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P-38J/L Lightning

Iliad Design, 1/72 scale


S u m m a r y :

Catalogue Number:

Iliad Design Item No. 72008 - P-38J/L Lightning



Contents & Media:

Decals for seven subjects, colour-printed painting and markings guide


Available on-line from Iliad Design for Can$12.00 and these Iliad Design stockists may have the sheet in due course: Hannants and Squadron.

Review Type:

First Look


Good production quality.


Nothing of consequence.


A simple, good quality package - Recommended.

Reviewed by Mark Davies

HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron.com


F i r s t L o o k


The P-38 Lightning is a true classic and a justifiably popular modelling subject, so a new decal sheet covering some interesting schemes is sure to be welcomed.

The decals come supplied in an A5-sized zip-lock plastic bag with the folded instructions providing the bag-art. The colour instructions clearly indicate markings placement, although they refer to each P-38 as a P-36. Iliad’s proofreading must be as bad as mine is! They provide USAAF paint names like Olive Drab and Neutral Gary, but no cross-reference to FS-595 or model paint codes; not that this matters a great deal in this case due to the simple schemes. The decals have very good registration and appear to offer good opacity.


The schemes this sheet covers do not seem too out of the ordinary at first glance. There is nothing outlandish or over the top about the choices offered here. I think it is fine to offer essentially typical colour schemes that still differ from those featured as kit decals. I believe this applies to a fair extent with the decals reviewed here, although some of the options covered also have a feature or two that makes them subtlety atypical. Two examples being the intruder scheme with its black under-surfaces or the interned Yugoslav example with red stars replacing the white ones in the USAAF star & bars.


A nice touch is that each scheme on the sheet has its full complement of national insignia, and provides striping, where applicable, for those who do not wish to mask and paint. No stencilling is included.

The subjects covered by this sheet are:

  • P-38J flown by Kt Ken Ladd, 80th FS, New Guinea, late 1944.

  • P-38J flown by Col Howard Rau, 79th FS, 20th FG, June 1844.

  • P-38J of the 7th FG, based in the UK, March 1944.

  • P-38J flown by Lt J.C. McHenry, 7th FS, 49th FG, Philippines, December 1944.

  • P-38J flown by James Morris, 7th FS, 20th FG, Kingscliffe, UK spring 1944.

  • P-38L flown by Maj J.A. Watkins, 7th FS, 49th FG, New Guinea, late 1944.

  • P-38L 44-25786 damaged over Austria in April 1945 and interned after putting down in Sombor, Yugoslavia.



C o n c l u s i o n


This is a simple and generally well-produced set of decals. I think that the options on offer are more interesting than a first glance might suggest. The instructions are attractive to catch a buyer’s eye, but offer no more than is needed, and embarrass themselves by referring to P-38’s as P-36’s, not that this really matters. What does matter is the quality of the decals, and the sheet looks very good in this respect.

So overall, this is a simple, good quality package, and therefore recommended.

Thanks to Iliad Design for this sample.


Text and Images Copyright 2012 by Mark Davies
This Page Created on 30 April, 2012
Last updated 30 April, 2012

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