BUIDING THE DREAM
It has been more than 30 years, since the end of Vietnam war, today all VNAF airplanes are gone. A few retired in US air museums. Some lucky restored ones are still flying in the freedom sky of Australia. But the rest has been lying rusted somewhere in an abandoned corner of the forgotten military airfields in Vietnam. And soon they all will fade away in memories of many wariors; but not in aircraft modeling.
On this Website, you will have a chance to see all kinds of VNAF war birds. The tiny plastic ones? Yes, but amazingly they all look like the real full size VNAF airplanes, from the thin antenna to the small detail paint chips and the real serial numbers. Look at the T-6 Texan's picture on the left, who can tell it's a tiny plastic one? Surprisingly, most VNAF model aircraft today have been built by "big kids" who during the VN war were just...kids, never had a chance to touch a real VNAF aircraft much less riding them. So you can say they are building a dream, yet they also restored and presersed the history so that many next Vietnamese generations would know who we are, where we came from and how manificently we flew!
It takes you a few seconds to look at the photo of a VNAF model aircraft, but it took the modeler about a month to get his model finished. The guy then has to set up the model for a photo shot, doing some touch up on computer before sending it for posting on the website. So don't get disappointed if you see only a few photos.
How a bout a slides show of VNAF model aircraft that it takes you a few minutes to go through, but it took the guy some two or three years to get the whole thing done.
A remarkable VNAF L-19 at 1/72 scale from Christian Thiele. The Airfix 1960's kit was built with all scratch built antennas and some weathered finish. Looking at the diorama of Southeast Asia's remote airfield, I can smell the familiar scent of Vietnam's country side. Great work at 1/72 scale!
Christian Thiele has sent in his VNAF Skyraider Model (ESCI Skyraider model kit with Hasegawa ordnance kit and PJ production's pilot figure). The aircraft is nice and clean. Without the heavy exhaust stains, I can tell it's just rolled out of Bien Hoa's paint shop hangar a few days ago and now ready for its first mission. Not many modelers build VNAF scale model aircraft, but those who build them do share one thing in common: more or less they know the history of that magnificent Air Force.
FLYINGDRAGONS' MODEL AIRCRAFT
Most of the VNAF modelers have a nick name. Today I introduce to you a "modeling Vet." FlyingDragons is one of the founders of Model Aircraft Club in Orange County, CA. His VNAF model collection alone, in term of numbers and categories can be used to set up a grand VNAF exhibition. During the VNAF MAC exhibition, someone has said, "I never saw that many Skyraiders in my live." Yes, that fleet of VNAF Skyraiders (all markings, all Squadrons) belongs to FlyingDragons. The following photos can reflect FlyingDragons' modeling skills.
PHAN DAI'S VNAF R/C MODEL
As the VNAF model aircraft making has been progressing; it is not only a static display model any more but also a flyable work. The following photos depict the two VNAF R/C models of the 112th Observation Squadron and T-28 1st fighter squadron of the early 60's. Both R/C models belong to Phan Dai (see his story at page 18). Seeing the photo of VNAF O-1 Birddog in flight who can tell this is a radio control 1/6 scale airplane! Phan Dai is also in progress to build another VNAF A-1H 1/7 scale. We will update when the pictures are available.
VNAF MODEL AIRCRAFT EXHIBITION
THE 2nd EXHIBITION OF VNAF MAC
THE 3rd EXHIBITION OF VNAF MAC
VNAF MAC EXHIBITION at Little Saigon Tet Festival 2009
VNAF MODEL EXHIBITION IN AUSTRALIA
GLOBAL MASTER III C-17
I wish I could build a C-17 model aircraft, unfortunately no C-17 kit is available so far. But as a soldier of Vietnam war and an enthusiastic aircraft modeler, I know the practical value of the super C-17 aircraft for its vital supporting role not only to US troops in today's tactical military operation, but also for humanitarian aid around the world during peace time as its motto has expressed: "Anything - Anywhere- Anytime."
If you happen to read this entry, please take a few minutes to sign the petition (at the link below) to save the C-17 program. By doing so you also save more than 30,000 jobs of the blue collars workers who badly need the real "Hope" and "Change" that only you, an American patriot (or an aircraft modeler) can provide.
This 1/9th scale radio-controlled C-17 model was built in the United Kingdom. To date it has about 20 flights. It was built as the centerpiece of a 15 program television series produced in the UK. for the Home and Leisure satellite TV channel.? Built with the aid of three friends, it took 1 year to build and is powered with 4 Jetcat P-120 turbines with a total thrust of 108 lbs.?
THE DUNNAHOO BROTHERS
Mike Dunnahoo and Dan Dunnahoo have built a radio control T-28 model aircraft with an outstanding feature: VNAF markings. The RC aircraft was modified from standard Parkzone T-28 Trojan RC model and bore the markings of VNAF Flying Tiger Squadron in the early 1960s. Thank you, Mike and Dan for sharing with us the pictures of your significant VNAF flying model aircraft. A year ago I had contact with a vietnam Vet who was also in process of building an VNAF Skyraider of 83rd Squadron in 1/6 scale. Hopefully we will soon see the many pictures of his finished project.
