How to build CH-53D/E, MH-53E and MH-53J in all scales

1:144

CH-53D

Kits - Revell

Accesories:

KV Models - KV14520 canopy and wheels masks
Armory - ARAW14316 wheels with weighted tires, ARAW72343 wheels with weighted tires, early

1:72

NOTE:
Academy released kit 12575, which is a rebox of old Fujimi. The Academy kit includes parts for MH-53J, RH-53D and HH-53C.
And, it has negative scribed lines, like the only kit in 1:72 !!!! So, I guess this Academy 12575 kit is the best start for all the Gulf war 2-engine versions.

CH-53D

Kits - Airfix, Italeri, Bilek (ex Italeri), Fujimi, Academy 12575 (ex Fujimi)

Accesories:

ResKit - RS72-0062 wheels set, RSU72-0019 main rotor head, RSU72-0008 correct "late" 650-gal fuel tanks

NOTE:

Kits have old, wrong, fuel tanks.
Do not install external winch.
Kits are missing window mounted M2 machine guns for specific airframes.
Kits are missing AN/ALE-47 chaff/flare launchers for all airframes.
Kits are missing AN/APR-39 RWR for all airframes.
Kits are missing AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS for specific airframes.
Kits are missing AN/ALQ-157 IR jammer for specific airframes.

MH-53J 66-14429 or 66-14432

Kits - Italeri/Revell, Fujimi, Academy 12575 (ex Fujimi)

Accesories:

Blackdog - BDOA72012 electronics + tail details, BDOA72013 engine, BDOA72014 BIG set - includes BDOA72012 and BDOA72013
New Ware - NWAM0702 BASIC kabuki masks all windows, wheels (Fujimi), NWAM0703 EXPERT kabuki masks all windows including inner side masks, wheels, camouflage details (Fujimi)
ResKit - RS72-0063 wheels set, RSU72-0019 main rotor head, RSU72-0008 correct "late" 650-gal fuel tanks (for Fujimi/Academy)

NOTE:

This version was update of HH-53B helos, which had sponson support braces installed. Those support braces are not in any kit.
Kits have old, wrong, metal main rotor blades instead of modern composite blades (Italeri/Revell).
Do not install upper ramp door (Italeri/Revell Part 19, Fujimi B6), it was removed to make room for the fast rope bar.
Tail rotor has wrong direction of rotating, cut and re-glue the rotor blades (Italeri/Revell).
This version had specific, different from later versions, fuel tank pylons with "straight wings". If you will use Italeri/Revell or Fujimi kits (recommeded, they are in negative), you need to use the sponsons + "straight wings" + pylons from Airfix kit of HH-53C or scratchbuild them (not so easy work).

MH-53J

Kits - Italeri/Revell, Fujimi, Academy 12575 (ex Fujimi)

Accesories:

Blackdog - BDOA72012 electronics + tail details, BDOA72013 engine, BDOA72014 BIG set - includes BDOA72012 and BDOA72013
New Ware - NWAM0702 BASIC kabuki masks all windows, wheels (Fujimi), NWAM0703 EXPERT kabuki masks all windows including inner side masks, wheels, camouflage details (Fujimi)
ResKit - RS72-0063 wheels set, RSU72-0019 main rotor head, RSU72-0008 correct "late" 650-gal fuel tanks (for Fujimi/Academy)

NOTE:

Kits have old, wrong, metal main rotor blades instead of modern composite blades (Italeri/Revell).
Do not install upper ramp door (Italeri/Revell Part 19, Fujimi B6), it was removed to make room for the fast rope bar.
Tail rotor has wrong direction of rotating, cut and re-glue the rotor blades (Italeri/Revell).
This version had specific, different from earlier versions, fuel tank pylons with "bat wings". They are correct in all kits.

