Home  |  What's New  |  Features  |  Gallery  |  Reviews  |  Reference  |  Forum  |  Search

At War

Part Two


Aeromaster Decals


S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: AMD 48-594 - AIRACOBRAS AT WAR PART II
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: Waterslide decals - Decal sheets plus instructions and notes
Price: USD$7.97 from Squadron.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Perfect register; thin; minimal carrier film; comprehensive stencil data; bonus decals supplied; good instructions and background
Recommendation: Recommended

Reviewed by Rodger Kelly

HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron.com




AeroMaster Products 48-594 is the second sheet in its P-39 Airacobra trilogy.  As with the other two sheets, this one carries markings for four P-39s,
two -Ns, an -L and a –Q. 

First up is MARY ELLEN, 42-18409, a P-39N, of the 41st Fighter Squadron 35th Fighter Group.  MARY ELLEN was flown by a LT Harold Nus out of Nadzab, New Guinea in November 1943.  Finish is olive drab over neutral grey with white tail theatre markings.  MARY ELLEN also bears the 41st Fighter Squadron’s markings of yellow spinner and tail tip.  Supplied markings consist of: 

·        Early USAAF national insignia of a white star on a blue circle background with field applied white bars in four places. 

·        Yellow 173 “plane in squadron” number for the nose. 

·        Yellow W “Flight letter” for the fuselage. 

·        Yellow aircraft serial number for the tail.  The serial is applied on an olive drab background, which was no doubt masked off when the white theatre markings were applied to the 1 to 1 scale machine. The easiest way to replicate this marking and save yourself the hassle of trying to spray white over olive drab is to spray some clear decal film with the same olive drab paint that you applied to the rest of the airframe. Once dry, trim an olive drab rectangle from the sheet and then apply it over the top of the white tail.  Wait for the olive drab decal to dry then apply the yellow serial on to it and voila! 

·        “Door art” consisting of a head and shoulders portrait of a woman on a light tan and yellow circle background with the words MARY ELLEN. 

·        The remainder of the markings are in black and include the walkways for either wing as well as the serial data block and a selection of stencil data. 

The next option is 42-9033, a P-39N of the VVS (Russian Army Air Force).  This is an interesting aircraft.  Apart from its colourful markings it was also flown by two Russian Aces (albeit with different markings).  The markings chosen for this sheet however are those of Grigorii Dol’nikov of the 100 GIAP and flown in German skies during 1945.  Finish is olive drab over neutral grey with a blue spinner and a white fin tip. Supplied markings consist of: 

·        Russian national insignia in six positions.  Four of these insignia are supplied with blue circle backgrounds.  This is because the Russians simply applied their red star markings over the top of existing U.S. national insignia when they were delivered rather than painting them out. 

·        White 01 “Bort” numbers. 

·        Blue and white Cyrillic scripts which translated mean “From the schoolchildren of Mariupol”. 

·        Further white Cyrillic scripts for either sides of the nose.  The left hand side one translating to “For Vanya Babak” and the right hand side one to “For Petya Guchyok” both of whom were fallen members of the VVS. 

·        A scoreboard of 15 red and white Russian stars for the right side of the nose.  Two different sets of these markings are supplied.  One set is simply white stars that you apply smaller red stars over the top of.  I guess that they have gone this way to avoid any register problems not there are any on my sample.  Curiously though there are two complete sets were only one is required. 

·        Yellow aircraft serial numbers for either side of the fin and rudder.  AeroMaster give you the option here of two different decals for the left hand side as they are unsure of how the serial number was split between the fin and rudder. 

·        A black stencil data block. 

The third option is another VVS machine, a P-39Q, (unknown serial number) flown by CAPT Pavel Kutakhov of the 19th GIAP in late 1943.  The aircraft is finished in olive drab over neutral grey with its entire nose and spinner in red.  Markings consist of: 

·        National insignia in four places (either side of the fuselage and on the lower surfaces of both wings).  Unlike the previous machine, this one had the blue and white U.S. national insignia over painted with fresh “green” paint on delivery.  No green background is supplied so you will have to either paint them on yourself or cut some from a solid “green” decal sheet for the fuselage and upper left wing.  A similar approach will also be required for the underside of the right wing in a suitable “grey” to cover the U.S. Marking that would have been painted there. 

·        White 10 Bort number for the tail.  The serial number has also been painted out and again, no “green” decal is provided so you will have to do this yourself too. 

·        A scoreboard consisting of eight red and white stars and thirteen white stars.  As with the previous machine, this marking is provided as either a two-part decal or a single all-inclusive one.  Again, two complete sets are supplied where only one is required. 

·        A black stencil data block. 

The final option is another USAAF aircraft.  P-39L 42-4687, “Little Toni”.  The placement sheet advises that the aircraft was “flown by training pilots of the future 357th Fighter Group” out of Hayward, California in September of 1943.   Finish is again, olive drab over neutral grey and, although based in the continental U.S. it bears the Pacific Theatre markings of a white empanage.  The use of white paint is further extended to a broad ring around the nose.  Supplied markings consist of: 

·        Early USAAF national insignia of a white star on a blue circle background with field applied white bars in four places. 

·        White 103 “plane in squadron number” for the nose. 

·        Yellow aircraft serial number for the tail and again, the left-hand side marking is supplied in two forms. 

·        White “Little Toni” scripts for either side of the nose.

·        Black walkways for either wing as well as the serial data block and a selection of stencil data. 

The recommended kits are the Eduard and Monogram ones.  As the placement sheet states:

“Although an old kit, Monogram’s P-39 is very good model that rivals recent offerings by many other manufacturers.  Do not underestimate this kit”  

The two sets of stencil data that are supplied are reasonably comprehensive.  If you are using the Eduard kit then you will probably use the kit-supplied data, as it is quite good.  However, if you are using the Monogram kit you will be happy that this sheet supplies enough to make your kit look complete. A good move by AeroMaster.  

As with Airacobra Part I and Part II, there are two complete sets of data and logos for both Curtiss and GM Aeroproducts propellers.  Just to make sure you understand which ones to use, the placement sheet gives you a complete history on which prop was used on which model P-39 – excellent! 

A full-colour double-sided A-4 sized sheet guides you in decal placement.  As well as showing decal placement it also provides a comprehensive list of references.  Each and every aircraft on this sheet appears in the Osprey Aircraft of the Aces No 36 “P-39 Airacobra Aces of World War Two”. 

The decals themselves have been printed by Cartograf so their properties are known.  The secret to making Cartograf decals work for you is, persistence, plenty of settling solution, a sharp knife to prick the bubbles and last but not least, patience!  As per standard AeroMaster practice, the placement guide and decal sheets are packed in a clear plastic zip-loc bag. 

This is another great Airacobra sheet from AeroMaster. 


Thanks to AeroMaster / Eagle Strike Products for the review sets

On-line sales are available from the AeroMaster Products / Eagle Strike Productions web site.

Review Text Copyright © 2003 by Rodger Kelly
This Page Created on 31 July, 2003
Last updated 14 August, 2003

Back to HyperScale Main Page