Aurora 1/72nd scale Lockheed AH-56 Cheyenne built and painted by Everard Cunion in September 2021
The kit canopy has no bulges in the side panes. Canopies on the various prototype AH-56s seem to vary in their bulgedness. One looks hardly bulged at all, so I think the kit canopy is not far wrong for that example. However, I like the bulges, so I created a bulged canopy.
To create the bulged canopy I used an F-15 canopy from the Falcon Clear-Vax Canopies 1/48th scale (note that larger scale) set 52, USAF jets, combined with the kit canopy’s front bit, rear bit, and flattish top.
For the panes each side of the nose gunner, whose compound curves defied the F-15 canopy and all the other canopies in the Clear-Vax set, I used bits sawn from the front part of a 1/72nd scale Cobra canopy. I filled in the many gaps with transparency glue. The proportions of the segments are not exactly correct. A lot of work for a dubious result.
The pilot’s instrument panel, behind the copilot/gunner’s seat, stuck up too far in my opinion, so I cut it down a bit. I also had to lower the two crewmen in their seats by cutting their feet off and filing down, or rather up, their rear ends.
Rotors are clear plastic, the main rotor ‘blades’ being applied with a spray can of matt black.
The weapons are from an inexpensive Cobra kit and the rocket pod pylons (shortened) are left over from an Airfix Harrier.
I don’t recall ever seeing so much flash before. Fortunately, it is thin and easy to cut away.
When displayed on an average size computer monitor, the model in these photos is much larger than its actual 8.5 inch (22 cm) fuselage length.
The box art seems accurate as regards stencil markings and such like, the smaller of which are not included as decals.
The rigid rotor system of the AH-56 was the brainchild of Lockheed engineer Irv Culver, for which he received the Klemin Award for “…notable achievement in advancing the field of vertical flight aeronautics” by the Vertical Flight Society in 1966. (Ref)
Culver subsequently contributed to the development of hang gliding in the early 1970s.
Vietnam war plastic models. Although the AH-56 came about during the Vietnam war, it never went into production and it never went to Vietnam.
Irv Culver: VJ day — Volmer Jensen’s hang gliders (related topics menu) in Hang Gliding History, which includes links to Irv Culver’s contributions to Jensen’s VJ-23 Swingwing and VJ-24 Sunfun rigid hang gliders
Dr. Alexander Klemin Award recipients on the Vertical Flight Society web site