Caracal Models CD 72016: YF-23

Units: Edwards Test


$12.99 which includes US shipping

Over 30 years ago, the USAF realized it would need a stealthy aircraft to compete in a war with the Soviet Union. Air defense and air intercept radars were such that only by being nearly electronically invisible, would modern aircraft have a chance in a hostile environment. So a tender was placed and two designs were chosen. One was from Lockheed/Martin for the YF-22 and the other was to Northrop for the YF-23. Both companys had been working on stealthy aircraft; Lockheed with the F-117 and Northrop on the B-2. Both of these planes had been developed in great secrecy and both of them proved to be capable of fulfilling their mission. Both were also bombers. However, when the fighter competition started, neither aircraft was publicly known.

Both planes were built to similar specifications and both companies had to provide prototypes with two different engines as the power plants were also being tested at the time. The eventual winner was, of course, the YF-22, which, like most prototypes, differed when compared to the eventual production aircraft. Many thought that the YF-22 was the better plane and that the choice of the YF-23 was politically motivated. I would not be surprised, but that is not at all uncommon where the second best is picked because of politics.

Anyway, this sheet from Caracal Models provides all the markings that have ever been carried on the two YF-23 aircraft. If you are like me, you have one or both of the two extant kits in this scale from Dragon and Italeri. Neither is exactly new and probably have either ancient or poor or inaccurate decals. This set will take care of that issue and provide you with fresh decals and ones that have been thoroughly researched. A full color placement guide with notes is included with the set and ensures that when you do build your dusty kit, you'll end up with a superb model. BTW, if you are wondering what the large wedge looking bits are, those fit in the upper intake.

  • December 2013

    Thanks to for the review sheet. Get yours today from this link or have your local shop order it for you.

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

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