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RA-5C Vigilante

RA-5C Vigilante Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review November 2014 Title RA-5C Vigilante
Author Charles Stafrace Publisher Guideline Publications
Published 2014 ISBN n/a
Format 64 pages, softbound MSRP (GBP) £15.50


Only 156 examples of this sleek, massive aircraft were manufactured.  And it sustained the highest loss rate of any US Navy warplane during the Vietnam War – nearly 40%.

It was the North American Vigilante.  And although originally designed as a carrier-based, supersonic nuclear bomber, the RA-5C variant ultimately excelled in the tactical reconnaissance role.

Now it's the subject of RA-5C Vigilante – number 97 in Guideline Publications's colorful "Warpaint" series.

Coverage includes design and development notes, initial operations, year-by-year summary of the aircraft's Vietnam War actions, and Vigilante squadron capsule histories.

Dozens of color and B&W photos tincture text.  Richard J. Caruana's 1:72-scale plans confirm the aircraft's massive size.  And his superb color profiles – 36 in all, plus a multi-view – provide plenty of model project inspiration.

Tables recap Vigilante specifications, serials, carrier air wing and squadron tail codes, and squadron deployments.  A final listing covers RA-5C kits, decals and accessories.  And a three-page "in detail" section offers close-up shots – inside and out.

Tackling Trumpeter's 1:72 RA-5C Vigilante?  Addressing Airfix's ancient effort?  Reference Warpaint 97!


My sincere thanks to Guideline Publications for this review sample!