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Triple Nickel
555th Fighter Squadron

Lakenheath Mudhens



Afterburner Decals, 1/48 scale


Catalogue Number:

Afterburner Decals
AD48-044 - Triple Nickel 555th Fighter Squadron

AD48-045 - Lakenheath Mudhens 492nd/494th



Contents and Media:

Waterslide decals plus instructions and notes


each US$20.00 Available from Afterburner Decals

Review Type:



Comprehensive and printed to a high standard by Cartograf of Italy. Comprehensive instructions.


None noted.


Superbly printed decal sheets covering a range of interesting F-15s and F-16s

Reviewed by Ken Bowes

HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron




45 Sheets already released, and pumping out new and better sheets at every turn, Afterburner Decals has once again delivered some extremely detailed and comprehensive decal sheets documenting some of the more active USAFE Units going back as far as the middle 1990s.

The first sheet, catalogue 48-044, covers the 555th Fighter Squadron from Operations in Bosnia to Iraqi Freedom. The 555th has a long and illustrious combat history, levened with stints as a training squadron in the US. This most recent interation sees the 555th based at Aviano in Italy equipped with F-16CG and DG Block 40 F-16s.

Given its forward deployed location it is not surprising that the Triple Nickel has been involved in just about all US air campaigns from the end of the Cold War to date, and especially over the Balkans. Putting aside all the jets are in the standard USAF three or more recent two gray camouflage scheme this sheet provides a myriad of unique markings and Squadron badges along with enough stencils for two complete airframes. There are no less than 12 subject airframes on the sheet including four iterations of AF89-2035 in its guise as the Squadron COs jet during the period 2000-2007 and three iterations of AF88-0550 again the Squadron COs jet from 1994 until shot down over Bosnia in May 1999 during Operation Allied Force. One point to note is that whilst the cover states that a J-21 killer is included there is no further information about this subject in the instructions.

The second recent release from Afterburner is again a USAFE subject, this time covering the F-15E Strike Eagles of the 492nd and 494th Squadrons based at RAF Lakenheath in Great Britain. Sheet AD48-045.



Like the earlier Triple Nickel Sheet is nothing less than a work of art and a testament to the state of the decal designers and printers art. This time Afterburner provides markings for no less than 16 options covering the entire quite of CC jets including 3rd Air Force, 48th Wing Commander, 48th Ops Group and Commanders jets from both squadrons. Along with these are five line jets including that of Maj Nicole Malachowski who became the first female pilot in the USAF Thunderbirds Flight Demonstration Team. Again reflecting the operational tempo of the USAF since 9/11, there are options for jets deployed including in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Afterburner Decals has put together a slick package with detailed instructions over 8 full colour A4 pages for the Mudhens (less to know about their airframe variations and a simpler scheme) and no less than 12 for the Triple Nickels, including a primer on all the small details important to producing an accurate Block 40 including airframe strengthening plates, wheels and landing lights among other things. Also useful and common to Afterburner sheets is a comprehensive sheet on weapons fits as appropriate to the subject as this can make a difference between a good model and a great one.

Almost as an afternote it is worth mentioning the high quality of the decal printing. Cartograph continues to produce outstanding decals. Each design is crisp and in perfect register with the large almost A4 size sheets literally crammed with artwork. If past experience is borne out these decals will perform flawlessly if applied according to the directions. In conclusion then if your interest is in modern American combat aircraft, particularly those that have been used in recent conflicts then Afterburner Decals is an outstanding source for your needs.


  • Afterburner Decals Review by Ken Bowes: Image
  • Afterburner Decals Review by Ken Bowes: Image
  • Afterburner Decals Review by Ken Bowes: Image
  • Afterburner Decals Review by Ken Bowes: Image
  • Afterburner Decals Review by Ken Bowes: Image
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Thanks to Afterburner Decals for the sample

Review Copyright 2009 by Ken Bowes
This Page Created on 16 April, 2009
Last updated 16 April, 2009

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