Author Topic: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990  (Read 564 times)

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Offline Dizzyfugu

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DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« on: May 25, 2020, 11:50:24 pm »
Well, there's some good time to go in this GB, and what would an "In the Navy" theme be without a Skyhawk? I originally had this idea/project stashed away for the upcoming 1WGB, but since it fits the current GB's theme, I'll add a subtly modified Airfix Skyhawk.  :mellow:
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 08:39:35 am by Dizzyfugu »

Offline NARSES2

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Re: Soon +++ A 1:72 A-4 Skyhawk
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2020, 06:30:43 am »
I swear you have a machine that slows time down within a certain small radius hidden somewhere in your wardrobe,  ;) ;D
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Offline Dizzyfugu

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Re: Soon +++ A 1:72 A-4 Skyhawk
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2020, 10:26:02 am »
Well, there's this blue police box in the garden...  :rolleyes:

Right about to apply the final coat of varnish on this one, beauty pics might follow tomorrow.

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Re: Soon +++ A 1:72 A-4 Skyhawk
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2020, 06:15:33 am »
Well, there's this blue police box in the garden...  :rolleyes:


 ;D ;D
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Offline Dizzyfugu

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Re: Soon +++ A 1:72 A-4 Skyhawk
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2020, 11:36:14 pm »
Photo shooting done and initial editing of the pics, but it will take some more time until I can post them.

Offline Dizzyfugu

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DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2020, 08:39:24 am »
So, here's an exotic Skyhawk, operated by the Royal Thai Navy...


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr



Some background:
The Douglas A-4 Skyhawk is a single-seat subsonic carrier-capable light attack aircraft developed for the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps in the early 1950s. The delta-winged, single turbojet engined Skyhawk was designed and produced by Douglas Aircraft Company, and later by McDonnell Douglas. It was originally designated A4D under the U.S. Navy's pre-1962 designation system.

Skyhawks played key roles in the Vietnam War, the Yom Kippur War, and the Falklands War. Sixty years after the aircraft's first flight in 1954, some of the 2,960 produced (through February 1979). The Skyhawk found many users all around the world, and some still remain in service with the Argentine Air Force and the Brazilian Naval Aviation. Operators in Asia included Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Thailand procured the Skyhawk in 1984, for the Royal Thai Navy air arm to be used for naval and air space surveillance, against sea surface targets and for close air support for the Royal Thai Marine Corps. A total of thirty aircraft were purchased from the USA, twenty-four single seaters and six two-seat TA-4J trainers.


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


The single seaters were refurbished A-4Cs from USN overstock, modernized to a standard that came close to the USN’s A-4L, but with some specific differences and unique features that made them suitable for all-weather strike operations. This modified version was re-designated as A-4LT and featured the late Skyhawk versions’ distinct “Camelback” fairing that house the additional avionics as well as a heat exchanger. The most distinctive external difference to any other Skyhawk version was a unique, pointed radome.

The update for Thailand included an AN/APQ-126 terrain following radar in the nose, which was integrated into an ILAAS digital navigation system – a very modern system of its era. The radar also fed a navigation and weapons delivery computer which made possible accurate delivery of bombs from a greater stand-off distance, greatly improving survivability.



1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Further special equipment for the Thai Skyhawks included, among others, a Hughes AN/ASB-19 Angle Rate Bombing System, a Bendix AN/APN-141 Low altitude radar altimeter, an AN/AVQ-7(V) Head Up display (HUD), air refueling capability (with a fixed but detachable refueling probe), a brake parachute housing below the jet pipe, two additional underwing hardpoints (for a total for five, like the A-4E) and an increased payload. Avionics were modernized and expanded, giving the Thai Skyhawks ability to carry modern AIM-9L Sidewinder AAMs and AGM-65 Maverick AGMs. The latter became, beyond standard iron bombs and pods with unguided missiles, the aircrafts’ main armament against naval targets.
However, despite the modernization of the avionics, the A-4LTs retained the A-4Cs’ Wright J65-W-20 engine with 8,200 lbf (36 kN) of takeoff thrust.


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr

The first aircraft were delivered in December 1985 to the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / Kong thap ruea thai), carrying a USN grey/white livery. They served in the No.104 RTN Squadron, distributed among two wings based at U-Tapao near Bangkok and at Songkhla in the south of Thailand, close to the Malaysian border. During regular overhauls (executed at Singapore Aircraft Industries, now ST Aerospace), the RTN Skyhawks soon received a new wraparound camouflage with reduced insignia and markings.

