F-8E Crusader Mig Killer June 21, 1966
This is the Hasegawa 1/48th kit of the F-8E Crusader with decals from the Furball, Mig Masters F-8 Crusaders of the Vietnam War. The model depicts aircraft F-8E 150300 Nickel 104 VF-211 (Fighting Checkmates, call sign Nickel aka The Mig Killers) and represents the aircraft used by LT(jg) Phil Vampatella to down a Mig-17 with a sidewinder on June 21, 1966. This was the third Mig downed by a Crusader. The Detail and Scale F-8 and RF-8 in Detail and Scale volume 8 is an excellent reference for the Crusader and has an excellent recounting of the use of the aircraft in the Vietnam War.
The model is typical Hasegawa of the era, not Tamiya but acceptable. The ejection seat is an aftermarket addition as it is the pitot tube. The paints used are Tamiya for the white fuselage sections and was my first use of Mission Models Gull Gray to complete the scheme. The afterburner section is painted in Alclad steel. Sidewinders are from the Hasegawa weapons set with decals from Two Bobs. Pictures of carrier aircraft during this time show weathering appropriate to their use (see pages 206-207of the digital edition of the D and S book).
Weathering was done using a number of techniques. The variations of the grey and white were done by using pre-shading and then spraying slightly different mixtures as appropriate. Decals were applied on a glossy surface using those from the Furball decal sheet and other sources. The aircraft was again glossed, very lightly sanded with very fine grit, and then glossed one more time. Oil paints were applied and then wiped off with a soft cloth. I use artists crayons and pastels to make the fine powder used to simulate various stains. Last, I use Testors dull coat to get the final finish and then a few touch ups.
This particular plane was flown by a friend of mine’s father during his tour with the squadron in 1964-65. I knew that her dad flew crusaders when she finished the saying “when you are out of crusaders you are out of fighters” when we were talking about flying. I sent her a picture of the model, her dad looked it up in his logbook, and it is one of many he had flown during deployment. Small world, isn’t it?
8 additional images. Click to enlarge.