by Tommy H. Thomason

Friday, April 4, 2014

Trumpeter 1/48 A-3 Skywarrior One More Time

The A3D/A-3 Skywarrior is one of the airplanes that I've accumulated quite a bit of material on over the years. Although it isn't my scale so I haven't seen it first hand, I did post some observations on errors in the kit (see for example). However, I was recently a little chagrined to be informed that yet another error with the kit is one I would not have noticed if I'd been given the opportunity to comment on it in the design process.

It turns out (see that the aft bomb bay door actuators are located at the very front of the main-landing-gear wheel well. That's a minor detail since it wouldn't be easy to model that area in a meaningful way even in 1/48th scale. However, it does mean that the bomb bay doors actually extend aft of the bulkhead between the aft end of the bomb bay and the main-landing-gear wheel well, contrary to what I would have assumed, and doesn't end there as Trumpeter would have it.

I would also have assumed that the bomb-bay door actuation at the back end of bomb bay would be the same as the front end, an actuator driving a linkage:
At the moment, I don't know if there's a similar linkage on the aft side of the aft bomb-bay bulkhead or the actuator acted on a torque tube in the axis of the bomb-bay door hinge line.

In Trumpeter and my defense, the location of the aft edge of the bomb bay doors is generally obscured by the main landing gear. However, if you look very closely from the right angle...

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