1/72 Hasegawa F-106A Delta Dart

by Tim Groombridge

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I can't imagine how the pilots of the 'Century Fighters' must've felt when throwing the throttle quadrant forward for the first time. An entirely new, aggressive form of aeronautical development in the form of 'manned rockets' resulted in some of the most groundbreaking aircraft designs of the 20th century. Worthy of note is the fact that these aircraft; the Voodoo, the Starfighter, the Thud, the Dagger, and the Dart were far from mere X-Planes. In many cases, they proved themselves to be formidable aircraft against unsuspecting adversaries, with several of the breed serving for many years around the world - (Starfighter in particular).

For reasons that remain a mystery, even to me, I had never regarded the Dart with any affection. Seeming like a flying triangle, I considered the Dart boring. However, I managed to get hold of a 1:72 kit through E-Bay and subsequently enjoyed a radical alteration of my opinion on this fine aircraft. As part of my admittedly limited research of the aircraft, I came across faded and nostalgic pictures of Dart Pilots climbing aboard their steeds with understandable expressions of pride and excitement. Who could deny them this? Strapped into a serviceable, operational aircraft, that at the time, was capable of achieving performance only dreamed of by boys reading comic books? I came to fully appreciate what the 'Six' represents, and enjoyed this build more than any in a long time.

This Six was built using Superscale decals for the type (72-877). I chose to display the missile doors as open, but without the addition of the Genie missiles which seemed to make the plane look a little too 'pregnant', opposing it's sleek, rocket-like qualities. Anyone building this kit: please bear in mind, the canopy is a TERRIBLE fit, and should be shaped for dry fitting before cementing and airbrushing.

Tim 

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Photos and text by Tim Groombridge