This build is a commission build. A friend who supported our A-10’s in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom in 2012 purchased the Revell 1/48 A-10 Warthog to build it as one of the 303rd Expeditionary Fighter Squadron aircraft. This particular aircraft flew a mission with a flag that he presented to his wife. The kit spent years sitting around waiting to be built. His lovely Wife decided to have it built by me as a special Christmas gift for him.
To start with I purchased a photo etch detail set for the cockpit, a brass GAU-8 gun with pitot tube, and grabbed one of my extra ACES II resin ejection seats. The cockpit comes with the lower half of a seat molded into the cockpit tub. I cut out the entire section and rebuilt the lower end of the tub so a fully detailed ejection seat could be added. The dash was detailed along with the side panels and photo etch details were added to the ejection seat. Once the cockpit was assembled I had to remove the HUD and reshape the dash top. The nose gear bay was then detailed allowing the fuselage to be assembled.
Next was building the engines that mount atop the fuselage. The exhaust cones were assembled, painted and then weathered with pastel chalk. The intake vanes were then cleaned up and painted. Once the engine assembly it had some huge gaps on the intake. These were filled with putty and reshaped slightly. I then assembled the rear stabilizer and tails. Revell placed a copyright stamp on the rear stabilizer that was removed.
Moving onto the main gear, I noticed the wheels had a much larger hole than the strut. I installed a styrene rod then re-drilled the hole to the correct size and detail painted the wheels. The main gear bays were detailed and painted ad the wings were installed. Some putty took care of some minor gaps in the kit and then it was ready for the base coats of light ghost gray and dark ghost gray paint scheme.
The brass gun and pitot tube were installed and then the decals were put on. I made the squadron/aircraft decals to represent the exact aircraft that carried the flag. The only exception was the pilots name was changed to the person who the aircraft was a gift for. The photo etch HUD frame was added, The HUD itself was done using chrome silver paint for the base then acrylic gel for the HUD lens ad then coated with clear green. The Maverick missiles were built, painted and decaled. The sensor heads were cut off and re-constructed with a gold base, acrylic gel lens and a coat of Tamiya Smoke on the outside to tint them. (see my Tips and Tricks section on making them). Finally the canopy was sanded to remove the seam and polished. Photo etch details added and the canopy and windscreen were installed completing this.
The last photo is how it was packed for its trip via UPS to Georgia. It arrived with no problems and is currently on display with the original flag that was flown on the mission.