Full Review with Dave Coward
Background – from Tamiya’s website
The deployment of the F-4 Phantom II started in the early 1960s and over 5,000 were manufactured during its production run. The F-4 Phantom II was operated by not only the Navy and Air Force in America, but also other countries on account of its long range and superlative loading capacity. In 1952, the Navy desired a supersonic aircraft and while the F-8 Crusader produced by the Vought Aircraft Industries, Inc. was employed, the McDonnell Aircraft Corporation continued to develop a two-seater interceptor with powerful dual engines. This aircraft equipped four each of AIM-7E Sparrows and AIM-9G/H Sidewinders, and was officially adopted as the F4H-1 in December 1958 (which was later renamed the F-4A). The F-4B’s production started in 1961 and its delivery began with the Fighter Squadron VF-74. In 1965, two F-4Bs shot down two North Vietnamese MiG-17 each, but the most enemy kills in the early stages of the Vietnam War were carried out by the F-8. However, from Operation Linebacker in 1972 onward, F-4 deployment increased and it was operated for air-to-ground strikes. After that, various kinds of F-4 aircraft were developed and some have even been in service with some countries for half a century.
About the model…
This is a 1/48 scale plastic model assembly kit.
Fuselage length: 370mm, wingspan: 244mm.
- Exhaustive studies of the actual aircraft enabled this precise recreation of the distinctive form
- The parts breakdown offers ease of assembly
- J79-GE-8 engine nozzles, cockpit, and landing gear bays are realistically recreated
- Choose between folded and extended wingtips
- One-piece horizontal stabilizer right and left sides move in concert
- Choose between open and closed canopy, and extended and retracted refuelling probe/boarding ladder
- Different types of antennae and cockpit consoles can be chosen depending on the marking option selected
- Air-to-air missiles (AIM-7E Sparrow and AIM-9G/H Sidewinder) and two types of drop tanks are included
- Includes 2 sitting crew figures, 3 marking options, and masking stickers.
- eduard Space 3DL 48040
- eduard T Face Mask set EX803
- Tamiya Access Door Panel Set A
The plan was to build one of the options from the box and my initial choice was the VF-111 Sundowners scheme but after looking into this I realised that this scheme didn’t use / have the stencilling applied as it was repainted upon its return from deployment and the maintenance stencils were not re-applied. As I always associate F-4s with a plethora of stencils it just didn’t seem right to not have them and I had also purchased the additional stencilling set from Tamiya!!!
So, the choice came down to the box art option of VF-51 or the 3rd option of VF-151. I really didn’t like the box art option (I didn’t like the talons on the main wheel bay doors !!) so VF-151 it was.
A little bit of internet searching brought up some great pictures of the actual aircraft and the biggest take I got out of these was it was clean, no grubby finish required here and it had a glossy sheen to it. With that clarified, it was time to start the build and see if all the hype lived up to its reality!!
Just as a taster of the finished model here’s some pics of my finished model…