Affectionately known as the "Warthog", the Fairchild-Republic A-10A was never designed to fly with the Eagles and the MiG's and the Tomcats.  It was designed as a close air support aircraft to get down in the dirt and the mud and the smoke in support of ground troops.

Carrying a 7-barreled 30mm GAU-8 Avenger cannon the Hog is devestatingly effective against ground targets.  The GAU-8 typically fires PGU-13 High Explosive Incendiary or PGU-14 Armor Piercing Incendiary with a depleted uranium penetrator.  The GAU-8 itself is approximately 21 feet long and weighs 619 pounds (here is a picture of one next to a Volkswagen Beetle for comparison).  It can carry up to 1,350 rounds of ammunition and fires them at a rate of 2,100 or 4,200 rounds per minute selectable by the pilot (I have seen differing numbers on the rate of fire.  These numbers are from an Air Force site).  The cartridges are 11.4" long and weigh about 1-1/2 pounds each.  The penetrator of the PGU-14 (the "Bullet" part) weighs about 0.6 pound and flies at a muzzle velocity of over 1,000 fps.  If you want to get an idea of just how large a 30mm 7-barreled cannon is, Take A Look At This Picture

If the GAU-8 isn't enough, the A-10 has 11 hardpoints and is capable of carrying up to 16,000 pounds of ordnance.  It can handle various stores including the AGM-65 Maverick, Mk82 500lb general-purpose bombs, BLU-1 and BLU-27/B Rockeye II cluster bombs and the cluster bomb unit CBU-52/71.

The A-10A has the distinction of being the first airplane designed around its weapon.  The GAU-8 cannon was not adapted to fit the A-10, the A-10 was specifically built around the GAU-8.  The pilot flies in a titanium tub built around the cockpit.  The two General Electric TF-34-100/A turbo-fan engines are mounted high on the rear of the fuselage to protect them from FOD (Foreign Object Damage) and to reduce the heat signature presented to heat-seeking antiaircraft weapons on the ground below.  The two vertical stabilizers, while primarily designed to give the A-10 its responsive control, also help mask the two engines from heat seekers on the ground.

The Hog is not what would be termed as an "Attractive" airplane, but it is certainly distinctive.  Its straight wings, high-mounted engines, large bubble canopy, stores lined up under the wings, and the snout of that 30mm cannon sticking out the front cannot be mistaken for anything else in the combat arena.

For more information on the A-10, the US Air Force has an excellent fact sheet At This Link.  For all the A-10 photographs you could ever want, try the links in the Reference Section below.

This model depicts aitcraft number 81-0987.  The aircraft initially deployed to the Air Force on April 14, 1983.  On March 1, 2003 Captain Kim "KC" Campbell arrived in Iraq with the aircraft as a member of the 75 Fighter Squadron, 23 Fighter Wing deployed from Fort Pope, N.C. as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom.  On April 7, 2003, one week before the aircraft would have been in service for 20 years, it was damaged by ground fire.  Captain Campbell got the aircraft back to base, however the battle damage repair crew determined that there was too much damage to repair there.  The aircraft was dismantled and shipped back to Davis- Monthan Air Force Base to determine whether it could be repaired or not.  More details are avaiable at This Link or, if you want the rest of the story about what happened to 81-0987 afterwards, This Link is where you want to go!

Historical Note .... The 23 Fighter Group has a long and distinguished record.  It was originally established as 23 Fighter Wing on 10 Aug 1948, and any fan of military aviation would recognize their logo: the legendary Flying Tigers.  The 23d Fighter Group can trace their roots back to December 17, 1941 when the 23d Pursuit Group (Interceptor) was constituted at Langley Field,VA. just 10 days after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.  Originally the 23d Fighter Group was assigned three squadrons, the 74th, 75th and 76th, with 5 staff officers, 5 pilots, and 19 ground crew from the original Flying Tigers as part of the organization.

Here Is A Link to their lineage, and Here Is A More Complete page describing their history.

