The Westland Wessex has its origins in the Sikorsky HSS-1/H-34 series, and the Wessex HAS1 was the first frontline helicopter to be powered by a free power turbine, this being the Napier Gazelle. First entering service in July 1961. The addition of a larger dorsal fairing complete with radome and more advanced avionics resulted in over 40 HAS1ís being designated HAS3 and entering service in 1967.
Serving mainly in an anti submarine role the HAS3 was in the course of being phased out in favour of the Westland Lynx when the Falklands Conflict broke out in 1982. HAS3ís from 737 Squadron Fleet Air Arm served in the South Atlantic aboard HMS Antrim and HMS Glamorgan.
Opening the sturdy box youíll find a plastic bag containing the two main sprues. Inside this is a smaller plastic bag containing the clear parts. Separate to these are the instruction leaflets and decal sheet.
The sprues are moulded from blue plastic and thereís only a minimal amount of flash. Panel lines are engraved and what detail is included is crisply moulded. Cockpit detail is limited and due to the large interior area that will be visible when complete many modellers would want to add some details here. Instrumentation is represented by a decal.
These come in a 10 page A4 booklet,with well drawn diagrams guiding you through the assembly process. Basic assembly looks straightforward enough but on a closer inspection there are some quite vague directions for drilling holes, shaving some detail away, and cutting plastic back for fitting small parts, (steps) on the side of the fuselage (Sections 4,7 and 8). The holes that require drilling in section 4 look to be locating holes for the bottom part of the undercarriage.
So perhaps this isnít going to be as straightforward a build as first appears. A small rigging diagram is also included for the ariels along the side of the fuselage.
Painting and decal options
2 schemes are offered. Both depict an HAS3 operating from HMS Antrim by 737 Squadron. The first being and yellow, blue grey scheme from 1980 (The box artwork scheme), and an all over blue grey from the Falklands Conflict 2 years later.
All decals are well printed and in register. As is usual with Revell kits, paint colours are suggested by a mixture of their own brands. The blue/grey being a mixture of 3 colours. Personally, I will be looking for an alternative, off the shelf colour.
Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AeroScale.
Highs: Nice detail and engraved panel lines.Lows: Vague and confusing instructions in some areasVerdict: Should build into a nice reprensentation of the HAS3.I shall be building this over the next few weeks and hopefully I'll be able to decifer the instructions by then.
About Nigel Julian (lampie) FROM: ENGLAND - EAST MIDLANDS, UNITED KINGDOM
Restarted modelling in late 2005 after a break of over 20 years.Built a lot of armour as a teenager but now concentrating on WW2 aircraft.
Some skills are coming straight back to me and Im learning new ones everytime I log on to this site it seems.