357 TFS, 355th TFW, Takhli Royal Thai Air Base, Thailand, 1970.
FROG/Hasegawa 1/72 with Print Scale markings
Developed from the F-
However it quickly found itself fighting a very different and limited conventional
war, one of attrition and restricted engagements against North Vietnam. Thunderchiefs
bore the brunt of the early bombing campaigns, flying from bases in Thailand to
attack North Vietnamese targets, including Hanoi with its infamous SAM alley. In
the conventional role, theF-
In view of the high level of attrition, the result of their intense use, rather than
any fault in aircraft or pilots, F-
Although not intended as fighters, USAF F-
This kit came to me in a dirty bag of bits, purchased for only £1 at the Cosford
model show. It had no instructions or decals and had been taped together some years
ago with sellotape that had left a thick layer of adhesive on the plastic of the
fuselage and wings. Nothing that a bit of elbow grease couldn’t remove, with a set
of Print Scale decals to finish. Although I believe the origins of this one to be
FROG, this is one of the many kits that were shared by FROG and Hasegawa in the 1970s,
in this case starting off as an Hasegawa kit. It is definitely not one of their
best, with very crude details, a bare cockpit (but detailed pilot and seat?) and
(to my mind) a rather over-
There were no real issues in building (except that my lead shot weights all came undone and fell out the tailpipe as I painted the kit!) . I’m not sure I got the assembly of the seat and pilot right though and had to do a bit of surgery to get them to fit. Sidewinders, ECM jammer, bomb load and MER pylon/rack came from various other kits and the decals are from Print Scale. Paint is Humbrol enamel applied by brush. Painting all 3 colours on the upper surfaces and trying to blend their edges was “interesting”! Although I am generally happy with the outcome, my light green is a little too vibrant and my tan probably a little too light.
Background Image: US Army Huey helicopter at the Helicopter Museum, Weston Super Mare
Have a look at my Friends and Allies pages for more USAF & Vietnam era aircraft.
469 TFS, 388th TFW, Royal Thai Air Base, Korat Thailand, 1969.
Hasegawa 1/72 OOB
For many people, the F-
With its angular shape and massive weapons load, it was a very distinctive aircraft,
equally at home as an interceptor, dogfighter or bomber. The F-
This is yet another ”cheapy” buy, costing me £5 at the same time and in the same place as the Thunderchief. This is the 2nd generation Hasegawa Phantom kit, still on sale, which is reasonably accurate, but quite simple in detail.
That said, it builds fairly well, although not as precisely as I have come to expect from Hasegawa kits, even old ones. The fit of the wings to the fuselage was disappointing, with gaps all round, especially between wing and upper fuselage sides. This was addressed by inserting a spreader bar from sprue cut to the correct size.
My issue of the kit came with a full weapon load (which is not included in the more
recent issues of this kit, which is also in the stash. I modified it slightly from
the kit instructions to reflect a more realistic 12x M-
Pilots came from the spares box and were needed to address the very empty cockpits. Ia lso did a little scratch modification to the ejector seat tops, including some delicate wire ejection handles, which promptly fell off once the canopy was attached ! .
The Commander of the 388th TFW, 13th Air Force was Colonel Paul Douglas, a WWII P-
In Vietnam F-
During the Vietnam War the F-
Various shots of F-