1/48 Academy F-15E

Gallery Article by Jay Vlad on Dec 18 2012



Here is my completed 1/48 scale F-15E Strike Eagle by Academy.  I have always like the striking power of the Mudhen and wanted to add one to my shelf.  As straight forward as the OIF kit is, I did have some issues with it.  The two biggest ones were that it took a lot of filler and sanding to even out joint lines of the connecting parts, especially under the wings and the tail area, and the panel lines were good weak in some areas, mainly on the top area of the mid to rear fuselage. Other than those two things the kit went together very well.


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The color was straight forward and simple; Gunship Gray. After sealing the paint with a gloss coat, I attempted to darken the panel lines.  I chose a watered down black acrylic wash that I have used on pervious models but for some reason, it did not want to stay in the lines and spilled outwards.  Long story short, I was able to clean up the areas where I tried the wash and decided to skip the panel line wash step all together.  Looking at my reference photos afterwards, I felt a little better as the panel lines on the Mudhen are not as noticeable as say a 30 year old MiG.  The decals were good but I did get some silvering on a few even after repeated applications of solving solution.  Another topic to add to the troubleshooting list.

To me, the Mudhen is serious player in strike missions.  The weapons provided in the OIF kit were good, but I was looking for something that gave it a bigger punch.  I took the two GBU-28 "Bunker Buster" bombs from the Hobby Boss FB-111 kit and added them under each wing.  I also hung the four JDAM bombs that came with the Strike Eagle kit.  I did not like the exhaust nozzles the came with the kit at all since they didn't even glue together correctly, so I picked up the Aires resin set.  These weren't a 100% fit on the aircraft, but it still looked better than the stock parts. 

While this kit had it's many challenges, I enjoyed the problem solving that came with it and am very satisfied with the final result.

Jay Vlad

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Photos and text by Jay Vlad