Revell F-89D/H/J modified
Model by Bruce Craig

Photos by Bruce Craig

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Northrop YF-89F left front view

I like to make models of prototypes. Okay, so this variation of the F-89 never got past a wood mockup, so it never got to prototype stage. This is a converted 1/48th Revell F-89, the conversions made were based on an "average" of several design proposals for E- and F-model Scorpions. Paint is Testors Buffing Metalizer. The decals are custom made using Pagemaker and an Alps MD-2010 printer on ATP Airlines Clear Decal sheets.

Northrop YF-89F left rear view

Four of the major differences from production Scorpions that were part of Northrop's design proposals for the E- and F-models were the "swept" wings with straight trailing edge, the pods moved to mid-wing with smaller main wheels, the fuselage spine aft of the canopy, and the horizontal stabilizer moved from mid-tail to aft of the fuselage. The fuselage spine is from a Monogram F-5; that fuselage was the remnant of a kit which donated other parts to a Hawk Lockheed F-90 and a Lindberg Grumman Tiger. The vertical tail has been extended to be higher as it appears in illustrations and drawings of the proposals.

Northrop YF-89F top view

As none of these planes were ever built, I did not attempt to create panel lines, rather I left the native lines clean. The book, U.S. Fighters (reviewed elsewhere on this site) has an illustration depicting a Scorpion proposal, and I used that illustration (as distinguished from illustrations and drawing of other variations of the proposals) as the focus of this model.

Northrop YF-89F fuselage modified with F-5 spine

The F-84 fuselage was modified to YF-89F by adding the spine from an F-5. This photo was taken before the vertical fin was extended.

Northrop YF-89F wings before and after modification

On the left is the "from the kit" wing, and on the right is the wing as I modified it by cutting wedges from the wing to change the sweep. The new wing tips were made from stacks of sheet stock and filed to shape.

Northrop YF-89F mid-wing pod being fitted

I was a bad boy and somehow double exposed a whole roll of film. This photo showing the YF-89F during construction, particularly of fitting the mid-wing pod, was a casualty of the double exposure episode. The pods are "from the box" extended by using the middle parts from two Revell kits. The main gear wells were scratch built using sheet stock. The main gear struts are F-89 kit parts, modified by removing two of the four brake calipers. The main wheels are from a Monogram F-14 kit; I used them because they looked about right based on illustrations and drawings. This means, of course, that when Grumman needed the main wheels for the F-14, they didn't have to reinvent the wheel; they just used the items Northrop never produced.

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Contents Copyright 1997-1999 Bruce Craig -- All Rights Reserved