1/144 94th Squadron

Gallery Article by Douglas Conrady on Oct 28 2020

 

      

No story to this one. I've wanted to do an "anthology" for some time, and after I found a 1/144 Spad, and the decals for the 94th, that did it. This is most every major ride the 94th has flown.

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Starting at the oldest. Many years ago, while stumbling around shapeways, I found a Spad, which started this project. The designer also advertised decals for the 94th on ebay. Being a 3D model, I didn't have to do any modeling... just painting. I went hunting for pics of WW1 Spads and was even able to find renderings of the 94th. No muss, no fuss.. bada bing.. a Spad.

Next up is the P-38. The kit is a Minicraft and decals are aftermarket. The kit was... not fun. In the past I've been a huge fan of Minicraft. However, it was their larger fair. I don't think fighters are their thing. Every part was mismatched. Instead of putty, I just sanded. The basic shape is there, but there are no details. We won't go into the landing gear doors. The result isn't bad, but I sure wasn't expecting that. The painting is the normal WW2 OD over neutral gray. Decals are 8th AF operation torch time frame with the yellow ring around the insignia.

For the 50's, an F-86. This little gem is a Trumpeter kit and homemade decals. As poor as the Minicraft fighters are, the Trumpeters are their opposite. Great fitting, super detailed, I could build these all day long. For the decals, I found a picture of a larger scale sheet and shrunk it down. This took time and many printouts to get the size just right. After all the shrinking, I lost the smaller numbers. Fortunately, I had a spare set of small numbers that used on the tail for the buzz numbers.

The F-106 for the next one. This is an F-Toys toy/kit. Pretty awesome if you ask me. I did repaint the entire plane because I glued the landing gear up and had to sand. All I had to install was the fuselage to the wing and put the nose cone and canopy on. Decals for this one came to me the same way the F-86's did. I shrunk a larger pic of a decal set. Nice straight forward and simple.

Ah yes, the standard F-4. This kit is another Minicraft, and my feelings are the same. Crude, but it does look like a Phantom. Decals were a mix of box and spares box for the tail. The FF's are actually model train decals. I could only find 1 picture of a 94th fighter F-4. I have no idea if there were other markings other than the FF on the tail to denote its lineage.

The decades of the 80's and 90's get an F-15. Yet another Minicraft - see above. I was able to find a real live decal set for this plane, but I got them many years ago from a fellow ARC'er and don't remember who. I think they came from a Dragon F-15, but don't quote me on that.

Last and most recent, F-22. This is another great Trumpeter kit. I almost added armament to the group because of this plane. But ultimately, The others would look way worse than this one. The missiles and bays are greatly detailed and I hated to cover them up. Building this one made me like 1/144 again.

All planes are hand painted. I don't like getting the airbrush out for small jobs. The base was a bit of scrap oak I had left over from a USS Carl Vinson build a few years ago. The stands are just brass rod. I drilled holes in both the base and bottom of the planes. No glue was involved, just in case I need to remove them. Perhaps in the future I'll add the 94th's emblem to the base.

That seems to be about it. A quick build of a project I'd been planning for some time.

Please email me if you've got any questions or comments.

Thanks for looking and don't throw rotten tomatoes!

Douglas Conrady

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Photos and text by Douglas Conrady