Blue Blazers Corsair II: 1/48th Hasegawa A-7E "SLUF"
Updated: Sep 27, 2021
The initial release of Hasegawa's 1/48th A-7 dates back to 1987, however this kit is one of Hasegawa’s best for fit, combined with a remarkable level of detail straight out of the box.
Notable Kit Features:
Excellent cockpit detail
Finely scribed panel and rivet detail
Detailed avionics bays on either side of the fuselage
Photo-etched fuselage skin reinforcements
Folded wing option
Separate slats and flaps
Nicely detailed wheel wells
Positionable horizontal stabilizers
Open / Closed ventral speed-brake
I always liked the Blue Blazers (VA-93) look on an A-7 and preferred the more colourful version therefore I went with aftermarket decals on this one. I admired the A-7 as a workhorse and ended up getting both the E and the D model on sale at a local hobby shop.
The large, very visible intake will need clean-up of the side seams (or seamless replacement parts)
Kit Additions / Modifications:
I used the CAM P48-002 A-7 decals to get the VA-93 Blue Blazer look which included the blue nose and tail stripes used in the late 70s
Added seatbelts to the ejection seat
The paint scheme for this aircraft is the standard USN finish of the time, consisting of Grey (FS 26440) over White (FS 17875). To weather the aircraft a bit I used a "Salt-Weathering" technique however I learned a lesson. As I had stock of a semi-gloss enamel paint, I went with that, however in hindsight I will recommend - Don't use a salt weathering method with anything but flat paints or at least figure out a way to spray the paint with fairly light and dry coats. Otherwise the salt may get caught up in the stickier paint and create surface issues or melt down and not really do an effective job in the weathering process. (I found out the hard way.)
The After-Build Report:
I would highly recommend this 1/48th Hasegawa A-7E kit for patient, experienced model makers. The separate slats / flaps, foldable wings and avionics bays may be a bit of a challenge for beginners or for those seeking a simple build. Given the proper attention, this kit is an attention grabber. With so many A-7 options for decals, the debate will be which markings, or can I limit myself to just one of these SLUF kits?
After this build I am definitely looking forward to the "D" version as well (or another "E" if I come across one on sale).
I didn't even do the open avionics bays complete justice however, the detail inclusion in this kit makes it a remarkable one, as you don't need to go aftermarket to get a build that looks like you went to all the extra expense (and note this kit came out in the late 80's). Note: the decals included for the inside of the gear doors as well.
Completed build #167 - December 2013 using the 1/48th scale Hasegawa #P12 or 07012 kit.
Feel free to comment or ask any questions - Keep on building, gain experience, challenge yourself if you like, but try not to stress yourself out over the build - it is suppose to be an enjoyable hobby after all - Cheers