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New Review: Warriors of Light: Digital Su-27S & Su-27UB Decals


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Review Author: 
Ben Morton
Foxbot

 

The Warriors of Light 1/72nd scale decal series from Foxbot is a collection of aircraft numbers for ten Su-27s with a complete data and stencil set for a single example. All of the Su-27's were assigned to the Ukrainian Air Force. Most Su-27s in Ukrainian service carried a digital, tri-color camouflage pattern on the upper surfaces and vertical stabilizers. The colored instructions are printed on thick paper with marking and stencil placement instructions. There is also a placement and color guide for the paint masks that are sold separately.

 

Color call-outs are provided with 'paint chip' facsimiles of the aircraft colors. The colors are referenced to RAL, FS or AKAN colors. Locating the AKAN paints may prove to be problematic as those are from a Russian company and not widely distributed in the U.S. The RAL is the European color matching system and FS (Federal Standard) is, of course, the U.S. color matching system. [Fun Fact: RAL stands for Reichs-Ausschuv fur Lieferbedinggen.] 

The updated marking options (this decal set was available previously) are provided for aircraft of the Ukrainian Air Force from 2015-2019.

  • Su-27 "Blue 50" named "Vasyl Nikiforov", Mirhorod, 2015.
  • Su-27 "Blue 39" 831st Guards Tactical Aviation Brigade, Lt. Yurii Bulavka, RIAT, Fairford Air Base, 20 July 2019.
  • Su-27 "Blue 24", "Blue 33", "Blue 37", "Blue 56", "Blue 58".
  • Su-27UBM-1 "Blue 71", Zaporizhia airfield, October 2015.
  • Su-27UBM-1 "Blue 67", Blue 73"

The marking options are presented in profile whereas the stenciling guide has full, four view drawings with supplemental drawings for the air intakes, vertical stabilizers, and landing gear.  The last guide is for the national insignia on the upper wings and the wing-walk areas.

The decals are printed in Ukraine by Decography and have very good registry and a minimal amount of thin, carrier film. The data blocks and warning stencils have outstanding definition with decipherable script and line spacing. 

This decal set is only for the aircraft stencils and markings.  I do have some digital camo decals 'on order' and hope to do a follow-on article using those in combination with these Foxbot markings. While we wait for that pending event, I have a reasonable facsimile to show these decals 'in their natural environment', namely on the wing of Trumpeters 1/72nd scale Su-27.

To keep things simple, I sprayed the upper wing/fuselage part with Tamiya primer and then clear coated that with ...well, a gloss clear coat.  The wing-walk markings, national insignia, and some of the data stencils were applied to the wing. These water slide decals released from the backing paper with a minimal amount of immersion in water.  The results are pluperfect. All of the decals went down well. They didn't crinkle, bunch up or tear when reposition, particularly the wing walk stenciling.  Another plus is that the carrier film disappeared after applying a semi-gloss clear coat over the completed decal application. [Fun Fact: pluperfect is short for plusquamperfect. Short version definition is 'more than perfect'. This will be on the test.]

There is an interesting addition to the instruction sheet that states; Buying a decal series from "Warriors of Light", you are helping the Ukrainian Air Force, as part of the income from the sale of decals will be transferred to the volunteer organization "Wings of the Phoenix", which deals with the restoration of aircraft for the Ukrainian Air Force. (?)

According to Wikipedia, "Phoenix Wings" (not "Wings of the Phoenix"): is a citizen organization started by Yury Biryukov to financially aid the armed forces of Ukraine. That aid has included purchasing bullet proof vests, helmets, and other related support for the armed forces of Ukraine.  And, it would seem, to the care and maintenance of the Ukrainian Air Force.

1/72nd scale digital camouflage, self-adhesive masks are available, separately, from Foxbot (item #72-003) FOXBOT FM72-003 Masks for Su-27 Ukrainian Air Forces, digital camouflage. (Kinda makes you wonder why Foxbot doesn't include them, as a set, with the decals.)

These decals are designed for 1/72nd scale Su-27 kits from Airfix, Hasegawa, Heller, ICM, Trumpeter and Zvezda, just about any 1/72nd scale kit available.

The decal series from Foxbot is really a must if you intend to model an Su-27. The digital camo scheme that adorns these aircraft is as striking as it is impressive. With the markings for "Blue 39" (and others) of the 831st Guards Tactical Aviation Brigade you will a have stunning addition to your display case.  And a great representation of the Ukrainian Air Force's attempts at keeping those 'Russian commies' out of their country. :)

My thanks to Foxbot and IPMS/USA for the review copy.

 

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