Airfix 1/72 A-4B/Q Skyhawk

KIT #: A03029A
PRICE: Ģ13.00
DECALS: Two options
REVIEWER: Francisco Santoro
NOTES: Thick sprue gates all around!


The Douglas A-4 Skyhawk is a subsonic carrierborne aircraft designed originally for the United States Navy. It first flew in 1954 and was introduced into servicein 1956. 2960 Skyhawks were built between 1956 and 1979.

Its historical users are the United States Navy, the United States Marine Corps, the Israeli Air Force and the Argentinian Air Force.

During Guerra de Malvinas, Argentinian Skyhaws using unguided bombs sank the destroyer Coventry and the frigate Antelope, while damaging many other British ships. From the total of 48 Skyhawks deployed, 22 were lost during the six week conflict.


Airfix's A-4B/Q comes in a top opening box with four sprues, three in light grey and a clear one. The grey sprues have recessed panel lines all around. An instruction booklet with two painting schemes in full colour and a nice decal sheet printed by Cartograf seal the deal.


I began by painting the cockpit with Revell 76 light grey and the seat cushions in olive drab. Before joining all the cockpit pieces, I found out that I had to cut the base of the cockpit's rear bulkhead so it would fit inside the cockpit tub. I then separated the fuselage halves and glued the cockpit into place. When the glued had set, I glued a 10g lead weight behind the cockpit to act as a noseweight. Before closing the fuselage halves, you have to glue the exhaust tube, but I decided to trim the end of it and glue the remaining parts to the back of the fuselage to lighten the plane up.

The wings are a simple top and bottom assembly. Before gluing them, you have to open up the holes for the external ordnance (bombs and fuel tanks). The kit includes the option of showing the slats in the open position. I glued the completed wing assembly to the fuselage halves and let the glue cure overnight.


Argentinian A-4Qs were delivered in the US Navy's standard Light Gull Grey upper surfaces (including the ailerons )with white undersurfaces. I painted the upper surfaces with Revell 76 Light Grey, while the bottom of the aircraft was painted with Revell Matt 05 White. The rudder was painted with Revell Light Blue 49 and Matt White, with a yellow sun. I then brushed the entire aircraft with two coats of Revell's gloss varnish, added the decals (which didnīt need any setting solutions to conform into the panel lines), and seal them up with Revell's matt varnish.


I painted the landing gear white with black oleos, while the wheels were also painted in white with tank grey tyres, glued the fuel tanks in the external pylons, and glued the bomb to the central bomb rack. The canopies were glued into place with Revell's Contacta Clear.


It's an easy kit to build and can be assembled in a single day, it's also cheap, and with the many amount of aftermarket decals, it'll sure be popular with many modellers.

Francisco Santoro

27 August 2019


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