Calibre Wings

Calibre Wings Recalibrates

Calibre Wings’ 1:72 scale JASDF Grumman F-14J “Mona Cat” Fleet Defense Fighter – 3rd Tactical Fighter Squadron

Originally launched under the Imaginarium moniker, Calibre Wings has decided to rebrand its fantasy-based category by calling the new selection “Dream Cats”. The idea here is to tweak an existing model without going through the added expense of actually retooling the mold – a makeover of sorts by applying ahistorical “what if” liveries and schemes to operational aircraft. In the case of their F-14 Tomcat, the Company has elected to apply a familiar Japanese scheme typically seen on their F-1 and F-2 jets and calling the new aircraft a “Mona Cat”, then finishing by assigning it to the JASDF’s 3rd Tactical Fighter Squadron. It’ll be interesting to see if collectors warm to the idea of adding models to their collection that never saw service with the nationality or squadron depicted. Its certainly a novel concept, and helps to defray the cost of producing the mold, so we hope it “takes off” with aviation enthusiasts world over.

 
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Calibre Wings Shows Off More in the way of Suhkoi

Some manufacturers we don’t hear from for months on end while others seem loathe to dropping the mic anytime soon. Such is the case with Calibre Wings, who today posted pictures of yet another Suhkoi aircraft – the Su-17 “Fitter” fighter-bomber. The Su-17 is an ideal aircraft for model makers, one that can be modified, upgraded and retrofitted into both the Su-20 and Su-22. Since it was exported to seven countries around the world — from the Eastern bloc nations to a handful of Middle Eastern states — a wide array of liveries are also possible, some a bit more eclectic than others..A Yemeni Su-22, for example, may not be at the top of everyone’s wish list.

As a Cold War aircraft, the variable-wing Su-17 entered service way back in 1970 and, because of its endurance and numerous revisions, saw yeoman service in the near decade long war between Iran and Iraq, as well as the Russian incursion into Afghanistan. No fewer than 14 different Su-17 variants were fielded, from trainers to dedicated attack aircraft. While CAD drawings are making their way around the publicity circuit, its likely the first Su-17 won’t see service with the Calibre Wings’ air force until early 2019.

 
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Calibre Wings Increases Its Soviet Stars Series by One More Star

A battle for the hearts and minds of collectors is expected this autumn, as two modelmakers unleash their take on the Sukhoi Su-25 Frogfoot attack aircraft

Looking to give Hobby Master a run for the money in the world of modern-era combat aircraft, Calibre Wings showed off a rough prototype of its next 1:72 scale project — a Sukhoi Su-25 Frogfoot attack aircraft. Debuted on their Facebook page, the Frogfoot, as NATO calls it, is one of those aircraft that can be displayed in a number of different configurations and liveries, none of which steps on the other in terms of sales potential. And, if you’re like me, enjoy aircraft with loads of ordnance and hardpoints to affix them to, then the Frogfoot scratches an itch and then some, thanks to a near infinite supply of different forms of weaponry.

Its not clear when the Frogfoot is expected or which aircraft will likely be replicated first, although we’re confident they’ll show up after Calibre Wings’ Su-24 Fencers have churned up the battlefield some time this summer.

 
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Calibre Wings Takes its Cue from Hobbyists

An F-14 “Monacat”, the inaugural offering in Calibre Wings’ all-new Imaginarium series

At this year’s Shizuoka Hobby Show in Japan, Calibre Wings touted a new line of model aircraft called their Imaginarium Series. According to their Facebook post, it appears as if this sub category is inspired by several accomplished model builders, all of whom have gone to great lengths to make their creations look as realistic as possible. The first warplane in the series has been dubbed a Monacat, which is a JASDF warplane clad in a dark/light blue paint scheme layered atop much of the upper surfaces of the aircraft. No word as to how many models will be offered in the series, and whether special packaging will be used to make them stand out from their standard aircraft series. Calibre Wings did indicate that pricing will not be affected by the usage of master modelers to create some of their more imaginative projects. Meanwhile, they have also created another new umbrella line called Soviet Stars, which, as the name infers, focuses on aircraft produced for the Soviet and Russian Air Forces

Calibre Wings 1:72 rendition of the F-16 Fighting Falcon, complete with removable engine, engine dolly and open/closed exhaust nozzle

In other news, Calibre Wings drew back the curtain on prototypes of their F-16C/D Block 50/52 Fighting Falcon in 1:72 scale, one carrying twin conformal fuel tanks attached to the upper surface of the aircraft running along its center line, and the other boasting an updated sensor suite fixed atop its dorsal spine. The F-16 will feature a removable engine and engine dolly, so it can be displayed in a landed position with its engine removed and seemingly undergoing overhaul by its ground crew. An interchangeable nose cone and crew access ladder are also included. Again, no word as to pricing, dates of availability or which livery they plan to replicate first.

