S u m m a r y
Number and Description:
||48-773 Early Scooters - A-4B/C
|Contents and Media:
||May vary according to place of
purchase (USD$9.00 if purchased
directly from AeroMaster)
||Good colour reference sheet;
perfect register, thin carrier film, interesting subjects;
by Rodger Kelly
Early Scooters is available online from
Ah, gull grey and white! AeroMaster 48-733 provides markings for two
early Douglas A-4 Skyhawks of the U.S. Navy.
The first option is A-4D-2 (A-4B) Bureau number 142420, the VA-12
(Flying Ubangis) CAG aircraft. Typical of the era, she sports full
colour in-you-face markings over a basic canvas of semi-gloss gull grey
upper surfaces over gloss white undersides and control surfaces.
wears blue/white/yellow bands over her fuselage and blue yellow/blue
flashes on her rudder. The former marking is supplied as a one-piece
decal and will require careful handling whilst the second marking is
supplied as individual decals so as you can apply them one at a time
between the ribs that feature prominently on her rudder. There is a
picture of this aircraft on page 5 of the old (but excellent)
squadron/signal book USN Aircraft Carrier Air Units Volume 2 1957-1963
and the supplied decals compare favourably with the picture with the
exception that the Bureau number shows as being applied stencil style
whilst the decal is in solid block numerals. The photo also shows that
there is a name (pilot's?) stencilled under the cockpit, this does not
appear on the decal sheet either. Other photographs of VA-12s machines I
found (Model Publishing Naval Air Weapons Meet 1956 – 1959 by Angelo
Romano) from the same time frame also show their aircraft with a pilot's
name applied beneath the cockpit. Don't stress these last points, they
are minor and don't really detract from the quality of this sheet.
The other option is A-4C Bureau number 147710 of VA-93 (Blue Blazers).
The markings depict her from her time aboard the USS Enterprise on
Yankee Station off the north coast of Vietnam. This machine is also in
the same gull grey and white finish of the first option and wears
equally striking markings. If you think that it looks familiar, you are
right as a painting of the machine appears on the cover of the
squadron/signal book USN Aircraft Carrier Air Units Volume 3 1964-1973.
A photograph of her also appears on page 22 of the same book and the
supplied markings compare favourably. The dark blue flashes on her
rudder are also supplied as separate decals which, if you have built any
of the Hasegawa 1/48 scale kits, will realise that it will considerably
ease the pain of application on the ribbed rudder. A nice touch is also
the black areas of the drop tanks being supplied as decals.
The supplied markings are quite comprehensive and include two of
everything (save the black and white arrestor hook stripes but this
decal looks wide enough to sliced in half and be sufficient for two
hooks) so you can build two models from the one sheet. The right hand
side national insignia is supplied as a three part decal to make the
task of trying to get it to settle down over the base of the in-flight
refuelling probe a whole lot easier. The red areas the intake warnings
are supplied as a complete marking which will save you the hassle of
masking off the intake and painting it. Anti-glare panels are also
supplied; again, this is great as it saves the irksome task of masking
The decals themselves have been printed by Cartograf. They are sharply
printed and in perfect register. Whilst not as user friendly as
Superscale decals you will achieve the same results with patience and
plenty of settling solution.
The placement guide shows side views of both machines on the front, with
the first option getting both left and right hand sides shown and the
upper surfaces of both machines on the back.
The placement guide and the decal sheet are packed in a clear plastic
A well thought out sheet from AeroMaster.
Thanks to Eagle
Strike / Aeromaster for the review samples
Review Text Copyright © 2005 by
This Page Created on 27 December, 2005
26 December, 2005
HyperScale Main Page