Hi my fellow modelers, this is my 1/72nd scale Academy AH-64D, The newest AH-64D kit in 1/72nd class. I'm very happy when knowing Academy had been releasing their AH-64D in 1/72nd class. The kit is very nice, well detailed, the
fitting quality is good too, everything went straightforward and I was enjoying to building it. I almost built it OOB, the modification only on flattening the bottom of the tires so it can look weighted.
We know the color for Apache or another US Army Helos is FS 34031 "US Army Helo Drab" but at this time I don't have this type on my stash so I'd chosen Tamiya XF-51 Khaki Drab, because it's look similar with FS 34031 for me. I'd sprayed XF-51 over black based surface so this technique can give you darker shade than grey primer.
Academy on this kit gives 6 options for your marking AH-64D, 4 markings for AH-64D Block II (early) and 2 marking for AH-64D Lot 4, finally I'd chosen marking to B Company, 1-3 Aviation "Vipers" 3rd Infantry Division of US Army, because their shark mouth nose art is cool and this marking had been showing the unit when they had served in Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003, When 3rd Infantry Division served in Iraq 2003, they still use early model of AH-64D in this case AH-64D with s/n: 99-5102 is AH-64D lot 4 so you need full attention when building this model because Academy give you all details for built AH-64D Block II and early AH-64D in one box.
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The decal has designed by CrossDelta and has printed by Cartograph, the decal's quality is so thin, make you easy to sticking it onto your model but I got some troubles when had freed the small stencils, because the film carrier of the decal so thin, it's made stencil easily folds itself when you try to sticking it onto your model.
Academy's 1/72nd AH-64D give you standard armaments for AH-64D: M230 Chain Gun, Hydra 70 mm rockets and Hellfire missiles. The rocket pod M261 had made with 2 options, 1st option is for empty rocket tubes and 2nd option for filled with fully of Hydra 70 mm rocket heads. The Hellfire that Academy give is Hellfire with Laser Head seeker but unfortunately, Academy give the oldest Hellfire stencils style or Hellfire I than Hellfire II which is always carried by AH-64D families.
Aysmmetric loadout is always catching our eyes because this style will give you differentiation among the scale models, so I'd chosen asymmetric loadout for my AH-64D with 1 x M261 with full of Hydra rockets and 2 x Hellfire II (AGM-114L) and 2 x AGM-114K on Hellfire's quadruple launcher for starboard side stub wing and 1 x 230 gallon external fuel tank (EFT) and 1 x AGM-114L and 3 x AGM-114K on Hellfire's quadruple launcher for portside stub wing. The EFT, I take from Hasegawa HH-60D 1/72nd. The AGM-119L is Hellfire II with head seeker contained by millimeter wave radar, for the radar head, I'd chopped the Brimstone missile head from weapons set of Hasegawa Eurofighter Typhoon 1/72nd and it had glued onto Academy's Hellfire and I'd made small hole at the Hellfire's tail for motor rocket exhaust.