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F-4C, F-4D and RF-4C Phantom II
in detail and scale

Early Air Force Phantoms


by Bert Kinzey




Squadron/Signal Publications


S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: D & S Vol. 43
ISBN: 1-888974-25-7
Media: Soft cover, portrait format, 72 pages plus covers incl. 8 pages of colour photos.
Price: US$12.96 from Squadron.com
Review Type: First Read
Advantages: Packed with well-captioned detail photos; excellent colour section; expert and readable narrative; helpful scale drawings and detail diagrams of cockpits etc; good description of variants' distinguishing features; honest assessment of available models.
Disadvantages: Material is accurate to 1994 - mainly a limitation for model & accessory assessment
Recommendation: Recommended for Phantom fans


Reviewed by Brett Green

F-4C, F-4D and RF-4C Phantom II in detail and scale is available online at Squadron.com




It is pleasing to see Squadron/Signal Publications continue to re-release Bert Kinzey's excellent "In Detail and Scale" series. The latest addition is "F-4C, F-4D and RF-4C Phantom II in detail and scale - Early Air Force Phantoms".

The F-4C was a groundbreaking aircraft that finally created a crossover between naval aviation and the US Air Force. 

Owing to the requirement of a naval jet fighter aircraft to land at relatively low speed, early carrier-based jets generally performed poorly compared to their land-based counterparts. The Phantom II was the first production jet to not only match, but also exceed, the performance of aircraft designed for the Air Force. It was also the very first fighter designed for a carrier to be accepted by the Air Force. 

Although the subsequent F-4E is probably considered to be the definitive Air Force Hog, these early Phantoms served with distinction in the role of fighter, fighter-bomber, nuclear weapons platform and reconnaissance aircraft. Indeed, the RF-4C continued to serve with the US Air Force until the 1990s, and remains in service with other Air Forces to this day.

Bert Kinzey provides interesting and readable background on the design of the F-4, its introduction to naval service, the intervention of the Kennedy administration of the early 1960s to standardise aircraft types and the prompt acceptance of the Phantom II into US Air Force service after spectacular trial results. The remaining text in the first 14 pages describes the F-4C, F-4D and RF-4C.

The bulk of the book comprises helpfully captioned detail photos of the three types. Diagrams and detail drawings help illustrate the characteristics of these early Air Force Phantoms.

Eight colour pages cover exterior and interior aspects of the aircraft including the seat, cockpit and general airframe. The back cover is also used to maximum effect with a full-page colour picture of the front instrument panel of an RF-4C Desert Storm veteran.

The twelve-page modellers section covers models from Lindberg, Airfix, Monogram, ESCI, Testors Fujimi and Hasegawa. The book was originally published in 1994, so no mention is made of the recent Tamiya 1/32 scale F-4C/D or Revell of Germany 1/72 scale RF-4C. However, this is a relatively minor shortcoming compared to the Accessory and Decal listings. Due to the brisk activity in this area over the last seven years, these listings are totally out of date.





It is nice to see more of Bert Kinzey's "Detail and Scale" series resurface.

"F-4C, F-4D and RF-4C Phantom II in Detail and Scale" will be a valuable and inexpensive resource for modellers tackling these subjects in any scale.


Thanks to Squadron for the review sample.

Detail and Scale book, plus Squadron/Signal books and products
are available at the Squadron website or Hobby Retailers.

Review Copyright 2001 by Brett Green
This Page Created on 01 November, 2001
Last updated 22 July, 2003

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