Originally built for anti-submarine duties, this Sea King HU5 was converted into an Air Sea Rescue helicopter when the need arose. Looking fantastic in the grey and dayglo orange livery of 771 Sqn RN based at Culdrose, this award winning model has superb detailing, including opening side door, optional undercarriage positions and in flight or static rotors. Low limited edition of only 2,900; get one while you can as these are now rare models and rapidly appreciating in value, on a lower production run then the RAF version.
The Westland WS-61 Sea King is a British licence-built version of the American Sikorsky S-61 helicopter of the same name, built by Westland Helicopters. The aircraft differs considerably from the American version, with Rolls-Royce Gnome engines (licence-built General Electric T58s), British-made anti-submarine warfare systems and a fully computerised flight control system. The Sea King was primarily designed for performing anti-submarine warfare (ASW) missions. A Sea King variant was adapted by Westland as troop transport known as the Commando.
In British service, the Westland Sea King provided a wide range of services in both the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy. As well as wartime roles in the Falklands War, the Gulf War, the Balkans conflict, the Iraq War, and the Afghanistan War, the Sea King is perhaps most well known in its capacity as a RAF Search and Rescue Force helicopter. The Sea King was also adapted to meet the Royal Navy’s requirement for a ship-based airborne early warning platform.
As of 2012, the WS-61 Sea King remains in operation in Britain, as well as multiple export customers: Germany, Norway, Egypt and India. Some operators have replaced, or are planning to replace, the Sea King with more modern helicopters, such as the NHIndustries NH90 and the AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin.