by: Tim Hatton [ ]
Originally published on:
Protected in a A4 resealable plastic wallet. Included with this release are:
-6 x A4 colour guides.
-2 x A4 black and white stencil guides.
-1 x A4 decal sheet.
-2 x smaller decal sheets.
CAG aircraft covered by this release include:
-165804 F/A-18F, VX-9 Vampires, Air Test and Evaluation Squadron, 2006.
-166795 F/A-18F, VFA-22, Fighting Redcocks, USS Ronald Reagan, 2008.
-165860 F/A-18E, VFA-27,Royal Maces, USS George Washington, 2010.
-166842 F/A-18F, VFA-41,Black Aces, USS Nimitz, 2010.
-165859 F/A-18E, VFA-115, Eagles, USS George Washington, 2010.
-166934 EA-18G, VAQ-138, Yellow Jackets, 2010.
All aircraft featured in this water slide decal release are painted light ghost grey [FS 36375] on the lower surfaces and dark ghost grey [FS36320] on the upper surfaces. The narrow cheat lines for 165860 [yellow cheat lines] and 166842 [red cheat lines] are printed in sections which makes their placement so much easier. The wider yellow lightning bolt cheat line of 166934 is printed in one piece. There are decals for the ejector seats and white square decals for the interior of the exhaust cones as well. Also included are decals for Steel Beach's vinyl intake cover sets and the Bard Stack resin sets. The sheet includes the red and green decals representing the navigation lights.
There are full colour port and starboard views of each aircraft to aid the placement of markings and the colour demarcation between upper and lower colours. There are upper and lower plan views of 165860 and 166842 providing the layout for the cheat lines as well as upper and lower colour guidance. There are very useful illustrations for the placement of the wing modex numbers for each aircraft. There are two separate stencil placement guides, one for the F/A-18E/F and the other is for the EA-18G.
Quality of the print by Cartograf is simply stunning. Decals are glossy with a minimum amount of carrier film. All the written stencils are sharp and legible, even the tiniest of stencils, that you have to view with a strong magnifying glass. I like the attention to detail, such as the fin badges and the rather vicious looking sharks teeth on 165860. Also there are four different types warnings for the engine air intakes. There are enough stencils and wing walk ways for two aircraft, but there is nothing to stop the modeler from using the kits stencils to be able to utilise even more of the above markings. Decals are sized to the Hasegawa 1/48 kit.
Afterburner Decals are at it again. Making life difficult for us poor modelers. The choice of six rather splendid looking schemes, will have you lying awake for hours deciding which ones to go for. Thank goodness there are enough markings to decorate two aircraft from this release. More if you use the kits stencils. Seriously this is a superb release from Afterburner Decals. Nice one Afterburner Decals.