u m m a r y
||(1/32) 8110 and (1/48) 8109
||1/48 and 1/32
||1/32: $9.96 USD, 1/48: $8.46 USD
|Contents and Media:
||Not recommended - Run Away!
Reviewed by Dave
With the recent release of the 1/32 scale Trumpeter MiG-19 kits and the 1/48
scale HiPM Mig-19S, some have been wondering what is available in the way of
aftermarket markings. Tiger Wings has decal sheets available in both scale for
Pakistani and Bangladeshi F/FT-6 aircraft and Chinese J-6 birds. Markings are
also included for two A-5C Fantan aircraft, which is only currently kitted in
1/48 scale by AA.
The sheets are essentially the same, with the 1/32 scale sheet being just a
scale-up of the 1/48 scale sheet, and the instructions are identical. Because of
their larger size, the 1/32 scale decals are spread over two and a half sheets,
whereas the 1/48 scale decals can fit on only one and a half sheets. The images
in this review are of the 1/32 scale sheets. NOTE: The 1/32 sheet is mislabeled
as 1/48 scale on the sheet. The 1/32 scale sheet carries the sheet number 8110
in black, whereas the 1/48 scale sheet has the number 8109 in red, so take care
to get the correct sheet.
The sheets basically consist of various national insignia, numbers, and squadron
badges which the modeler mixes and matches to make specific aircraft. Special
markings are included for a NMF Pakistani F-6 from No. 23 Squadron with a large
sharkmouth and another F-6 from No. 15 Cobra Squadron with red and white
checkerboards on the nose, rudder, and wingtips. Initial impression is that the
decals are quite thin. Some of the squadron badges are made up of overlays that
the user applies in stages, which helps avoid registration problems. My
experience is that decals this thin usually tend to stick to the model
immediately and this could be a problem when moving the decals around to exactly
position them for the overlays.
Unfortunately, the decals are rife with problems. Starting with the Pakistani
birds, the green and white roundels are undersized. The white center seems close
to the correct size, but the green outer ring is noticeably too small. In
addition, the squadron badges that go on the tail are also undersized. Photos
show that the squadron badges are larger than the tail flag, but on the sheet
they are the same size. Pakistani aircraft have serial numbers on both sides of
the nose and the rear fuselage, usually in a segmented block style font. The
sheets contain four sets of 0-9 numerals in the block font but on the 1/32 scale
sheet only three of the sets are segmented and on the 1/48 scale sheet only two
sets are segmented. One will have to cut the segments out of the remaining block
font sets to make the minimum of four sets on numbers that you need for one
aircraft. Even after doing the cutting, you will only have enough numbers for a
serial number without repeating digits. Unfortunately, most of the aircraft
shown on the instructions have at least one repeating digit which means that
none of them can be done with only one sheet. There are also four sets of black
digits in a different font on the sheet, but again you’ll have the repeating
Besides the general problems with the national insignia, squadron badges, and
numbers, the special aircraft from Nos. 15 and 23 Squadron have other problems.
The sharkmouth is much too long for the 23 Squadron bird. Photos show that the
rear end of the mouth ended about halfway between the nose and the wing root,
roughly in line with the muzzle brake of the wing root cannon. The mouth on the
1/48 scale sheet goes from the front edge of the nose all the way to the wing
root itself on my HiPM kit. The rudder checkerboard for the 15 Squadron aircraft
is sized to fit the 1/48 scale AA kit, which has some serious size and shape
problems. Consequently, the checkerboard is too short to fit the 1/48 scale HiPM
kit, and the scaled-up version is too small for the Trumpeter rudder.
The problems with the undersized roundels and insufficient numbers carries over
to the Bangladeshi aircraft as many of them are ex-Pakistani birds and retain
the serial numbers and camouflage of the previous owners. The center of the
roundel is red instead of white, but the roundels remain the same size.
The Chinese markings look basically OK and you get four sets of red numbers,
which allows one to use duplicate digits as Chinese J-6s only carried a nose
number. The sheets also include sets of white numbers and white Chinese national
insignia, but their purpose is not clear. They can’t be an underlay to provide a
white border around the red numbers or national insignia as they are the exact
same size as the colored decals.
The A-5C Fantans on the sheet have their own nose numbers and rear fuselage
serials, so you don’t have to piece together the numbers from a series of
digits. However, the markings include a triangle warning ground crew of the
danger of getting sucked into the “INTANE”.
The instructions are pretty poor, consisting of a series of sheets showing black
and white profile drawings of various aircraft. There are no letters or numbers
associated with the decals on the sheet, which can lead to confusion in the
order of applying the overlays which make up some of the squadron badges unless
one has access to color pictures of the badges. The color callouts are all in
Gunze paint numbers, so you’ll have to find a color chart on your own. The
camouflage information for the aircraft in light grey/ medium grey uppers over
light grey undersides is incorrect. The instruction sheet states that the
vertical tail is in the light gray underside color. Photos of real aircraft,
including one of the FT-6s on the sheet, show that the tail is in the upper
surface medium gray color.
These sheets are just plain bad, folks.
To be fair, these sheets are probably a few years old and were put out for
the 1/48 scale AA kits, long before the Trumpeter and HiPM kits existed, so the
things like the checkerboard not fitting is not really surprising. However, the
sizing errors in the roundels and squadron badges are unforgivable and make the
sheet essentially useless for doing Pakistani or Bangladeshi aircraft. Save your
money and hope something better comes around.
Sample courtesy of my ever dwindling bank account.
Review Copyright © 2002 by Dave
Page Created 03 February, 2002
Last updated 22 July, 2003
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