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Discuss the modern aircraft age from 1975 thru today.
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1/48: East Coast Superbug CAG's.
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England - North West, United Kingdom
Joined: October 15, 2009
KitMaker: 1,788 posts
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Posted: Monday, July 04, 2011 - 09:10 AM UTC

Afterburner Decals have released a 1/48 decal set for the F/A-18E/F''s based at NAS Oceana titled East Coast SuperBug CAGs. This set is aimed at the 1/48 Hasegawa kit and the decals are printed by Cartograf. Tim Hatton [litespeed] takes a look and tries his best not too drool over them.

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Texas, United States
Joined: October 13, 2010
KitMaker: 29 posts
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Posted: Monday, July 04, 2011 - 05:22 PM UTC

Quoted Text

There is a small decal sheet for the “Felix the Cat”, which presumably replaces the character on the main sheet.

One of the many reasons we use Cartograf to print is because of the innovative new ways they print things. One of the banes to model decal designers has been gradients. Those ideally have to be printed in 4-color, or offset process...normal printing like what comes from your home printer. The problem was, the dpi was not conducive to really good printing. Cartograf now uses a process that renders gradients extremely fine. The problem was, I wasn't sure how to adjust the colors in the art to account for the fact that offset printing only uses a very thin later of ink over a white background. The original Felix the Cat logos came out very nice...they just didn't "pop" the way they do on the real jet.

The colors looked a bit washed out. On the red background of the tail, I'm betting they'd have looked ok, but "ok" isn't what we do here. The delay to have them redone was frustrating, but if you look at the 2 pieces side by side, you'll see what I mean, and I decided the delay was worth getting the sheet "right". Now that I know how to adjust the art to take advantage of the technology, it makes us a little more agile in terms of rendering complicated gradients correctly.