bushande

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About bushande

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  1. All that makes me feel way better now about myself hihi.
  2. so was it 200+ or 300+?
  3. O.K. let's see how that works out. I took my chances and ordered 2 from Steelmodels in Italy. They look quite reliable and serious. There's sadly no shop listed for Germany or Northern Europe but they don't charge anything for S/H for orders above 100 bugs which is great. So hopefully not that many to go for AMK anymore. Thumbs pressed and prayers sent I guess.
  4. Thihihihi .... good one!
  5. Don't let yourself get dragged down Sio. I'm sure everything's going to be good. What's not good, is not finished yet, right?!
  6. That's exactly what's currently keeping me from committing to a preorder (and I'd gladly order more than one). But what exactly happens to my meager bugs if the LHS goes down in the time ahead or if the kit for some reason won't be produced or will be produced at a later time for a higher price because not enough preorders have been placed? Do I get a refund? Will I have to pay up to meet the regular retail price in case of a later issue? What if the owner's business is going so well (and I really do wish you well AMK!!!) that they won't receive enough slot time even with enough preorders; won't that push the release date even further??? I'm not in a hurry, take all the time you want and need AMK but pay money up front for such a long time, I confess, I'd feel better with a little more security here. I really want to preorder but I admit it's just a little too less information for me to commit just yet.
  7. Thanks a lot Sio for the reply and the explanations. Just one little thing in order to better understand the pricing model: If I pre order (and hence pay) now for the advertised incentive price, i.e. the lower retail price and AMK should not be able to score the desired 5000 pre-orders to start early production, i.e. switch to the traditional process and a later delivery in 2018; do I still get my pre ordered Tomcats for the lower price or do I have to expect an additional invoice and extra payment to meet the regular price? Short: I preorder, pay the lower price, 5000 threshold is not met, slower production, later delivery for regular price - do I still get my pre ordered Tomcats for the incentive price (don't care if it is later - I'm not in a hurry but I admit, the incentive price sounds pretty good and tempts me to order more than just one or two) Thanks in advance for the reply.
  8. The last Phoenix was launched by a VF-213 Delta Tomcat in August 2004 (no, I don't mean that failed attempt to down that pair of Iraqi Mig-25s! That was in Jan. '99 and was live). Don't get fooled by that - surely nice - nose art VF-11 carried up to their end.
  9. Air One is correct. However: A mix of A/G (Rockeyes) and A/A, i.e. AIM-54 on the center rail had been aproved and in use at least during the late nineties as documented on VF-11 and -31 Deltas as well as VF-211 and -213 Alphas. Hence, though I haven't seen an AIM-54 / LGBU combo on a center rail yet, if you like that one, just hit it. This is just an example to illustrate the claim in general: http://www.topedge.com/alley/images/f14d/f14d31gb.htm http://www.topedge.com/alley/images/f14d/f14d31de.htm
  10. Yes you do! The reason for this (actually quite frequent) "obscurity" is that these panels were removable panels and esspecially during cruises were interchanged with other birds and/or hangar queens. You wouldn't have as many replacement parts aboard the boat as you have while on base and if a panel needed maintenance or repair you would go and use a panel from another bird sitting under deck in order to get one jet in the air. On the other hand, the '89 Mig-killers were both Block 80 and 85 birds. As the birds were direly needed in the fleet upgrades and changes on behalf of the manufacturer (if not possible on depot level) were only done infrequently and not all Block-upgrades could be done to the entire fleet at the same time but just kind of "creeped" into the fleet over time. It was not uncommon to see early block birds with boat tails but already some TCS or two louvre gun grills or birds with a seven louvre gun grill but a newer Block beaver tail etc. Chances are pretty high that the killer birds either just had a replacement panel from another bird or that they were among those ships that just didn't receive the full compliment of all later Block upgrades at that time.
  11. That Iran gave a Phoenix to the Russians is at least to the date only an unconfirmed rumor and is at least mostly denied by Iranian officials. Regarding Russian missile systems on a Tomcat, it is at least proclaimed by Iran that the few Tomcats that apparently underwent the current "Baba'ee" upgrade program are capable of employing the R-27 with plans to also integrate the capability to employ the R-73 but so far no visual evidence has ever surfaced that might give actual proof to these claims. To what extend Iran still pursues any upgrades on their Phantom fleet has become somewhat questionable now that a lot of effort is placed on acquiring SU-30s which would be slated to replace the F-4 fleet.
