Airfix 1/72 Cessna 0-1 E/F Bird Dog
21st. TASS, Phu Cat, Vietnam
Well, thank you to Paul's Bods for encouraging me to start a blog. Not having modelled for about 25 years, I don't have much to post, but I have got bits and pieces from the past.
I'll begin with the 0-1 Bird Dog which is the only model I've completed so far since my return to the hobby.
The Bird Dog was used as a Forward Air Control aircraft in Vietnam. It had no defensive weapons and regularly flew close to the ground looking for targets or downed airmen needing rescued. It usually carried white phospherous rockets to mark the position of ground targets and then would direct fast bombers in. The 0-1 pilots were often experienced fast jet pilots and were extremely brave being shot at by almost anything on the ground! They were feared by the North Vietnamese Army and the Viet Cong because when a Bird Dog was circling above them, they knew big trouble wasn't far behind!
The model itself is good and the only one available at this scale. The only problem with the kit is the transparencies which are far too thick. Pavla produce a resin aftermarket set with a vacform transparency. I just used the kit transparencies apart from the ones on the roof which were made from clear acetate.
The completed model is photographed here passing an idol high in the mountains and about to mark a convoy of lorries in the valley below.