Originating from a USMC requirement for a close support aircraft, The OV10-A, a North American Aviation design, won a production contract in 1964. Performance highlights included short takeoff using a high-lift wing configuration and trailing beam landing gear to allow rough field operations. The central boom could hold paratroopers while sponsons carried 4 machine guns and hard points for weapons and a fuel tank. The operational version had 10 feet added to the wingspan. The cockpit canopy featured bulged side panels to allow downward vision to the pilot and observer. These aircraft were used in the Forward Air Control (FAC) role in Southeast Asia all the way through the war in Iraq. In 1995 the last Broncos were retired by the USMC.
This kit is a new tool in 1/72 scale. It's packaged in ICMs typical cardboard box with a colorfully illustrated box top. Inside are four sprues molded in grey and one clear. A decal sheet supplies two USMC and one each USAF and Navy versions. All versions were based in South-East Asia. Surface details is what we’ve come to expect from ICM. Fine panels lines and restrained rivet details. Canopy parts are very clear, and framing is pronounced enough to assist in masking. Masking templates are included in the instructions. A full complement of ordinance allows the builder to arm their Bronco accurately. I had no issues with assembly. There are no seat harnesses included or molded for the seats, so I added some. All the flying control surfaces are separate parts. I was particularly impressed with the gear well details and the gear legs.
Because ICM makes paint sets, including one for this kit (#3008), that is the only reference given in the color chart. I based my color picks on internet photos and mixed the airframe colors from Tamiya Lacquer paints. The decals worked very well, conforming to surfaces with only mild setting solution. In conclusion, this was a very enjoyable build. ICM has closed a gap with this kit and given us what I think is the best OV10-A in this scale. Thank you IPMS for sharing this sample with me and to ICM for several hours of fun modeling.