There is almost nothing more sinister looking than the silhouette of an AH-64 Apache with the sun rising in the background. It’s an iconic image that the world saw during Desert Storm that truly grasps the full meaning of shock and awe. For more than 30 years in service, the Apache fought and survived through many battles, evolved to Longbow and finally to Guardian version and will be present in some form on the battlefield of tomorrow annihilating enemy armor columns or providing ultimate reconnaissance and CAS for troops on the ground.
For any helicopter modeler, Apache in every form is very welcome. There are a number of options in 1/72 scale, few in 1/48 (with Hasegawa hailing as the best in every scale) and only a few in 1/32(35) that are either very old models or seriously under-detailed, so quality references are more than welcome. If you are looking to super-detail your model or fix omissions, WWP is here to cater for your early AH-64A Apache needs with the latest photo reference book: Apache in Detail part 1; AH-64A Variant in 30 Years’ Service. (B018)
Title: Apache in Detail part 1; AH-64A Variant in 30 Years’ Service
Publisher: Wings & Wheels Publications (WWP)
Authors: Ioannis Lekkas and František Kořán
Format: softcover (22x24 cm)
Color: full color
ISBN: SBN 978-80-87509-61-6
Retail Price: $41 (€32)
Nothing new to tell about the quality of WWP publications: the book is printed on high-quality paper and comprises of 120 pages filled almost exclusively with large high-res photographs of the subject showing all the possible detail inside and out, accompanied by short image captions. This particular title delivers over 350 color photographs and 25 manual drawings covering the Apache system in great depth. The book is organized in chapters which are color coded on the page edges, allowing easy navigation:
• Ah-64A Apache users
Texas National Guard, IAF, Hellenic Army Aviation (002-018)
TADS details (024-027)
FAB details (028-031)
Canopy exterior (032-034)
Front Cockpit (035-041)
Rear Cockpit (042-055)
Pilots helmets and display units (056-057)
30mm chain gun (058-061)
Gun ammo bay & feed chutes (062-065)
Gun ammo bay & feed chutes (062-065)
Landing gear (066-069)
Engine & transmission details (074-088)
Main rotor (089-091)
Fuselage dorsal bay (092-097)
Wing detail (098-103)
Ordnance & under-wing stores (104-109)
Tail wings & wheel (116-120)
The book opens with a short history and development, briefly outlining the development of AH-64A Apache along with some operational history. This chapter also includes several large (older) photographs of Apaches stationed in Europe. Since the A version is almost phased out from use, it’s nice to see WWP added beautiful images from users like the US National Guard and Israeli air force, and current user - the Hellenic AAV.
Probably everything you’ll need for the A version of this machine is covered through the walkaround. Images are focused precisely on the thing modelers need in detail. TADS detail chapter include images of TADS mounting plates without the sensor itself so you can detail this usually forgotten but still visible section. FAB details are amazing and what used to be top secret now is in plain sight. Both sides are well covered and show all the wiring details. Even a dull thing like the canopy is nicely depicted showing various wire cutters and bolt detail to the fullest.
The cockpit areas are where this book really shines for me. Gunner’s cockpit is very detailed with diagrams and high-res images showing the complexity of the weapon systems officer’s habitat. Everything is covered from several angles to ensure no details are skipped: from pedal to canopy – I mean everything. Pilots cockpit include images with the seat removed to show the intrinsic detail in the forward area and emphasis is given on minute things like the circuit breaker panel that dominates the glass. Cyclic and collective are shown to fine detail for both crewmembers as well as the “green-eyed-monster” – IHADS – Integrated helmet and display sight subsystem.
Starting with weapon systems for the Apache is the 30mm area suppression weapon; the fearsome chaingun. It’s covered from head to toe with detailed look on the gunbay and the ammo feed system.
Fuselage details provide images with almost every inspection and service panel open including engine bays with and without the T700-GE-701C power-plants installed. Anyone brave enough to tackle the massive transmission and scratchbuild something, this is also covered.
Rotor head and the blades are an area usually not detailed enough on OOB models, so here’s the place to look for details like tie-downs and cable routing.
Fuselage dorsal bay houses the transmission shaft for the rear rotor, huge amount of ducting and wiring and takes a lot of real-estate on the Apache. Good thing this book shows all the details inside and out.
Wings, as small as they may be on the AH-64, are crucial as they act as the delivery platform for M261 Hydra 70mm unguided rockets and AGM-114 Hellfire missiles. They are nicely covered with lots of detail photographs showing the exterior and interior structure of the wings and pylons. Main weapon systems (the Hellfire and the Hydra) are shown in detail with weapon loading diagrams to properly arm your model. Also included is a more common loadout option – single fuel tank, and some countermeasures in detail. Structural tail details with photographs and diagrams are provided for modelers looking to open up this area. Now you don’t have an excuse any more not to show this on one of your models. Tail wings, rotor and wheel details nicely wrap up this huge walkaround of this beast of a helicopter.
WWP managed to show almost everything worth knowing about an iconic aircraft and is an absolutely fantastic photo reference material covering the subject to great detail, both exterior and interior. Printed on high-quality paper, the photos are modeler-focused, large and clear, while the captions provide a very informative read, explaining various details presented in the photos.
Altogether, “Apache in Detail part 1; AH-64A Variant in 30 Years’ Service” from WWP is a fantastic photo reference book for modelers looking for super detailing reference, or anyone else interested to see what makes the Apache such a mesmerizing aerial weapon platform.
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Highs: Very modelling orientated, large and sharp images, multiple angle photos.Lows: None noted.Verdict: A very useful resource to have on your desk for modelling purposes. Has lots of interior and exterior shots that you just won't find on the web by casually surfing around.
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