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A-4E Skyhawk - USN VF-126 Bandits, Blue 55, USNFWS TOPGUN, NAS Miramar, CA, 1985 

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Expected release date is 30th Oct 2024

Hobby Master 1:72 HA1441
A-4E Skyhawk - USN VF-126 Bandits, Blue 55, USNFWS TOPGUN, NAS Miramar, CA, 1985

Historical Note:


Preorder Expected Arrival - OCT 2024

In an effort to improve the poor performance of USN aircrews in Vietnam the USN Fighter Weapons School was established in 1969 at NAS Miramar, California. The first aircraft used by the school to teach the F-4 pilots better tactics were the A-4 Skyhawk and the F-5 Freedom Fighters. A-4E Bu.No. 151095 s/n 55 c/n 13265 was flown by Lt. "Mick" Michell (not Mitchell) at the Top Gun School and this same aircraft was used as "Jesters" (Michael Ironside) aircraft in the 1986 movie "Top Gun" with Tom Cruise. This aircraft was also on loan to Japan for static display and is painted as "8" of the USN "Blue Angels" even though the BAs never flew the E variant of the A-4.

Designed to replace the antiquated, propeller-driven AD Skyraider, the A-4 Skyhawk was first flown on June 22, 1954. Douglas exceeded the original design requirements by delivering a carrier-capable aircraft that was only half the Navy's weight specification and so compact that it did not need folding wings. The A-4 was the first to use "buddy" air-to-air refueling (an A-4 could refuel other aircraft of the same type), which was helpful when operating in remote locations where dedicated tankers were impractical. The A-4 served the US Navy until 2003 and remained the preferred warplane for the Marine Corps until the 1980s, even after the introduction of the A-7 Corsair II.

Hobby Master's 1:72 scale A-4 Skyhawk is a sturdy model constructed almost entirely from diecast metal with only the smallest amount of plastic used. This model has an opening canopy with pad-printed dials and gauges, control stick and pilot seat. Each release features a pair of 20mm cannons, a delicate refueling probe and a variety of wing-mounted weapons ordnance and fuel tanks. The series includes the early B and E variants as well as the F and M variants, which have a hump on the top of the fuselage to house upgraded avionics (also seen on retrofitted E variants).

Info:      A-4E Skyhawk - USN VF-126 Bandits, Blue 55, USNFWS TOPGUN, NAS Miramar, CA, 1985

Product Videos

Its Weapons Were Half Its Weight - Douglas A-4 Skyhawk (10:51)
Leading Douglas aviation engineer Ed Heinemann wanted to take a different approach when designing a replacement for the Navy’s AD1 Skyraider warplanes in 1952. In a bold proposal, he decided to replace one of the biggest single-engine fighter-bombers ever built with one of the smallest, lightest attack jets to date. Military aviation history shows that sometimes going cheap is the ideal call, and there is no better proof than the fascinating case of the A-4 Skyhawk, one of the most influential warplanes in American history. The Skyhawk’s modest but trusty array of features would engrave its place in the canon of aviation annals as the US Navy’s workhorse aircraft during the Vietnam War, flown by notable pilots such as Lieutenant Commander John McCain. To this date, the cheap but ubiquitous warplane known as “Tinkertoy Jet” is fondly remembered as it valiantly swooped down over the dangerous Vietnamese jungles to deliver American firepower to the most remote enemy entrenchments of the Indochina peninsula. The Skyhawk was neither extremely fast nor particularly agile or technologically groundbreaking. Still, it was small, versatile, reliable, and almost half its weight were weapons! --- Join Dark Skies as we explore the world of aviation with cinematic short documentaries featuring the biggest and fastest airplanes ever built, top-secret military projects, and classified missions with hidden untold true stories. Including US, German, and Soviet warplanes, along with aircraft developments that took place during World War I, World War 2, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, the Gulf War, and special operations mission in between. As images and footage of actual events are not always available, Dark Skies sometimes utilizes similar historical images and footage for dramatic effect and soundtracks for emotional impact. We do our best to keep it as visually accurate as possible. All content on Dark Skies is researched, produced, and presented in historical context for educational purposes. We are history enthusiasts and are not always experts in some areas, so please don't hesitate to reach out to us with corrections, additional information, or new ideas.
  • Its Weapons We...
    Leading Douglas aviation engineer Ed Heinemann wanted to take ...

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