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Flying Leathernecks Decals 1/48 CH-53E Heavy Haulers Decal First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review August 2008 Manufacturer Flying Leathernecks Decals
Subject CH-53E Heavy Haulers Scale 1/48
Set Number 48001 Pros Nice markings for eight aircraft, excellent reference photos on the CD-ROM
Cons Skill Level Novice
MSRP (USD) Out of Production

First Look

Flying Leathernecksis a new brand under Orion Scale Models which is all owned and operated by Dave Roof, USMC, so you'll know he has a passion for the Corps and this latest release is no exception.

CH-53E CH-53E CH-53E CH-53E

In this set, Flying Leathernecks offers markings for eight US Marine Corps CH-53 Super Sea Stallion helicopters from three squadrons (actually, the aircraft are all from two squadrons with two of the airframes on loan to a third).

The aircraft presented in this set are:

  • CH-53E, 162526, HMH-461, CJ/16, MCAS New River, April 2008
  • CH-53E, 163062, HMH-461, CJ/20, MCAS New River, April 2008
  • CH-53E, 163063, HMH-461, CJ/21, MCAS New River, April 2008
  • CH-53E, 162521, HMH-261 (rein), EM/21, 'Cadillac 21'
  • CH-53E, 161995, HMH-261 (rein), EM/22
  • CH-53E, 161533, HMH-464, EN/08, MCAS New River, April 2008
  • CH-53E, 162001, HMH-464, EN/11, MCAS New River, April 2008
  • CH-53E, 162481, HMH-464, EN/12, MCAS New River, April 2008

The door artwork is printed by Archer Fine Transfers and overlay the white silhouttes provided on the decal sheet.

What is nice about this release is the instructions - they're on a CD-ROM included in this decal set that not only profiles each aircraft, the CD-ROM also contains walk-around images of these particular aircraft as well as an in-depth detailed walk around of the CH-53E airframe and another folder with nice cockpit interior shots.

If you've been looking for a good reference on the CH-53E, the retail price is very reasonable for the imagery provided on this CD-ROM plus you get a nice set of decals to boot. If you're looking for some current combat workhorses, these Marine CH-53Es are just what your project needs, plus you get some excellent references included for free. Either way, this is a must have for the Academy 1/48 CH-53 modeler!

For more information about this set and the other releases from Flying Leathernecks Decals, visit their website at

My sincere thanks to Flying Leathernecks Decals for this review sample!


  • Notice: The appearance of U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Coast Guard, Department of Defense, or NASA imagery or art does not constitute an endorsement nor is Cybermodeler Online affiliated with these organizations.