While in service, the Thai Skyhawks soon suffered from frequent maintenance issues and a low availability rate, since replacement parts for the reliable yet old J65 engine became more and more difficult to obtain. At times, half of the A-4LT fleet had to remain grounded because of engine problems. In consequence, the Thai Skyhawks were in the mid-Nineties supplemented by fourteen Vought A-7E Corsairs (plus four two-seaters) in the coastal defense, sea patrol and anti-shipping role. In 1999, they were retired and replaced by Royal Thai Air Force F-16s.




General characteristics:
    Crew: one
    Length: 40 ft 3 in (12.29 m)
    Wingspan: 26 ft 6 in (8.38 m)
    Height: 15 ft (4.57 m)
    Wing area: 259 ft² (24.15 m²)
    Airfoil: NACA 0008-1.1-25 root, NACA 0005-0.825-50 tip
    Empty weight: 9,146 lb (4,152 kg)
    Loaded weight: 18,300 lb (8,318 kg)
    Max. takeoff weight: 24,500 lb (11,136 kg)

Powerplant:
    1× Curtiss-Wright J65-W-20 turbojet with 8,200 lbf (36 kN)

Performance:
    Maximum speed: 575 kn (661 mph, 1,064 km/h)
    Range: 1,700 nmi (2,000 mi, 3,220 km)
    Combat radius: 625 nmi, 1,158 km
    Service ceiling: 42,250 ft (12,880 m)
    Rate of climb: 8,440 ft/min (43 m/s)
    Wing loading: 70.7 lb/ft² (344.4 kg/m²)
    Thrust/weight: 0.51
    g-limit: +8/-3 g

Armament:
    2× 20 mm (0.79 in) Colt Mk. 12 cannons in the wing roots, 100 RPG
    Total effective payload of up to 7,700 lb (3,500 kg) on five hardpoints
    - 1× Centerline: 3,500 lb capability
    - 2× Inboard wing: 2,200 lb capability each
    - 2× Outboard wing: 1,000 lb capability each




The kit and its assembly:
The original idea was simply to build an A-4L, a modernized A-4C for the USN Reserve units, but similar machines had also been exported to Malaysia. For the naval theme I came across the Royal Thai Navy and its A-7E Corsairs - and from that the idea of a Skyhawk predecessor from the Eighties was born.

Instead of an A-4C (Fujimi does one in 1:72, but it's a rare kit) I based my build upon the nice Airfix A-4B/Q kit. Its biggest difference is the shorter nose, so that I decided to modify this "flaw" first and added a pointed radome instead of the usual blunt Skyhawk nose; not certain where it came from – it looks very Sea-Harrier-ish, but it’s actually the tip of a large drop tank (Italeri Tornado?). Nevertheless, this small change created a weird look, even more so with the black paint added to it later.


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit) - WiP
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit) - WiP
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Further additions and mods are a dorsal avionics bulge from an Italeri A-4M, a scratched kinked refueling probe (made from wire and white glue, the early Skyhawks had straight probes but this would certainly interfere with the new radar in the nose), a brake parachute fairing under the tail (scratched, too, from sprue material) and additional antennae under the nose and behind the cockpit. Nothing fancy, rather details from more modern Skyhawk versions.
The AGM-65 Maverick missiles and their respective launch rails came from an Italeri Saab 39 Gripen, the drop tank on the ventral pylon is OOB.


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit) - WiP
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit) - WiP
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Painting and markings:
This was a tough decision. The Thai Corsairs as primary (and historically later) benchmark carried a standard USN grey/white high-viz livery, even though with small roundels. There were also VTOL Harriers (former Spanish Matadors) operated for a short period by the Thai navy on board of the multi-purpose carrier HTMS Chakri Naruebet, which wore a darker two-tone grey livery, pretty boring, too. I rather wanted something more exciting (if not exotic), a more modern wraparound scheme, suited for both overwater and high-altitude duties. That brought me to the Thai F-5Ts (a.k.a. Tigris), which carried - among others - a quite unique US export/aggressor scheme in three shades of light grey, including FS 35414, which looked like a pale turquoise on these machines. I furthermore took inspiration by early Indonesian A-4s, which also carried an US export scheme, nicknamed "Grape", which included darker shades of blue, blue-gray and the bright FS 35414, too.

