Tupolev Tu-22RD Blinder


Soviet Blinder in 1/72 scale: modelling report using the ESCI kit by Meindert de Vreeze
The Tupolev Blinder was a Soviet bomber that was designed during the cold war. It served in huge numbers in the former USSR, a limited number now still in service.

The Blinder appeared in various versions. ESCI from Italy issued a kit back in 1982, together with a "Backfire" kit. This was quite welcome as Soviet aircraft kits of such a large subject were at the time quite rare. 

The ESCI model is in-accurate in dimensional sense. As no accurate information was available at the time, ESCI had to use some basic information only which resulted in a number of big errors in the kit.

NOTE: MODELSVIT has released a much better kit in 2016.

Surprisingly however, the kit can be corrected to represent an accurate Blinder model in 1/72. However, it takes effort to do so, but lets begin...
 


 
The wings are very accurate in plan view, only the main lower wheelbays need to corrected as reducing the aft section onf the undercarriage doors. Also, the "cano's" were sanded to be a little less blunt at the rear.

The fuselage nose contour needs refining as to make a more pintier impression.

The fuselage itself was lengthened 30 mm (1,2 inch) just before the wing ledaing edge.

The biggest inaccuracy of the kit is in the rear fuselage section. The nacelles were shortened 10 mm and the complete fairing and engine stubwings re-built. This is quite a job.

The tailfin was reduced 6 mm in height.

The horizontal tail stabilizers were corrected to give a larger 4 degree sweep by removing root sections.

The undercarriage legs have to be detailed with the boogie installation. Use new nose wheels as the ESCI kit's nose wheels are far to small. The nose undercarriage bay was moved 10mm more aft and reduced 10 mm in length. 

A Soviet Blinder is most striking in a metal finish, so I sprayed 9at that time) various coats of Testor metal paints, overcoating with Johnson Clear Varnish, re-spraying and adding details with a paint brush. White panels are also scattered around the airframe.
Do not forget to polish carefully as sanding scratches come through when not done nicely.

Decals with the stars came from ESCI kit and spare decal box. 
 



 


The model was detailed with the interesting downwards firing ejection seats. Therefore, three openings were made and the interior detailed.

Three seats were made and in addition, a large Kitchen missile was added inside the lower midsection- fuselage. 


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Back to 1/72 jet models page.......

References:
- Tupolev Blinder and Backfire, ALTAIR, Poland 1995, (includes excellent drawings)
- World Air Power, Summer 1998, Volume 33


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Created November 26, 2000 ;
Page updated June 2016