The A-10A/C aircraft has been in US Service and US Service ONLY since 1977. It was an aircraft designed not for speed, but for strength. It was built not to fly high far and fast, but low, slow, and for a long time. It was built to withstand multiple hits from ground and air and keep on fighting, with its GAU-8 30 mm Vulcan gun providing ground troops in contact with precision close air support. Interestingly, its prime target, Soviet tanks, were never encountered on the intended battlefield, but in the deserts and mountains of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Italeri has produced a 1/72nd scale kit for the 25th anniversary of the original 1990 Gulf war against Iraq. It is kit #1376 and the box shows a manufacture date of 2016. The box is a top off designed box with very fancy box art of a Hellfire equipped A-10 engaging T-55 type tanks on a desert battlefield.
The box contains two grey and one clear sprue tree. Also contained is the crisply printed decal sheet and seven page instruction manual.
The sprues provided have crisp, fine, recessed panel lines and virtually no flash. Ejector pin marks, while occasionally present, will not cause too many problems. The main sprue color is grey and a separately packaged clear sprue finishes up the parts holders. Options for the modeller include posing the ailerons opened as speed brakes or closed, as well as an access hatch and the canopy.
Instructions and decals
The instructions include four pages of painting and decal options for aircraft from both the 1991 Gulf War and 2012. There is also a single page of introduction and parts call outs. A nine step instruction set rounds out the instructions. Each of the steps includes several sub assemblies and all parts call outs appear straight forward.
The single decal sheet provided is separated into 5 sections. The top half of the sheet is dedicated to common A-10 markings, cautions, as well as the cockpit details and a false canopy for the underside of the aircraft. A nice touch and noted attention to detail is that Italeri has taken the time to add a forward cockpit decal for each type of A-10 (A model and C model). The bottom half of the sheet contains aircraft-specific decals for aircraft of the 74th TFS with "shark mouth" nose decals, a snakes head of the Indiana ANGs "Blacksnake" Squadron, the "Red Devils" of Michigan, and an Air Force Reserve Squadron "NO" of JRB New Orleans LA.
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Highs: Finely engraved panel lines and large amounts of weapons choices. Decals for four different aircraft with nose art!Lows: Engine intake and exhaust details are extremely simplistic. Verdict: This kit is sure to build up into a fine example of either aircraft, with few problems and lots of options for the modeller. Diorama and vignette modellers will be pleased with small scale and large display options.
About Brian (fhvn4d) FROM: MASSACHUSETTS, UNITED STATES
I am middle/late 40s, and have been modelling in plastics most of my life. I started around 7 years old, mostly aircraft and armor. I work full time as a Lieutenant on a career fire department. I also currently am the secretary of the organization Armor Modeling Preservation Society.