Kit #AA2088. 1/72 scale. This is a highly-detailed
resin kit of the Yakolev YAK-24,
NATO code-name “Horse,” complete with decals.
At one time the largest operational
helicopter in the world, the YAK-24 design borrowed much from the US firm
Piasecki’s tandem rotor design. The YAK-24
was created in parallel with the MIL-4 in a design program begun in 1952. Four prototypes were rapidly completed and
flight testing began in July 1952. First publicly demonstrated at Tushino
airport in 1955, the helicopter received the NATO designation Horse. At its
introduction, the YAK-24 set two new world payload records, lifting a 4,400
pound load to 16,700 feet, and twice that load to 9,500 feet.
Built around two 1,700 hp
power-and-transmission units adapted from the MIL Mi-4, the YAK-24 entered production in 1955. Several alternative designs were proposed or
build in small numbers, including the YAK-24A
civilian variant, the more advanced military YAK-24U – also used as a flying crane – along with the VIP-model YAK-24K and the civilian airliner
version, the YAK-24P.
The relatively small production run of YAK-24s
served in Soviet Air Force, but – because it was never really satisfactory – it
began to be phased out after the far more powerful Mil-6 Hook entered production in 1959. Yakovlev then proposed a
scaled up version the YAK-24, the huge heavy-lift YAK-60, but that ambitious
design never got beyond the model stage.