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F-16I “Sufa” Conversion

IsraCast, 1/48 scale  


S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: IsraCast 48015 - F-16I “Sufa” Conversion Kit (revised)
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: Resin conversion
Price: U.S. $55 (includes shipping) available online from http://www.isradecal.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: High quality casting; detailed; comprehensive; accurate.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by "Bondo" Phil Brandt

HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron.com


F i r s t   L o o k


My admiration for the small Israeli nation and, specifically, for the IAF goes back to 1968 when Boy MAC Nav Bondo strode off his huge C-133A Weenie Wagon onto the Lod (Tel Aviv) Airport tarmac. That night at the hotel bar we listened to a jazz quartet’s rendition of Hava Nagela and shared war stories with an Israeli fighter pilot (a Six Day War participant) who, in his best Brooklyn Yiddish accent, smilingly asked us, “So how’s your war going?” The next morning saw us on a fascinating tour of Israeli Aircraft Industries. Later, as we waited in the Lod terminal to go out to preflight our big hummer, we must’ve fallen in love every five minutes with the truly attractive young ladies, many in military uniform, strolling by.

But, Bondo digresses............

The IAF’s latest and greatest weapon system is the F-16I “Sufa” (storm). In 2001 Israel ordered 104 of this high-end version of Ft. Worth’s venerable Block 50/52 F-16D two-seater, and the first bird was delivered in 2004, with final production to be finished in 2008.

The most visually significant difference in the Sufa is the 450 gallon conformal fuselage tanks, which greatly up the mission range–can you say “Iran”?--and double the aircraft’s weapon carriage ability. The other significant profile change is the large dorsal avionics fairing (much like the IAF “Brakeet.”)

The Conversion

The basis for the conversion is Hasegawa’s F-16DJ Block 50 kit, 09352. As you would expect for half a hundred bucks, this is a very complete conversion kit: thirty cleanly-cast components, a small-but-detailed PE fret and two small decal sheets (panels, etc., but not national/unit markings or stencils).



Separately available markings and beaucoup stencils go for $25, including a walkaround DVD. Also available ($30) is ISRADecal honcho and nice guy Ra’anan Weiss’ excellent Sufa book. Bondo looked at it at the KC nats, and it’s got more detail on this airframe than one could ever want.

The conversion consists mainly of replacing the cockpit coaming, forward-of the-windscreen fuselage and instrument panel, plus adding the conformal tanks and avionics dorsal fairing.



Also included are new wheel/tire castings new main/nosegear doors and a wealth of small avionics protuberances.


Three excellent pages of B&W closeup photos with a multitude of small part callouts in contrasting white and one auxiliary drawing to show the arrangement of small parts on the wingtip missile pylons. A complete resin/PE/decal part number layout at the beginning of the instructions insures that no rocket scientists will be required here.




Every Israeli Air Force fan needs to have a model of what will undoubtedly be their go-to airframe for the next generation.

It’s possible that Hasegawa could, since they’ve already released the Brakeet kit, eventually do the Sufa, but ISRAdecal’s very detailed and accurate conversion kit is here now, and it’s done by those who really do know.

Two thumbs up!

Highly Recommended.

Preview Text Copyright © 2006 by Phil Brandt
This Page Created on 19 December, 2006
Last updated 19 December, 2006

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