I’m back at the bench for the winter season and just started working on a 1/72 Academy F/A-18C (this kit). When I bought the kit last year I’d intended to do one of the colorful CAG birds, but having just finished a hi-vis F-14 I changed my mind and decided to do a lo-vis operational bird instead and take the opportunity to practice my weathering, mottling, fading, etc.
The switch means I’ve also decided to go with a more realistic, operational loadout… something that looks asymmetric, menacing and used… so, obviously tanks on 5 and 7 for starters, the pods (AAS-38 and ASQ-173) on the 4 and 6 stations, and the AIM-9s on the 1 & 9 wingtips.
Visually the GBU-12 pair on a VER looks cool, so that would go on 2.
That leaves 3 and 8 in need or ordnance.
The kit hardware is as follows:
4 x AIM-9L/M Sidewinders
2 x AIM-7M Sparrow
4 x GBU-12 Paveway II
1 x AAS-38 Laser Designator pod
1 x ASQ-173 Laser Detector/Tracker pod
1 x AAR-50 TINS pod
2 x Vertical Ejector Racks (VERs)
4 x External Fuel Tanks
I do have a Hasegawa smartbomb kit (JDAMs, JSOWs, and various GBUs), but not the AGM kit (with the Mavericks, HARMs, etc.)