IPMS USA appreciates Revell USA sending us this model, and I also give the nod to our leadership within the reviewer corps for forwarding me the kit to review.
A personal note concerning the actual aircraft: To use an Eagle painted on an Eagle, what a great recruiting tool!!! Eye-catching and unique, interesting markings, and even this older version F-15C is still a viable Air Superiority weapon. When I first saw it I was skeptical, but having built this kit, I found the scheme rather well thought-out and not overbearing. Not just another gray airplane.
The first picture will be the copyright on the interior spine of the Model: 1979. Back then this dates the kit as one of Monogram’s front-line kits being released with the modeling community in mind. Excellent (for the time) cockpit detail, deep intakes, and modern armament on board. The molds have worn well, and the details are still sharp after several re-releases. I also did not use putty on this build; wanted buyers to see what could be done straight out of the box.
Since this was a putty-free build, a note on fit: the only really large gaps I found were the vertical stab attachments, the underside leading edge seam, and the fit of the nose radome to the rest of the fuselage. The fuselage nose attachment to the main fuselage was actually pretty good, as you can see. It has a positive tongue and slot fit on top and bottom. Also, the rear augmenter exhausts were not part of the original kit, and are slightly larger than the kit openings, which for purposes of this build were not addressed. The simplified construction is totally inaccurate (wedges verses actual straight brackets for each nozzle section) so it was not worth the extra effort in this build. If you are going to use the early nozzles with turkey feather aerodynamic plates, they fit much better.
I also opted to leave off the missiles and 5th outboard wing pylon with the ECM pod, as I figured the aircraft was probably used for demo flights, and the ECM option is not applicable. The missiles are basic one-piece AIM-7 Sparrows and AIM-9L Sidewinders. The sidewinders are particularly well-detailed and worth tossing in the spares box.
In the current guise, the Idaho Air National Guard celebratory flagship is highlighted on a glossy decal sheet as large as the box itself. More on this later. But the rest of the box contains 89 parts in clear and gray plastic. The clear parts are packed in their own bag for protection, and the rest of the parts are bagged as well to keep them in one container. The current instruction sheet is acceptable, the normal picture drawings without much explanation; pointy-talkie. Marking and painting diagrams are actually well done.
Engineering for this kit was good for the time. The intake assembly has multiple parts including vari-ramps with blocking plates at the end to paint black and hide the lack of full intake trunking. Side walls to the intakes are separate, and require careful installation to avoid seams. They call this a level 4 kit, for what reason I don’t know. I’m pretty certain a devoted modeler with a few kits behind them could handle the model. The decals provided are clearly aimed at the younger crowd who don’t have all the tools and skills.
The basic cockpit is an early version, so if you plan to build more modern versions, use PE aftermarket or scratchbuild. The cockpit has excellent detail which basic paint, wash and drybrushing brings out. This worked well in the aft electronics bay. These are now painted white, but used to be a greenish-blue tinted anti-corrosion coated color. The instrument panel is getting a little faint, but is still there. The company did not use a decal for the panel, which is ok if you drybrush carefully. Otherwise, you are on your own.
The wheels are early “A” model F-15 spoked versions; no later “C” wheels are provided. Also, the outer wing ECM pod and pylon are included. I have never seen an Eagle use this pod, but if you have pictures, share before shooting me. In my case, spares box item and fill the mounting holes.
The arrestor hook can be either up or down. I recommend up unless you are doing a post-emergency barrier landing diorama.
The kit includes two excellent figures, typical of Monogram heritage kit contents. The pilot fits perfectly and was painted up and installed on the early STENCIL II ejection seat common on early F-15A’s. The correct ACES II seat is not included in this kit. The crew chief is looking for a trip to the Chief’s office, as he’s got the headset and mouth-cup intercom set on over his hat. “Detected Safety Violation”, or potential FOD (Foreign Object Damage) hazard while on the flightline. The uniform is particularly well done, and was painted to resemble the current “international war location” USAF ground crew uniform. The base for the crewman was sheet spare styrene, cut and sanded to fit.
Unlike another company’s recent older re-release of an F-15 I did a few months ago, this kit has positive wing attachment and better fit. The stabilators are mounted to the upper fuselage half in one piece, neutral. You can cut them free and I’d do it if I was hanging on to the kit.
This model is a great trip down memory lane for us older builders, and the decals are a perfect recruiting tool for the Air Force. 75 years ago, can it be so? Again, thanks to Revell for providing a valid re-release, and IPMS USA for the review space!
F-15C by Monogram/Revell
I have built this kit several times. I find this model not too bad. Yes there are places that do need putty and other places not. I like the cockpit and it looks quite nice. Yes replace the ejection seat kit one is not right. In 1985 I gotten a first place with this kit. I did it in the two tone ghost gray with the kit decals and more. Could have at least 400 decals but I am not too sure. I plan to get another one again real soon. Have fun and enjoy building it.
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