Aggressor VFC-12 & VFA-204
Kinetic, 1/48 scale
S u m m a r y
||Kinetic Model Kits Item No. K48088 - F/A-18A/C/D Aggressor VFC-12 & VFA-204
|Contents and Media:
||273 grey injection moulded parts; 18 clear parts; 22 photo-etched metal parts; markings for at three Aggressor schemes.
plus shipping available online from Lucky Model
||High level of detail; excellent surface textures; high quality decals; great value.
This is an impressive kit of the F/A-18A/C/D Aggressor Hornet and represents smoking hot value at just USD$39.99. Highly Recommended.
by Brett Green
An aggressor squadron or adversary squadron (in the US Navy and USMC) is a squadron that is trained to act as an opposing force in military wargames. Aggressor squadrons use enemy tactics, techniques, and procedures to give a realistic simulation of air combat (as opposed to training against one's own forces).
Since it is impractical to use actual enemy aircraft and equipment, surrogate aircraft are used to emulate potential adversaries.
The first formal use of dissimilar aircraft for training was in 1968 by the Navy Fighter Weapons School (better known as "TOPGUN"), which used the A-4 Skyhawk to simulate the performance of the MiG-17.
The success of formalized dissimilar air combat training (DACT) led to transition of Navy Instrument Training Squadrons equipped with the A-4 into Adversary Squadrons at each Master Jet Base. The USAF followed suit with their first Aggressor squadrons at Nellis AFB equipped with the readily available T-38 Talon.
US aggressor squadrons fly small and low-wing loaded fighters that are used to represent those of the potential adversaries. Originally Douglas A-4s (US Navy) and Northrop F-5s (US Navy, Marines, and Air Force) were flown along with T-38 Talons that were immediately available and served as placeholders until new F-5E/F Tiger II aircraft were introduced.
The Navy and Marine Corps briefly operated 2 squadrons of F-21 Kfir Adversaries at NAS Oceana (VF-43) and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma (VMFT-401). These were eventually supplemented by early-model F/A-18As (US Navy) and specially built F-16Ns (for the US Navy) and F-16A models (for the Air Force).
At the end of 2005, the USAF started using the larger and faster F-15 Eagle as an aggressor aircraft alongside the F-16 at Nellis Air Force Base. However, the USAF began phasing out its F-15 aggressors towards the end of 2014, and with the deactivation of the 65th Aggressor Squadron, the F-16C is once again the only dedicated aggressor type at Nellis AFB.
* Historical summary courtesy of Wikipedia
Kinetic released their 1/48 scale F/A-18C Hornet to justified acclaim in May 2016. Mick Evans conducted a detailed review of this initial release.
Over subsequent years, Kinetic has expanded the family with various releases of the F/A-18A, A+, F/A-18C, Canadian CF-188, F/A-18B two-seater and an F/A-18D.
Now Kinetic offers us an Aggressor Hornet in F/A-18A, C and D configurations. The single or two seater versions may be built out of this box.
The kit contains 273 parts in grey plastics, 18 clear parts, 22 photo-etched metal parts and markings for at least nine different aircraft.
A first for this boxing, AQ pods for the outer wing positions are included.
Surface detail is excellent, with a combination of very fine crisp panel lines and rows of rivets. Raised details are also present as appropriate.
The fuselage is a horizontal split construction with the upper fuselage containing the upper wing surfaces to which is added the lower wings and optional nose sections.
Intakes are full length and two closed burner cans are included. Several sources have confirmed that this is the apprporiate configuration for a parked F/A-18.
Cockpit detail is good straight from the box, both for the single seat and two seater versions.
The wheel well detail moulded to the main parts looks terrific.
A number of alternative parts are supplied, including fins with separate rudders, port side nose with slime lights and detail parts.
The original fin and nose parts are still in the box.
Control surfaces including leading edge flaps and upper fuselage speed brake are all provided separately and may be posed to taste.
The kit's photo-etched fret includes detail parts for chaff dispensers, gunsight mount, canopy handles / mirrors and more.
The clear parts are spread over three sprues and include both the single seat and two-seater canopies.
The clear parts are nice and thin and free from distortion. There is, however, a raised centreline seam on the canopy and windscreen parts that will have to be scraped and sanded off.
Three very attractive camouflage options are provided on the large and colourful decal sheet - two spinter schemes and one suitably Soviet-like black over grey - printed by Cartograf and designed by Fightertown Decals.
Stencil markings are supplied too.
The decal sheet is printed perfectly in register and colours look great.
This is an impressive kit of the F/A-18A/C/D Aggressor Hornet and represents smoking hot value at just USD$39.99.
Thanks to Lucky Model for the samples
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Page Created 12 October, 2021
12 October, 2021
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