1/72 Revell of Germany

Panavia Tornado GR-4a

by Len Thomson

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This is the Revell of Germany Tornado GR-1, converted to a GR-4a reconnaissance version. This is a first class kit, which has now replaced the Hasegawa version as the best of the bunch. 

It is not without its problems however. The nose shape is all wrong. Drewe Manton pointed this out to me just as I was starting the build a couple of months ago. You would have thought that when Hasegawa got the nose of theirs wrong, Revell would have done better, but no. I replaced the nose on mine with a resin item that came from a PP Aeroparts detail set.

I replaced the wings with resin items from Airwaves, with the dropped flaps and slats. These are intended for the Hasegawa kit, but fit this one without any problems. Rather large gaps are left between the wings and the glove vanes, but cutting off the bottom section, and re-fixing hard against the underside of the wing can cure this. 

I replaced the cockpit tub with the Aries set. The one provided in the kit is not bad, but the resin set gives extra finesse, and the resin seats are really good.

 

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The conversion to GR-4a was achieved by adding the new pod below the nose (carved from scrap, the addition of the line scan pod under the fuselage (again from PP Aeroparts set), and introducing the camera ports either side of the nose.

The weapons provided in the kit are some of the best I have seen. The model uses both types of long-range tank: the large hindenburgers under the wings, and standard tanks under the fuselage. I saw this aircraft at the Royal International Air Tattoo an few years ago with this fit, and though it would look nice on a model. 

The finish is Humbrol enamel, with the deals from Xtradecal, showing an aircraft from 13 Squadron RAF, based at Marham in Norfolk. 

Len

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Photos and text by Len Thomson