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Grumman EA-6B Prowler
VMAQ-2 Playboys

Kinetic, 1/48 scale

S u m m a r y

Item No. Kinetic Model Kits Item No. K48112 - EA-6B Prowler VMAQ-2 Playboys
Contents and Media:

EA-6B Prowler - Approx. 315 parts in medium grey plastic and 12 parts in clear; markings for one aircraft.

NC-2A EPU Tractor - 37 parts in medium grey coloued plastic.

Scale 1/48
Price: USD$39.99 plus shipping available online from Lucky Model
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: High quality moulding; well detailed; nicely recessed panel lines; optional position wings (extended or folded); canopies and boarding ladders may be posed open; clear parts moulded to accurately depict canopy bulges; straightforward parts breakdown; includes bonus NC-2A EPU Tractor; high quality decals produced by Fightertown Decals.
Disadvantages: Intakes finish in front of entry ladder; some heavy sprue connectors will need care when removing.
Recommendation:

Kinetic's 1/48 scale EA-6B is an impressive model of an important subject. 315 parts might seem like a high number, but construction looks to be fairly straightforward. The inclusion of the EPU tractor is a welcome touch too. This is still a very nice package, and it is actually USD$10 cheaper than it was when released in 2010!

 

Reviewed by Brett Green

 

Introduction

 

The Northrop Grumman (formerly Grumman) EA-6B Prowler is a twin-engine, four-seat, mid-wing electronic-warfare aircraft derived from the A-6 Intruder airframe. The EA-6A was the initial electronic warfare version of the A-6 used by the United States Marine Corps and United States Navy. Development on the more advanced EA-6B began in 1966. An EA-6B aircrew consists of one pilot and three Electronic Countermeasures Officers, though it is not uncommon for only two ECMOs to be used on missions. It is capable of carrying and firing anti-radiation missiles (ARMs), such as the AGM-88 HARM.

 

 

The Prowler was in service with the U.S. Armed Forces from 1971 until 2019. It has carried out numerous missions for jamming enemy radar systems, and in gathering radio intelligence on those and other enemy air defence systems. From the 1998 retirement of the United States Air Force EF-111 Raven electronic warfare aircraft, the EA-6B was the only dedicated electronic warfare plane available for missions by the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Marine Corps, and the U.S. Air Force until the fielding of the Navy's EA-18G Growler in 2009. Following its last deployment in late 2014, the EA-6B was withdrawn from U.S. Navy service in June 2015, followed by the USMC in March 2019.

 

 

FirstLook

 

Kinetic first released their 1/48 scale EA-6B Prowler in mid-2010. This was only their second US Navy subject, and was an undoubted improvement over Monogram's Prowler, which suffered from a number of common (and inappropriate) parts with the earlier Revell A-6 Intruder kit and best depicted a very early version.

Kinetic's new EA-6B, on the other hand, represents a later Prowler fitted to ICAP III standards straight from the box, complete with ALQ-99 jamming pods, fin cap antenna housing and associated smaller antennae.

The kit comprises approx. 315 parts in medium grey coloured plastic plus 12 parts in clear. Markings for a single Prowler are included.

 

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Surface texture fine recessed panel lines, selective rows of recessed rivets and quite smooth plastic overall.

The cockpit is respectably fitted out with four multi-part seats, instrument panels with raised detai and basic side consolesl. Harness straps are not inckuded, but Eduard does offer coloured photo-etched harness straps on their Item No. 49520 (also available from Lucky Model).

The front landing gear bay is moulded as part of a ventral insert, and features separate sidewalls.

The jet intakes only go as far as the front of the ladders, but Kinetic has at least moulded an engine face here. On the upside, the boarding ladders may be posed open; and there is a decent length of exhaust ducting.

 

 

The wings may be built extended or folded. Some cutting of the wings, slats and flaps will be required if you want to build the wings folded. The inboard wing sections should mate securely to the fuselage with a large joining area. The top of the wheel well extends into the fuselage area to help with a solid join too.

 

 

Leading edge slats and flaps are all moulded shut, while the rudder and airlerons are in neutral positions. The horizontal stabs can pivot on their locating pin, so these may be posed according to the modeller's taste.

Undercarriage parts are broken down simply, while the wheels feature separate tyre halves sandwiching the wheel hubs. This should make painting easier. The front landing light is supplied as a separate clear part for the front landing gear door.

A plethora of separate small antennae pepper the fuselage.

The transparencies are thin, very clear and free of distortion.

 

 

Kinetic has moulded the opening sections of the canopy in two parts each so they retain their thinness, but still feature their characteristic bulge. You'll just need to take care when gluing the canopy halves together (although the saving grace is that there is a centreline frame along the line of the join).


 

NC-2A EPU Tractor

Kinetic has also NC-2A EPU Tractor in this package.

The tractor comprises an additional 37 parts in medium grey coloured plastic.

 

 

Markings for the tractor are included on the main decal sheet.

This will be a nice accompaniment for the Prowler in a deckside diorama.


 

Markings

Markings are supplied for a single Prowler attached to VMAQ-2 Playboys in 1978.

The decals are designed by Fightertown and perfectly printed by Cartograf.

 

 

Artwork was designed by Fightertown Decals.

The large decal sheet includes stencil markings.

 

 

Conclusion

 

Kinetic's 1/48 scale EA-6B is an impressive model of an important subject.

315 parts might seem like a high number, but construction looks to be fairly straightforward. The inclusion of the EPU tractor is a welcome touch too.

I have read accounts online of modellers who have found the kit easy to build and others who found it challenging. I think the old adage of test-fit twice probably applies here. Take your time and you'll have an impressive result.

This is still a very nice package, and it is actually USD$10 cheaper than it was when released in 2010!

Thanks to Lucky Model for the samples


Review Text and Images Copyright 2020 by Brett Green
Page Created 17 November, 2020
Last updated 18 November, 2020

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