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P-38 Lightning

Modelers' Guide to the P-38 Lightning eBook Review

by Michael Benolkin

Date of Review September 2013 Title Modelers' Guide to the P-38 Lightning
Author Jay Sherlock Publisher Aero Research
ISBN N/A Published 2013
Format 112 pages, softbound MSRP (USD) $10.95


Aero Research has released the next title in their Modelers' Guide series, this time looking at the Lockheed P-38 Lightning series. If you remember Bert Kinzey's Detail and Scale series (many of us have the whole collection in our libraries), Bert would take a subject, provide a brief introduction, then look at each variant with some photographs and scrap drawings to show the differences between each variant. At the end he would survey the available kits and aftermarket products available at that time.

Like the first title on the A-1 Skyraider, Jay Sherlock has taken this into a better direction for the modeler. First, all the pages are in color. Second, he is focused on the model more than the history and operation of the aircraft. For example in the first image below, he lists recommended kits in 1/32, 1/48 and 1/72 scale and then references them against the drawing to identify the changes to be made to replicate one of the 26 P-38 Lightning variants in this title.

To give you an idea about how thorough the coverage of this title is for the modeler, look at the list of subjects and each one has the diagram, list of kits available in each scale, and the differences/details to be observed:

  • XP-38
  • YP-38
  • Lighting I and II
  • P-322-I and II
  • P-38
  • XP-38A
  • P-38D
  • P-38E
  • P-38F
  • P-38G
  • P-38H
  • P-38J
  • P-38J/L Droop Snoot
  • P-38J/L Pathfinder
  • P-38K
  • P-38L
  • P-38M
  • F-86L
  • F-4-1
  • F-4A-1
  • F-5A
  • F-5B
  • F-5C
  • XF-5D
  • F-5E
  • F-5F
  • F-5G

In addition to these great modification checklists and which kits are the best to start from for any given variant, this title also provides a one-stop reference in the appendices for Serial Numbers, Operating Units, Surviving Aircraft, and available references.

Of course a modeling reference wouldn't be complete without a line-up of available kits and a discussion of the merits of each one.

This is another great modeler's reference and I really appreciate the coverage on the reconnaissance variants as well. I'm looking forward to putting this new volume to work!

You can purchase this title or any of their photo CDs directly from their website or via email

My sincere thanks to Aero Research for this review sample!