historyThe Piasecki H-21 Workhorse/Shawnee is an American helicopter, the fourth of a line of tandem rotor helicopters designed and built by Piasecki Helicopter (later Boeing Vertol). Commonly called the "flying banana", it was a multi-mission helicopter, utilizing wheels, skis, or floats.
The H-21 was originally developed by Piasecki as an Arctic rescue helicopter. The H-21 had winterization features permitting operation at temperatures as low as −65 °F (−54 °C), and could be routinely maintained in severe cold weather environments.
The H-21 was one of the most successful early helicopter designs, and served in military and civilian services in several Western countries during the Cold War.
the modelThe first H-21 kit in 1/48 was produced in the 1950s by Helicopters for Industry. Later offered by Aurora, this kit was a long-sought collectors item for many years. Finally, a more modern (although short-run) kit was offered by Fonderie Miniature which is the subject of this build.
This kit needs some serious work to turn it into a decent model. Extra detail is needed almost everywhere and fitting the clear nose is a challenge. Because the model was to depict an abandoned example, some of the details added depicted the typical scrap which finds its way into abandoned airframes over the years. The glazing was cut away from the nose cover framing and the rotors folded. The rotor supports had to be scratchbuilt, and the vertical fins were taken from the Special Hobby kit to depict the larger fins fitted to later airframes which are not included in the FM kit.
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