter, lots and lots of rivets. The panel lines are nicely engraved and should look excellent with a dark wash. Up close pictures of the Thunderchief shows lots of rivets visible on the surface as well so we will give them a little break here! The basics shapes look pretty good, but there is a slight problem with the nose. It should have a gentle curve from the windscreen to the tip of the nose, but instead it is a straight line. Unfortunately, there is really no way to fix it so you are best off just to not sweat it and to be honest it is not all that noticeable.

trumpeter f105g wild weasel 2 trumpeter f105g wild weasel 3 trumpeter f105g wild weasel 4

The cockpit looks great. The kit I purchased included a Verlinden resin cockpit and to be honest, I am not entirely sure if I am going to use it. The kit pieces are well detailed with raised buttons and dials. The instrument panels are clear and have holes where the dials should be. What you do is paint the panel as normal, then sandwich a film between the back of the panel and a second piece that gets painted white. The result is a very sharp looking set of dials on your instrument panel.

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Of course, no Trumpeter kit would be complete without a fully detailed engine. The Thunderchief is no exception to that rule. The entire Pratt and Whitney J75 is here in all its glory. The only thing missing is the intake trunking. And again, the engine is completely invisible once you build the model. I may try to open up a panel here or there to see if I can get that glorious engine some sunlight.

trumpeter f105g wild weasel 6

The Wild Weasel comes jam packed with weapons. You get a whopping 16 Mk 82 GP bombs and 16 M 117s. If that wasn't enough, the box also has 5 AGM-45 Shrikes, 2 AGM-12 Bullpups, 2 AGM-78 Standard ARMs and 2 720 pound Napalm bombs. The kit also has the standard fuel tanks, and an ALQ-71 ECM pod. This box has enough ordnance to not only arm the F-105G, but I should be able to bomb up a few of my A-4 Skyhawks as well!

trumpeter f105g wild weasel 7 trumpeter f105g wild weasel 8

As nice a surprise as the weapons were, the decal sheet is what really put a smile on my face. The decal sheet features markings for two different aircraft, pretty standard affair for the F-105G. What really caught my eye was the copyright information. It seems Two Bobs printed the decal sheets for Trumpeter. What a nice surprise as Two Bobs is one of the better aftermarket decal makers out there. The sheet is in perfect register with nice bright colors and crisp lettering. Also included is a sheet of stencils for all those wonderful bombs.

trumpeter f105g wild weasel 9

It is often said that one must take the good with the bad, and that holds true with this kit. One of the biggest problems with the kit is the landing gear. It is very thin and weak. Which is actually kind of appropriate. Pilots gave the F-105 the nick name "Lead Sled" because the landing gear was too thin to support the aircraft and would often break on landing, causing the aircraft to skid across the runway. The positive is that Trumpeter designed the kit landing gear very accurately, the negative is they are so thin there is no way they are going to support the model. Do yourself a favor and spend the $17.00 to get the metal landing gear from Scale Aircraft Conversions. There are also some funny translation errors in the instructions. This was one of my favorites:

trumpeter f105g wild weasel 10

This kit sells for around $125.00, but can be found for around $100.00 if you shop around. For that money, you get a ton of plastic and some great decals. This is a great model for someone who is interested in getting into big scale, well detailed models. It is not overly complicated, its big size will surely awe people and it can be made into a great looking model kit plane with very little additional investment. I highly recommend the Trumpeter F-105G to everyone.

Have fun and Happy modeling!

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