Flight of the Intruder - 1/48th Fujimi A-6A Intruder
Updated: Feb 9
Introduced in 1963 the A-6 Intruder served as the US Navy’s and Marine Corps’ premier medium/all-weather attack aircraft all the way through until the 1990s. Criticized for not being the sleekest of the pack (can you believe some people think this is an ugly aircraft ;) the Intruder certainly excelled at its intended job.
My example was built from the decades old Fujimi kit and it (along with its identical twin - the Testors kit) used to be the only game in town if you wanted a 1/48th scale Intruder. (back in the late 70's or early 80's). I always liked the A-6 and so it ended up in my stash fairly early on. It then took a while for the model to make it to the workbench due to the kit deficiencies. I ended up choosing the VA-196 markings for my model as I liked the "Tonkin Gulf Yacht Club" emblem carried on the fuselage (a bit of Navy humour there ;) and wanted to build one of the "First to Fight" squadrons of the Vietnam war. VA-35 "Black Panthers" was a close runner up.
If I'm not mistaken, VA-196 was also the squadron featured in the movie "Flight of the Intruder" (released in 1991).
It is probably about time I picked up a newer version of this aircraft and built an A-6E.
- Note: A true model maker always likes to plan in advance (E.g. find excuses to buy yet another kit when they already have plenty.)
Although the kit basically looks like an Intruder, there are some shape issues
Decent panel lines but also many rivet lines that should not be present
No ECM equipment / antennas are present
Fuselage airbrakes have (early type) holes - not present on some airframes
Cockpit detail is... well it appears to be fictional and poorly done at that
Ejection seats need to be replaced (and I only replace parts when I have to)
Vertical and side consoles are missing from the cockpit
The area behind the cockpit is equally fictional... look at photos and do your best to replicate a closer proximity to this aircraft... you can't make it any worse ;)
Dispense with the sliding canopy feature of this kit and build it open or closed
Windscreen fit around the Radome is problematic and will require some work and filler to fit properly
Landing gear are lacking in detail but at least sturdy (although I added steel strengthening pins to mine, probably because I broke the main gear during the build)
Wheel well have very little detail so you could spend some time here
Arrestor hook is the very early covered type (so you will need to replace it)
Kit weapons are useless... hence my unarmed version as I never got around to correcting this deficiency
Instructions are poor
As you can see from that long list above, if you wanted to build a 1/48th Intruder kit you would probably not want to buy this kit (even if you could find one). The later Revell kit release was an improvement, and the much later Kinetic model is much nicer but from what I understand the Hobbyboss kit is now King (in this scale).
Feel free to comment or ask any questions and I will see how good my memory of the build is - Keep on building what you want, how you want
Completed build #73 - May 2004 using the 1/48th scale Fujimi #FA10 kit.