Cutting Edge Decals
S u m m a r y
CED48161 - A-4 Skyhawks
|Contents and Media:
||Double-sided full colour
letter-sized instructions plus notes sheet; 1 x full-size decal sheet.
national markings split to fit over kit features; wing walkways
and tailhook markings supplied as decals; good instructions;
reference sources, FS colour equivalents and model paints quoted.
||Limited stencil data
supplied; no anti-glare decal.
Reviewed by Rodger Kelly
HyperScale is proudly sponsored by Meteor
This is the last in the trilogy of new A-4
sheets from Cutting Edge. Like the other two sheets, this one also has
markings for two aircraft.
The first one, Bureau No 155010, is in the familiar markings of VA-55
War Horses whilst it was aboard the USS Hancock (CVA-19) during one of
the four cruises it underwent on Yankee Station in 1968. In the
standard finish of Light Gull Grey over white it bears the bright
markings befitting its status as a CAG aircraft. As well as the
squadron’s standard green “check mark” on the fin and the green
checkerboard on the fin tip it also has the spaces between the
external stiffeners on the rudder filled in with colours. This latter
feature has always stopped me from trying to replicate these markings.
It is bad enough trying to paint a straight colour, let alone a
checkerboard! Cutting Edge have come to the rescue and provided these
as separate decals with an absolute minimum of film surrounding the
design. No problem! Carefully apply the decal in place and touch it
with some settling solution and you are there. The one downside to the
markings provided is that there is no name supplied for the green
rectangle that he War Horses painted beneath the cockpit. Sure, the
aircraft probably flew without a name but this omission detracts from
the overall effect.
The other Skyhawk is a USMC machine, A-4E, Bureau No 151197, belonging
to VMFA-332. USMC A-4 markings are not exactly thick on the ground and
this sheet goes towards addressing this shortage. It also bears the
same basic Light Gull Grey and white finish. If the polka dot markings
look familiar then you are right, they used to adorn the cowls of
squadron’s F4-U-4 Corsairs during the Korean conflict. On the A-4
these markings have been somewhat simplified and evolved into a simple
red stripe on the fin with red polka dots between the rudder’s ribs.
The polka dots and stripes are produced as a single decal but if it
were me applying them, I would separate the stripe from the polka dots
and apply them one by one – tedious but safe! The other squadron
markings consist of a straw hat and a cane and these are applied to
the fuselage sides. A small nitpick here. The white band on the hat
lacks polka dots as does the cane. Seeing that the complexity of the
War Horses insignia has been faithfully reproduced the addition of the
polka dots should have been easy.
Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:
One set of basic stencils is provided as are
one set of stars and bars. The fuselage stars and bars have been
neatly produced as two separate decals to make their application
around the airbrakes a simple task – thank you Cutting Edge. The wing
walks are also provided, but again, there is no anti-glare panel.
Intake warning triangles are also provided in three distinctly
different types, only one of which is appropriate to both aircraft.
Another good idea on Cutting Edge’s behalf is the supply of the
white/yellow rectangles that fit over the edge of the canopy and
fuselage in two styles – a one piece one for a closed canopy and a two
piece one for an open canopy.
All together a good little package. If you want a little inspiration
to build a War Horse’s aircraft have a look at the box art of the
Hasegawa 1/72 scale kit. By using this sheet and adding a few other
decals it is possible.