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Furball Aero-Design 48-010 Low Viz Devil Dog Scooters 1:48 Scale


vol_2_imageThe A-4 Skyhawk is a true classic in the history of U.S. Naval and Marine Corps aviation.  Furball Aero-Design recently re-released their sold-out but still highly sought-after Low Viz Devil Dog Scooter decal sheet from 2012.   Here, we’ll take a look at this extensive decal sheet.  

The Low Viz Devil Dog Scooter sheet contains options for no fewer than 16 A-4 Skyhawks spanning the A-4E, A-4F, TA-4J, A-4M, and OA-4M aircraft between 1980 and 1993. These are optimally sized for the Hasegawa/ProModeler family of kits, but can also be used on the Monogram 1:48 A-4s, such as their OA-4M. These low visibility schemes are all USMC aircraft, and include some five distinct low visibility patterns. In addition to the three-tone different tactical gray schemes, two options on this sheet are variations on so-called “lizard schemes” with two different green over gray camouflage patterns that wrap around the upper surfaces of the aircraft.  

The options on the sheet include full markings and stencils include:

    1. A-4E, VMA-322 (1982)
    2. A-4M, VMA 331 (1982)
    3. A-4M, VMA-311 (1984)
    4. A-4F, VMA-142 (1985)
    5. A-4M, VMA-211 (1989)
    6. A-4M, VMA-214 (1989)
    7. A-4M, VMA-131 (1993)
    8. OA-4M, H&MS-13 (1980)
    9. OA-4M, H&MS-12 (1984)
    10. OA-4M, H&MS-32 (1984)
    11. TA-4J, VMA-322 (1986)
    12. OA-4M, H&MS-11 (1988)
    13. OA-4M, H&MS-12 (1989)
    14. OA-4M, H&MS-32 (1990)
    15. OA-4M, H&MS-32 (1987)
    16. OA-4M, H&MS-32 (1987)

The five pages of instructions contain Furball’s typical clearly rendered, full-color illustrations for each scheme, and include notes on each aircraft’s particular colors and color variations. Another nice touch is inclusion of a diagram for A-4 external stores loading.  

The decal sheet, printed for Furball by Cartograf of Italy, also represents typically exquisite quality of Cartograf products.  Colors are crisp. Multicolor decals are in perfect register.  Also, the precision with which Cartograf lays down their carrier film is really impressive. There is little to no excess of carrier film on these decals.  On some decals, such as the dark gray wing walkways and national insignia, the carrier film is so precisely applied that one cannot even see it.  Also, some of the most impressive points on this sheet are the little things:  the quality of stencils, sharpness of text within stencils, and fuel tank access panels represented in the wing walkway decals add wonderful touches.

This decal sheet is recommended without reservation.  It is a great alternative to the many high-viz 1960s-1970s A-4 schemes that are out there.  Even though these are low-viz, these particular colors and markings are unique and distinctive to make for eye-catching 1:48 Skyhawks.

Haagen Klaus
Scale Modeling News & Reviews Editor
Detail & Scale

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