Being one of the world's first air services, the roots of Belgian military aviation can be traced back to 1909 when it was founded as a branch of the Belgian Army. During the First World War the military aviation branch was called Aviation Militaire Belge and on 18 Jan 1916 the decision was made to form the first dedicated fighter squadron: 1ère Escadrille de Chasse. And while the procurement of airplanes proved to be difficult during the war effort, the AMB was incorporated in the Allied efforts.
At the outbreak of World War II, Belgium's Army Air force was ill equipped gainst the much superior German Luftwaffe. After the surrender, a number of Belgian pilots made it to the UK where they started to fly in RAF Squadron's like e.g. 609 "West Riding" Squadron. In 1941 the 350 (Belgian) squadron was the first dedicated Belgian Squadron to be formed within the RAF, while in 1942 the 349 (Belgian) Squadron followed as the second squadron.
In 1946, the Belgian Air Force became independent of the Belgian Army and during the Cold War, it operated a variety of aircraft. As the Cold War ended at the beginning of the '90s, the Air Force was hit hard by the restructurings taking place. And although the display aircraft nowadays are still wearing the "Belgian Air Force" designation, the Air Force as such ceased to exist in 2002 as an independent organisation following the "single structure" implementation for all armed forces in Belgium. Now officially called Belgian Air Component within Belgian Defence.
The Belgian Air Force scale model collection searches to provide an overview of the airplanes used by the air force throught it's history and while the focus is on 1/144th scale, other scales are covered as well. Scale models of the Belgian 31st Tiger Squadron however, can be found on the dedicated 31 "Tiger" Squadron page.
F-16AM "Solo Display 2015"
For the 2015 Airshow season, the role of the Belgian Air Force F-16 Solo Display team was taken up again by 31st Tiger Squadron, based at Kleine Brogel Air Base (KeeBee). As such, a new livery scheme was designed by Johan Wolfs. F-16AM FA-123 was the chosen airframe to receive this striking livery while Cdt. Vl. "Gizmo" De Moortel was the demonstration pilot. Call signed "Blizzard", FA-123 was flown during various airshows accross Europe during 2015.
Revell ~ 1/144
F-16A "50 years 349 Sqn"
No 349 Squadron was formed during World War II as a Royal Air Force (Belgian) squadron in 1942 at RAF Ikeja, Nigeria. In 1946, it was transferred to the Belgian Air Force. In 1992, the Squadron, now flying F-16A's, painted one of their jets, FA-25, in a special livery to commemorate the 50 years of existence of 349 Squadron. Revell issued the airplane in 72nd scale with the striking spitfire-on-top livery in 2006. The model is build straight from the box.
Revell ~ 1/72
© 2014 - 2020 Guido Haesevoets All Rights Reserved