Revell’s 1:72 MH-47E is a re-boxing of their 2005 Revell of Germany kit. It contains 193 injection molded parts on three sprues and 16 clear parts on one clear sprue. The full-color instruction booklet guides the build over 68 steps. The decals provide markings for two special operations Chinooks:
- MH-47E, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, “Night Stalkers,” Fort Campbell, Kentucky, 1998
- Chinook MC Mk.3, Royal Air Force, 2004
Strengths: This kit has a number of nice things going for it. While I am not a MH-47E subject matter expert, it very much passes the “eyeball test” and appears to capture well the lines, shapes, and overall configuration of this highly specialized Chinook. These include its many other specialized gear including the nose-mounted FLIR turret, refueling probe, and a veritable constellation of antennas and sensors arrayed all around the airframe. Exterior surface details feature recessed panel lines (though see below). Molding quality is excellent.
Of note: for the Night Stalkers version of the kit, you do indeed need to cut away (preferably, using a razor saw) the side sponsons on the left and right fuselage halves and replace them with Parts 60 and 61 that represent the significantly enlarged and differentially-shaped sponsons (filled with lots more gas) seen in the U. S. version.
The kit provides a full interior (though a bit basic; again, see below) that is pretty good for 1:72 scale. There’s a decent instrument panel and center console, but buttons are varyingly over-scale and there’s no dial detail, so it is best to sand that part flat and just use the kit-provided decal or something from the aftermarket world. The pilot and co-pilot seats are decent and include molded-on shoulder harnesses and lap belt details. The sticks, collectives, and rudder pedals are also all there. The aft cargo bay (which makes up most of the internal volume of the MH-47E) is there and you can position the aft ramp up or down. Parts are also provided for the left and right forward door gunners and their miniguns. The rotorheads also look very nice, as do the rotor blades which appear to have been molded with a bit of an appropriate droop (curvature).
The decals were printed by Zanchetti and look fine in terms of printing quality, color, and register. They include markings for both U. S. Army and RAF versions, with each sharing a significant range of stenciling. Anti-skid walkways are also provided as are decals for various intake screen meshes.
Weaknesses: A few things to note: the interior is nice but it is simplified overall. Eduard produces a few sets for this kit and they can really improve the fidelity of detail in this kit. The miniguns and their ammo shell chutes are also simplified, and the guns themselves end in a featureless, solid cylinder that represents the gun muzzle. I also think those guns are fitted with flash suppressors, so the shape is okay but the muzzle detail is missing.
There are very significant and obvious ejection pin markings throughout the inside surfaces of the fuselage. These will be visible if you have the cargo ramp down. It will take some work to fill in those defects. There are a few different depths and widths for the recessed panel lines, from finely recessed lines to a few engine access panels and the starboard side crew door that would be over-scaled (too deep and too wide) for a 1:32 scale kit. The contrasts will be a little jarring for some folks. You will also notice that many of the sprue gates that connect to the parts are really quite big. This was arguably acceptable for kits produced in the early-to-mid-2000s, but some additional clean-up will be necessary when compared to today’s latest kits.