Great Wall Hobby

1/144 Vulcan B.2 model kit

Product #L101

Product Article by Steve Bamford on Dec 28 2013

Lion Roar is a Chinese company that produces a variety of high quality detail sets for plastic model kits including photo-etched frets, tools, cast metal, turned alloy and even resin figures.  All of these items are produced to a very high level of detail and accuracy.  Great Wall Hobby is a line of model kits produced by Lion Roar and they are well known among modellers.  

This latest release from Great Wall Hobby is a plastic model kit that includes markings for 2 different RAF Vulcan B.2. 

History
The Avro Vulcan is a strategic bomber operated by the Royal Air Force from 1956 to 1984, which assumed the nuclear deterrence as one of the "3V" bombers.  The development began based on Specification B35/46 issued by the Ministry Supply in 1947.Its prototype, the Model 698, succeeded in it's virgin flight in 1952 and was named Vulcan.  The next day she made a spectacular debut performing a fly pass at the Farnborough Air Show in 1958.  The first production type B.1 started to be delivered to the RAF from 1956 after some various test flights.  The next year No.83 Squadron, the first operation unit, finished the organization with the Vulcan.  From 1960 the type B.2 with ECM and modified wings were deployed to the units.  Up to ten air squadrons operated the Vulcan.  And the Vulcans participated in the Operation Skyshield exercises in 1961 as virtual enemy planes.  The ran through the US air defense network taking advantage of the ECM and succeeded in intruding upon the sky of New York.  In the Falklands Campaign the participated in the Operation Black Buck as sole long range bombers of the RAF.  They took off from Ascension Island and made bomb attacks to the Port Stanley Airport and it's radars, which was the sole actual flight of the Vulcans.  Although the Vulcans were to retire from the RAF after the Falklands conflict, they continued to be operated as aerial tankers, because the development of the next Aerial tanker was delayed.  Six Vulcans were modified and added airborne refueling equipment and were operated until 1984.  After that all the Vulcans retired from the RAF.  As a lot of fans felt regret about the retirement, the Vulcan XH558 received a restoration under the "Vulcan to the Sky" project and made the first post-restoration flight in 2007.  Even now she can be seen flying at some air shows.   

This kit includes;

  • 4 sprues of grey styrene

  • 1 sprue of clear styrene

  • 1 black stand for an in-flight display

  • 4 page instruction booklet

  • 2 page large 4 view colour profiles

  • decal sheet with markings for 2 different aircraft

  • parts are all packed in plastic bags....including the clear styrene parts

  • sturdy box

 

Click on images below to see larger images

The Vulcan is an impressive looking design from any angle and it is a big aircraft, but in 1/144 it becomes a manageable model that is the perfect size for the display case.  But even in 1/144 it still comes with 2 pilot figures complete with oxygen masks plus molded in ejection seats which is all hidden under the painted canopy.

All panel lines are recessed and very crisply done and there are many panel lines on this big bomber.  The flying surfaces are fixed which looks best on this sleek high speed bomber.  This model does come with a bomb bay but there are no provisions for a weapons load in the bomb bay, but a serious detailer could go to town detailing the bomb bay if he was so inclined.  You do get 2 missiles to hang under one wing and a pod to hang under the other wing.

The Vulcan has 4 engines buried in the wings with seamless intakes and burner cans that are a double layered unit for added detail.  The exhausts look like they are one can inside another which was a very pleasant surprise.  The canopy is a two piece unit with a separate windscreen and I see no reason you couldn't pose it open if you chose.  The wheels and landing gear deserve special mention and the wheels are loaded with plenty of detail and even the landing gear look quite good. 

This model kit has an in-flight stand although I'm sure to actually close the landing gear doors might require a bit of work as it usually does on most models and the Vulcan is sucha  clean shape that closing the landing gear doors would look much better for an in-flight display. 

Markings 
There are 2 choices for markings, both are the classic Vulcan camo and one aircraft has the missiles and pod on pylons under the wings.  The second aircraft is a very clean airframe.

  • Vulcan B.2 XM597 101 Sqn
  • Vulcan B.2 XM607 44 Sqn

For paint, the instructions list the numbers for the new Gunze Creos colours as well as BS and FS numbers for some colours, so you can use pretty well any line of paints that you prefer. 

Great Wall Hobby has done a first class job on this Vulcan model kit.  There are enough parts to give good detail, but not too many parts to turn this into a complicated build. 

You can purchase this and other items directly from Great Wall Hobby or from the many retailers that carry their products.  

I would like to thank Great Wall Hobby for providing me with this product sample.

Steve Bamford

Click on images below to see larger images

Photos and text by Steve Bamford