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Hajo L.

WIP: ACH-47A in 1/72, Italeri-kit + Eduard

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I started with the Italeri ACH-47A in 1/72 today (pictures will follow soon). I´d like to use this thread not only to show the progress, but to ask for tricks and information.

As usual with my helo-builds doing a "live-like" crew will consume most of the time working on this helo. I read that the ACH-47 had 8 crew-members: 2 pilots, 5 gunners, one flight engineer. While I have a pretty good feeling where I should place the pilots and the gunners ;), I´m not so sure about the typical where-abouts of the FE during a combat mission.

Can someone help me out?

HAJO

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The FE tended to be a 'lookout' who moved around from door/gun positions as well as the ramp looking down for targets and threats.

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Thanks a lot!

Progress so far:

Pilot has taken a seat, head will be attached soon! ;)

IMG_0509_zpsede0aa0f.jpg

Easy wiring of the instrument panel: Using a sheet of paper, cut intoi the same size/dimensions of the panel. Then punch some holes with a needle, and use a copper thread to simulate cables:

IMG_0511_zpsb0ac967d.jpg

And glued into place!

IMG_0514_zpsfaf17aa7.jpg

Next question: White or green flight helmets for the crew, did they had any relevance in their colour? I know that on board a warship, only the captain/commander wears a white cap... Does the same apply to multi-personnel flight crews?

HAJO

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Next question: White or green flight helmets for the crew, did they had any relevance in their colour? I know that on board a warship, only the captain/commander wears a white cap... Does the same apply to multi-personnel flight crews?

HAJO

Nice work on the Go GO bird. Regarding the helmet color, based on this USAAM archive shot, I'd say you are good with either or both.

Ray

PICT7611.jpg

Any idea which bird you will be building?

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I have to go with the decals that come with the kit, so I´ll choose "Easy Money", because I want a bird that´s "in country".

Question: The color of the ammo-boxes. Are they green or silver? I have pictures where I have the feeling like they are silver, or is it just metal shining through a green paint?

HAJO

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In the photo above showing the interior you can see the metal cans for the 40mm in the center aisle. They are bare metal. The 50cal ammo cans against the wall beside the gunners are olive drab green with a big white printed advisory that listed the contents of the can and showed how the belts of ammunition should be loaded into the cans. If memory serves me correctly the 20mm cans for the wing mounted cannons were also bare metal. I double checked some pics and yes, the 20mm cans are bare metal.

Chris M

Edited by Chief Snake

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Regarding colors of things, I think this photo is interesting as it shows the bulkhead on at least one of the Go Go birds was two tone chromate yellow and gray.

Random0158.jpg

Here's a photo of the chin armor. I assume those are chicken plates in the chin bubble?

Random0159.jpg

Here are a few details of the 50 cals.

9003.jpg

8389.jpg

PICT7623.jpg

PICT7631.jpg

ramp mounted 50 cal:

8446.jpg

PICT7629-1.jpg

Finally here's a nice shot showing the general layout of weapons and ammo cans. Pics from USAAM archives. HTH

Ray

9009.jpg

Edited by rotorwash

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That helped A LOT! Thank you very much!

By seeing the ramp: Was it open in operational use or closed as in the picture shown above?

HAJO

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Some progress of the cockpit-area, I added armor-shields to the seats:

IMG_0560_zpsa81e2161.jpg

IMG_0557_zpsb8b3b546.jpg

Can someone help me with my question above? (By seeing the ramp: Was it open in operational use or closed as in the picture shown above?)

HAJO

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Hmm, would a lowered ramp not offer an even more greater field of fire? Today those helos with a ramp gunner always fly with an open ramp...

But thanks for the intel!

HAJO

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Some progress before I´m starting into a family weekend.

The front office is done:

IMG_0563_zps31caf9fe.jpg

Next steps will be the "back-office" with all the fun stuff (guns, ammo, gunners,...).

HAJO

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Wow great job so far. This looks like a fun project that you could dump a lot of detail into. Great resources pics as well from Ray.

As far as the picture with the two tone gray and primer, I know when I worked CH-47D's the sound proofing always covered up the roof of the cargo/cabin area but when we pulled the sound proofing down to do inspections it was always yellow primed from front to the back.

Brock

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Some progress - I installed the 40mm ammo cans and added an ammo-belt.

IMG_0597_zps1e802e5c.jpg[/url]

The belt is some old 1/87 scale Roco Minitank ammo-belt which was supposed to simulate 12,7mm in 1/87 scale... A bit out of size for this intended purpose, but looking good for 40mm!

