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Book Review
F/RF-4E Phantom II
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by: Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]

The title of the series - Photo Gallery & Profiles - actually only goes part way in describing the scope of this volume, because it goes far further and authors Alexandros Anestis and George Papadimitriou have packed the 136-page softbound volume with what amounts to an F/RF-4E modeller's "one-stop shop" reference.

The text is well written in English throughout and the book breaks down into four main areas:

Development
Photos section
Profiles
Scale Plans

The Development section serves as an introduction, with a concise overview of the design and development of the F-4, and the F/RF-4E in particular. It's illustrated with some useful general photos of surviving (mostly museum) airframes, along with a table of what types of Phantoms were used by which countries, but it's really only a faint foretaste of what follows...

Things get started properly with the Photos section - and here the reference coverage is quite exceptional. The breakdown is as follows:

F-4E Cockpit - 26 photos
F-4E Forward Fuselage - 40 photos
F/RF-4E Mid Fuselage - 32 photos
F/RF-4E Wing - 39 photos
F/RF-4E Rear Fuselage - 21 photos
F/RF-4E Engine - 17 photos
RF-4E Cockpit - 23 photos
RF-4E Fuselage - 35 photos
Cameras - 9 Photos
F/RF-4E Armament - 40 photos

The colour photos are mostly close-up "walkaround"-style of Greek service machines, with a few shots of what appear to be museum display items. The coverage is excellent, with clear shots, well printed on high quality paper. Size varies, with between 2 to 6 shots per page, but all are very clear and of a very useful size to modellers, backed up with detailed captions.

The F/RF-4E Users section picks up where the introduction left off, and covers the service of the aircraft internationally in more depth. There are some good in-service photos included (although one or two are rather too small for my liking) and the chapter should provide plenty of inspiration for modellers because the thing that really hits you is the quite extraordinary amount of weathering evident on some aircraft. It's not paint-chipping, but rather paint fading and staining - so "heavy weatherers" can really go to town, safe in the knowledge that that the critics can't accuse them of overdoing it!

The profiles section features artwork by well-known illustrator and author Richard J. Caruana, with top and side views of German, Israeli and Iranian Phantoms, followed by 20 side views of a good variety of aircraft from a range of air forces.

Last, but not least, there's a 6-page set of 1:72 drawings, again by Richard J. Caruana.

Conclusion
Periscopio Publications have produced an excellent "one stop shop" guide to the F/RF-4E. It will appeal to aviation enthusiasts too, but the obvious target is modellers and it offers a pretty ideal combination of highly informative reference photos, backed up by scale drawings, plus profiles for colour scheme inspiration. I'm really impressed - and it's made me realise that I haven't got a single 1:48 Phantom in my Stash! I think that's something I need to correct...

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
SUMMARY
Highs: Well written English text. Excellent detailed colour photos. Good quality profiles and plans.
Lows: On eor two photos are a little small - but they aren't in the all-important walkaround section.
Verdict: Periscopio Publications' book is a very well balanced reference to the F/RF-4E, particularly targeted at modellers.
Percentage Rating
95%
  Scale: Other
  Mfg. ID: 978-960-6740-75-6
  Suggested Retail: N/K
  PUBLISHED: Jun 21, 2009
  NATIONALITY: United States
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 88.16%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 87.56%

Our Thanks to Periscopio Publications!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Rowan Baylis (Merlin)
FROM: NO REGIONAL SELECTED, UNITED KINGDOM

I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...

Copyright 2019 text by Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.



   

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