CH-53E

Kits - Italeri, Revell

Accesories:

Dan Models - MS720012 canopy masks
KV Models - 72254 canopy and wheels mask
Armory - ARAW72318 wheels with weighted tires, ARAW72344 wheels with weighted tires - late
A-Squared - BMS720012 canopy and wheels masks
Eduard - CX002 canopy mask - Tamiya tape
ResKit - RS72-0063 wheels set, RSU72-0012 seats with belts, RSU72-0009 air intakes, RSU72-0008 "late" 650-gal fuel tanks, RSU72-0010 front wheel bay, RSU72-0011 weapon set (Browning M2 and ammo belt feeder), RSU72-0024 main rotor head, RSU72-0037 tail rotor head with composite blades, RSU72-0035 refuelling probe, RSU72-0114 exhaust nozzles
DF Helo Stuff - DF80672 rotor folds

NOTE:

Kits has "modern" composite tail rotor blades only. Most of them in the Gulf had the "old" metal tail rotor blades. Compare with pictures of CH-53D and correct the kit blades.
Kits has AN/ALE-47 chaff/flare launchers.
Kits are missing antennas for specific airframes.
Kits are missing AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS for specific airframes.

MH-53E

Kits - Italeri, Academy, Wolfpack

Accesories:

Dan Models - MS720012 canopy masks
KV Models - 72254 canopy and wheels mask
A-Squared - BMS720012 canopy and wheels masks
Eduard - XS087 canopy mask, 72211 interior, 72210 exterior, CX129 canopy mask - Tamiya tape, 72466 exterior, 73276 interior, SS276 interior ZOOM PE set, BIG7232 BIG PE set
ResKit - RS72-0063 wheels set, RSU72-0012 seats with belts, RSU72-0009 air intakes, RSU72-0010 front wheel bay, RSU72-0011 weapon set (Browning M2 and ammo belt feeder), RSU72-0024 main rotor head, RSU72-0037 tail rotor head with composite blades, RSU72-0035 refuelling probe, RSU72-0114 exhaust nozzles
DF Helo Stuff - DF80672 rotor folds

NOTE:

Kits has AN/ALE-47 chaff/flare launchers.
Kits are missing antennas for specific airframes.
Kits are missing AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS for specific airframes.

1:48

CH-53D

Kits - Revell

Accesories:

Cutting Edge - CEC48034 cockpit detailing set
Armory - ARAW48336 wheels with weighted tires, early
Flying Leathernecks - FLM48-29 canopy mask
New Ware - NWAM0799 BASIC kabuki masks all windows, wheels, NWAM0800 ADVANCED kabuki masks all windows including window seals, wheels, other details, NWAM0801 EXPERT kabuki masks all windows including window seals and inner side masks, wheels, other details, NWAM0802 ROTOR BLADES kabuki masks
ResKit - S48-0062 wheels, RSU48-0011 main rotor (6 blades - 2 engines)

MH-53J 66-14429 or 66-14432

Kits - Revell (needs conversion/update sets for this specific version)

Accesories:

Cutting Edge - CEC48001 weapon set, CEC48032 cockpit set
Black Magic - CEBM48086 canopy and wheel hub masks
Cobra Company/Lone Star Models - 48024 conversion set, 48048 interior detail set, 48049 weapons package
New Ware - NWAM0799 BASIC kabuki masks all windows, wheels, NWAM0800 ADVANCED kabuki masks all windows including window seals, wheels, other details, NWAM0801 EXPERT kabuki masks all windows including window seals and inner side masks, wheels, other details, NWAM0802 ROTOR BLADES kabuki masks
ResKit - S48-0062 wheels, RSU48-0011 main rotor (6 blades - 2 engines), RSU48-0005 "late" 650-gal fuel tanks

NOTE:

This version was update of HH-53B helos, which had sponson support braces installed. Those support braces are not in any kit.
This version had specific, different from later versions, fuel tank pylons with "straight wings". Use Parts 52+53+54+55.

