Cessna O-2A Skymaster - American Reconnaissance Aircraft
The O-2 Skymaster was a military version of the Cessna 337 Super Skymaster 4-6 passenger general aviation aircraft. It was purchased by the U.S. Air Force beginning in 1967 in two versions. The O-2A was used in the forward air control mission ( FAC ). It was equipped with additional radios and ordnance hard points under the wings for rocket and machine gun pods. The most significant modification of the civilian Model 337 to the O-2A was the addition of armament.
The O-2A could carry a selection of offensive weapons, including the 7.62 mm Minigun pod (small Gatling gun), but our normal load was two LAU-59/A rocket pods with seven 2.75" FFAR (Folding Fin Aircraft Rockets) each. These rockets could be armed with a variety of explosive warheads, but we usually carried white phosphorus (WP or "Willie Pete") heads. The WP round exploded with a highly visible puff of white smoke which made it useful for marking targets for attacking fighters, particularly in jungle canopy.
The O-2 Skymaster was employed by the( FAC ) forward air controller that played a significant part in the Vietnam War from the very start. Largely relegated to airborne duty by the constraints of jungled terrain, FACs began operations as early as 1962. Using makeshift propeller-driven aircraft and inadequate radio nets, they became so essential to air operations that the overall need for FACs would not be completely satisfied until 1969. The FAC's expertise as an air strike controller also made him an intelligence source, munitions expert, communication specialist, and above all, the on-scene commander of the strike forces and the start of any subsequent combat search and rescue if necessary.
2. The Kit
This kit is based on the ICM 1/48 Cessna O-2A Skymaster, and the shapes of the plane are perfect, and the pieces are perfectly in scale.This is new kit from Ukrainian manufacturer, packaging is standard for this brand, all frames come in single plastic bag. In total there are 196 parts. Molding quality looks nice and has been easy to work with this kit.
I have used the following accessories:
Eduard O-2A seatbelts STEEL 1/48 Cat.No.: FE1120
Eduard Mirage O-2A 1/48 Cat.No.: 491119
3. Colors and paint guide
* Sand and clean very well the model before painting.
Colors used step by step:
Mr. Surfacer 1200 ( All the surface )
Mr. Surfacer 1500 black ( only blade and propeller )
Mr. Hobby H332 Light Aircraft gray ( All Aircraft )
Mr. Hobby H1 White gloss ( Upper surface Wings )
Mr. Hobby H58 Interior green ( Interior )
* Paint and marking guide, ( MARKING C ) from the box of the kit
* Images from WEBSITE