Thursday, November 26

A new "killer" Superbug from Meng in 48th scale is on approach...

Meng has released the first of the images that look like a killer "Superbug", the F-18E Super Hornet in a new tooled kit. We take a look at some of the features of the Super Hornet and the CAD drawings with several great features in our preview...

Preview: Meng's new 48th scale Boeing F/A-18E Super Hornet

Boeing F/A-18E Super Hornet
From the Meng Model
Kit No #LS-012
1/48th scale
The Subject: The F/A-18E Super Hornet
The Boeing F/A-18E Super Hornet is a carrier-based multi-role tactical fighter and attack aircraft. The Super Hornet is powered by two General Electric F414-GE-400 afterburning turbofan engines with 22,000 pounds of thrust each. Two versions of the F/A-18 Super Hornet are being produced, the single-seat E model and the two-seat F model. Customers include the U.S. Navy and the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). As of January 2018, the U.S. Navy operates a fleet of 561 Super Hornets (284 F/A-18E and 257 F/A-18F). Furthermore, Boeing has delivered 24 F/A-18Fs to the RAAF.
With its selected external equipment, the Super Hornet can be optimized to accomplish both fighter and attack missions. The F/A-18E/F provides a 40% increase in combat radius, 50% increase in endurance, 25% greater weapons payload, three times more ordnance, and is five times more survivable than the F/A-18 Hornet models. These major performance improvements are mainly due to the superior F414-GE-400 engine, which is more powerful than the F404 used on the F/A-18 Hornet.
The Super Hornet is equipped with a Raytheon AN/APG-79 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar, which is integrated with the aircraft's AN/ASQ-228 Advanced Targeting Forward Looking Infrared (ATFLIR) targeting pod from Raytheon; the Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS); the Multifunctional Information Distribution System (MIDS); Advanced high capacity computer system; and state-of-the-art cockpit. Other systems onboard are the Raytheon AN/ALR-67(V)3 digital radar warning receiver (RWR), the BAE Systems/ Exelis AN/ALQ-214 Integrated Defensive Countermeasures (IDECM), the BAE Systems AN/ALE-47 countermeasures dispenser, Raytheon AN/ALE-50 towed decoy, and the Rockwell Collins AN/ARC-210 VHF/UHF Airborne Communications System. 
More recently, in January 2015, the U.S. Navy approved Lockheed Martin's IRST21 passive long-range sensor system for the F/A-18E/F. IRST21 uses infrared search and track technology to detect and track airborne threats. IRST21 is mounted on the nose section of the centre fuel tank.
Armament/Weapons: The F/A-18E/F has eleven weapons stations (hardpoints) - 2 on wingtips, 6 under-wing, and 3 under-fuselage - and carries a wide range of ordnance. It features an M61-A1/A2 Vulcan 20mm gatling gun and can be equipped with AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles (incl. AIM-9X), AIM-120 AMRAAM, AGM-88 HARM/AARGM, AGM-154 JSOW, AGM-158 JASSM, GBU-31/38 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM) as well as several other types of ordnance. According to Boeing, a typical basic loadout for a self-escort strike mission includes the AN/ASQ-228 ATLIR targeting pod, one AIM-120 AMRAAM, two AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles and an external fuel tank. This leaves the six under-wing weapon stations available to carry a variety of weapons and other stores.
Mission/Role: The F/A-18E/F Super Hornet strike fighter performs traditional missions of fighter escort and fleet air defence, interdiction, and close air support, while still retaining excellent fighter and self-defence capabilities. The F/A-18E/F was designed to replace the F-14 Tomcat fighter aircraft. Also, the Super Hornet has a secondary mission as carrier-based aerial tanking aircraft - this capability used to be provided by the now retired S-3B Viking.

The CAG machine (No#100) of VFA-31 "Tomcatters" is included as one of the marking choices in this kit. It looks like we are going to see some wing-folds on this kit...
The numerous new designs greatly improve this aircraft’s capabilities. The U.S. Navy is about to be equipped with the more capable F/A-18E/F BLOCK III aircraft. In the new era, the Super Hornet will form the core of the U.S. Navy’s air power together with F-35.

The Kit from Meng:
Now MENG releases this brand-new LS-012 Boeing F/A-18E Super Hornet model kit licensed by The Boeing Company. The finished model will be 377.9mm long and 273.4mm wide.

Not only are the internal detail from several Blocks of Super Hornet, but also a pilot figure and two helmets are included in this kit.
The boarding ladder of the aircraft is also included.
The ordinance can be swapped out after the kit is competed - wow!
Like the cockpit, the exterior parts of diffferent Blocks of F-18E are included, making this a capture all (so far) F-18E.
The control surfaces on this kit can all be posed, that includes not only horizontal and vertical tails, but also the slats and flaps and of course those foldable wings.
A rear view of those large wing posable flying surfaces.
The kit features complete wheel wells. intakes and landing gear with wiring and plumbing. GBU-24 and GBU-14 laser guided bombs are included as well as Sidewinder missiles.
This new kit is still in development of course. You can see more info on this kit and others from Meng on the Meng Models Website...