Caracal Models CD 72102: F-18 - The Early Years

Units: See review




Scott Van Aken


Caracal Models has decided to do the early preproduction F-18s for us on one sheet. These planes were overall white with either blue or red trim. The sheet states that these planes were painted using automotive colors and gives you a reference so you can have some mixed to exactly the same shade. FS 595 approximations are also provided. As these planes are shown after the prototype airframe changes had been made, you can use pretty much any 1/72 F-18A/B kit. Since the options are the same as with the 1/48 sheet, I've used that profile sheet to save a bit of site space.

There are 8 markings options All with a very similar pattern.

F-18A #2 BuNo. 160776

F-18A #3 BuNo. 160777 (carrier trials aircraft)

F-18A #4 BuNo. 160778

F-18A #5 BuNo. 160779

F-18A #6 BuNo. 160780 (spin testing aircraft)

F-18A #6 BuNo. 160780 (as NASA 840)

F-18A #7 BuNo. 160782

TF-18A #1, BuNo. 160781 

The builder will need to paint all the large red and blue areas, but you are provided the pin striping to attach after you finish painting the model. One option is shown in its initial NASA markings before it was repainted in the white and blue with gold trim scheme that NASA used at the time.

In all, it makes for a great sheet for those who like to do prototype/preproduction aircraft.

November 2020

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