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thierry laurent

Phoenix 1/32 decals

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Hi,

 

I postponed for a long time an order of Phoenix decals and finally decided to have a go. As they are very rarely mentioned on LSP, I thought you would be interested in having a feedback. I ordered them via Hobbyeasy and got them in less than two weeks as the letter went under the customs radar.

 

First important thing: if you know Tiger Wings, you will not be surprised as they are the producer hidden behind this more recent name!

 

To decrease the P&P and because the cost was quite reasonable, I ordered six decal sets from Taiwan: The three USMC AV-8B/B+ sets, the AVG P-40 set, the Tomcat VF-1 set and the 2013 TAC meet F-15J set.

 

Result: I cannot tell you how they behave when you use them but at least I had a close look at the sheets and instructions.

 

In fact, the value for money is even better than I thought as each set gives A LOT of schemes in a single set! Moreover, as Tiger Wings used to do, they also give very extensive stenciling for a minimum or two or three planes! To give you some specific examples:

 

- The F-15J set gives four schemes on the equivalent of... FIVE A4 pages of decals with stenciling including individual panel number and the grey background for at least three Eagles! Each scheme has full tail art.

 

- AV-8B VMA-231 & 311 sets cover at least a dozen of full schemes with stencils for a minimum of at least two planes (including all panel numbers). VMA-223 has "only" seven schemes but gives a better mix of color schemes as the other sets mainly focus on the late, darker Harrier colors. A very large majority are AV-8B+ ones. There is a nice mix of grey birds and colored ones including various sharkmouth & anniversary schemes.

 

- The P-40 B/E set includes... 17 different sharkmouth schemes covering all AVG squadrons (15B & 2E)!

 

- The Tomcat is a more standard set as it only gives two VF-1 early block planes.

 

Topics are interesting and most of them have not been covered by other decal companies. I did not make a thorough assessment of all of them but they look quite good with regard to accuracy.

 

Each paper sheet is crammed with decals.The printing quality is very good and comparable to the one of western producers.

 

The instruction sheets are also quite good. They are printed in color on A4 gloss paper and give a clear view of the position of each element. Except for the smaller Tomcat set, each set has six full pages of instructions. Minimum information is given per scheme (location/year) but they could be more exhaustive. Some pictures of the actual plane are generally included but unfortunately, they are often too small to be very useful. However, on some sheets such as the Harrier ones, web links used as reference are given. Last, color references are Gunze ones. By default, I would have preferred Federal Standard references.

 

Final conclusion:

 

It is a pity Asian decals producers such as Phoenix or Siam decals are not better known and distributed as most of their large scale productions have an excellent quality level. If one aspect may be improved a little bit, it is the instruction sheets in spite of the fact they are already very good.

 

Globally, they offer an excellent price/number of schemes and quality ratio. I highly recommend them.

 

Thierry

 

 

 

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Hi Thierry,

 

Any chance of a link ? I am interested in the Tomcat VF-1 sheet, which I'm guessing must be an improvement on the Trumpeter kit decals.

 

Tony

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Hi Tony,

 

Here's a view of the available sets from Hobby Easy:

 

http://www.hobbyeasy.com/en/category/AC32D/index.html

 

and from ebay (better view of the contents):

 

http://www.ebay.com/sch/Models-Kits-/1188/i.html?_from=R40&_sac=1&_nkw=phoenix+decals

 

HTH

 

Thierry

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Assuming you might have a Trumpeter F-14A, how do the Phoenix decals compare ? Are there pilot/RIO names ?

 

Currently have the F-14D, with VF-31 in mind, and was wondering if the Trumpeter F-14A would be accurate for a ca.1975 Wolfpack jet from the Big E ?

Not sure which Block/date the radome pitot was introduced and the gun gas venting arrangement changed from grilles to ventura style so curious what arrangement the Trumpeter has in the box (or options ?)

 

Thanks for the heads-up on the decals Thierry

 

Tony

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Hi Tony,

 

I have it. This kit is an early block with the initial type of gun vents. The Phoenix set has the crew names for the two planes. However, I cannot compare with the Trumpy decals as I do not have access to them now.

 

Hth

 

Thierry

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I would love to see the whole line. There are quite a few sheets that are no longer on hobby easy.

 

Rob

Indeed, this is also a pity that all the Tiger Wings sets disappeared as some of them were true gems...! They even released a short run of Kfir decals many years ago. However, this is possibly the rarest set of large scale decals ever printed (except Mark Proulx, I do not know anyone who has/had a set!).

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Assuming you might have a Trumpeter F-14A, how do the Phoenix decals compare ? Are there pilot/RIO names ?

 

Currently have the F-14D, with VF-31 in mind, and was wondering if the Trumpeter F-14A would be accurate for a ca.1975 Wolfpack jet from the Big E ?

Not sure which Block/date the radome pitot was introduced and the gun gas venting arrangement changed from grilles to ventura style so curious what arrangement the Trumpeter has in the box (or options ?)

 

Thanks for the heads-up on the decals Thierry

 

Tony

 

Tony, yes the Trumpeter kit would be ok for a 1975 VF-1 cruise. Don't worry to much about the Phoenix Decals for VF-1 as they are not correct. The Wolfpack head and some of the fonts are incorrect. It was a nice sheet to look at though. The Trumpeter decals are actually a little better.You would need to delete the radome Pitot tube for an early cruise VF-1 Tomcat and everything else in the box is good to go.

Edited by Vitali

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Thanks Vitali. Think the Trumpeter A is moving up the list of buy-and-build projects.

 

I might try swapping the unbuilt D at some stage.

 

Tony

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I ha be the Phornix F-4EJ decals and will reflect what Thierry said about the quality etc.

Nice decals and cool subjects rather than the standard barrage of low vis grey and lie vis markings.

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