The introduction is as provided by ICM:
In 1963, the United States announced a competition to develop an airplane for use in limited military conflicts. Its main tasks were to strike ground targets, provide direct air support to its troops, and provide forward surveillance and guidance. The winner of the competition in August 1964 was the project of North America, which was designated OV-10A and given the name Bronco in the armed forces. Combat testing of the aircraft in Vietnam began in the summer of 1968. The aircraft were used very intensively, thanks to their ability to be based on unprepared unpaved airfields and the short time required for re-flight. If necessary, these attack aircraft were able to appear over targets 15 minutes after receiving a request from ground units, and this distinguished them from jet combat aircraft. During combat missions, the OV-10As demonstrated high efficiency and good combat survivability, becoming a kind of benchmark for anti-guerrilla attack aircraft. The OV-10A Bronco’s combat operations continued after the end of the Vietnam War, and these aircraft were successfully used by air forces around the world.
This offering from ICM arrives in a flip top cardboard tray with a separate card lid showing the art work. Inside the model parts are packed in a single re-sealable plastic bag, with the decals protected by the instruction booklet. Having looked at many 1/48th scale offerings of the OV-10A Bronco from ICM, I had expected this 1/72nd scale offering to be a slightly simplified and minimised copy of the previous releases, but that is the case in part only.
As you would expect many of the mouldings are the same as in the larger offerings. In the case of the cockpit interior assembly is pretty much identical to a 1/48th scale kit. However, being 1/72nd scale the small sizes of some parts will make assembly more problematic, but does mean a high level of detail is present for a 1/72nd scale kit. Shock, Horror no harness detail has been provided in this model and if I was to give ICM one piece of advice it would be to find a way of tackling this glaring omission in their model kits generally.
The grips for the weapons load are each mounted individually and I can hear the carpet monster claiming some already!! The wings of the model are fully assembled prior to being added to the fuselage again a large number of very small additions need to be added, which is giving me eye strain just thinking about it!! The flight controls are separate and so can be set as desired. The large glazing even on a model of this size does mean that the cockpit detail and anything you choose to add can be seen to a fair degree.
The wheel strut assemblies and wheel bay details are good with my only concern being the strength of them once assembled. As you progress through building this model, I think you will be pleased that the fuselage, engine nacelles, wings and tail can all be pretty much kept as separate sub-assemblies right up until the model is nearly finished. This is a plus for me as ICM has released a very highly detailed 1/72nd kit here right down to a separate wiper blade. A template for masking the canopy has been included in the instructions and so if you are capable you now have a very detailed 1/72nd scale Bronco, that is clean. No I am not finished; ICM has not stopped there and has included a large mix of weapons for the model and these are as follows:
Mk 81 Snake eye
Mk 81 Low Drag
Mk82 Snake Eye
Mk82 No Drag
150 Gallon Fuel Tank
The distribution of these weapons systems across the hard points of the model are indicated in the instruction booklet, but I do not know enough about the Bronco to comment on the accuracy of the layout. ICM has provided 4 finishing options for the model:
OV-10A 155427, Marine Observation Squadron 2 (VMO-2), Marble Mountain Air Facility, Vietnam 1969
OV-10A 155495, Light Attack Squadron 4 (VAL-4) “Black Ponies”, Binh Thuy, 1969
OV-10A 67-14649, 20th Tactical Air Support Squadron, Da Nang, 1972
OV-10A 155472, Light Attack Squadron 4 (VAL-4), “Black Ponies”, Binh Thuy 1972
Also included on the decal sheet are decals for all of the ordnance - YES it will hurt your eyes and the 4th finishing option is incorrectly identified in the English text and you will need to read the Ukrainian text instead.
This offering from ICM of a 1/72nd scale OV-10A Bronco is an extremely detailed kit in this scale. The detail that is provided will probably make you go “Wow”, but when it comes to building it the small details will most likely make you want to swear! The result of all of this is a very detailed model that if you have the ability will look stunning. For us mere mortals let the swear fest begin…