MAQ-7256 1/72 Mil Mi-4 Soviet Transport Helicopter model kit
Design work on the Mi-4 helicopter started in the second half of 1951 and the aircraft was flown in prototype form in August 1952. In appearance it closely resembled the contemporary Sikorsky S-55, but in terms of size and performance it equated with Sikorsky's later S-58. The Mi-4 was already in Soviet Air Force service by August 1953, when it was first seen publicly at the Tushino Aviation Day display, and it has since become the most widely built of all Soviet helicopters. Production is believed to have ceased around 1964, by which time several thousand had been built both in the Soviet Union and in China.
Maquette 1/72 Mil Mi-4 Soviet Transport Helicopter model kit. Pic.1
The Mi-4 was produced initially as a troop and assault transport helicopter for the Soviet armed forces. This version is characterised by circular cabin windows and a ventral fairing in which an observer can be stationed if required. Alternatively an additional fuel tank can be fitted in this position. One major difference between the Mi-4 and the S-55 is that the former has clamshell rear loading doors through which a maximum internal payload of 1600kg can be admitted. Typical military loads of the Mi-4 include 14 fully equipped troops, a GAZ-59 command vehicle, a 76mm anti-tank gun or 2 motorcycle combinations. Military Mi-4's have been exported to a number of air forces in the Soviet bloc, among the largest users being India, which has sixty, and Cuba, which has twenty-four.
From 1964 two civil versions of the Mi-4 were also built in considerable numbers. These were the Mi-4P (Passajirskii == passenger) and the Mi-4S (Selskokhoziaistvennii = rural economy). The Mi-4P is the standard version for Aeroflot, carrying 11 passengers normally or up to 16 in high density seating or, in the ambulance role, 8 stretchers and a medical attendant. The Mi-4P is distinguished by having square cabin windows, wheel spats and no ventral fairing; 100kg of baggage can be carried in addition to the normal passenger complement. The Mi-4S is normally used for agricultural operations, when it can be fitted with a 1000kg dust hopper or a 1600-l tank holding pesticide or fire-fighting chemical. All versions of the Mi-4 have provision for fitting inflatable pontoons in addition to the wheeled landing gear. A stripped-down Mi-4 established a number of speed-with-payload and payload-to-altitude records in 1956, and in more recent years both military and civil Mi-4's have performed a considerable amount of useful work in the Polar regions, their tasks including ice patrol and geological survey.
K.Munson "Helicopters And Other Rotorcraft Since 1907", 1968