MH-53J

Kits - Revell (needs conversion/update sets for this specific version)

Accesories:

Cutting Edge - CEC48001 weapon set, CEC48032 cockpit set
Black Magic - CEBM48086 canopy and wheel hub masks
Cobra Company/Lone Star Models - 48024 conversion set, 48048 interior detail set, 48049 weapons package
New Ware - NWAM0799 BASIC kabuki masks all windows, wheels, NWAM0800 ADVANCED kabuki masks all windows including window seals, wheels, other details, NWAM0801 EXPERT kabuki masks all windows including window seals and inner side masks, wheels, other details, NWAM0802 ROTOR BLADES kabuki masks
ResKit - S48-0062 wheels, RSU48-0011 main rotor (6 blades - 2 engines), RSU48-0005 "late" 650-gal fuel tanks

NOTE:

This version was update of HH-53C with internally beefed up structures, so no sponson support braces are needed.
This version had specific, different from earlier versions, fuel tank pylons with "bat wings". Use Parts 101+102+103+105+106.

CH-53E

Kits - Academy/MRC

Accesories:

AMS Resin - AMS48012 FOD Protection Covers
Black Magic - CEBM48571 canopy mask
Eduard - EX185 canopy mask, 48542 exterior, 49026 cargo seatbelts, 49364 interior, FE364 interior ZOOM, BIG4875 BIG ED PE set
Cobra Company - 48051 detail set
Scale Aircraft Conversions - SAC48252 white metal gear legs
Montex - 48254 canopy and wheels masks
Armory - ARAW48315 wheels with weighted tires universal, ARAW48337 wheels with weighted tires, late
ResKit - S48-0063 wheels, RSU48-0009 seats with belts, RSU48-0006 air intakes, RSU48-0005 "late" 650-gal fuel tanks, RSU48-0007 front wheel bay, RSU48-0021 main rotor head (7 blades - 3 engines), RSU48-0037 tail rotor head with composite blades, RSU48-0035 refuelling tube, RSU48-112 exhaust nozzles
Blackdog - BDOA48068 outer engine, BDOA48069 inner engine, BDOA48070 electronics, BDOA48071 Big set

NOTE:

Kits has "modern" composite tail rotor blades only. Most of them in the Gulf had the "old" metal tail rotor blades. Compare with pictures of CH-53D and correct the kit blades.
Kit includes AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS for specific airframes (Parts F21, F22, F27, F28).
Do not use FLIR assembly (Parts F17, F18, F19, F20).
Do not use SATCOM antenna (Parts A12, C31)
Do not use antenna (Part D21).
Use wire HF antenna for "non-Block upgrade" airframes, check pictures.
Use "towel rack" HF antenna for "Block upgrade" airframes, check pictures.
Use antenna (Part C32) for "Block upgrade" airframes, check pictures.
Use antenna (Part A4) for specific airframes only, check pictures.

MH-53E

Kits - Academy/MRC

Accesories:

AMS Resin - AMS48012 FOD Protection Covers
Black Magic - CEBM48571 canopy mask
Scale Aircraft Conversions - SAC48252 white metal gear legs
Montex - 48254 canopy and wheels masks
Armory - ARAW48315 wheels with weighted tires universal, ARAW48337 wheels with weighted tires, late
ResKit - S48-0063 wheels, RSU48-0009 seats with belts, RSU48-0006 air intakes, RSU48-0007 front wheel bay, RSU48-0021 main rotor head (7 blades - 3 engines), RSU48-0037 tail rotor head with composite blades, RSU48-0035 refuelling tube, RSU48-112 exhaust nozzles
Blackdog - BDOA48068 outer engine, BDOA48069 inner engine, BDOA48070 electronics, BDOA48071 Big set

NOTE:

Do not use SATCOM antenna (Parts A12, C31)
Do not use antenna (Part D21).

Main and tail rotor blades variants and configurations for specific versions -  HERE

Antenna and ASE (Aircraft Survivability Equipment) configuration for specific versions.

