DXM Decal 1/48 F-14A Tomcat 'VF-1 Wolfpack' Decal First Look
|Date of Review
|F-14A Tomcat 'VF-1 Wolfpack'
|Nice selection of subjects
DXM Decal is back with another interesting release. This set provides a nice cross-section of subjects ranging from the F-14A's early days aboard USS Enterprise through operations aboard USS Ranger prior to Operation Desert Storm in 1991. This cross-section provides a variety of color and marking variations as well as camouflage variations through this time period.
This set consists of two sheets which provide the standard Tomcat markings and walkways as well as the distinctive markings for each of the subjects listed below. Those subjects include:
- F-14A, 158995, VF-1, NK/106, USS Enterprise, 1978
- F-14A, 161288, VF-1, NE/103, USS Ranger, 1985
- F-14A, 162611, VF-1, NE/111, USS Ranger, 1990
- F-14A, 161294, VF-1, NE/106, USS Ranger, 1986
- F-14A, 159827, VF-1, NE/107, USS Ranger, 1981
- F-14A, 161279, VF-1, NE/101, USS Ranger, 1981, Skipper's aircraft
This set provides a variety of schemes for your favorite Tomcat kit. The first scheme is ideal for the Tamiya F-14A kit with its early block configuration. The remaining subjects can be looked up online or in your favorite references to see how the given aircraft was configured in the timeframe depicted. For example, the color profiles all show the F-14As with NACA vented gun doors while many of them (like the first subject) had one of the several louvered gun doors installed. All of the profiles show the aircraft with the infrared search/track (IRST) fairing under the radome, though some of these aircraft flew with the television camera set (TCS) fairing in place of the IRST fairing. Ditto for the various electronic warfare antennas (bumps) under the wing gloves that appeared in the early-1980s. These are all easy details to sort out as you plan out your project. It is a shame that there isn't an example of the VF-1 (along with the rest of CVW-2) cruise aboard USS Kitty Hawk in 1984 while Ranger was laid up for repairs after an engine room fire in November 1983.
For more information about this set and the other releases from DXM Decal, visit their website at dxmdecals.com.
My sincere thanks to DXM Decal for this review sample!