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A disclaimer: this set is from my collection but are official Air Force Flight Test Center photos. The AFFTC reference numbers are on the images. When I moved from the F-16XL Combined Test Force (CTF) in 1984 to the 6512th Test Squadron (Test Ops), there were two clean-outs taking place. The A-10 CTF was closing, in part to make room for the Advanced Tactical Fighter CTF, the YF-22/YF-23 competition, and because A-10 development flight test was pretty much coming to an end. A quarter mile away, Test Ops was making room to accept the two remaining A-10 test programs that had to be completed before the last of the Hogs were traded to Eglin in exchange for a couple of A-7Ds. The Hog trade was a logistic consideration to consolidate A-10 test operations at Eglin with the 3246th Test Wing, while consolidating A-7D test support operations at Edwards with the 6510TW. A-7D testing was rarely required at this point in the SLUFF's life cycle, but the SLUFF was still a valued support aircraft and part of the USAF Test Pilot School curriculum as a systems bird and spin instruction airframe. At the A-10 building, we were told to throw out anything that we didn't want - apparently the engineers and history office had already picked over the vacating offices. I found these pictures in the back of a desk drawer. At Test Ops, in closing a door that had apparently been propped open for 25 years, on the back of the door was a map showing all the X-15 emergency landing sites from Utah down to Southern California, with appropriate notes. I don't know what I was doing that was so important, but I made a mental note to come back to save the map for myself. When I got back about 30 minutes later it was GONE! Of course no one knew what I was on about when I asked where the map went - "Map? What map?" Pulling of hair, rending of flight suit - you get the idea... Anyway, the pics. One from 1979, the rest from 1980. Icing tests of what I am quite sure is Full-Scale Development (FSD) jet, s/n 73-1667. This is the 1979 picture. Note the camera mounted on the right wing tip. I think it is focused on the right engine intake. The orange outline of the access panel aft of the cockpit indicates special test instrumentation is located there. There is also a non-standard outlet mounted proud of the panel. Several ice measuring probes are visible on the aircraft nose, the landing gear sponson, the wing leading edge, and at the front of the Pave Penny shape. As usual, the water from the icing tanker has yellow dye for in-flight visualization. Into 1980... Wing-tip camera removed. With A-37B chase, showing the typical icing test set-up. Approaching the icing rig at the end of the tanker boom. Some ice build-up Probably near the limit for ice on the wing leading edge. The little orange rectangles are the attachment points for the ice probes. Often published October 1975 photo of three FSD jets with the two YA-10 prototypes at the back. That's '667 up front. Behind her is '666, later to become one of my test jets for Nitramine ammunition trials and terrain avoidance system tests. The next, with the "1" on the tail is '664, eventually modified to the two-seat Night/Adverse Weather configuration. then 71-1370 and 71-1369. Thanks for looking, Sven
Kit manufacture: Hasegawa Scale: 1/72 Type: A-10A Thunderbolt II Extras used: Verlinden Productions resin and photoetch update Paints and colours used: Vallejo Model Air Ghost Grey in the cockpit, various Vallajo and Tamiya paints inside, Gunze H57 Aircraft Grey, H301 Grey FS36081, H302 Green FS34092 and H303 Green FS34102 for the camo colours. Aqua Gloss, Tamiya Semi Gloss and Flat Coat were used for the clear coats. Weather was done with thinned down Tamiya Rubber black and Flory Dark Dirt weathering wash. The kit was ok... Raised panel lines are a pain as they are hard to reproduce when lost through sanding as well as cause issues with holding wash. The fit wasn't great; a lot of filler and sanded needed. To be fair it is an older kit and the amount of resin and lead I crammed in definitely didn't help. That said, it wasn't cheap for an older kit. I bought this before I really new about reboxing etc, and knowing what I know now I'd have probably invested the same money on a new kit. At the end of the day, I'm pleased with how she turned out and she undeniably looks like a hog. Here's the pics: So there we go! Thanks for looking! Comments and criticism welcome as always, Many thanks, Val
Hi guys, I recently dug out an old Tamiya 1/48 A-10A Thunderbolt II kit that I had stashed away for some time. Decided to build it as the decal has started to yellow. I probably got this kit 10 years ago so I did not know about its problems then. I am now fixing it and am wondering if anyone who have done this kit well, has any advice on how to patch the following without using aftermarket parts (since I don't want to spend more money on this kit). 1) The front wheel well is open on the top and front that you could see all the way to the cockpit. It befuddles me why Tamiya is so cheapskate to leave out two small parts that would make the wheel well complete. Its like someone forgot a wall and roof for a house. I was thinking of using some cheap plastic cards to make the roof however wonder how to carve the surface so that it is not a flat ceiling but has some semblance of cables and bars? 2) The two bulge on the wings for the landing gear, the rear part of each is a gaping hole. It seems like the engineer at Tamiya forgot to mold in the rear area. Sigh, looks like I have to fill these and mold them close with putty. Any easy way to do this? 3) The rear of the cockpit has a gaping hole too where the seat does not cover it. Looks like another piece of home made plastic panel. 4) The bottom of the nose for the front wheel well bulges out at the side and is not flush with the rest of the body. Trying to see if I can put a strut inside just below the cockpit to push out the fuselage a bit to make it flush with the bottom part. Problem is that area is blocked by the cockpit well and wheel well. At this point I am only thinking of fixing the major gaps. Not even going to reshape the other deformities.