  12. Well, just as a little add on the Iranian birds issue. Actually Tom Cooper is the expert on all things reg. the Persian cats but AFAIK, while no tanks had been on order with the first lot of Block 90/95 Tomcats, the Shah actually DID order some external tanks to be delivered later on together with new equipement, missiles potential new airframe lots etc.. They wanted some ext. FTs right away but due to the necessary rework that had to be done on the tanks (the little winglets kept them just long enough gliding under the trunks upon a potential drop to damage the ventral vins) they skipped that and postponed it to supposed later stock-ups. The intent was not so much to extend the range of the jets but rather increase independent loiter time. There apparently were some supposed attempts to manufacture some indigenous EFTs and some basic test sets had actually been produced but due to lack of further funding (the IRGC from where the money actually comes, considered an increase of loiter time not relevant enough) the whole program was shelved. It apparently resurfaced as a point of the current "Baba'ee" update program but once again it seems that IRGC has not yet issued the funds for it because most of the money currently goes to anti-ISIS efforts. This is also the reason why the current Baba'ee-, i.e. AM-upgrade program seems to be at half pace at best. originally it was said that the IRIAF wanted at least half of the fleet upgraded by 2020 but as rumor currently indicates the new timeframe is somewhere around 2025. If tanks will ever be an issue remains to be seen I guess. Oh and nowadays the airbase north of Esfahan isn't called Kathami anymore, at least as far as I was able to learn. Currently the base seems to be run under "TAB8 Babai". While most of the Tomcats seem to be stationed there, it seems at least 6 ships are forward deployed to a base close to Busheer and a few more seem to be based further down south closer to the Gulf region. As Skull Leader said, Mehrabat/Esfahan is only a temporary rotation point for overhauls and potential upgrades.
  13. Very true but I gotta say it's a great and enjoyable challenge. 164604 i.e. Vandy-1 was one of the last live Kitties I got to see. Had a chance to catch her briefly in 2000 and one last time in 2004 and was lucky enough to sneak some little snitbits of the bird away that the squadron removed during maintenance and didn't present a security breach. The nice thing about this birdy is that she was (in opposite to her three black Alpha predecessors in the 80s and early 90s, i.e 161287, 161444 and 159853) a fully fletched test bed that apparently went through the same paces as her low viz sisters and hence featured quite some wear and tear and was far from having the glossy show bird look of 159853, the black bunny Alpha Tomcat of the early 90s for instance. I think the only time 164604 had a true pristine gloss black appeareance without a stain, was when she was delivered to then VX-4 just short before their merger with VX-5 to VX-9. I know it's bad attitude to highjack a thread with one's own WIP threads, please forgive me the stinky self praise but I wouldn't dismiss the color choice solely for the reasons stated here in the thread just that easily and since that bird is one of those F-14s that I'm more fond of than others I did a 1/32 interpretation of her a few years back using the old Revell kit and frequently reworked the kit. The first time I sort of outdid it a bit but after some rework I'm quite happy for the time being The gloss black coat is a challenge but if you take your time you can really make this stand out among the others. I'd do a lot of things differently today though and AMK might just give me that chance at least in 1/48. http://www.arcforums.com/forums/air/index.php?/topic/276004-132-tomcats-late-f-14d-vx-9-vandy-1-and-early-f-14a-vf-1-wichita-101/ I for one am quite happy about this choice of AMK. Admitted, the only thing I might have liked a tad more in terms of testcats would have been a VX-30 Delta with the Bloodhounds insignia on the tail. The only way to portray sucha bird is via the sold out decals of VF- and subsequently Fightertown decals.
  14. That particular jet never flew an actual display in these colors. I think the colors went on by mid or end of August 2006 and it was just sitting in the static at Oceana airshow in 2006 and was used for another static incl. some inert weapons displayed around it at the Sunset ceremony Sept. 22 in 2006. Try to google "Tomcat Sunset Ceremony" and yo should find plenty of this ship in these colors. Originally they just painted the bird without any tanks but also painted a set of palletts in white as well. While in these colors it still flew some training missions albeit only a few until it was eventually delivered to the museum. During these days they ocassionally put on whatever pallett and rail was available including some standard grey ones. During the Sunset flyout ceremony they put the white palletts back on and upon its final flight to the museum Palmdale they also put the gloss white tanks on featuring a "Felix Rulez" writing. Far as I know the tanks were only on during its last flight to the museum. So it's basically your decision how ou want to portrait the bird. Feel free to put on whatever you like. But the jet didn't carry any weapons load anymore in these colors.
  15. Now that is one pretty bird!!! Do you possibly have another shot of the whole plane as well? Thanks for posting these!