I eventually settled upon a compromise between these two liveries and tried to adapt the standard F-5 aggressor camouflage pattern for the A-4, made up from FS 36440 (Light Gull Grey), 35164 (Intermediate Blue) and 35414 (Light Blue). Current Thai L-39 Albatros trainers seem to carry a similar livery, even though I am not certain about the tones that are actually used.
The basic enamel paints I used are Humbrol 129 and 144, and for the greenish Light Blue I used "Fulcrum Grey Green" from Modelmaster (#2134), a tone that is quite greenish but markedly darker and more dull than e.g. Humbrol 65, so that the color would not stand out brightly from the other greys and better fit between them. Worked quite well.

The inside of the slats as well as of the air brakes on the flanks were painted in bright red (Humbrol 19), while the landing gear and the interior of the air intake were painted in white (Humbrol 130). The cockpit was painted in a bluish mid grey (Revell 57).

After basic overall painting, the model received the usual light black ink washing and some post-panel-shading, for a lightly used/weathered look.


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit) - WiP
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit) - WiP
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Most decals/markings come from a Thai Harrier (from an Italeri AV-8A kit), some other markings and stencils were puzzled together from the scrap box, e.g. from a USN F-5E aggressor and from a Peruvian Mirage 2000. Some additional details like the black gun soot areas on the wing roots or the fine white lines on the radome were created with generic decal sheet material.
Finally, the kit received an overall coat of matt acrylic varnish, except for the radome, which became semi-gloss.




1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Douglas A-4LT “Skyhawk”, aircraft “193 (former BuNo.159288)” of the Royal Thai Navy (RTN / กองทัพเรือไทย / kong thap ruea thai) 104 Sqn, 2 Wing; Songkhla Royal Thai Navy Airfield, 1990 (Whif/modified Airfix kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


As intended, this build was realized in just a couple of days - and I am positively surprised how good the Skyhawk looks in its unusual, if not exotic colors! This fictional livery certainly looks different from a potential standard USN grey/white outfit, and more exciting than a dull grey-in-grey livery. And it’s so weird that it even adds some credibility to this whiffy aircraft model. 😉
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 09:20:03 am by Dizzyfugu »

Offline PR19_Kit

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2020, 08:47:17 am »
A couple of days?  :o

I don't know how you manage it, as Chris says, I reckon you've got a time machine stashed away somewhere!

It looks TERRIFIC, and could only be Thai with that scheme, and also very believable s well.  :thumbsup:
Any aircraft can be improved by fitting longer wings, and/or a longer fuselage

...and I'm not a closeted 'Take That' fan, I'm a REAL fan! :)

Regards
Kit

Offline Dizzyfugu

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2020, 09:21:22 am »
Thank you, Kit, glad you like it. Yes, it looks pretty trashy in this garish livery - but that just "justifies" the Thai operators!  ;D

Online 63cpe

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2020, 10:25:27 am »
As kit also reckons: very plausible! I like the very "used"looks of it...

Amazing job to produce so many models in such a short time.

Keep up the good whiffery stuff!
David aka 63cpe

Offline Doug K

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2020, 10:27:47 am »
Really, really nice. The Skyhawk lends itself to so many great schemes

Offline ChernayaAkula

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2020, 10:36:50 am »
Very cool.  :thumbsup: Gorgeous camouflage.  :wub:
Cheers,
Moritz


Must, then, my projects bend to the iron yoke of a mechanical system? Is my soaring spirit to be chained down to the snail's pace of matter?

Offline sandiego89

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2020, 12:25:19 pm »
Very nice scheme.

Seems they didn't have much room on a A-4 panel for a radar scope, all kids of things scabbed on wherever they could, on the framing etc.  I have sat in several A-4 cockpits and they are tiny- similar to first generation harrier. 
Dave "Sandiego89"
Chesapeake, Virginia, USA

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2020, 04:32:49 pm »
Interesting story and a beautiful model = well done! :thumbsup:

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2020, 12:12:00 am »
Thanks a lot, glad you all like it.  :cheers:

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Re: DONE +++ 1:72 A-4LT "Skyhawk", Royal Thai Navy, 1990
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2020, 05:57:46 am »
Really, really nice. The Skyhawk lends itself to so many great schemes

It certainly does. Must admit I'm sorely tempted to pick an Airfix one up.

Nice one Dizzy  :thumbsup:
Decals my @r$e!