CH-53D

Pictures and drawings of antennas and ASE. Picture 1 Picture 2 Picture 3 Picture 4 Picture 5

1 - HF antenna - installed
2 - Omega Navigation System antenna - installed
3 - VOR antenna - installed
4 - AN/ALE-47 chaff/flare launchers - both sides of the fuselage - installed
AN/APR-39 - both sides of the fuselage - installed
AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS - both sides of the fuselage - picture proven on BuNo. XXXXXX/YL-40 from HMH-362 "Ugly Angels" so far.
AN/ALQ-157 IR jammer - both sides of the fuselage - picture proven on BuNo. XXXXXX/YL-40 from HMH-362 "Ugly Angels" so far.

MH-53J

- in works

CH-53E

Scans of drawings are taken from Academy 1:48 kit. Drawing 1 Drawing 2 Drawing 3

1 - SATCOM antenna - only installed there for a few years and later moved to farther up on the tunnel cowlings - not installed
2 - UHF "aft" antenna, installed with the ARC-210 radios - installed on "Block upgrade" airframes only
3 - VHF antenna - installed on "Block upgrade" airframes only
4 - Hand Hold - installed
5 - Hand Hold - installed
6 - Omega Navigation System antenna - installed
7 - HF Radio antenna mast 1 - installed, removed on "Block upgrade" airframes
8 - HF Radio antenna mast 2 - installed, removed on "Block upgrade" airframes
9 - Upgraded "towel rack" HF antenna, beginning on 163XXX BuNo and above - installed on "Block upgrade" airframes only
10 - FWD HF antenna mast 3 - installed, removed on "Block upgrade" airframes
NOTE: connect all HF antenna masts (1 + 2 + 3) with thin antenna wire, check pictures)
11 - Lower anti-collision light installed on all CH-53E's, this particular light appears to be the "Dual" anti-collision light with red/white strobes - installed older version
12 - Lower new ARC-210 radio antenna, or "aft comm antenna" - installed on "Block upgrade" airframes only
13 - Old aft UHF comm 1/2 antenna retracted position, it extends when gear goes up - installed
14 - FWD UHF comm antenna - installed

VOR antenna - on the upper side of the tail - installed PHOTO
AN/APR-39 - both sides of the fuselage - installed on some airframes, check pictures
AN/ALE-47 chaff/flare launchers - both sides of the fuselage - installed
AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS - both sides of the fuselage - picture proven on BuNo. 161992/YK-55 from HMH-466 "Wolfpack" and BuNo. ??????/HC-537 from HC-4 "Black Stallions" so far.

Starting with BuNo. 163xxx, the CH-53Es were delivered in so called "Block" upgrade. The external visible differencies, except the antenna config mentioned above, were composite tail rotor blades. The old metal tail rotor blades had different size and shape.
CH-53Es serving in Gulf had composite main rotor blades.

MH-53E

Scans of drawings are taken from Academy 1:48 kit. Drawing 1 Drawing 2 Drawing 3

1 - VHF antenna - installed
2 - UHF "aft" antenna - installed with the ARC-210 radios - not installed
3 - Hand Hold - installed
4 - Hand Hold - installed
5 - "forward" UHF antenna - installed
6 - Omega Navigation System antenna - installed
7 - Upgraded "towel rack" HF antenna - installed
8 - Old aft UHF comm 1/2 antenna retracted position, it extends when gear goes up - installed
9 - Lower new ARC-210 radio antenna, or "aft comm antenna" - not installed
10 - Lower anti-collision light installed on all MH-53E's, ths particular light appears to be the "Dual" anti-collision light with red/white strobes - installed older version

AN/ALE-47 chaff/flare launchers - both sides of the fuselage - installed
AN/AAR-47(V)1 MAWS - both sides of the fuselage - not installed
All delivered MH-53Es had composite main and tail rotor blades.