The latest 1/48 scale decal set available from Iliad Design provides markings for seven different Korean War-era MiG-15s. The instruction sheet clearly shows six aircraft, but modelers do have the option of doing a seventh (I’ll explain below). Markings are included for four (or five) natural metal and two camouflaged aircraft flown by North Korean, Chinese and Russian pilots. Note that unlike some aftermarket decal companies that provide a variety of unique markings for different aircraft but only one set of national markings, Iliad includes enough national insignias to do all of the aircraft on this sheet. This makes Iliad Design’s modest retail price a real bargain.
The options are:
- A Soviet-built aircraft of the PLAAF (People’s Liberation Army Air Force). The aircraft is finished in overall natural metal with Chinese National insignias. The forward fuselage displays an inscription in bold red characters that reads “Peoples Voluntary Air Force” (referring to Chinese “volunteers”).
- A MiG-15bis finished in a three-color camouflage pattern over light grayish blue with North Korean markings. This aircraft was flown by Soviet pilot K. I. Siyom of the 535th IAP, 32nd IAD in the spring of 1953.
- A MiG-15bis finished in natural metal, North Korean markings, black outlined yellow aircraft numbers on forward fuselage, and 10 victory markings. The aircraft was flown by Soviet pilot Captain P. S. Milaushkin while serving with the 176th IAP, 324th IAD in early 1952.
- The MiG-15bis flown by North Korean pilot No Kum-Sok when he defected to Kimpo air base in South Korea on Sept 21, 1953. Full markings are included for the aircraft in North Korean service and for its later USAF evaluation role (thus providing the aforementioned seventh marking option).
- A medium dark green and brown over light grayish-blue camouflaged MiG-15bis flown by Soviet pilot Major Arkady Boitsov of the 16th IAP, 971st IAD in Manchuria, in the summer of 1953.
- A natural metal MiG-15bis with North Korean National Insignias and nine victory markings flown by Chinese pilot Wang Hai, assistant CO of the 7th Air Regiment 3rd Air Division, in the summer of 1953.
Iliad decals are extremely well printed and are of very high quality. Registration is crisp with vivid opaque colors that appear quite accurate. Everything is printed on a thin film that I have found will respond well to Gunze’s Mr. Mark Softer decal setting solution. There is an adequate amount of carrier film surrounding the small items, so it is advisable to apply these decals on a smooth glossy finish and use a setting solution to avoid silvering.
A double-sided, full-color instruction sheet is included that provides the modeler with a port profile of each MiG-15 (with appropriate aircraft and unit information) and overhead views of each aircraft, with under wing marking locations indicated in lightly ghosted colors.
Iliad decals can be easily sourced directly from the manufacturer at the website noted above. The website also provides a list of retailers who stock Iliad’s products.
This decal set is highly recommended. My thanks to Illiad Design for supplying the review sample and IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review it.