Profile Photo
Tom Rodgers
32 articles

Italeri 1/72 OA-10A NAIL FAC

June 27, 2020 · in Aviation · · 22 · 2.7K

During my USAF career, I had the honor and pleasure to fly the Wart Hog for twelve years. It was a joy to fly…and to say that shooting the GUN was a thrill is an understatement.
I built this kit for an old fighter pilot friend of mine whom I met early in my career at Nellis AFB in 1972 while we were both going through F-111A training. He later commanded the 23rd Tactical Air Support Squadron (TASS) during Operation .

This build replicates one of the OA-10A's in his squadron as it looked while deployed to King Fahd International Airport, Saudi Arabia at the beginning of the air campaign in January 1991. The “NF” tail code comes from the unit callsign “NAIL”…they were the NAIL FACs who had their beginnings during the Vietnam war. The aircraft carries the standard load of 2 AIM-9L's, 2 LAU-68 rocket pods with seven 2.75 inch white phosphorus target marking rocket each mounted on Triple Ejector Racks (TERs), an ALQ-119 ECM pod, and of course a fully load 30mm GUN.

The kit went together very well and I highly recommend it. I really liked the detail, fit, and nice panel lines. A lot of the other A-10A kits out there don't have the chaff and flare dispensers, but this one does and that is a big plus. The only aftermarket parts used were the resin Eduard/Brassin Triple Ejector racks, a scratch-built hypo needle pitot tube, and SuperScale decals (72-645).

The NATO I camo was Vallejo Air 71.124/USAF Green/FS 34092, 71.289/US Dark Green/FS 34102, and 71.314/Seaplane Gray/FS 36081. Alclad II Aqua Gloss was used to prep for the decals which performed beautifully. These then were sealed with another coat of Aqua Gloss followed by an oil panel line wash, some light weathering, and streaking. The model was then finished off with a coat of Vallejo Acrylic Matte varnish.

I hope you like it…

Reader reactions:
11  Awesome

13 additional images. Click to enlarge.

22 responses

  1. Nice job, Tom. I have always admired the A-10. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and she's as "graceful" as they come. When I was flight instructing, out of Schenectady, Ny, we would encounter one or two while out in the practice area or stopping into the Guard base at Schenectady.

  2. Love the A-10, I regularly see ANG birds doing touch&go's while AutoX racing at airports, and had one on the deck right over my house one Saturday morning.. was awesome.
    Thank you for your service. Outstanding job crafting this one up, and thanks for the explanation on the OA payload. Your buddy should be proud.

  3. Really nice work there, my friend. And yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    • Tom, I hope it gets through the mail ok. I couldn’t build it with the canopy open and really do up the cockpit because I knew the canopy would break off. Oh well.

  4. Nicely done! My last Navy reserve unit was at Willow Grove PA. Where there was an A-10 squadron stationed there as well, it was awesome to see them operate.

  5. I don't think an aircraft has to be beautiful to look good, some of the best looking aircraft are just plain tough. The A-10 is one of those. Beautiful job Tom, I'm sure your friend will be pleased.

  6. The A10 is a legend. I love the sound of its Gatling gun in the morning... "brrrrrrt". And then the followed by the high pitched sound of the twin engines... "piiiiuuw" Great build Tom!

  7. Tom, this is a wonderful build and, I have to say, this is my favourite camo for the "Warthog", or "Thunderbolt II", as I prefer to call it.

  8. Well done Tom, I've always enjoyed watching A-10's demonstrate their stuff at air shows, Nothing quite them.

  9. Go with 1/72, I don't know how you are able to detail these models in this way, I am surprised, the smaller the scale, the more difficult the detailing and weathering.


  10. A tremendous build and so much details for a 1/72.
    Great job.

  11. Great looking Hog. The detail is impressive. One of my instructors in pilot training flew OV-10s in Vietnam, and my T-38 flight commander had flown O-2's in Vietnam. With all of the detail in your kit it is hard to believe it is 1/72.

  12. Looks fantastic! Great work on the Hog, Tom.

  13. Tom, super job! As an Army Cobra pilot I had the opportunity to participate in several JAAT missions with A-10s. They were a lot of fun.

    I'm currently working on an A-10C in 1/48th scale using the Monogram kit.



    • Thanks Scott. I enjoyed doing JAAT too. From 82-84, I was the Air Liaison Officer (ALO) with the 6th Cav Brigade (Air Combat) at Fort Hood, helping develop JAAT tactics and procedure. The 6th Cav was a one of a kind unit and was the test bed for the Corps Aviation Brigade...240+ helos, AH-1s, OH-58s, UH-1s, and CH-47s.

      • So, small world Tom. I was assigned to the 6th Cav Brigade at the very same same time. I was a member of the gun platoon in Charlie Troop 4/9 Cav. What a coincidence.

        • Scott, That is amazing. It was an interesting time in Army aviation. They were testing the Corps Aviation Brigade concept and new Joint tactics. The AH-64 was getting ready to come on line. We had a Marine major, Ken Hill, on the brigade staff to observe that roll out (he later commanded the Marine AH-1 squadron during DESERT STORM). And finally, the Army was re-instituting the Aviation Branch. Good Times.

  14. Profile Photo
    CJ said on June 29, 2020

    Tom, this is awesome! Great photography, too. Keep up the good work. By the way, thanks for your military service, it's much appreciated (and the same goes for the other vets posting here).

    P.S.: Not to brag or anything, but I've flown A-10s, too... in all kinds of video games :).

  15. Hi Tom!
    I have one 1:48 right now on my bench and was going to the grey scheme. Now, looking at this beauty, I'm in deep trouble as I'm balancing to yours lizard scheme... ?

    • When I first started flying the A-10A in late 1979, “Gray Ghost” was the standard paint scheme. That changed when the jets destined for the 81 TFW at RAF Bentwaters began coming off the production line and they shifted to the “NATO Green” design. Personally, I have always preferred the original “Gray Ghost” paint job. Which ever one you choose will end up fine…I’m sure. Cheers, Tom.

Leave a Reply