First Look Review
Enterprise CVAN-65 (1962)
StarFighter Decals Enterprise CVAN-65 (1962)
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by: Dariush [ DR_WHO2 ]


The Revell CV(A)N-65 Enterprise kit in the 1/720 scale sure is a very good starting point but lacks some details, mainly with the missing hangar deck, the missing flight deck markings and the missing airplane markings.
StarFighter Decals did not only rectify the hangar deck problem as seen in a different review, no, they also took care of the flight deck and airplane markings. There are wide variations of decals offered by the manufacturer and I chose this specific set because it contained for both of the mentioned problems a solution – at least, this is what I thought.
The Packaging…

I received my order quiet fast within a strengthened envelope. Upon opening I was given a clear plastic bag which contained the decals as well as the instructions.
... Now, what is inside? ...
The Content…

Upon opening the clear plastic bag the modeler is provided 2 big sheets of decals. The color print is without any obvious error or distortion. The colors are well chosen and the edges of the decals are sharp.
Let me point out, that the layout of the decals is set a way to reduce the modeler’s workload. The decals for e.g. the fins come organized in a manner that you only need to manually cut the rough shape. Also, the markings are not repetitious but do provide according the Bu-No.
The first big sheet of decals contains markings for the following airplanes:
1. VF-102 Diomandbacks with F4B´s (14 parts) * 12 = 168
2. VF-33 Tarsiers with F8E´s (20 parts) * 12 = 240
3. VA-65 Tigers with a0-6´s (11 parts) * 12 = 132
4. VA 66 Waldomen with A-4C´s (13 parts) * 12 = 156
Besides that, 6 foul lines/markings for the flight deck are included.
The smaller decal sheet comes with the following:
1. VR-76 Fighting Spirits with A-4C´s (10 parts) * 12 = 120
2. VAN-7 Peacemaker of the Fleet with A-5A´s (17 parts) * 12 = 204
3. VFP-62 Flying Photo 62 with RF-8A´s (13 parts) * 4 = 52
4. VAW-33 Night Hawke with AD-5Q´s (9 parts) * 4 = 36
5. VA-64 Black Lancers with A-4C (13 parts) * 5 = 65
6. VAW 12 with E-18´s (14 parts) * 4 = 56
7. HU-2 with UH-25B´s (4 parts) * 4 = 16
This gives 1245 decal parts that need to be applied - alone for the air wings.
That is, if I did not miss the one or other decal part through my own counting.
Now, the list has not ended yet as this decal set comes with the flight deck markings as well. These are roughly the 1962 – 1969 design for the ship. Markings for the ship include 2 styles of Flight Deck markings, Foul Lines, Barrier Covers, Elevator Warning Markings, JBDs, Runway Centerline as well as the flight deck hull number.
The Instructions…

The Instructions are color printed on thick paper. They start with a brief history o the Enterprise dealing with the chosen time frame. Also, reference information is provided!
Regarding the airplanes, the modeler is given a side view with all the markings in place. Also, printed color samples with according FS numbers for painting the airplanes are included.
The instructions also advise the modeler to check with references regarding the flight deck markings. The set includes markings specifically for the early 60´s time frame. Templates for the elevator markings are provided as well.
No pictures of an actual build process are included.
Result and Conclusion…

I would love to tell you, the community, that this set is a superb product to obtain. However, I found no way to obtain the according airplanes in this scale. This was a disappointing experience to start with. I even could not figure if there ever were such planes available in this scale. I would highly appreciate if someone could guide me into the right direction if there ever was an according airplane kit.
The flight deck markings for the ship are brilliant and sure worth the effort. However, those can be obtained separately as well through Starfighter Decals.
For this, I feel torn about what rating to give this superbly done decal set. The quality is outstanding but I can see no further use for it if the according airplane kits are missing.
Highs: Nicely executed set of decals with fine details and clear print. The instructions are outstanding with included reference and templates for the flight deck.
Lows: I found no airplane kits in this scale for the decals.
Verdict: If you cannot find the according airplanes to fit the decals you are better off with the separately sold flight deck markings and a different decal set.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:700
  Mfg. ID: 700-6
  PUBLISHED: Oct 18, 2010
  NATIONALITY: United States

About Dariush (Dr_Who2)

... being father of two lovely children brought me back what was a hobby of mine in my own childhood. I guess everyone with at least one child in the household can figure what I am talking about. Despite what I have built in my younger years (most of them blew up or sank in a pond) I learned to lov...

Copyright ©2021 text by Dariush [ DR_WHO2 ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of Model Shipwrights. All rights reserved.


In defense, and I am in no way connected with Starfighter Decals, but THAT was an unfair review. Its not that the modeler is shortchanged on the amount of decal groups for each airplane, THAT would be unforgivable, but here we are basting him for providing far too many decal groups for airplanes that dont exist. So, the modeler is getting MORE for his money than provided in the kit. Okay, so lets say an aftermarket manufacturer in plastic or resin, provides xtra airplane sets in that scale as a generic add on. Now, the modeler has a bonus because he can use the sheet provided, and then use up the additional decals on the add on sets. Add on sets are now found everywhere, and the provision of xtra decals on a sheet is considered a god send. Take this for example, ALL the new DRAGON kits come with all the necessary sprues for that kit, but they also come with a huge selection of xtra kit parts and accessories for NOT that kit in the box, but for MANY others. These beautifull and free little extras are stored by us modelers in what we call a 'spares box' for ongoing future projects...I have dipped into mine a thousand times. Same goes for the decal sheets, I have tons of sheets chopped and hacked and carefully saved for future projects and I certainly never condemned or downgraded a product because of the extras. I am a designer for Dragon. I am the one that told them to add in all the little TUG BOATS you find in the PENNSY and other ship kits. AND the PT boats.. Not part of the kit, but, wow, what a BONUS. And its great for the modeler. Judge the product for what you see in front of you.... the carrying film quality...never mentioned that did you...SF Decals is superb. The tack sharp craftmsanship is right up there. Variety...gosh, full house there. 30% ???? I give them 95%.... Ray D. Bean, Winnipeg, Canada.
OCT 18, 2010 - 04:37 PM
A review is always a personal opinion and luckily you always have the right to disagree with the conclusions, ( well, until Geert Wilders becomes president of the World anyway ). Darius has written a lot of reviews on this site and he is usually very generous in his opinion on subjects. I certainly appreciate an honest review that does mention any "bloopers" or problems. I can understand his remark about the availability of some of the aircraft for which markings are supplied here. (just my 2 cents....................................................................) cheers, Julian
OCT 18, 2010 - 05:14 PM

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