Kit No. 04604
Decals: Two versions – USAF, 1958; French Armee de l’Air, 1972
Comments: Re-box of sought-after 1982 Esci kit
The F-100 took its maiden flight on May 25, 1953. Although designed as a clear weather air superiority fighter — it was the first fighter in the U.S. Air Force inventory capable of supersonic speed in level flight — the Super Sabre was to be pressed into service almost exclusively as a fighter-bomber, particularly in the skies of Southeast Asia. In Vietnam, the F-100 was extensively employed in close air support missions in the South, as well as “Wild Weasel” SAM suppression sorties — until it was replaced by the F-105, which had better electronics and could carry more ordnance. The Super Sabre was the chosen mount of the Air Force’s flight demonstration team, the Thunderbirds, from 1956 to 1964. The F-100, like many post-war jet fighters, remained in service far longer than anticipated. It was not completely phased out until the last flight of the type by the Air National Guard in November 1979.
Revell Germany has produced a fine 1/72 scale offering of the North American F-100 Super Sabre. The kit consists of 61 injection molded silver parts and features engraved panel lines, a cockpit with injection molded raised detail on all instrument panels as well as the pilot’s seat, and boxed-in dive brakes and wheel wells. There are a pair of underwing drop tanks and a pair of what appear to be 750 lb. bombs. Finally, there are a choice of American or French refueling probes and engine exhaust nozzles. The French version also includes an arrestor hook for carrier operations.
The decals appear to be of very high quality and provide a choice of either a U.S. Air Force F-100D of the 309th Fighter Bomber Squadron, 31st Fighter Bomber Wing of Tactical Air Command, stationed at Turner AFB, Georgia, circa 1958 (painted in special markings for a TAC gunnery meet, as featured on the box art); or a French F-100D of E.C. 2/11, Armee de l’Air, stationed at Toul Air Base, circa 1972. The decal sheet is well laid out, divided into sections for the American version, the French version, and a third section for markings common to both.
Revell’s Super Sabre looks like a kit with all the makings of an outstanding build. Some may want to purchase a set of aftermarket decals, since the American version of the markings is a bit loud.