G-4 Super Galeb in 1/72 scale: building the YuMo kit
In the communist republic Yugoslavia the "Aeronautical Institute" designed in the 1970s the Super Galeb G-4 trainer (or designated Type N-62). The type was manufactured by SOKO in Mostar and first flight was in 1978. It was to replace the G-2 Galeb and some 85 Super Galebs built until 1991. It had a Rolls Royce Viper 632 engine and could fly some 920 km/hr. During the Yugoslav Balkan wars, the aircraft flew attack missions fitted with gun pod and rocket pods. Later, several aircraft were allocated by the than separate states in former Yugoslavia of Serbia, Montenegro and one in Bosnia. Also Birma (Myanmar) has operated some 4 aircraft.
The kit is of the small plastic brand YuMo and is in scale 1/72. It was released earlier in 1998 as kit #A-001 and is now quire rare!
But I got a similar kit from my modelling friend Peter kit #A-002. Thank you Peter!
This kit #A-002 has a scheme and decals for the ACRO aerobatic team. There are in this short-run about 57 parts in darker grey plastic and nicely done recessed panellines. The parts are neat but there are some flash and sink marks.
The instructions are a bit small printed and need careful studying.
Markings are for the ACRO team:
Construction started with the fuselage. The cockpit tub is simple but decals are provided for the instruments. I also opted to use replacement seats which seem to be Martin Baker licensed Mk.8LC;
PAVLA set JS72028 has resin seats in 1/72:
Verified with the tub was if the seats fit. Often, resin seats do not fit in kits.... Thankfully here it is no issue, they fit!
The intakes of the kit do not fit well, use putty and sand. Also other areas need putty.
The wing-fuselage joints also needs filler (or white glue as alternative) but not a lot, just a bit filler. With a fine TIGER saw, the edges of the ailerons were sawed in, this looks better. With an Olfa P-Cutter also some panel lines of moving surfaces were inscribed a bit more.
Sand all areas and than a base grey coat of Revell 75 acrylic grey was airbrushed to reveal any flaws. Here a check was done to see if the PAVLA seats are set at the correct height.
It seemed some extra putty and sanding was again needed, so here we go....
After sanding another base grey was applied and it seemed OK now.
Detailling the airframe was now done. The 2 wing fence parts are too thick, I made new ones from thin plastic card.
There appears that always the lower tail airbrake is seen drooped down on parked Super Galebs. I did not bother to open up the brake fuselage bay itself but simply make an air brake from scrap plastic as seen here:
Detail parts like undercarriage were not yet installed but first the paint scheme applied.
It was decided to make another scheme of a Super Galeb for the "World Air Forces in Plastic" collection. The republic of Montenegro was one of the republics after the collapse of the former Yugoslavia after the fall of the "Iron Curtain".
Montenegro got some 15 G-4 Super Galebs in 2007. They had a camouflage pattern and light blue under surfaces. Also the fuel tanks and pylons as per kit were to be set in place so these were assembled and would get colour.
The acrylic colours selected were:
- lower areas light blue Revell Aqua 50 "lichtblau";
- upper grey Revell Aqua 57 "grau";
- upper green pattern Revell Aqua 39 "dunkelgrun"
Start with the lower areas with the airbrush. Next, masking was done and the next colours followed.
The cockpit interior colour seems to be turquoise, I used AKAN 73005 Emerald green acrylic.
The seats were painted black with green cushion/ parapack and got seat harnasses made from tape. The kit instrument decals were added and some bits and pieces such as a gun sight.
The canopy is one part, I separated the windscreen with a TIGER saw. The windscreen fits well and the inside frames were also painted.
NOTE: later on, it was decided to set the main canopy closed so I could have saved this trouble. Any gaps around the canopy were closed with white glue and painted when dried.
The undercarriage was fitted, there is a bit of kit detail inside the gear bays. Gear struts are mostly aluminium.
Montenegro markings had to be home made. The air forces roundels were seen in 2 varieties: a red disk and another complex type.
I tried to print the complex one on clear decal sheet but that did not turn out very well. So, the red disc roundel was applied instead using Japanese roundels with an additional round very light yellow border. This was done by putting below the red disk a light yellow cut circular decal. The flag was printed though on decal paper.
NOTE: a few years later I had new markings printed by a third party; these were set onto the older ones on the model.
The new made airbrake was set in place.
The model got an overall semi-matt varnish coat airbrushed with Johnson Future/ Pledge with 10% Tamiya X-21 "flat base" with the usual technique. Protect the canopy when applying the varnish.
Final details were antennas and pitot tube with a red colour. The central GSh-23 gun pod and two wing rocket pods were also installed as per kit.
[ area: 13,800 sq.km; capital: Podgorica; population 680,000 ; GDP nom. EUR 8,000 per capita ]
Montenegro is one of the former parts of Yugoslavia and in 2003 it formed a two state federation with Serbia. In 2006 Montenegro became independent after a referendum. Aircraft were obviously mainly obtained from the region as Mil helicopters, Utva 75 trainers and Soko G-4 Super Galebs. About 17 Super Galebs were transferred from Serbia in 2007 and were flown about 5 years until 2012. Current types are various Western helicopters like Gazelles, Agusta Bells 206, 212 and 412. No attack or fighter aircraft are currently flown. The main base is at the State capital Podgorica.
Soko Super Galeb G-4 of Montenegro
A nice model in the "World Air Forces in Plastic" collection....
References Super Galeb:
- Air international magazine: Vol.25 page 104, November 1980 ;
- World Air Power journal, Aerospace Publishing, Vol.20 , Spring 1995, page 18
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Created this page September 12, 2019