Caracal Models CD 48002: US Navy S-2E

Units: See  review


$12.00 which includes US shipping


Scott Van Aken

This is Caracal Models third decal sheet (yes, they are being released out of numerical sequence) and is their second S-2 sheet, this time covering three USN  aircraft. When I came into the Navy, the S-2 was the primary fleet-borne ASW platform and you'd see these on just about every ASW carrier that was out there. These carriers were generally WWII and a bit later era Essex class ships that had been modernized for the ASW roles. The ships not only carried the S-2, but often an E-1 det and Skyhawks for air defense.

With the advent of the S-3 Viking in the mid 1970s, these ASW carriers went away and within a few years, so did the S-2, being relegated to US-2s for training, or sold to foreign navies.

All of these options are in the light gull grey over white scheme and have very colorful tail markings that were typical of this era. The decals themselves are superbly printed by Microscale and are in perfect register.

First up is an aircraft of VS-29 with the NS tail markings from the USS Kearsarge in 1969. VS-29 was one of the first fleet S-3 Viking units so they shed their Trackers before many other units.

Next is a VS-23 plane as aboard the USS Yorktown in 1968. This one contains some red nose stripes and two digit modex. In common with the other schemes, some of the kit decal markings will be needed to  complete this one. Notice that in addition to the red prop spinners, this one has no prop warning stripe. VS-23 never made it to the Viking era and disappeared with the unit was disestablished.

Finally, a VS-22 plane from the USS Wasp in 1971. VS-22 was one of the units that did transition to the Viking and carries the AT tail code that indicates an Atlantic fleet squadron. The decals provide enough insignia for one of these options, but really, you can use kit markings if you want to do more than one plane from this sheet.

It makes for a great decal sheet and one that I'm sure you will be pleased with. I'm hoping Caracal comes out with some others for the Kinetic kit as the S-2 had some great fin/rudder markings.

July 2011

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

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