Here are a couple of cardmodel builds of X-15-3, 66672, as it appeared on its world-altitude-record flight and it’s tragic last flight four years later. Both are 1/48th scale.
On 22 August 1963, on Flight 3-2236, Joe Walker flew 66672 to an unofficial world altitude record of 67.1 miles. Weather had delayed the flight six weeks, and as the weather aborts added up, the ground crew painted a pair of dice and “Little Joe the II” on the forward fuselage as a good-luck charm. It is one of the few times a zap was painted on any of the three X-15s, and as far as my research can find, the only time the X-15 flew with one. (If you play craps, “Little Joe” is a term for a pair of twos on the dice. Walker had had “Little Joe” painted on the nose of the X-1E when he flew it.)
This is a digital repaint of Henry Yuen’s X-15. On its record flight, 66672 carried the NASA band and serial numbers on both sides of the tail, but no national insignia or USAF on the wings. By September 1962, NASA determined the ventral rudder didn’t add any stability, so they stopped using it.
I added scratchbuilt details to improve accuracy.
On flight 3-65-97, 15 November 1967, Michael Adams became the first (and only) fatality of the X-15 program in X-15-3. The vehicle went into a hypersonic spin and eventually broke apart. Adams had reached a speed of Mach 5.2, and an altitude of 266,000 feet. He was posthumously awarded an astronaut certification.
This is a digital repaint of Yuen’s model. Research on this one took awhile because there were no pre-flight or inflight photos of mission 3-65. There were a couple of photos taken a few days before, though.
On 3-65, 66672 carried a number of experiments that required scratchbuilding. It had two wingtip pods and an experiment box at the rear of the upper tail. The most colorful of the experiments was a test section of insulation intended for the Saturn V rocket; it was attached to the upper left speed brake. (While technicians were testing the insulation, they were actually more interested in testing the adhesive used to attach it….) The vehicle also sported the knife-edge leading-edge attachment to the upper rudder that was fitted on 66672 late in its life.