AOA Decals 32-019: Dogs of War (1)

Units: USAF and US Army


$18.00 (free US shipping)


Scott Van Aken

During the Vietnam war, some of the most important aircraft were those that flew low and slow. This was particularly true of the planes that flew in South Vietnam in the never-ending hunt for Viet-Cong troop concentrations and hide-outs. As often as not, these aircraft were tasked to not only perform airborne eyeball recce, but to spot targets for the fast movers. During most of the war, it was the O-1 Bird Dog, basically a militarized Cessna light plane, that performed these tasks.

The Bird Dog had several benefits, not the least of which was the ability to slow loiter over an area. They had the benefit of not being as loud as helicopters, which were often able to be heard miles away. These planes usually had bright markings on the upper wings and sometimes the tailplanes so that incoming strike aircraft could spot them from above. The down side of these birds was a lack of crew protection, though some units installed armor plate on the underside of the seat to help protect from ground fire. .

This particular sheet covers seven US Army schemes - 21st Black Aces (two schemes, only one shown in cover image), 199th Swamp Fox, 203rd Hawkeyes, 220th Catkillers, and 221st Shotguns Reconnaissance Aviation/Airplane Companies (RAC). It also portrays six USAF options. Note that all the Army planes are in olive drab while the USAF planes are in ADC grey.

The sheet provides USAF markings in both dark blue and black. There are sufficient stencils for one aircraft. This sheet is for the new Roden kit and those wanting to do more, can use kit markings.  Instructions are among the best in the business offering all sorts of information on the aircraft in question. Decals are superbly printed by Cartograf and will definitely result in a superb model.

January 2017

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Thanks to AOA Decals for the review sheet. You can find this sheet at this link, where you can also see profiles of each markings option.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note to Contributors.