Pacific P-51 Mustang Decals, Part 1

Published: January 11th, 2012     
Decal Packaging
Decal Packaging
Reviewed by: 
Paul Mahoney, IPMS# 8943
Scale: 1/48
Company: Kagero Publishing
Price: $14.50
Product / Stock #: KD 48001

This is the first release in Kagero's new Red Series.  From what I understand, the Red Series will consist of decals accompanied by 8 pages of color instructions.  Although I have the 1/48 scale sheet for review, it is available in 1/72 and 1/32 as well.

The decals and accompanying booklet come in a re-sealable plastic sleeve, which is useful for storage purposes.  The booklet itself is indeed 8 pages (including front and back cover), and is printed on high quality, thin (think good quality magazine) paper stock.  Good quality color printing has been used throughout.  The cover page has a dramatic in-action painting of Mustang #1 on the decal sheet.  The interior 6 pages cover the individual subjects of the decals (see below).  The final (back) page has 3 small profiles of the subjects, as well as a brief how-to on the best way to apply Kagero decals.

3 aircraft are covered in this decal sheet:

  1. P-51D-25 flown by 2nd Lt. Saks, 457th FS, 506th FG, Iwo Jima, June 1945.
  2. P-51D-25 flown by Lt. Gardner/Lt. Jatczak 457th FS, 506th FG, Iwo Jima, June 1945.
  3. F-6D-10 flown by Capt. Shomo, 82nd TRS, 71st TRG, Mindoro January 1945

Each aircraft has 2 full pages devoted to it.  A brief history and description of each aircraft is included, along with a separate paragraph (and accompanying color sketch) about the pilot. Included in the aircraft description is a brief discussion of the markings themselves.

Full color side views (left and right), as well as a full top view and wing undersides of each aircraft, are depicted.  Each decal location is very clearly marked, and some scrap views are also present, as needed, to show some of the otherwise obscured decal locations.  In the case of aircraft #3, 2 photos of the real aircraft are included.

Color callouts are labeled by name, ANA description, and FS number (ie Olive Drab, ANA 613, FS 34088).  I think the artwork (both in the book and on the decals) is extremely well done.  These profiles are more the type one would find in a high-quality reference book, rather than decal instructions.  So, calling these merely decal instructions is probably doing them a disservice.  This is a booklet you will want to hold onto even after you finish using the decals.  References (both books and websites) for the photos these markings are based on are cited as well. 

The decals themselves are printed by Cartograf, so there should be no surprises here.  National insignia markings are provided for all three aircraft.  (Aircraft #3 had no insignia on the wing topsides).  2 sets of "dive sight" stripes (on the top surfaces of the wings) are provided.  Option #2 carried these, option #1 may or may not have carried them (according to Kagero), but it is thoughtful that a second set is provided.  Unfortunately, no stencil decals are provided other than the data blocks specific to each aircraft.  I very much like that you have been provided with 3 complete sets of markings, but do wish more stenciling had been provided.

Most aftermarket decals for the P-51 cover those based in Europe, so this subject matter was a little different and welcome.  As far as I know, the markings for the first two Mustangs have not been done before.  Although a few decal manufacturers have done Shomo's "Flying Undertaker," this is the first time I have seen another of his aircraft's markings in decal form.

I would highly recommend this product as both a decal sheet and a reference booklet.

Thanks to Kagero for providing the sample, and to IPMS/USA for allowing me to review it.
 

  • Marking overview and instructions
    Marking overview and instructions
  • Profile with decal placement
    Profile with decal placement
  • Decals
    Decals

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