by: Tim Hatton [ ]
This book and decals by Dutch Profile, covers the P-40N's of the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army Air Force [RNEIAAF] during the Indonesian War of Independence involving Indonesia and the Dutch Empire. The publication focuses on 102 Squadron and their P-40 N's between the time that Indonesia declared independence in 1945 up to the recognition of Indonesia's independence by the Netherlands in 1949. Decals are for 1/72, 1/48 and 1/32 scale
1 x A4 soft back book.
1 x A5 decal sheet.
1 x small correction decal sheet.
1 x A4 instruction sheet.
Decals and instructions are placed in a resealable plastic bag.
The P-40 was becoming obsolete towards the end of WWII, even so the Dutch Government were still purchasing P-40N's in 1946. The P-40N's of 102 Squadron saw action during the first and second Police Campaigns, when the squadron was charged with monitoring and dealing with the build up of rebel forces. Actions included bombing rebel positions, strafing airfields and reconnaissance. There are quite a few stories included describing the missions involving the pilots of 102 Squadron. 1947 saw the application of new national markings and registrations, the red, white and blue flag was replaced with the red, white and blue segmented cocade with the orange centre. By the latter part of the 1940's the attrition rate with these aircraft was becoming too high and on the 30th December 1949 the type was finally retired from the RNEIAAF. One of the last P-40N's to fly was converted into a reconnaissance aircraft. In all the Squadron had around 40 aircraft at their disposal between 1945 and late 1949. After their retirement the remaining Dutch P-40's were transferred to the Indonesian Air Force, but were never used again.
The book has many useful photographs of these distinctive looking aircraft, in that many had the camouflage partially or wholly removed. Also as the aircraft rarely saw the inside of a hangar and were exposed to the elements, resulting in some some very interesting weathering of paintwork. There are many photos of the P-40N landing on their belly's, not through pilot error but because the aircraft were so worn out, systems were failing. The photographs not only offer a chance to view the men and the machines of this squadron, but also the surrounding and the paraphernalia around them, particularly useful if you enjoy creating dioramas. It is also very interesting looking at the weathering and how matt the paintwork is. Some of the most interesting photos to study in regards to weathering are the ones were the aircraft has 'nose stood' on landing so there is the opportunity to see the upper and lower parts of the aircraft.
The coloured profiles are useful references if you want to finish your P-40N into something different. There are 14 profiles in the book. Some aircraft are shown at different periods in their life with 102 Squadron. I did notice that one aircraft, J-352 appears twice, the later scheme includes the name “Rhanie Tully” on the port radiator, but the name is not on the decal sheet. Also aircraft C3-500 has a distinctive badge on the nose and this does not appear on the decals sheet either. So don't presume the decals cover all the colour profiles.
Part 2, 1945 – 1950. History, Camouflage and Markings.
Authors: Max Schep and Luuk Boerman
Profile 11. Limited edition.
A4 format, soft back, 45 pages.
Approx 75 B&W images, 14 colour profiles.
The 1/72, 1/48 and 1/32 scale decals allow you to create:
C3-522 / J-322, 1947/48.
C3-500, 1947. The badge in the illustration is a charging Buffalo not a Rhino as described in the profile. The badge is included in the first publication, Curtiss P-40N part 1.
C3-511, “Flying Dutchman”, 1947.
C3-560, “Irma”, 1946.
C3-549 / J-349, “Snafu”, 1947.
J-365, “Betty”, 1948.
C3-536 / J-336, 1948.
C3-559 / J-359, 1948.
J-329 [J-316?], 1949*.
*Aircraft described in the text as J-329 is illustrated as J-316.
Decals themselves look excellent, thin, good colour density and registration. There are three scales provided on the sheets and the decals for each scale are clearly defined. The smaller correction sheet has the aircraft codes with a slightly lighter silver coloured background. The background colours on the serials have uneven edges which reflect the look on the real aircraft. A nice touch by PT Decals. Included on the decal sheet are the two types of national markings, the flag and the roundels. Two aircraft can be finished using each scale, one with the flag and one with the roundel type markings.
Instructions comes in the form of a folded A4 sheet with black and white illustrations. There are 16 side profiles some of the profiles cover the same aircraft at a different time. There are also a upper and lower plan view for the aircraft carrying the flag national markings. There is only a upper plan view of the aircraft carrying the roundels.
Also there are recommendations for kits and also a warning that the decals are very thin and only need immersing for a few seconds in water. So you have been warned.
I like this release a lot. This is not only a great written and illustrated reference to the P-40N's of 102 Squadron but also a tribute to the pilots and ground crew for keeping these aircraft in the air, when they well past their maximum airframe hours. Some of the information is a little confusing, but the value of this reference is in the unique markings offered and the decals to go along with the book. Excellent. Highly recommended.
Many thanks to jean-Luc for this publication.