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Argentine Air Force Skyhawk A-4B (1982) 1/72 scale

by  Hernan Casciani


The kit

The quantity of parts this Fujimi's kit provides is over the average for 1/72 scale, it is composed of 5 light gray branches (recessed panel lines), plus the transparent ones for the booth and the shot scope. Besides it offers us two ways of building, opened or closed booth. It doesn't have armament!!!, only 3 fuel tanks and 2 couples of MER / TER (Multiple Ejector Rack / Triple Ejector Rack), it's a pity. The marks offered are for Argentine Navy A-4Q, (registration number 3-A-307) but AeroCalcas has the set 72006, which allows us the A4B building.
I admit that the A-4 is my weakness, so I have several books about it, where I have verified the measures and can assure that they are right, but these books weren't useful for me when looking for information to make an Argentine Air Force (FAA) A-4B. I had to consult publications such as: "Malvinas la Guerra Aérea" and others and to photos took from the real airplane.


I began with the cockpit which I painted in light gray, the panel's instruments and the lateral panels in black, applying them "dry brush " to highlight details, and painting switches and handles of ejection in red and yellow.
Once the work was finished I added weight inside the nose to avoid that the model's tail falls.

Then, I joined the rear fuselage halves, which once dried I glued the front section finishing this task. On the fuselage, I had to correct some inspection panels, according to the Argentine airplane, which are placed on both sides, in front of an air manifold.
On the rear back of the rudder we find a triangular shape air intake, which I had to remove filling it with putty.


On the upper part of the fuselage and in front of the rudder I added a radome, (which is not provided by the kit so I had to scratch build it). This part has a water drop shape, whose measures are, height: 2mm, width: 9mm, length: 14mm.

On the airplane nose, we find 2 small circles; the one ahead is the AOA (Angle Of Attack indicator), which I had to re-build, because in the A-4B it is squared.
Once the above-mentioned was finished, I glued the wing to the fuselage. Regarding to the wing, I only had to remove a small panel that is on the leading edge left.

After applying putty and sanding thoroughly, the model was ready to be painted.
In the A-4B, there were many camouflages schemes, green and gray, light earth and light blue, and the used during the 1982 war. I chose the green and brown one, with the under fuselage in light blue. On the wings and rudder some yellow strips are painted, which were used from May 1st 1982, besides the hook was painted in white with black strips.


I used Tamiya acrylic Deep Green (XF26) and Red brown (XF64). Since both colors have much contrast between themselves, I mixed both in proportional parts until finding more appropriated tones. For the light blue I used Tamiya's Sky Blue (X14) to which I added a little of white and X21 (to give it a flat finishing), the speed brakes well, the inside part of the slats and flaps and the landing gear hatches edges were painted in red.


Besides I added the following details: the VHF antenna (behind the booth), pitot tube in front of the windshield, AOA sensor, and at last the VOR on the rudder. Due to the result obtained with the painting, I believed that it was not necessary, to wear it away.
If you decide to build this model, consult me if you need draws or anything else...and have fun!.


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Experimental camouflage used after 1982, 5ta Air Brigade, San Luis Argentina

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