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Imperial Iranian
Air Force

F-14A Tomcat



by John Chung



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During the early 1970s the Imperial Iranian Air Force (IIAF) selected the Grumman F-14A Tomcat for an air superiority fighter. The choice came close between the F-15 Eagle, however the ability of the Tomcat to deliver the AIM-54 Phoenix AAM might have been a chief factor in the decision.

A total of 80 aircraft were ordered with 79 delivered and one remained in the United States for further evaluation. This last Tomcat was embargoed after the Islamic Revolution.



As of the early 1990s, more than twenty aircraft were still presumed serviceable despite the severe shortage of spare parts. This is mainly attributed to the ingenuity of the Iranian aerospace industries in reverse engineering and in the production of indigenous aircraft supplies. The remaining F-14 Tomcats are said to have gone under upgrades and are expected to be in service with the Islamic Reformed Iranian Air Force (IRIAF) for years to come. 





This kit started out life as Italeri's 1/72 scale F-14 Tomcat.

The project was initiated and completed in the time frame of two and a half weeks, display base included. The critical time limit was there since it was to be a gift for a friend. The Italeri 1/72 F-14 Bombcat kit was selected for being the most economical available at the time.  

The kit was build mostly out of box without any aftermarket enhancements. However, a great number of changes were made. The panel lines on the kit were raised, and were sanded off and rescribed. During the construction of the model, much modification was needed to amend for the many shape errors inherent of the Italeri kit. This included the complete restructuring of the entire aft fuselage section, the spine and the aft engine shroud, and ample amount of filler and CA to build up these areas. The nose of the aircraft still looked slightly off in spite shape corrections to the kit pieces. The model certainly looks like a half-decent tomcat afterwards. Out of the box, however, I would pronounce the kit a complete failure to capture the basic curves of the aircraft.  



Quite a number of minor modifications were also made. The cockpit was built mainly out of box, though a back wall had to be built for the pilot as none was provided. Due to time constrains, the kit seats were used with significant enhancements. Two pilots from the Hasegawa 1/72 F-18 kit were added. The engine shroud came as terrible outlines and jagged plastics on the surface. These were filled accordingly, sanded and rescribed. The gear doors also did not fit well, as inherent with all Italeri offerings. The fuel dump on the beaver tail was cut off and rebuilt. The refuelling door was drilled off and the boom scratch built. The spine antenna and nose pitot were fashioned out of scrap plastics. The chin pod was taken from a Hasegawa 1/72 F-14A spares and the missiles from the Hasegawa 1/72 US Missiles box.  



Painting and Markings


The model was finished in Tamiya and Gunze acrylics applied over a flat black primer coat. Future was used to seal the model prior to decaling and Gunze flat was used to dull the effects afterwards.



Additional weathering was achieved with oil wash. Decals were taken from Fujimi’s 1/72 IIAF F-14A release.  





With its many fallacies, it is surprising how much may be accomplished to such a mediocre kit in such a short time. However, I would also like say that, though the Italeri kit provides a less costly alternative to the better Hasegawa and Fujumi kits, it is by no means worth the savings.  



I would also like to give my sincere thanks to the folks at HS, ARC and MM for their prompt assistances regarding inquiries, parts and decals. Without them, I would never have been able to complete this model on time. Special thanks to the following individuals for their help. 

Gordon. W. Chastain  – 1/72 Aircrew figures

Thomas M. Lore – 1/72 Modern USN Aircrew figures from Fujimi kit

Fernando Rolandelli – 1/72 IIAF F-14 decals and instructions from Fujimi kit

Lt.Cdr, C.A. V-Man Villanueva, USNR(RET) – 1/72 GRU-7 seats from Hasegawa kit




Additional Images


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Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2003 by John Chung
Page Created 23 July, 2003
Last Updated 17 March, 2004

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