In-Box Review
C-141B Starlifter Gulf War
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by: paul [ LUDWIG113 ]

A brief history...
The Lockheed C-141 Starlifter was a military strategic airlifter in service with the air mobility command (AMC) of the united states air force (USAF). The aircraft also served with AMC-gained airlift wings and air mobility wings of the air force reserve command (AFRC) and the air national guard (ANG).

Introduced to replace slower piston-engined cargo planes such as the C-124 Globemaster , the C-141 was designed to requirements set in 1960 and first flew in 1963. Production deliveries of an eventual 285 planes began in 1965: 284 for the Air Force, and one for NASA for use as an airborne observatory.

The C-141B differed from the previous A version by having inserts in the fuselage in front and behind the wing to increase capacity and the aircraft remained in service for over 40 years until the USAF withdrew the last C-141s from service in 2006.

first impressions
I have to admit that when I first heard this was an 1/200 scale kit I expected a smaller you can see from the picture its bigger than the Tamiya Spitfire and almost as big as the Roden Gladiator, both 1/48 kits.The box its self is clearly laid out with detail views, decals and markings, and once opened you'll find the decal sheet, intructions, 2 bags holding 4 grey sprues and 1 clear sprue.

Instructions and decals
The instruction sheet is basic, it is 4 sided, in black, white and blue but gives clear diagrams and paint instructions for 3 types of paint: Aqueous Hobby Color, GSI Mr. Color and Model Master Color.

The decal sheet printed by Cartograf is nice, excellent registration, nice colours and very little carrier film showing at the edges, however there are only 1 set of markings for this kit ( 50257 spirit of the inland empire ) which is a shame as I can't find any aftermarket decals in this scale...if anyone knows of some please let us know.

the Kit
The overall fit of major parts is very good, the wings, fuselage and engines go together with no problems as do the tail surfaces and the clear glass on the front which hides a basic cockpit (that you won't see anyway) fits perfectly. excellent panel lines and cargo ramp detail also enhance the look of the kit.
I taped all these parts together and there didn't seem to be any major gaps or issues with fit, just a couple of things to be careful of, though, are the underwing inserts as one of the locating pins made the fit a little tight so I removed the pin to make things easier, and the moulded aerials on the fuselage as i'm sure they could be broken or trimmed off if you're not careful.

A nice touch is the option to model the cargo doors open or closed and it also comes with a pair of tiny HMMWVs.

If you're thinking this kit will fill a small space on your shelf you might want to take a look at the comparison shot with the 1/48 hurricane, the wingspans are the same while the Starlifter's fuselage is actually longer than the Hurricane.

Overall, this is a very nice “little” kit. Crisp detail, as well as the option to have the cargo doors open or closed make it a winner to me. The only minor downside is the single decal option.

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Verdict: A very nice, crisply detailed kit, slightly let down by the inclusion of only one markings option.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:200
  Mfg. ID: 2013
  Suggested Retail: TBA
  PUBLISHED: Feb 07, 2012
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Dragon Models!
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 paul (ludwig113)

Copyright ©2021 text by paul [ LUDWIG113 ]. 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.


Great review. I am hoping to receive mine in the mail very shortly. Just a few comments. I am presuming there is only one paint scheme, the overall grey? Also I beleive there is an inaccuracy in the decals. The aircraft that was marked "Spirit of the Inland Empire" belonged to the 63rd MAW which flew out of Norton AFB, not March AFB which in indicated by the yellow band on the tail.
FEB 07, 2012 - 12:11 AM
hi kevin, thanks for the info on the markings, there is only 1 paint scheme and i couldn't find aftermarket decals in 1/200. when i searched for this aircraft while doing the review i found these pictures... this must be the aircraft that dragon took their scheme from. paul p.s. i have noted the copyright and have not altered the pictures in anyway. if anyone wants them removed please say so. many thanks paul
FEB 07, 2012 - 12:55 AM
Uggh... And I knew something else was wrong, the wrong colors and wrong tail number. I am presuming when Norton AFB closed, the 452 MAS was moved to March AFB, thus the tail marking. But, it is not even the original aircraft. The original Spirit of the Inland Empire is stored at the Davis Monathan "grave yard".
FEB 07, 2012 - 02:36 AM
i see what you mean kevin, all i can say is that the scheme and decals are correct for the "spirit of the inland empire" that they chose... maybe seeing this might inspire someone to produce an after market set for the original aircraft. paul
FEB 07, 2012 - 02:46 AM
Good review Paul of an excellent subject. Look forward to your build. all the best. tim
FEB 07, 2012 - 09:35 PM
thanks tim, i have a few kits that i have to build(or finish!) this year and the C-141 will be one of them. cheers paul
FEB 08, 2012 - 02:17 AM
I got mine in the mail today, thanks to the speedy work of Gordon at SprueBrothers. I could hardly wait to get in the door to rip the box open. I already have the fuselage glued together, working on the wings. Amazing little kit, going together VERY well. I should explain my excitness, I was a member of the 63rd Military Airlift Wing at Norton AFB in the late 80's - early 90's, while I was member of the 63rd Civil Eng. Squadron, I grew a great fondness for the big birds flying out of our base, expecially during the first Gulf War. So building one for my collection just brings back fond memories of my time at Norton AFB.
FEB 08, 2012 - 12:49 PM
I hope somebody will make Travis decals, namely The Golden Bear that sits outside of the dorms on base.
FEB 15, 2012 - 10:06 PM

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