Detail & Scale Header
Digital Publications Link
Aviation Photo Section Link
Scale Modeling Section Link
Aviatin Artwork Link
Furball Aero Design / Detail & Scale Decals
About Us Link
Contact Us Link
Home Page Link

Detail & Scale Books

Quick Links to Available Detail & Scale Series Publications.


Detail & Scale Series


F3H Demon in
Detail & Scale
**********F9F Cougar in Detail & Scale
Revised Edition

**********
F2H Banshee in
Detail & Scale, Pt. 1

**********

SBD Dauntless in
Detail & Scale

**********




F-102 Delta Dagger in Detail & Scale
**********

F4F & FM Wildcat in Detail & Scale
**********

F-8 & RF-8 Crusader in Detail & Scale
**********

F/A-18E &
F/A-18F Super Hornet in Detail & Scale

**********

F6F Hellcat
in Detail & Scale

**********

F-100 Super Sabre
in Detail & Scale

**********

Military Aviation Websites:
Click Here

——————

Scale Modeling Websites:
Click Here



DECAL SHEET REVIEW


Fightertown Decals Combined Test Squadrons
1:48 Scale



vol_2_image

Some of the most compelling stories in the world of aviation can be found throughout the history of experimental and test flying.  Your reviewer is certainly biased, as his opinion is influenced as having grown up alongside a flight test environment, but it is also undeniable that test aircraft often bear among the most interesting and compelling paint schemes for scale modelers.  However, most kit manufacturers include only markings for operational or fleet aircraft, leaving us out of luck when it comes to the more noteworthy and unique flight test markings.  Fightertown Decals has recently filled in some of that coverage shortfall in 1:48 scale with their new sheet, Combined Test Squadrons.   

This new decal set is literally packed with markings for 25 diverse schemes spanning several different aircraft types that served a remarkable range of flight duties for the U. S. Navy:

This decal set carries a lot of “wow-factor.”  In terms of subject matter, it is unmatched in terms of coverage, from a classic VX-4 F-4J to NAWC, VX-30 Vampires, some of the final flight test Tomcats, and VX-23’s awesome showbird Super Hornet scheme in part inspired by the colors and motifs of the Maryland state flag.  In between, there are markings for VAQ-33 and -34 aircraft.  Technically, these were not test aircraft but operational electronic adversaries.  But who the heck cares about this distinction!  They are awesome subject matter and we are grateful to have these aircraft now in decal form (to learn more about the highly consequential story of VAQ-33 and VAQ-34, check out Angelo Romano’s outstanding two-book set on the subject.  You can read our reviews of those books HERE and HERE.

Beyond the diversity of the subject matter, there’s a ton of history here, too.  These markings options feature, among others, the last new-build production F-14D (shop number D37, BuNo. 164604) as Vandy 1 including its retirement scheme in 2004.  F-14B BuNo. 163226 tested the ultimate deep strike loadout ever flown on a Tomcat, and F-14B BuNo. 161432 carried a unique camouflage scheme on the jet owing to VX-4’s acquisition of that airframe from VF-74.  The Strike Test and NAWC jets are very distinctive as well and include the lead jet in the DFCS program that validated long-needed flight control system improvements.  While you’ve got the F-14D BuNo. 163417 in its Strike Test markings here, that jet was bailed back to the fleet and took the final Tomcat cat shot off of a carrier in August 2006.  The VAQ-34 markings include the A-7E assigned to the late CDR Rosemary Mariner, a legendary female pioneer of modern naval aviation and the skipper of the Flashbacks at the time.

Many of the decals can be used with any 1:48 scale kit of their respective aircraft, but the “sized” F-14 markings have the Tamiya and AMK kits in mind.  The two decal sheets are literally packed to their edges with markings, from aircraft markings to stencils, photo registration marks, and even helmet decals.  The decal design and rendering by Fightertown is superlative and exceptionally accurate.  The sheet was printed by Cartograf.  Colors are just gorgeous, everything is in register, and carrier film is so tightly restrained that it is practically invisible up against the margins of the printed edge of any given decal.  Decals don’t get better than this.

In sum, this is a highly detailed and accurate set of markings for a diverse set of U. S. Navy flight test jets with some long-neglected electronic warfare adversaries included as well.  Hopefully, we might see more VAQ-34 and VAQ-35 options (Skywarriors, Skyhawks, Intruders, and Prowlers, anyone??) along with other flight test jet subjects in the future.

Many thanks to Brian Plescia at Fightertown Decals for the review sample. You can find them on the web and order their sheets at http://www.fightertowndecals.com.  

Haagen Klaus
Scale Modeling News & Reviews Editor
Detail & Scale

(Return to top of page)

** Click on the thumbnails below to view a larger image.**


(Return to top of page)

Our Most Recent Release!



F-100 Super Sabre in Detail & Scale

Detail & Scale Special Edition Books


U. S. Navy and Marine Carrier-Based Aircraft of World War II
********



JET FIGHTERS
OF THE U. S. NAVY AND MARINE CORPS
PART 1: THE FIRST TEN YEARS
********

Attack on Pearl Harbor, Japan Awakens a Sleeping Giant

********


Colors & Markings Series


Colors & Markings of U. S. Navy
F-14 Tomcats,
Part 1: Atlantic
Coast Squadrons
********


Colors & Markings of the F-102
Delta Dagger

**********

Colors & Markings of U. S. Navy
F-14 Tomcats,
Part 2: Pacific
Coast Squadrons

**********