While the IRCHA Jamboree is best known for incredible 3D flying, there are also some outstanding scale models to be seen in the dedicated scale area. This year there were some big and impressive scale models on display, but my personal favorite was a truly amazing Sikorsky SH-3 Sea King that was the handiwork of Swiss modeler Marcel Germann. Marcel was just one of a whole contingent of heli enthusiasts who made the trip from Switzerland, and these fellows came to fly!
Marcel’s Sea King features a dazzling array of scale details. The electric model has a scale 5-bladed head and 6-bladed tail and full panel line and rivet detail. There are added scale details like radomes, operating nav lights and landing lights, retractable landing gear, a sliding cabin door and to top it off, a frogman that drops down on a winch!
But the really impressive part is the size. The photos convey the impression of a giant scale masterpiece, but this scale bird is 500 size! The mechanics are a stock T-Rex 500, and the overall length is just 39″! Marcel started with the inexpensive Smartmodel fiberglass body and then added tons of scale details. The 5-bladed head uses the inexpensive plastic Smartmodel blades, and the 6-bladed tail is scratch-built, as are most of the other added scale details.
This model is an inspiration because it shows what can be accomplished in a modest size and budget. Impressive scale models don’t necessarily require a big budget or molding your own composite body. Marcel created this beauty with affordable components and a lot of ingenuity.
This is no hangar queen. Marcel flew his beauty all weekend, even when the winds were keeping a lot of other helis grounded. In challenging conditions he flew the Sea King to a well-deserved 2nd place in the IRCHA Scale competition against much larger models. At the end of the weekend, he simply folded back the main blades and tucked the Sea King back into its compact plastic travel tote for the flight back to Switzerland.