Matchbox 1/72 T-2C/E Buckeye

KIT #: PK-42 (1987)
PRICE: $Currently out of production
DECALS: Two options
REVIEWER: Victor Scheuerman
NOTES: This is it for injected Buckeyes


To fulfill a US Navy training requirement, North American submitted a design which utilized the same wing as the FJ-1 Fury and a control system derived from the T-28C. An order was placed for 6 aircraft for evaluation, the first flight being in January 1958. The aircraft was designated T2J-1 (later changed to T-2A) and was an immediate success and 217 were produced before a twin engined version fitted with J60-P-6 engines was introduced as the T2J-2 (later T-2B). A final engine change to the J85-GE-4 was made and the new machine was designated T-2C and was flown on August 17, 1965.

Total production exceeded 400. In 1986 a programme was established to refurbish 100 airframes and this will mean that the aircraft will remain in service until 2000 at least. The name ‘Buckeye’ is a reference to a species of tree which gives Ohio its nickname of ‘Buckeye State’ thus reflecting the Columbus home of the aircraft. (Thanks to the kit instruction sheet).

In addition to use by the US Navy, A total of 24 T-2Ds went to Venezuela and 30 T-2Es were purchased by Greece.   


This kit has 30 cleanly molded white and grey parts plus a two-piece clear canopy. The contents of this boxing show a little flash on the ejection seats only and only some very minor mold seams.  Unfortunately, the trench digger has had a hand in this kit with the engraving being over done. Matchbox supplies a rather complete cockpit by their standards. The kit has the office fully framed in with even side instrument consoles for both crew locations. Further molded details are the center instrument panel and housing and the same for the front office. Fitting into the pit are two basic ejection seats.  Add two control columns, throttles and a harness to the seat and this office is good to go.

The nose gear bay is fully framed in and deeper then normal but the main gear openings have no walls. Another nice touch is that some of the gear doors are ‘layered’ but as normal all would look better thinner. While the main gear tires are separate, the nose gear is molded with the landing strut. Final parts are the arrestor hook, separate intakes and wing-tip tanks.

Assembly is covered five well illustrated steps with detail colour notes offered at the end. This sheet also has two sets of four-views showing exactly were the decals goes for the two subjects offered; very well done. As can be expected one of the options is a brightly painted trainer of VT-23 of the US Navy circa 1983. The over all white scheme has the hi-viz red (actually International Orange. Ed) trim on the nose, tail and wing tips and a features four stars on the rudder. A more mundane Greek is the second subject with Vietnam era style Tan/Dark Green/Medium Green disruptive upper pattern over Light Grey. There is some curb appeal with the white and orange striped wing-tip tanks and rudder. The decals look very nice and feature the orange stripes for the Greek aircraft in addition to basic stenciling for both subjects.


Aside from the over stated engraving, this is one of Matchbox’s better kits. As it is the only injected molded Buckeye in 1/72 scale that I am aware of makes the engraving a moot point.      

 Victor Scheuerman

October 2008

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