Calibre WIngs’ 2nd F-16 prototype boasts twin conformal fuel tanks running alongside the center line of the aircraft

 
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Calibre Does the F-16 Justice But will others Follow Suit?

Calibre Wings adds the F-16 to its ever-expanding line up of 1:72 scale aircraft. Look for several of the more advanced F-16s to be modeled first ahead of the legacy aircraft

Never one to sit on their laurels, Calibre Wings has officially gone on record to indicate plans for modelling the venerable F-16 Falcon. As you can see from the accompanying CAD diagram, plans initially call for modelling several of the more advanced F-16s, beginning with the Block 50/52 Plus which features bulbous Conformal Fuel Tanks (CFT) attached to the center line of the aircraft. CFTs are external, pod-like fuel reservoirs that are attached to the upper surface of the F-16’s fuselage, with the tank’s lower surface conforming to the aircraft’s shape. Further, the Block 50/52 sports a dorsal spine compartment for electronics, the APG-68(V9) radar, an On-Board Oxygen Generation System (OBOGS), and a JHMCS helmet.

According to research, “Poland took delivery of its first F-16C Block 52+ aircraft on September 15th, 2006. The “Poland Peace Sky program” includes 36 F-16Cs and 12 F-16Ds. All 48 aircraft were delivered in 2008. The Hellenic Air Force took delivery of its first F-16C Block 52+ aircraft on May 2nd, 2003. The Hellenic Air Force is the first Air Force in the world to operate this F-16 type. The total Greek order was 60 F-16C/D. The Israeli F-16I and its Singapore equivalent variant are based on the block 52+ aircraft. In March 2010, it was announced that the Egyptian Air Force would purchase 20 Block 52 aircraft (16 F-16Cs and 4 F-16Ds), the first of which arrived for testing in April 2012.” Therefore, its not clear which livery will be covered first and how many other variants will be included in their ambitious modelling program.

The Lockheed Martin F-16V configuration provides relevant combat capabilities in a scalable and affordable package. The core of the F-16V configuration is an Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, a modern commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based avionics subsystem, a large-format, high-resolution display; and a high-volume, high-speed data bus.

What makes this development so coincidental is that, according to The National Interest, earlier this month “the Slovak Republic has requested the sale of 14 advanced Lockheed Martin F-16V Block 70/72 Fighting Falcon fighters to replace its increasingly obsolete fleet of Soviet-built Mikoyan MiG-29 Fulcrums. The new jets would give the Slovak air force a huge boost in capability with the addition of advanced new sensors such as an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar and other capabilities that are not found onboard the Cold War-era Fulcrums.”

“The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Slovakia of F-16 Block 70/72 V configuration aircraft for an estimated cost of $2.91 billion,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement. “The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on April 3, 2018.”

Of all of the operators of the F-16 — and there are indeed many — it would be interesting if this tiny, former East Block nation would be the first to add this advanced aircraft to their inventory and do so at a time when many nations are looking towards obtaining low observable stealth aircraft as a means of guaranteeing their safety should an air war erupt.

 
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Calibre Wings Catches a Wave

Never one to shy away from the more intimidating projects, Calibre Wings unveiled their first-ever purpose-built display base designed to accommodate any of their F-14 Tomcats.The diorama is aimed at giving the model a sea-skimming appearance, kicking up a pair of waves as it rockets to its destination. According to the manufacturer, the twin supports shown in these photos will actually come in a transparent acrylic, which preserves the illusion of near-the-deck flying. No word on pricing or a release date just yet so keep your eyes peeled for further announcements if you’re interested in nabbing this cool-looking accessory. Ordering information should be passed along towards the end of April.

 
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Calibre Wings Reveals its No Longer on the Fence(r)

Calibre WIngs’ 1:72 scale Soviet Sukhoi Su-24M “Fencer” Attack Aircraft – “White 42”

Even as they continue to tease CAD drawings of their upcoming F-16 Fighting Falcon, Calibre Wings decided to post preliminary images of their upcoming Sukhoi Su-24. In development for at lease a year, the images for their first pair of Fencers reveal some of the detail we’ve come to expect from this relative newcomer to the diecast military space, even if the colors may need a little tweaking to get them to match real-world aircraft.

