In-Box Review
Starfighters in Combat
Starfighters in Combat
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by: Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]

The latest samples that Iliad Design have kindly sent us include a real treat for anyone building an F-104 in 1:48 scale. Starfighters in Combat provides markings for no less than seven F-104s serving with various air forces around the world - and, as the title suggests, the underlying theme is that all the aircraft featured saw actual combat.

The line-up comprises:

1. F-104A, "D", Pakistan Air Force, 1971
2. Canadair-built F-104G, "4344", 427th TFS, 3rd TFW, Republic of China Air Force, 1967
3. F-104C, 0-70927, of the 8th TFW, USAF, Udorn RTAFB, 1966/67
4. F-104C, 0-60910, of the 8th TFW, USAF, Udorn RTAFB, 1966/67
5. F-104C, 60883, USAF, 1965
6. F-104A, 56-803, Pakistan Air Force, 1971
7. F-104G, 22313, 141 Filo, Turkish Air Force, 1974

The subjects chosen sport an interesting mix of n/m, ADC Grey and two styles of camouflage schemes, so there's something to suit all tastes.

The decals are gloss finished and wonderfully thin, with crystal clear carrier film, so they should snuggle down beautifully over details. The registration is pin-sharp and the colour density and accuracy look excellent, with correctly dark US Insignia Red and Blue contrasting with the brighter tones on other markings.

There's a lot to cram onto the sheet, but Iliad Design have managed to squeeze in everything needed for all the schemes except for #5, where you'll need to rely on whichever kit you're using for USAF text. I guess the one danger with that is that the donor kit's decals might not match the quality of Iliad Design's.

The decals are accompanied by a nicely produced sheet of instructions, with full colour side and plan views and detailed notes highlighting specifics of each aircraft.

This is another excellent set of decals from Iliad Design. I can't fault what they've provided in any way - I just wish some kind of jiggery pokery could have made space on the sheet to include the missing items for one of the featured schemes and so ensured everything would match Iliad Design's standards.

There are some really interesting subjects among the chosen aircraft - with stories which are beyond the scope of this review - and a variety of colour schemes offering plenty of interest and enjoyable modelling challenges. Highly recommended.

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Highs: Superbly printed decals backed up by detailed instructions.
Lows: Space constraints on the sheet mean you'll be relying on kit-supplied markings to complete one of the colour schemes - which may not match the quality of Iliad Design's markings.
Verdict: This is another great set of decals from Iliad Design. It's instantly got me wondering "Have I got a Starfighter in the stash, or do I need to buy one?".
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:48
  Mfg. ID: 4820
  Suggested Retail: $12.00
  PUBLISHED: Feb 18, 2020

Our Thanks to Iliad Design!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Rowan Baylis (Merlin)

I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...

Copyright 2021 text by Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


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