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P-47D Thunderbolt

by David W. Aungst


Republic P-47D Thunderbolt


Revell-Monogram's 1/48 scale P-47D Thunderbolt is still available online from Squadron.com




I have read many postings lately concerning the camouflage and markings of Gabreski's P-47D Thunderbolt. I decided to throw my hat in the ring and post my model of this famous aircraft. I completed the model in 1989 using what I thought were the correct markings at that time (based mostly on the Monogram kit instruction sheet). I have since learned that the camouflage and markings I applied to the model may not be correct.

  • The camouflage colors may have been British colors, not American.

  • The bottom may well have been Light Gray, not metal.

  • The invasion stripes may have only been the white stripes with thin black outlines, leaving the camouflage intact to show through where black stripes would have been.

Conjecture abounds over these points. Whatever the truth is, it was this camouflage (in American colors) with the metal bottom and the full black and white stripes that got me to want to build the model. Whatever works is fine by me. Right or wrong, it looks nice on my display shelves.



Building the Kit


The Monogram "Jug" is an early kit for them, dating back to the middle 1960s. Even so, it is really not that bad of a kit. It's simple construction and inexpensive price make it serious competition for the newly molded, vastly more expensive Hasegawa and Academy P-47 kits.



When I built this model, I was working toward competing in my model club's annual "Out-of-the-Box" competition. As such, the model is out-of-the-box, although my kit had the guns broken off the one wing in the box before I bought it. I replaced the broken guns with brass wire, but I did not drill out the barrels or anything exotic like that.



Camouflage and Markings


The part of doing this model that got my interest stirred up was the camouflage and the fact that it was applied to the top surfaces while a natural metal bottom was maintained. I used all Testors Model Master enamel paints and metalizers. The top colors are Olive Drab (F.S.34087) and Neutral Gray (F.S.36270). I used five shades of metalizer on the lower surfaces to give the effect of natural metal. The invasion stripes are masked and painted.

The decals come from the Monogram kit decal sheet. The markings represent the aircraft flown by Lt. Francis "Gabby" Gabreski from the 56th FG, 8th Air Force, Europe, circa 1943.


The only detail of the decals that disappointed me was the kill panel. A clear picture of Lt. Gabreski in front of this panel shows it to be made up of German flags with subtext to state what aircraft each represents. The aircraft camouflage shows through between the flags. Monogram chose to print the panel as a solid black rectangle with no clear portions between the flags.





I had fun building the model. I got second place in the model club "Out-of-the-Box" competition. I lost to a Monogram P-51D finished as "Petie 2nd".



Additional Images and Project Summary


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

Project Statistics

Completion Date:

February, 1989

Total Building Time:

31.0 (est)





Painting (includes creation and printing of custom decals):


Decals / Markings (includes creating and printing custom decals):


Extra Detailing / Conversion:


Model, Description and Images Copyright 2002 by David Aungst
Page Created 30 September, 2002
Last Updated 04 June, 2007

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