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B-34/PV-1 Ventura in RAF and Commonwealth Service

DK Decals, 1/72 scale

S u m m a r y :

Catalogue Numbers:

DK Decals Item No. 72048 - B-34/PV-1 Ventura in RAF and Commonwealth Service

Scale:

1/72

Contents & Media

Decals for fifteen subjects (plus one bonus PV-2 Harpoon) with colour-printed painting & markings guide.

Price:

AUD $20.00 plus shipping available online from Red Roo Models

 

GBP £9.75 plus shipping available online from Hannants

Review Type:

First Look

Advantages:

Excellent production quality, great value.

Disadvantages:

Several schemes lack plan views illustrating upper-surface disruptive camouflage patterns. Also unclear on aircraft that should have fins flashes on both sides of each fin.

Conclusions:

They provide some interesting and attractive markings in ‘The One True Scale’ for British Commonwealth Ventura fans.

However, DK Decals really needs to offer more effective plan views of the subjects, and ensure all disruptive camouflage schemes are fully illustrated. This can easily be achieved by replacing wasteful self-advertising space in the instructions, or by providing an additional page or additional web-site coverage. There is no excuse for the paucity of upper surface illustrations. The markings guide is also unclear on aircraft that should have fins flashes on both sides of each fin.

Gripes aside, these are superbly well produced decals that represent excellent value.


Reviewed by Mark Davies


Xtradecal's 1/72 scale Junkers Ju 87 B/K/R Stuka decals
are available online from Squadron.com

F i r s t L o o k

 

The Ventura was operated by a number of RAF and commonwealth units, and this most welcome set provides no less than fifteen quite varied and interesting options reflecting this.

I know that DK Decals used a number of global contacts to assist in the research of this and several other recent RAAF & RNZAF releases. DK Decals acknowledges the help of Ed Russell of Red Roo Models, Nathan (Barf) Bosher of the RNZAF Museum, and Jiri Sebek in this set’s case.


 

The Decals

The decals are supplied in the ubiquitous zip-lock plastic bag, although the packaging method is more unusual in that the single A-4 page of instructions are folded in three to enclose the four decal sheets and their protective talcs.

The instructions are produced in colour on glossy paper, and generally indicate markings placement clearly enough. A brief note regarding the aircraft and its station location is listed in a separate box and keyed to each subject.

1. Ventura Mk.II, AE957, No.487 (NZ) Sq. RAF
2. Ventura Mk.II, AE660, No.487 (NZ) Sq. RAF
3. Ventura Mk.II, AJ209, No.487 (NZ) Sq. RAF, S/L L.H.Trent
4. Ventura Mk.II, AE856, No.21 Sq. RAF
5. Ventura GR.V, 2185, No.8 (BR) Sq. RCAF
6. Ventura GR.V, 2156, No.113 (BR) Sq. RCAF
7. Ventura Mk.II, AE881, No.1575 SD Flt. RAF
8. B-34 Ventura, 6027, SAAF
9. Ventura GR.V, 6416, No.22 Sq. SAAF
10. Ventura GR.V, JT894, No.521 Sq. RAF
11. Ventura GR.V, FN966, No.519 Sq. RAF
12. RB-34A Ventura, NZ4591, No.11 SU, RNZAF
13. PV-1 Ventura, NZ4502, No.1 (BR) Sq. RNZAF
14. PV-1 Ventura, NZ4538, No.2 (BR) Sq. RNZAF
15. PV-1 Ventura, NZ4509, No.1 (BR) Sq. RNZAF, F/O Don Ayson
16. PV-2 Harpoon, NZ4702, RNZAF (Bonus)

Colour call outs are listed using RAF or USN names.  All colours are further cross-referenced to the Humbrol and Agama paint ranges.

Each scheme is illustrated using a single side-profile view, and scrap-views are used to display nose markings otherwise obscured by engines in the profiles where required. These profile views are about as small as one would want them to get, but are fit for purpose; they can be improved by scanning an enlargement.

 

 

Only one tiny plan view is provided covering the five aircraft with disruptive dark green and dark earth camouflage. There is an even smaller plan view of the black & sky grey underside recognition scheme applicable to Option 2. The sizes of these two drawings are barely adequate.

Far more serious is the absence of plan views for Option 7’s mid-stone & dark earth and Option 11’s dark slate grey & extra dark sea grey disruptive schemes; both of which are laid out to different patterns to the dark green & dark earth options that are catered for. Likewise, there are no plan views for four options with sea blue & intermediate blue upper surfaces, although the profile views for these options give a reasonable indication of demarcation lines.

DK Decals need to “bite the bullet” and realize one A4 side is not enough to illustrate sixteen colour scheme options. They should either provide an additional page of illustrations, or at the very least replace the pointless one-sixth of a page promoting their other sets with more and larger plan views. Alternatively, they could provide superior and more helpful illustrations on their website, and direct users to this with a note in the printed instructions.

 

 

Some Venturas had fin flashes displayed on both sides of each fin, whereas others had them only on the outboard sides. The instructions are unclear on this point, although the decal sheet numbering groups all fin flashes in sets of four, which implies both sides. I really feel that scrap views should have been included to make this point more clearly.

The decals are printed by BOA Agency appear to be of superb quality, with excellent registration, good colour density, and a gloss finish. I also suspect that they may be a little thicker than some Czech decals, as it is possible to feel them raised from their backing paper. I am confident they are not too thick by any means, just that I suspect these will be less fragile and prone to folding over on themselves than some other Czech decal brands.

 

 

The decals come supplied on four separate sheets, and include plenty of national insignia; which makes for a good excuse for Ventura group build with your modelling mates.

 

 

C o n c l u s i o n

 

These decals provide some interesting and attractive markings in ‘The One True Scale’ for British Commonwealth Ventura fans.

However, DK Decals really needs to offer more effective plan views of the subjects, and ensure all disruptive camouflage schemes are fully illustrated. This can easily be achieved by replacing wasteful self-advertising space in the instructions, or by providing an additional page or additional web-site coverage. There is no excuse for the paucity of upper surface illustrations. The markings guide is also unclear on aircraft that should have fins flashes on both sides of each fin.

Gripes aside, these are superbly well produced decals that represent excellent value.

Thanks to Red Roo Models for this sample.


Text and Images Copyright 2017 by Mark Davies
This Page Created on 27 October, 2017
Last updated 27 October, 2017

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