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Kennedy's Tomcats

2002/03

Part I

 

AeroMaster Decals
 

 

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: AMD 48-605 - Kennedy's Tomcats Part I
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: Waterslide decals plus instructions and notes
Price: USD$8.97 from Squadron.com
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Perfect register; thin; minimal carrier film; comprehensive stencil data; good instructions with top, bottom and plan views;
Disadvantages:  
Recommendation: Recommended


Reviewed by Rodger Kelly


Aeromaster Decals' 1/48 scale "Kennedy's Tomcats Part 1"
is available online from Squadron.com

 

FirstLook

 

Although this sheet is titled Part 1, it was actually released after its companion sheet
(48-606 Kennedy's Tomcats Pt II) and it completes AeroMaster's coverage of the fighter and attack squadrons of Carrier Airwing Seven (CVW-7) whilst they were based aboard the USS John F Kennedy during the air war over Afghanistan.   

The sheet provides markings for three F-14Bs, two from VF-143 'Pukin Dogs' and one from VF-11 "Red Rippers": 

Bureau Number 161438, modex 102 of VF-143 Pukin Dogs.  The aircraft is finished in the standard F-14 Tactical Paint Scheme (TPS) of FS36320 dark ghost grey over FS36375 light ghost grey.  The markings are all lo-viz but they are quite comprehensive and spectacular.  They consist of: 

  • 102 modex for the nose and wing flaps with a further smaller set for the inside of the rudders.
  • Three diagonal stripes incorporating lo-viz national insignia for the nose with a second set without the national insignia for the intake mounted external fuel tanks.
  • VF-143 scripts for the ventral strakes.
  • A one piece decal for the outer sides of the vertical stabilizers that include the fin cap, three horizontal lines that span the entire cord of the stabilizer, VF-143's squadron insignia, Safety S and Golden Spanner award. The grey fin caps for the inner surfaces are also supplied as a decal.
  • AG airwing identifiers with "JFK" for the rudders.
  • Pilot's, RIO's and Plane Captain's names for the canopy rails and nose gear doors respectively.
  • NAVY titles and Bureau number blocks for the rear fuselage.
  • Intake warnings, ejection seat triangles, and arrestor hook warnings.

Bureau Number 162912, modex 201 (the CO's aircraft) of VF-11.  The aircraft is finished in the F-14 TPS of FS36320 dark ghost grey over FS36375 light ghost grey.  The markings and consist of: 

  • 201 modex for the nose, wing flaps and nose gear doors with a further smaller abbreviated 01 for the outer faces of the rudders.
  • VF-11 scripts for the ventral strakes.
  • VF-11's squadron insignia for the outer faces of the vertical stabilizers.
  • Dark grey fin caps (inner and outer surfaces supplied as separate decals).
  • AG airwing identifiers for the rudders.
  • CVW 7 scripts for the base of the vertical stabilizers
  • MUTHA award scripts for the top of the vertical stabilizers
  • Pilot's, RIO's and Plane Captain's names for the canopy rails.
  • USS JOHN F KENNEDY scripts for the leading edges of the wings.
  • NAVY titles and Bureau number scripts for the rear fuselage.
  • Intake warnings, ejection seat triangles, and arrestor hook warnings.

Bureau Number 163220, VF-314's CAG bird.  The machine is finished in the standard
F-14 TPS of FS36320 dark ghost grey over FS36375 light ghost grey with its squadron markings in full colour.  The markings and consist of: 

  • 100 modex in blue with a white outline for the nose and wing flaps with a further smaller set for the nose gear doors.
  • Three diagonal stripes in blue incorporating a national insignia in the same blue for the nose with a second set without the national insignia for the intake mounted external fuel tanks.
  • VF-143 scripts in grey for the ventral strakes.
  • A one-piece decal in blue for the outer sides of the vertical stabilizers that include the fin cap Safety S and Golden Spanner award and three horizontal lines that span the entire cord of the stabilizer and VF-143's squadron insignia (in black with white highlights). The blue fin caps for the inner surfaces are also supplied as decals.
  • AG airwing identifiers with "JFK" for the rudders in black with white shadowing.
  • Pilot's, RIO's and Plane Captain's names for the canopy rails and nose gear doors respectively in grey.
  • Intake warnings, ejection seat triangles, and arrestor hook warnings in grey.
  • Pukin Dog scripts in blue for the leading edges of the wings.
  • NAVY titles and Bureau number scripts and arrestor hook warnings for the rear fuselage in grey.
  • national insignia in blue for the upper left and lower right wings

The placement guide is a departure from AeroMaster's norm.  Whilst it still shows colour profiles it also has several colour photographs of each of the options nice stuff!  A further innovation is that the inside of the header sheet contains a very complete explanation on the employment of the F-14s of CVW-7 during its Afghanistan cruise.  It gives details of how the aircraft were configured and what ordnance was carried on what station as well as a discourse on LANTRIN and TARPS pods.  I for one am glad to see this sort of information provided in a decal sheet as it gives you a fuller understanding on how the F-14 is used without having to refer to other publications a one-stop shop! 

 

 

The decals themselves have been printed in Mexico.  Everything is in perfect register and there is minimal carrier film around each subject.  I have used Aeromaster decals that have been printed in Mexico before.  Whilst they are not as easy to use as Microscale decals they do work well if you use patience and settling solution.  If you are going to do the VF-143 option I would cut the one-piece vertical stabilizer decal into several smaller ones to save you some anguish. 

The decal sheets (there are two of them) the placement sheet and the header are packed in a clear plastic zip-loc bag. 

The recommended kit is Hasegawa. 

Recommended. 

Footnote: 

I have included a photo of the tail of a VF-143 aircraft that I took when the squadron visited Perth aboard the USS John C Stennis.  Whilst it is not one of the aircraft depicted on the sheet it does illustrate their squadron markings well.

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 TextCopyright 2004 by Rodger Kelly
This Page Created on 22 May, 2004
Last updated 22 May, 2004

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