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CD48158 - 1/48 F-18 Hornet - The Early Years

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7 hours ago, KursadA said:

Does anyone have a close-up photo of the badge that appeared on the tail of 160780 during the test/eval program?

 

https://www.airfighters.com/photo/58978/M/USA-Navy/McDonnell-Douglas-YF-18A-Hornet/160780/

 

I didn’t find any in my rerences but found similar but different artwork on the right vstab of #7 and on both sides of the fuselage below the rear seat canopy rail on T1. Unfortunately the resolution is no better than the linked image above.  

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1 minute ago, habu2 said:

 

I didn’t find any in my rerences but found similar but different artwork on the right vstab of #7 and on both sides of the fuselage below the rear seat canopy rail on T1. Unfortunately the resolution is no better than the linked image above.  

 

My next question would be the art on the T1 - it most definitely is something with two stylized hornet caricatures. I asked the same questions to Mr. Downey, who runs the Aviation Archives blog and has a treasure trove of McDonnell Douglas historic material. 

 

I can't believe the details of these markings are lost to time - there must have been some photos published in the early 1980s. Any help would be much appreciated - this is the highest priority research problem right now and I will keep this thread at the top until it is resolved. Please help me out by leafing through your early 1980s books and magazines about the F-18.

 

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I have gotten several excellent leads and would like to thank everyone for their help - we still need better photos, though. The marking on No. 6 (160780) is most definitely associated with the spin / high AOA (angle of attack) testing and the one on 160781 is definitely a twin Hornet caricature of some sort. 

 

There are better photos of these somewhere - maybe in that dusty 1982 issue of Aviation Week that has been sitting in your basement, or that 1985 Hornet book you bought at a contest but forgot about.  Let us find these!

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Hey Kursad I have many old books from that era. Let me have a look  

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Hi Robert,

 

Thanks for the photo - while this is the clearest one we have, I still need a larger one to make out the details of the marking. Keeping the thread at the top - I still hope some of you will help sole this mystery.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks, Daniel! I think we are almost there - I can see that it is the same Hornet character (with "18" on his belly) used on the artwork on the carrier trials jet. I still can't make out everything but I think I can design something pretty close which will work for 48th and 72nd scales. 

 

Now if only we could find something similar for the marking on the twin seater T1.

 

tf18q1.jpg

Edited by KursadA

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Kursad I had a look at my old book on the F-18. There were many pictures of the prototypes in it. I did see something interesting though. It seems that no. 6 had two different schemes. There is one with no logo on the tail and the caption mentioned it was for the high AOA tests. I will try and scan tomorrow.

 

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Posted (edited)

Thanks, Chris - I am looking forward to the photos. I know that the high AoA program logo was painted on the tail of No. 6 at some point during the testing program, so it is possible to depict the aircraft without the badge.

 

 However, I would like to include the marking for the sake of completeness - including it will also allow the modeler to build this aircraft during the first few months of its later career as the NASA F-18 HARV; during which it wore an interesting, hodge-podge scheme with both NASA markings and remnants of its prototype past; as well as a few mismatched panels and parts from other prototypes for good measure:

 

800px-NASA_F-18A_Hornet_HARV_in_flight.j

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SViiqylV0lA

 

With the latest information I received, I think I will be able to draw the marking on No.6. This leaves the "twin Hornet" marking on TF1 - I contacted the Pax River Museum per Brent's suggestion; and hope to hear back from them as well.

Edited by KursadA

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I have Koku Fans going back to the mid-late 70s and I’m not finding anything that adds to the search.... 😞

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59 minutes ago, habu2 said:

I have Koku Fans going back to the mid-late 70s and I’m not finding anything that adds to the search.... 😞

 

Thanks for all the  help you provided so far - with the exception of the elusive "twin Hornet" artwork on the T1, I have almost everything I need and will finish the sheet shortly. 

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On 8/19/2019 at 8:35 PM, habu2 said:

I have Koku Fans going back to the mid-late 70s and I’m not finding anything that adds to the search.... 😞

 

Yeah I also have Koku Fan going back to the same era as yours. Looking through them only found one picture of a prototype Hornet and it was printed in another book anyway. 

I wonder why is that?

 

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