Republic F-105 Thunderchiefs 
[Trumpeter 1/72]
designer

F-105 model in 1/72 scale
TRUMPETER: kit modelling report & review 

Modelling report
   
The Republic F-105 Thunderchief was designed in the mid fifties as a high-speed fighter-bomber to primarily drop a single nuclear bomb on the enemy target. First flight was October 1955. Soon the F-105 was particularly used in the old fashioned bombing role during the Vietnam conflict. The F-105 suffered large losses during the Vietnam war with almost half of the aircraft lost, due to enemy fighter intercepts but also SAM surface-to-air missiles. 

The F-105D was the most common single seat ground support version. Also a two-seat F-105 variant was developed with a navigator / system man that enabled accurate bombing. The F-105F was used as basis forthe F-105G Wild Weasel that was used to suppress enemy radar and attack SAM missile sites. ECM pods were fitted on the lower fuselage sides. The type was used until 1984. 

Some 833 F-105 were manufactured.

After issue'ing large 1/32 scale F-105 kits, Trumpeter also came with F-105 models in 1/72 scale at end of 2008: 

  • Kit #01617 for a F-105D
  • Kit #01618 for a F-105G Wild Weasel two seater


After issue'ing large 1/32 scale F-105 kits, Trumpeter also came with F-105 models in 1/72 scale at end of 2008: 

  • Kit #01617 for a F-105D
  • Kit #01618 for a F-105G Wild Weasel two seater


Each kit has very fine parts, about 100 light grey parts each in a sturdy box. Panel lines are nicely done and in the correct place and nice riveting. But all parts have flash, so some work is needed on all parts with sandpaper to get a good joint. And the kit moulds is new..... 

The accuracy is a bit of a question, the noses of the F-105 models look a bit too pointy and the vertical fin on the F-105G a bit too small. It was decided however to do a straight out of the box build. Otherwise, the pile of kits never gets finished....

 
F-105D
The cockpit parts are OK, but I replaced the seat with resin PAVLA seat set #S72049. Also, the cockpit will benefit from additional detailing. The tub sits deep inside the fuselage so is not very well visible. 

First, complete the overall assembly before fitting the undercarriage to prevent damaging these parts. Do this at step 15. 

The fuselage ventral fin a much too thick, so sand thinner. 

Inside the fuselage, I missed an exhaust pipe fan. Also the pipe should be fitted more aft. 

The wing tips are seperate parts, filler was needed here. Nice are the separate flaps and ailerons but the lower gaps needs filler as well on the flaps. 

The wing-fuselage joint was OK, but the radarnose fit of the fuselage needs filler. As noted, the nose is a bit too pointy but it was used as per kit. 

The gear leg doors #B11, B16 have no details inside, so inscribe some details. The wheel hubs shape is not very accurate but I used the kit parts anyway. 

Overall, the assembly was straight forward. Nicely done panel details and rivets. 

F-105G 
For the F-105G wild Weasel, in general the same comments apply. The ventral fin is again much too thick. 

The vertical tail/fin is also too small for a two seater Wild Weasel. But I simply made the kit as is. 


The armament AGM-78 Standard missile is 3 mm too short in length and this is noticeable. So it was not used. I got one from a Hasegawa weapons set IV.

 


The kit F-105D decals are for these schemes: 

1/ F-105D, 61-0183, 334 TFS/4 TFW, with a Sharkmouth but it is not accurate for this squadron.
2/ F-105D, 61-0132, 334 TFS/4 TFW, but again the unit markings are not accurate. 
3/ F-105D, 62-4375, 466 TFS/419 TFW but the tail code is not accurate. 

The F-105G Wild Weasel decals were only partly used as a MicroScale set was used that I had in my decalbox. 

I suggest to check reference books and get additional or other decals from for example MicroScale/ Superscale sets #72-456 and 72-368. Also, the blue in the US Stars-and-bars is too blue'ish. Replace these markings as well. The USAF markings are also better replaced. 
 


The F-105D got a metal scheme as per kit scheme "A" using ALCLAD II paint system. 

A gloss black base coat was applied with the airbrush first as per ALCLAD instructions. The olive coloured panels like on the spine were first masked and sprayed. After drying, the ALCLAD II gloss aluminium ALC-105 was applied with the airbrush.

The gun bay was kept open and is in the kit. 

When setting the main gear doors, make sure their lower edge runs parallel to the ground. Also, the refuelling probe is seen here as well. The flaps were set drooped down. 

The decals were applied as usual, but many stencils were replaced by better ones as noted above from MicroScale. 
Also, I needed to paint some areas at the rear scopes of the 

The canopy frames painted and final small details like antennas added. 

A bullpup missile as in the kit was added as well as the large fueltank. Anti-collision lights were painted. Some tiny mirrors were made and fitted inside the windscreen.  

The model got a wash of Promodeller wash black and Tamiya clear Smoke in areas, like the wheelbays.

The result....

Note the nice movable exhaust petals. 
The model looks quite nice, even as almost made straight out of the box!


and set in a scenery....


This model of the  F-105G Wild Weasel was given a scheme in Vietnam style camouflage, using:
FS34102 medium green using Mr.Hobby Gunze Sangyo acrylic #303
FS34079 green drab Gunze Sangyo acrylic #309
FS30219 brown Gunze Sangyo acrylic #310
FS36622 lightgrey / white Gunze Sangyo acrylic #311

Microscale set #72-456 had nice markings for the US Air National Guard 128 TFS at Georgia, called "Peach" around 1983. It was the last operational F-105G.

The colours were airbrushed by hand, the Harder Steinbeck airbrush enables this.


Note the seat straps made from tape and painted. Inside the canopies, tiny locks were added made from strip. 

.... and some pylons and stores added with the result....


and in a scenery....

Two nice 1/72 models in the collection, although not perfect they are nice next to my over 20 years old Hasegawa F-105D
 

Reference books:
  • Walk Around F105 Thunderchief, #23, Squadron/Signal Publications
  • F-105 Thunderchief, by Bert Kinzey, Detail & Scale, Vol.8
  • Thunderchief, F105, Warpaint #38  by Kev Darling
  • Wings of Fame Journal Vol 18.
  • KokuFan Japan of November 1980
  • Warbirds illustrated #49, F-105, Robert F Dorr 

Internet:
 
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Created November 23, 2012;
update 2021