IMG_0599_zpsaf742a0b.jpg[/url]

HAJO

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Hmm, would a lowered ramp not offer an even more greater field of fire? Today those helos with a ramp gunner always fly with an open ramp...

But thanks for the intel!

HAJO

The D and Fs fly with the ramp down. The 240 mount is different than the 50 cal mount that they used in Vietnam. I believe that is the reason they flew with the ramp up. If the ramp was down the weapon would not be able to traverse up very much.

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I imagine that as the ACH-47A was not intended as a troop transport it was felt that having the ramp up might limit the field of fire, but offer a modicum of protection to the gunner. I know the fields of fire from the wing gunners were supposed to intersect to a degree, and this was probably the case with regards to the ramp gun too, so the issue of a limited fire ARC might not have been seen as that big a deal when compared to more gunner protection.

The development of the ramp gun subsystem for regular CH-47s seems to have lagged behind the development of the the forward door guns. No mention is made of the M41 in the Army Aviation Reference Data handbook I have dated 1968 for instance and its not authorized in any of the original iterations of the period TOEs for CH-47 equipped units. The issue of gunner protection might have played a part here too and there's the possibility that flying with the ramp down for rapid egress was a relatively late development with regards to the helicopter as a whole. Who wants to be the sucker to sit on that exposed ramp?

To further illustrate this, while rarely operated in this fashion from the available pictures I have, the ramp mount for the CH/HH-3E had a stowed position that involved sliding the mount to the rear so that the ramp could be closed, indicating at least to me that at least initially flying with the ramp down in that case was not necessarily universal either. I believe the ramp gun mount on the CH-46 is a relatively recent development too.

Edited by thatguy96

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Lookin' good. I think this might offer you some more inspiration. From the film collection of the USAAM. No sound, but still pretty interesting.

Ray

Edited by rotorwash

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Thanks, I will take a closer look this evening.

Another question: Looking at the pics that show gunners/crewmembers, I have the impression that FLAK-vests were NOT part of their usual dressing. Is that correct?

HAJO

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Thanks, I will take a closer look this evening.

Another question: Looking at the pics that show gunners/crewmembers, I have the impression that FLAK-vests were NOT part of their usual dressing. Is that correct?

HAJO

Hopefully someone more versed in the Go Go birds will come along to answer that. It looks to me like some are wearing chicken plates while others are not and some may be wearing FLAK-vests. My guess is it was crew preference more than anything else. I just realized you can't make the video full screen. Follow the link below to get the full screen version.

Ray

Edited by rotorwash

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Some progress on the interiour: The 12,7mm boxes are from the Eduard-set, which unfortunately doesn´t provide the 20mm boxes. These have been scratched by me, standing here in front of the helo.

IMG_0657_zpsd9c8bb86.jpg

The whole 20mm-box-setup is a little bit too long, but that will be hardly visible once the helo is closed. Hope you guys don´t mind. ;)

A big thanks to Rotorwash for the video, but I think I saw at least some parts of that video with sound somewhere else on youtube?! Great stuff anyway, and surely an inspiration for the gunners and the things and lumps & bumps in the cabin. Like smoke-grenades, personal weapons, boxes, stuff...

HAJO

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Boxes glued into place, also the small ducts that lead the 20mm-ammo into the stubwing.

IMG_0661_zps122cd4e7.jpg

You can also see my first tries to scratch something that may represent a 20mm-ammo-belt in the peg. I used a small strip of paper and stretched sprue. I think it will look the part when I cut it into the correct length and paint it...

IMG_0663_zps332ae4f2.jpg

Question: The 12.7mm and their ammunition. I have seen both kinds of feeding: Simple belt-fed and ammo-chutes. Any insights?

Belt-fed:

9003.jpg

Chute-fed:

8389.jpg

HAJO

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Quite easy to imagine that the feed chuting might have been seen as restrictive by some and subsequently dispensed with. Same thing happened with the feed chuting on the M23 for the UH-1.

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So, do I unserstand correctly, you think that the more simple ammo-belts would have been used later on after the chutes proved unreliable? (sorry, non-native english-speaking is kicking in here... ;) )

HAJO

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So, do I unserstand correctly, you think that the more simple ammo-belts would have been used later on after the chutes proved unreliable? (sorry, non-native english-speaking is kicking in here... ;)/> )

HAJO

It's not so much that chutes are unreliable as it is that they are a pain in the backside to reload and tend to limit flexibility and field of fire. I think the chutes seemed like a good idea when the system was being tested stateside but were later abandoned in country in favor of quicker reload times and possibly increased field of fire.

Ray

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