Combat Scooters I - USN/USMC A-4E/A-4F Skyhawks in the Vietnam War

Published: September 4th, 2016     
Product Image
Package Art
Reviewed by: 
Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: 1/32
Company: AOA Decals
Price: $22.50
Product / Stock #: 32010

Trumpeter's 1/32 A-4E/F Skyhawk has been out since 2012 and while some aftermarket companies have addressed the cockpit and intakes, there have been almost no decals issued to a very familiar kit with lots of marking potential. Enter AOA Decals and Part 1 of their multi-part coverage of the Scooter in USN/USMC markings. The decals are printed by Cartograf. Included in the package are two large full color sheets covering the colorful markings and one gigantic sheet covering the black and white markings. Printing is superb as Cartograf is a leading manufacturer of decals. The instructions are full color and have side profiles in color for all 10 schemes as well as detailed information on each scheme. A full set of stencil instructions are also included.

The marking choices are:

  • VMA-223 Bulldogs - 5 options from Chu Lai, South Vietnam between 1966-69
  • VA-94 Mighty Shrikes - 4 options: 1 from USS Bon Homme Richard 1968, 1 from USS Bon Homme Richard 1969 (CAG scheme), and 2 from USS Bon Homme Richard 1970 (one CAG, one line scheme).
  • VA-106 Gladiators - 1 option from USS Intrepid 1968-69

Stencils are provided for one A-4; however, the stencil sheet is also available to purchase separately (see 32-012). Decals also included for VA-94 and VA-106 fuel tanks (VMA-223 generally had plain white fuel tanks without any squadron markings/identifiers).

One thing that really stands out to me is the section describing details of each aircraft. This really helps the modeler and shows AOA's dedication to research of their subjects. On other thing you might notice looking at the picture is that one of the national insignia looks elongated or deformed. This is done on purpose to have this fit over the refueling probe. It is that attention to detail that makes this set stand out amongst the best.

So, in summary, great research and thought in designing, great printing by Cartograf and great subject matter. Highly recommended as a great way to dress up the Trumpeter kit.

My thanks to AOA and IPMS/USA for the chance to review these great decals.

  • Instructions 1
    Instructions 1
  • Instructions 2
    Instructions 2
  • Instructions 3
    Instructions 3
  • Decal Sheet 1
    Decal Sheet 1
  • Decal Sheet 2
    Decal Sheet 2
  • Decal Sheet 3
    Decal Sheet 3

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