Profile Photo
Josh Patterson
36 articles

General Dynamics YF-16, Monogram 1/48

May 11, 2021 · in Aviation · · 17 · 2K

Well, this is another kit I had in my childhood that did not get built to my expectations back then. Lofty goals, but scotch tape and rattle cans combined with heavy handed paint application (at least as a kid I didn't have to spray the white) ended with results I'm sure everyone can imagine. (I was seven or eight at the time so patience was also lacking!)

This time around it was much different. My ability to shoot a nice gloss straight from the airbrush combined with the fine edges one can mask while using said device produced a much different result. I've always wanted to do the red white and blue prototype justice so I picked one up last year. (And fortuitously Caracal came out with the F-16 Early Years set not long after so I could actually DO the YF-16 that had this kit set up as. (I did leave the external tanks off even though they are finished as I have not seen any pictures of the YF-16 carrying them and They did sully the lines of the naked plane a bit. (A shame because it would highlight the difference between the prototype tanks and the ones used on production units.)
The cockpit leaves a lot to be desired but I wasn't concerned as the canopy was staying closed on this one as the exterior is the real star of the show. I used Model Master enamels, Classic White, Guards Red (a Porsche color that comes very close to looking like what the pictures show as Insignia Red looked much too dark) and generic blue out of the little bottle! No primer (or filler for that matter) just sprayed right on the smooth clean plastic. The Caracal decals went down without a fuss except cutting the black stripes was an exercise in patience!
So, build #2 of 2021 done! Unfortunately while taking my pictures a slight breeze blew the model off the table into the grass while I was away from the table. No real damage except the pitot tube is now lost forever! (Folks think the Carpet Monster is evil, try losing a tiny part in the lawn!)

Reader reactions:
13  Awesome

9 additional images. Click to enlarge.

17 responses

  1. Sweet! I am really enjoying all the nostalgia builds! Monogram is still my favorite company long gone as they are. Nicely done!

  2. Beautiful sheen on this bird, Josh. Looks great!

  3. I like your prototype YF-16 model. It is the most colorful of the Vipers.

    I'm planning on building one using the old Otaki/Entex kit with a lot of resin (yeah, that might not be a good idea.)

  4. Now that brings back a few memories! Great looking prototype Josh.
    My brother built that kit when we were younger and we only had rattle cans so he painted his gray tones.

  5. Great performance, Josh.
    Colors look nice and shiny.
    A pity about the loss of the pitot.

  6. Great model and amazing scheme, Josh.
    Yes! The YF-16 was one of the iconic plane figures that accompanied our dreams when we were children back then.
    Thanks so much for bringing up those memories!

  7. Well done Josh, those old Monogram kits still hold up when one uses a little TLC with them. She looks good.

  8. Nice nostalgia build! I like the result, looks great.

    Just recently, I tried to look up kits released in my birth year. Few of those are still on the market after 40+ years, but my stash is full with much nicer kits. So, after one evening wasted on the Internet, I dropped the idea. Maybe in ten years, if those kits are still on the market.

  9. Really nice paint scheme, Josh (@jpatt1000). This early paint scheme is very rare, and your work on this old Monogram kit is exceptional.

  10. That is one sleek airframe, dressed up in some pretty patriotic livery! Well done.

  11. Great job! Amazing how much time has gone by since the kit, and the real thing were introduced.

  12. Very neat paintwork on this, Josh, and I love the outdoor photographs, you're lucky you only lost the pitot tube, I once lost a 1/12 Ducati. Definitely liked.

  13. Josh, @jpatt1000
    Boy this build brings back so many memories. I remember building this one when it first came out. The plastic was molded in white, and I brush painted the red and blue sections on. None of the paint lines were straight, and I tried fixing it by brushing on some white paint on the model, before the other colors had sufficiently dried... so it had some light blue and pink areas in addition to the red, white, and blue.

    Now many years later, I have the exact same kit on the bench with half of it built. These are the markings I am still looking for, so I could build it again, using one of the more recent examples.

    Your YF-16 looks amazing ! I can't get over how shiny it looks. I definitely pressed the liked button. I have a question for you... Where did you pick up the decal set for this one ?

    These older Monogram kits still rock, as you have proven here. I especially like the picture that was taken from the front, as if the camera was placed on the ground, so the aircraft would tower over it... #4

  14. Man, that bird looks great Josh! She's a true beauty in that natural light! 🙂

  15. Love it! Anyone familiar with that kit will understand how much you've put into it and the paint job is outstanding!


Leave a Reply