1:00 Scale Metal Die-Cast – AgustaWestland Merlin HC.3 – Length: 7.75" Rotor Span: 7”
This Merlin HC.3 is very detailed, it has various windows and view ports throughout. The rotors are free to rotate and despite their small size, you can see the links and connectors as in the real thing. A stand where the model can be attached for display is included and the model's info (type of aircraft, squadron name, base and country).
The maker of the model, Italeri, really did a good job with the model, the panel lines and details are very clear and crisp.What really caught my attention, however, is the way the markings and coloring are done. At 1/100 scale, these models are in the range of 5.5 to 7 inches long, and although not as big as their 1/72 cousins, the details in the markings is very impressive. I looked at them under a magnifying glass (just out of curiosity) and one could actually read the text in the markings.
These models come in what could be described as a blister pack (sandwiched between two transparent plastic shells and then glued/attached to a piece of cardboard with the branding info. Some bigger models (say the A-10 or F-15) will have the same blister pack inside a simple box, but at the end, the packaging is supposed to be disposable and with the sole function protecting the model.
Unlike bigger models, there is nothing to assemble for these models. All weapons and fuel tanks are already attached to the model. One just needs to open the pack and display it (or play with it).
The packaging labels these model as "Collectible Product" and "Not suitable for children under 14 years". I say these are PERFECT to collect and play. At 1/100 scale, space will not be a limiting issue (nor will price, for that matter) and the size and weight is almost designed to be played with, since it can be securely held with one hand. Could it survive a 7 year old? I say yes. Maybe the antennas and weapons might detach but the model itself should remain in one piece.
The AgustaWestland AW101 is a medium-lift helicopter used in both military and civil applications. It was developed by joint venture between Westland Helicopters in the UK andAgusta in Italy in response to national requirements for a modern naval utility helicopter. Several operators, including the armed forces of Britain, Denmark and Portugal, use the nameMerlin for their AW101 aircraft. It is manufactured at factories in Yeovil, England andVergiate, Italy; licensed assembly work has also taken place in Japan and the United States.
Prior to 2007, the aircraft had been marketed under the designation EH101. The original designation was EHI 01 but a transcription error of a handwritten note changed this to EH101and the designation stuck. In 2000, Westland Helicopters and Agusta merged to formAgustaWestland, leading to the type's redesignation as AW101. The AW101 first flew in 1987, and entered into service in 1999. Since the AW101's introduction it has replaced several older helicopter types such as the Sikorsky S-61, performing roles such as medium-sized transport,anti-submarine warfare, and ship-based utility operations.
The Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) operates a variant of the AW101, designated CH-149 Cormorant, in the air-sea rescue role. Another variant, designated VH-71 Kestrel, was developed to serve in the US presidential transport fleet, however the program was cancelled. Civil operators also use AW101s in roles such as passenger and VIP transportation. The type has been deployed to active combat theatres, such as in support of coalition forces during theIraq War and the War in Afghanistan.