As with all great jets their era must eventually come to an end.  Here is a some information on the last A-10 built, serial number 82-0665, compliments of The Warthog Pen

Installment 1 Curtis-Wright P-40B Warhawk
Installment 2 Fairchild-Republic F-105G Thunderchief Wild Weasel
Installment 3 McDonnell-Douglas F-4E Phantom II
Installment 4 Fairchild-Republic A-10A Thunderbolt II


Manufacturer: 1/32 scale Trumpeter A-10A Thunderbolt II

Aftermarket: Cutting Edge Modelworks 32057 resin cockpit
Cutting Edge Modelworks 32061 Exterior Detail Set
Eduard 32062 PE Set - A-10 Exterior Detail Set
TwoBobs Aviation Graphics 32-013 KC And The Cajuns decals
BlackBox GBU-12 Laser Guided Bombs

Finishing: The main fuselage was painted with Testors Model Master FS-36375 Light Ghost Gray enamel.  The camouflage (yes, there are actually three colors of gray on it!) was then painted using Testors Model Master FS-36320 Dark Ghost Gray and FS-36118 Gunship Gray acrylic.  A wash of artist's acrylics is used to emphasize the panel lines, and some flat black and Tamiya Smoke were used to add a few stains here and there.

The cockpit was sprayed with Testors Model Master FS-36320 Dark Ghost Gray enamel and then the detailing was done using Tamiya acrylics.  A dark gray wash of artist's acrylic was used to highlight the recesses and cockpit details.  A final coat of Testors Model Master clear flat acrylic and the cockpit was done.

All metallic surfaces (engine turbine face, engine exhaust, pylon clamps, oleo struts, etc.) were painted with Alclad II Stainless Steel over a base of Alclad II primer.

Testors Model Master FS military enamel
Testors Model Master acrylic
Tamiya acrylic
Alclad II laquer

Build Started: October 30, 2004
Build Completed: July 17, 2005
Total Construction Time: 368 hours

The construction notes page, accessed by clicking the link below, contains a great deal of information pertaining to the construction of this model.  It documents many of the problems that I ran into and how I worked around them, and contains many photographs of the model in various stages of completion.

Click This Link To View Construction Photos and Construction Notes

You can use the link below to view all photographs of the model.  A page will be displayed showing thumbnails of every photograph of the model in the top.  You can then click any of the thumbnails to view a full-sized copy of the image in the bottom frame.

Click This Link To View ALL PHOTOS

All images above are links to larger photographs.  Click the image to view the larger image
The HUD lens in photograph 16 looks like it is bright green but it is not.  It is green-tinted clear plastic and the sun is reflecting through it.  It is actually dark green.

Photo 15 shows some dark green areas on the bottom.  They are NOT there!  That is just some color shift from the fluorescent lamp over my workbench that I forgot to turn off before taking the photographs.  Any green areas in any of the photographs is caused by that.  There is no green of any kind on the model anywhere except for a couple of the instruments, a navigation light, and the HUD lens.

If you look closely in photo 6 you will see a "Remove Before Flight" streamer stuck in the refueling panel cover.  I saw a photograph that had one stuck there and thought it would add a unique flavor to the model.  According to my resident expert, that is where they store the gear pins so that they will be with the aircraft wherever it goes (thanks, Dice!).

Update - 12/30/2009 - Here are a few more detail photos I recently took.  It always amazes me how much dust these things can pick up even when they are in a box or case.

Update - 11/24/2011 - I wanted to play with my camera and lighting so shooting a few more photos of my A-10 seemed like the right thing to do.


October 1, 2005 Huntsville Plastic Modelers Society 2nd Place - 1/32 Aircraft

Aircraft Type: Fairhild-Republic A-10A Thunderbolt II
Aircraft Category: Ground Attack / Ground Support
Wing Span:57'-6"
Overall Length:53'-4"
Gross Weight:51,000 lbs
Engine:Two General Electric TF34-GE-100 turbofans
Thrust:9,065 lbs each
Speed:420 mph
Range:800 mi
Ceiling:45,000 ft
Date of First Flight:May, 1972
Date Deployed:March, 1976
The Warthog Pen A-10.Org Aircraft Resource Center - Jet Walkarounds
Fine Scale Modeler Forum Scalehobby Forums TF34 Engines on Club Hyper
Aicraft Walkaround's A-10 John McCormick's A-10  

Special thanks to Joe at the Warthog Pen as well as the guys on the Scalehobby.Com and Finescale.Com forums for their help and assistance.

The Horatio Hogbreath background image was designed by Mr. Hank Caruso and
has been used with the kind permission of The Warthog Pen.   Read the story of his beginnings at This Link!

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