Aiken’s/Col­lec­tors Show­case Bell UH-1 He­li­copters

Three vari­ants of the ven­er­a­ble “Huey”

Die Cast X - - OUT OF THE BOX -

The “Huey” is per­haps the most rec­og­niz­able he­li­copter of all time. Orig­i­nally de­vel­oped by Bell in the late 1950s as the Model 204 in re­sponse to the U.S. mil­i­tary’s call for an all-pur­pose util­ity heli, the de­sign was adopted by the U.S. Army and put into ser­vice in 1960, des­ig­nated the “HU-1”—giv­ing birth to the nick­name “Huey.”

Although the Army re­des­ig­nated it the “UH­1” in 1962— around the time that the first mod­els were de­ployed to Viet­nam—the nick­name stuck. The Huey served a di­verse va­ri­ety of roles in the fol­low­ing decades: as a troop trans­port, mede­vac unit, and gun­ship for the mil­i­tary as well as in a civil­ian ca­pac­ity as fire and res­cue and even recre­ational air­craft. The key to the de­sign’s suc­cess was the Ly­coming tur­bine en­gine, which was lighter, more com­pact, and more pow­er­ful than pis­ton­en­gine de­signs. UH­1s re­ceived up­grades through­out the model’s lifetime, al­low­ing more pay­load space and lift­ing ca­pa­bil­ity. Aiken’s Air­planes is in­tro­duc­ing a se­ries of three Viet­nam­era Hueys as part of the Col­lec­tors Show­case se­ries of mil­i­tary minia­tures in 1:30 scale. Each fea­tures ac­cu­rate unit in­signia in ad­di­tion to pre­cise mold­ing of Huey de­tails. Let’s check out some of the high­lights of each.

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