Red Roo Decals


RRD7238 1/72 Vickers Vimy G-EAOU


by Peter Roberts

 

Review Type

First Look

Scale:

1/72

Price:

$13.64 AUD from Red Roo

Contents and Media:

1 x sheet of decals

Advantages:

Close match to aircraft markings

Disadvantages:

May need to modify some letters

Recommendation:

Recommended

 

Introduction

The period 12 November to 10 December 2019 marks the centenary of the famous flight of Vickers Vimy G-EAOU, crewed by Ross Smith, Keith Smith, Wally Shiers and Jim Bennett from England to Australia. Those wanting to model this aircraft can use the Frog/Novo et.al. 1/72 scale kit, or the 1/48 scale Alley Cat resin kit. The 1/72 scale kit was issued as a replica of the Alcock/Brown Vimy, and as a bomber. All these kits require some modification to represent the England to Australia Vimy.

However, one of the biggest issues faced by modellers wanting to build this plane has been the lack of markings. Masks can be cut, but careful study of the registration letters shows each one is a little different; their application was a custom job, so every letter needs its own mask. Another alternative is to tediously hand paint each letter. Enter Red Roo Models.

Images courtesy of the State Library of South Australia.

The Decals

Red Roo Models have solved this predicament for those wishing to build a 1/72 scale version of the plane, with the release of their decal pack RRD7238. This pack provides the registration letters and ‘Lift Here’ markings for G-EAOU. These have been nicely done, with ‘handed’ letters for each side of the fuselage and individual ‘G’s for the tail, and suitable large letters for the main wings. There is a nice custom look to the decals, and while there are slight differences, photos of the plane before and during its flight show the Red Roo decals are a close match. Red Roo Models have also thoughtfully provided some extra strips of white in case you need to touch up your handy work. This extra decal could also be used to test how the decals perform with a particular decal setting or softening product.

The Instructions

The instructions are very good regards decal placement, although they don’t get the lower surface arrangement of the registration letters quite right. On the underside of the main wings, the registration was split into ‘G-E’ and ‘AOU’. It is also worth noting that the ‘G’s on each side of the lower tail plane surface are set in board slightly to avoid the skids near the wing tips, compared to those on the upper surfaces. (Refer to the photos from the South Australian State Library).

A word of caution here. The aircraft currently on display in Adelaide has been repainted at least once, possibly twice, and the upper wing and outer lower wing panels are not the originals, so there are some differences in the appearance of the current markings compared to those on the aircraft when it made its flight. There was also a replica G-EAOU Vimy built and flown in 1994 so be sure not to confuse this with the original aircraft, unless of course this is the plane you wish to build.

It is highly recommended you read the Red Roo Models instructions BEFORE you use these decals. These decals have been produced with an Alps dry ink thermal printer which means they have been printed on a sheet of carrier film, as opposed to screen printed decals which have the carrier film printed over the image. Therefore, when you are using the decals for your Vimy, you will need to trim them closely to the subject. Red Roo recommend that you leave about 1mm of carrier film edging around the subject decal.

Recommendation

For those who wish to add a 1/72 scale model of the famous Vimy G-EAOU to their collection, these decals are quite suitable straight out of the packet, while the more fastidious may want to slightly modify some letters. Either way, this is a much better alternative to masking or hand painting each individual letter, so I have no hesitation recommending them.

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