Republic P-47D Thunderbolt Part 9 Decals

Published: July 21st, 2016     
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Reviewed by: Paul Mahoney - IPMS# 8943
Scale: 1/48
Company: Lifelike Decals
Price: $16.00
Product / Stock #: 48-049
Product provided by: Lifelike Decals

Likelike Decals from Japan just released a few new sheets, and this one covers the P-47D Thunderbolt. Having just reviewed the Mustang sheet released at the same time, you will find some similar comments in this review!

This is yet another example of Lifelike providing a comprehensive set of contents in a standard Ziploc decal bag. Along with a full color placement guide, there is one full page of decals, printed by Microscale, that contains most of the individual markings and a full set of stencils. There is an additional 1/2 page, also printed by Microscale, containing at least two sets of national insignia (including the oversized stars and bars common on the underside of both wings of some P-47s). Finally, there is a small third sheet, printed by Cartograf, that contains the personal insignia for each aircraft.

The 3 markings options are:

  • P-47D Razorback flown by Lt.Klibbe, England, Spring 1945
  • P-47D Bubbletop flown by Col. Perego, France/Germany Spring 1945 (2 versions)
  • P-47D Bubbletop flown by Lt. Reams, Italy 1945

Each aircraft has a nicely done color side profile, as well as smaller top and bottom views (also in color). There is also a full-page generic four-view showing stenciling placement. A full set of stencils is provided for one aircraft, as well as enough national markings to cover two aircraft. As there are markings provided for two different timeframes in the life of aircraft #2, you could say there are actually four sets of markings in this set

Each of the side profiles is accompanied by some quite in-depth text covering a bit of the history of the individual pilots, as well as that of the specific airframe. There is also explanations, complete with reference citings, as to how Lifelike came to its conclusions regarding paint schemes and markings. Several paragraphs are devoted to each profile. Lifelike explains where they made educated guesses (and how they arrived there). All instructions I have seen from this company are written by someone that clearly has a love of the subject, and is most probably a modeler as well. I only wish all decal instructions were this comprehensive!

The main decals themselves, as noted above, are printed by Microscale. Cartograf was used to print the finely-detailed personal insignia decals for each aircraft. My experience with the decals of both these printers has always been first-rate. Once again, these sheets look to be no exception.

This is the fifth set of Lifelike decals I have seen or used, and I continue to be very impressed. The research clearly shows this to be a labor of love. As with the other sheets I have seen, I happen to have several of the references they mention. I was able to follow the train of logic regarding the markings quite easily. The information in this sheet stands on its own, but it is nice to see how clearly Lifelike shows its sources. It was a pleasure to follow along with their reasoning and logic in coming to conclusions about various markings. The only downside to this sheet, in my opinion, is that the first aircraft markings have appeared several times before (Monogram and Tamiya kit decals, and at least one other aftermarket set). The other two were new (at least to me), and in all cases the research trumps anything previously issued. As a final note, a visit to the Lifelike website will show you they are constantly updating the modeler with any new info they may come across regarding markings on their sheets.

Thanks to Lifelike Decals for providing the sample, and to IPMS/USA for allowing me to review it!

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