A second Fencer is in the hopper. A Ukranian Sukhoi Su-24MR “Fencer” Attack Aircraft – “Yellow 15”

Thus far, no hard-and-fast release information has surfaced, so we’re willing to bet that they’ll likely take wing in the summer, perhaps right after their second pairing of F-14 Tomcats make it to market.

 
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Calibre Wings Looks Ahead to 2018 with their Fencer

Ordinarily, with the holiday rush in full swing, we tend to add blog posts that have something to do with products currently available. This year we are making an exception, largely to help newcomer Calibre Wings get some traction as we enter the new year and put them on a more equal footing with some of the more entrenched players.

Earlier today, the Company release several first test shots for their upcoming 1:72 scale Sukhoi Su-24 “Fencer” attack aircraft. While unpainted and still showing areas where plastic is being used as opposed to metal, the imagery does give collectors an idea as to how far along they are with this project as well as their commitment to quality and craftsmanship. Noel Lee, managing director for Calibre Wings, also had this to say about their newest tooling:

1) There will be air intake covers and nozzle covers, these will be made from soft PVC.

2) The pitot tube looks bent because the PVC used during this test shot was too soft. We may change the pitot tube to a hard plastic if the subsequent harder PVC still proves to be unsatisfactory.
Due to the length of the pitot tube, it may not hold the shape very well if it was not a straight forward hard plastic. But I am trying to have it PVC, to prevent any accidental breakage.

3) The ordnance will be shown later since at this point of the test shot, the “giove vane” (if I got the term right) pylon is not yet adhered due to the lack of mounting holes on the underside of the model.

4) You can see clearly the differential between the M & MR versions on our test shot, which was previously not visible during the Nuremberg prototype.

5) The wings are sagging at the moment, again, due to the 1st test shot, there are areas that supports the wing that is not yet enough filled with material.

6) The ejection seat is wrongly sized and will be re-done to be made taller to fit the seated pilot

7) We are considering the use of magnets to adhere the landing gear “cartridges” (gear down and gear up) instead of using press fit.

8) The removal of the air intake covers requires the removal of the entire front section of the air intake piece.

9) The canopy will be provided as separate pieces for open position and closed position. This is due to constraint for having a more uni-body front fuselage and hence there is no space for assembly of a movable canopy.

 
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Calibre Wings Hints at More Aircraft for 2018

A trio of new warbirds are slated to join the Calibre Wings air armada, including the vaunted Sukhoi Su-25 “Frogfoot” ground attack aircraft

Some times it doesn’t take much to cause a stir online. Early last night, Calibre Wings posted new pix on their Facebook account, suggesting, in rather subliminal form, that three more warbirds will be added to their foot locker in 2018. The three images include a French Dassault Rafale multirole fighter, Russian Sukhoi SU-25 “Frogfoot” ground attack aircraft and Russian MiG 35 multirole fighter. Earlier in the week, as part of the run-up to the upcoming San Diego Comic Con convention, the Company also indicated plans to offer Robotech merchandise, although this range will be offered to a new distributor that caters to a significantly different market. On the surface, it would appear as if this relatively new manufacturer plans on ramping up in a big way, competing with the likes of Hobby Master, Century Wings and Air Force 1 for their own stake in the modern military space.

 
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Robo-Wings or Calibre-Tech? You Decide…

 

Just when you thought you had things figured out comes word that one of our newest manufacturers seems to be headed down an unexpected road. Earlier today, Calibre Wings posted a titillating teaser on their Facebook page which indicated, in rather unabashed form, that they will soon be offering Robotech-related merchandise.

Robotech is a science fiction franchise that began with an 85-episode science fiction anime television series cartoon adaptation produced by Harmony Gold USA in association with Tatsunoko Production and first released in the United States in 1985. It was adapted from three original and unrelated – though visually similar – Japanese anime television series (Super Dimension Fortress Macross, Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross, and Genesis Climber Mospeada) to make a series suitable for syndication.

In the series, Robotechnology refers to the scientific advances discovered in an alien starship that crashed on a South Pacific island. With this technology, Earth developed robotic technologies, such as transformable mecha, to fight three successive extraterrestrial invasions. (courtesy Wikipedia)

Presently, we have no idea as to what they plan to offer, although the image does hint that more information is forthcoming at the soon-to-debut Comic Con Convention being held in San Diego from July 20th-23rd.

Unveiled at the San Diego Comic Con on July 21st, Calibre Wings’ first pair of Robotech F-14s are shown here.

 
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