YANKEE-CARIBOU'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
YanKee-Caribou's just returned to Vietnam theatre with his VNAF A-37B, which represents the "generic" paint scheme of VNAF A-37 (without Tactical Wing and Squadron insignias) at the late time of Vietnam war. If the digital photo is so convincingly real, you would be marveled for his skill at the 1/72 Academy scale. And look again, perhaps thanks to the visual trick of refraction image at the cockpit.
Yankee_Caribou brought back this model page again with his C-123. And don't fool yourself by thinking this is 1/72 scale. Man, it's 1/144!
This particular aircraft 033 crashed in a training flight at LONGBINH the transmission shaft snapped in flight . The Chinook crashed killed all crew. 033 is one of the oldest Chinook airframe that US Army handed over to VNAF ... The flarebox was built using alluminium can, (reference is from the famous Xuan Loc Chinook) . Hope you guys enjoy it. (Yankee-Caribou)
History of VNAF CH-47 (SN 033)
66-19033, Boeing build number B-291, was a CH-47A helicopter. The U.S. Army acceptance date was 9 January 1967. The administrative strike date was 14 February 1974. 66-19033 accumulated at least 2,056.0 aircraft hours. At some point, 66-19033 was assigned to the 237th Helicopter Squadron, Vietnamese Air Force (VNAF), in the Republic of Vietnam (South Vietnam), and remained there until it was lost due to unknown causes. On 14 February 1974, 66-19033 was on approach to an unknown location when it blew up in mid-air. Sabotage was suspected, but has not been confirmed. The last known location of 66-19033 was in the Republic of Vietnam. Aircraft status: Crashed. (Source:CH-47 Chinook Helicopter)
TRIET CAM'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
Sure, you would get confused when viewing this detailed model of VNAF Skyraider A1E in 1/72 scale; because this is a "Frankenstein" A-1 experiment :0))) Just like the name, the assembly is a combined product of Monogram and Hasegawa's parts plus the scratch built canopy, etc. (to make what the VNAF A-1E should look like), not mentioning most decals and tail code lettering were also hand masked or cannibalized from something else. This crazy on-and-off project took Triet Cam about 8 months to the finishing line of an A-1E of VNAF 518 FS (with wJ tail code, serial number 132503). If the picture's worth a thousand words, then enjoy the photos.
TRIET CAM'S AD-6, 1/48 scale
Triet Cam is a VNAF modeling "old timer" who has built the VNAF models at the time when the computer technology didn't exist. The photos below were the works of his newer phase of aircraft modeling accomplishment. Thank you for sharing with us the photos of your VNAF models. Nice paint job and great presentation!
TANGO 0-5'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
Tango 0-5 returns with the Alouette, Chinook, and H-13 choppers. Two more models H-21 and H-19 will come in the near future. Thank Tango for the great collection of VNAF choppers and rare documentary of VNAF Chinook
From Montreal, Canada, Tango 0-5 joins us on this page with his H-34 (Song Chuy Squadron) , UH-1B (Than Tuong Squadron), the Bird-Dog L-19, and the C-119G. The VNAF decals, especially the Song Chuy insignia are all home-made. A job well done on the meticulous and time-consuming home-made VNAF decals and congratulation on the landing of Tango 0-5's choppers at VNAF-MAMN airbase!
GUCCI'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
I sent these photos of my VNAF B-57 to the ARC for the anniverary of the Tet Offensive model show, unfortunately I missed the deadline 1 day. Those photos wouldn't be able to show up on the "flight line." As a result, they retuned to the Home Air Base. Enjoy the old model but with new pictures!
The VNAF chopper below is an old model (1/35 scale, I don't remember Company name) that I have built long time ago out of the box without modification. It originally bore US Army Air Cavalry insignia on the pilot side's door. After I can make custom-decals, producing a lot of VNAF insignias, I put the chopper through "Vietnamization program," by taking out some "fancy machine guns" and rocket pods that used to be mounted on both sides of US helicopter (controled by pilot). The "poor guy" VNAF choppers have the basic M-60 guns or 7.62 mm mini-gun manned by side door gunner. Now the UH-1 bears VNAF insignia with tail number 059. The #059 served dutifully throughout the VN War; its last duty was to ferry ARVN troops for the final ARVN epic battle at Xuan Loc (April/1975, see the last photo in row).
The VNAF UH-1H looked good in the photos, but actually it had some tiny gaps between the assembled part; because long ago as a model novice, I thought that was the manufacture company's fault for molding their defect products. We don't have to fill the gaps (and fill with what?). Today I still think any model companies that produce models with unfitted parts are the lousy culprits to be blamed for flawed assembly. The modeler shouldn't fix, fill, or file their defect products :0)
COHUONG'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
TRIPLE-T'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
Photos & texts (printed on photos) by Triple-T. See "HALL OF FAME" for interesting story about Triple-T.
BIRD-DOG'S MODEL AIRCRAFT
THE ARVN EXHIBITION IN AUSTRALIA
Some art works, photos, and articles are properties of their owners, the rest by VNAF MA MN.© Copyright 2005 vnafmamn.com.