1/48 Hasegawa A-7E Corsair

(as A-7H tiger scheme)

by Steve 'Cloggy' Cladingboel

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For a long time I had wanted to build this fantastic Greek special scheme in 1/48, but held out in case someone - anyone really - designed a high quality aftermarket decal sheet; it has been on Syharts 'to do' list for ages, for example, but as yet hasn't materialised.

Then Hobbyboss brought it out in 1/72 and I thought - "at last; shame it's not in 1/48 but I'll build it anyhow". However, nice as the Hobbyboss decals are, they are far too yellow - when I last saw this A-7H at the Royal International Air Tattoo last year (2007), it was distinctly faded and jaded with some good weathering!  So I binned the idea of building it in 1/72 and, instead, I used the Hobbyboss decals as a template about which more later. So I got as much photo references as possible from my own stock, from the web (good ol' web) and from my friend Rob 'The Rabbit' Foster, who had some good close-ups and detail shots.

KIT: Hasegawa's A-7E is a fairly old kit now, but still lovely. Everything on my model was done OOB, the detail on this kit really is excellent (IMHO) so unless you're into really heavy super-detailing, there isn't a need to buy major aftermarket stuff. However that doesn't mean it's necessarily an easy kit to build. The fit for the wings over the fuselage is not too good, the flaps needed some slight re-shaping and the main gear wheels seem to spread out just too much at the bottom.

PAINT: Everything here is hand painted using Humbrol and Revell enamels.  It took a few goes to get the colour mix right for the rather unique sandy yellow colour, but I was satisfied with Revell 16 (60%) + Humbrol 24 (40%).  The underside is Humbrol 147 (I never use white as on a model it looks too....white!).

DECALS: The only decaled parts are the tigers head, the tiger on the tail and the Greek flag.  I used the Hobbyboss decals for these 3 items as a template to give me the basic shapes and then resized them to 1/48 and did some drastic reshading, pruning and detailing in Photoshop, printed the results out onto decal paper and then retouched them by hand using the Humbrol & Revell paint.  The tiger on the tail and the Greek flag are placed over plain white decal which had been shaped accordingly. I hope you like the results.

Steve

Photos and text by Steve Cloggy Cladingboel