- Published on Wednesday, 25 April 2012 00:01 James Hatch
1:32 Korean War Mustang Decals
Catalogue # 32D005
Available from AIMS for £9.99
We've reviewed a number of sets of decals for the P-51D Mustang here at SP&R. The release of the superlative P-51D from Tamiya certainly quickened the release of new decal sets from many manufacturers, but very few of these sets have concentrated on anything other than WW2 machines. In that respect, this release is quite refreshing as the SIX schemes presented here are for machines that operated during the Korean War. Even better is the fact that only four of these schemes wear the 'Stars and Bars' of regular schemes.
Also, we really should get away from now saying 'P-51D', as these post war machines were denoted at 'F-51'.
Again, AIMS have supplied us with some very interesting and unusual schemes. It's very odd to see a Mustang carry a modern-style standard 'Stars and Bars' with the red banding on the outer portions. The decals for these aren't actually supplied in the kit, but you are given the red bands to add to kits standard wartime national markings.
One machine, a 2 Sqn SAAF F-51D shows under-wing rockets on a cutaway drawing section. There is no other pictorial reference for this, and you will need to check out the Squadron/Signal book mentioned in order to get the information you need to be able to 'arm' this F-51. Although all machines are natural metal finish, we do have some very attractive schemes with shark-mouths, multi-coloured spinners, and coloured flashes.
The instructions are double sided and colour printed, showing each scheme in profile, with sectional drawings to show anything specific appertaining to wings or undercarriage doors. A few lines of history regarding each aircraft is given, along with the reference used for producing this set.
The decals are printed by Cartograf, which is unusual, as AIMS generally use Fantasy Printshop for their releases. As you would imagine, printing quality is exemplary, with the printing being both relatively thin and in perfect register. I don't feel that these decals are as thin as the Fantasy Printshop ones I have seen recently. Carrier film is cut back to a bare minimum and will present no problem on application. I generally find that Cartograf decals work well with setting solutions, but remember to check a spare decal first.
There are no stencil decals present on this kit, and you will be expected to use those from your kit. The shark-mouth decals are represented by the white teeth alone, and these must be placed either onto a red background, or the red sections painted-in after decal application. This may be the preferred option as no guide is given for the shape/size of the mouth in 1:32 scale.
The six aircraft depicted in this set are:
- F-51 D, 2 Sqn SAAF, Chinhae, 1952
- F-51 D, 2 Sqn SAAF, Squadron Leaders aircraft, Chinhae, 1952
- F-51 D-30-NT, Lt. James Glessner, 12th FBS, 18th FBG, Pussan, 1950
- F-51 D-30-NA, Major Arnold 'Moon' Mullins, 67th FBS, 18th FBG
- RF-51D, 45th TRSq, Kimpo, 1952 'OH-KAYE BABY'
- F-51 D-25-NT, 12th FBS, 18th FBG, 'Little Beast', Chinhae, 1950 – 1952
So what do we think?
If you've never thought of building a Mustang in any scheme other than the 'regular', consider the possibility of building one as an F-51, just so you can correct all your modelling buddies when they refer to it as a P-51! Again, we have some great schemes here which certainly deviate from the 'norm' and are very worthy of building. Decal quality is again excellent, and for just under £10, you get a sheet jam-pack full. I have Tamiya's kit in my stash, so I'll be carefully tucking this sheet into the box in readiness.
Very highly recommended.
Our sincere thanks to AIMS for the review sample used here. To purchase this directly, click THIS link.
Discuss this set on our very own forum at www.sparforums.com. Register today for your account, and join our community.