This is the fourth in a quartet of 1/48 scale P-51 decal sets recently released by A.M.D.G. Decals. As I noted in my review of their first set of P-51 decals, A.M.D.G. Decals is a new company from Poland that markets these sets under the title YANKEE MERLIN ROARS!!! (Parts I – IV), and they provide everything needed in each set to finish four different aircraft. The decal sheet included in each set is packed with about as many individual decals as anyone could hope for (as shown in the photo below).
This set (Part IV - #A48-004) of YANKEE MERLIN ROARS!!! provides markings for the following:
- P-51B-10-NA, s/n 42-106447, SHOO SHOO BABY, flown by Lt. John Howell, 364 FS/357 FG, at Leiston, UK, (March, 1944)
- P-51B-5-NA, s/n: 43-6425, MARGIE MARU, flown by Capt. Jack T. Bradley, 353 FS/354 FG, at Criqueville, France (June, 1944)
- P-51B-15-NA, s/n: 42-106875, Queen Jean, flown by Capt. William J, Shackelford, 375 FS/361 FG, at Bottisham, UK (August, 1944). See the comments below concerning this information.
- P-51D-20-NA, s/n: 44-15499, Punkie II, flown by Lt. Vernon R. Blizzard, 504 FS/339 FG, at Fowlmere, UK (April, 1945)
As the photos below show, the fold-out instruction sheet included with these sets is a testimony to A.M.D.G. Decals’ commitment to detail and accuracy. The instructions are printed on both sides and provide full-color profile and plan-view illustrations for each subject in the set. They also feature very comprehensive painting guidelines, including guidelines for painting invasion stripes. In addition, the sheet includes specific details about each aircraft, along with considerable historical information about the plane and its pilot, unit, location, and date. Added to all of this, there are photo-references notes and kit recommendations.
As comprehensive as these instructions may be, it is always a good idea to consult other references, if available, to confirm the dates and pilots specified for the individual aircraft markings. Although A.M.D.G.’s instruction sheets list Queen Jean (P-51B-15-NA s/n 42-106875) as flown by Capt. William J. Shackelford, 375 FS/361 FG, there are conflicting sources. Two photos published in other references indicate that the aircraft, as depicted on the instruction sheet, was actually assigned to the 374 FS/361 FG and flown by Capt. John Cearley Jr. during the period it was painted with the invasion stripes and carried his personal nose art, Queen Jean. Fortunately, no pilot’s name is displayed on the aircraft, so it may be a moot point, but one that is pointed out for the sake of accuracy.
The decals themselves are crisply printed on thin film that should respond well to mild setting solutions. Colors are vivid and opaque, and everything is well registered. The option is provided to use small pre-registered decals (one decal printed with multiple colors) for kill markings, checkerboard trim, and other multi-color markings, or for the modeler to use separate single-color decals that can be registered (stacked) over one another to achieve a multi-color final product. Finally, each of the markings is clearly identified with numbers that coincide with those on the instruction sheet for accurate placement.
This set is highly recommended. A.M.D.G. Decals are available directly from the manufacturer. My thanks go to A.M.D.G. Decals for providing the review sample and to IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review it.