RB Productions | Rumanian Air Force Decals
Reviewed by Ray Peterson
As many of you know, I from time to time create custom decals with an ALPS printer. And I am not the only one here at LSP who does this. Radu Brinzan also creates decals with a combination of his Okidata 5000 printer (ALPS sold their technology to Okidata) and a newer printer from Epson, the C86, that uses a new water-resistant ink. This combination allows for some striking nose art without the dot matrix caused by the ALPS printers when trying to print different tones of colors.
The decal sheet you see here is for a 1/24th scale Hurricane, plus a Donald Duck emblem for a Bf 109. The large sheet with the numbers and national markings is made on the ALPS. It is in near perfect register, a trademark of the ALPS printer. The second sheet with the Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck(Donald is in 1/32nd scale here) art is made on the Epson printer. The Epson prints beautifully on what is special inkjet paper made by Papilio. There are no runs or any signs of bleeding on my examples.
The national markings, called Michaels Cross, is made up in two layers. The first layer is the magenta and white cross. After that has dried, the second full color cross is applied. The full color cross also has a white layer as a base. When the full color layer is applied over the magenta layer, just enough magenta comes through the yellow and blue to make the yellow a more richer yellow, and the blue turns more like a royal blue. The effect is very good as you can see. Note this was marked as a reject decal by Radu. The sharp eyed will notice the inner red roundel is a little off center. The other decals were fine. I applied Solvaset to the decal and it worked fine.
The nose art is a little more involved, as it is three layers and harder to line up!!! The first order of business is to give the art a coat of clear spray. The Papilio decal paper requires this to ensure the art bonds properly to the paper. Once this is done, the decals are placed as per normal. First, the two ALPS printed layers: the white base coat, then another white base, this time outlined with black. These bases are required as the Epson does not print white, and the colors are transparent when removed from the backing paper. After the base layers are dry, the top color is applied. As you can see, the end result turned out well. The only nitpick is the first all-white base seems to be a little too large as a small halo can be seen around the image. One could avoid this if two layers of the white-with-black-outline were used instead of the all white one.
In conclusion, if you want to do an aircraft with markings a little bit off the norm, drop Radu a line for some Rumanian markings. The Rumanians flew different variants of the Bf 109 (E and G mainly), Hurricanes, IAR-80s, Ju-52s, Stukas, as well as various other aircraft.
© Ray Peterson 2005
This review was published on Saturday, July 02 2011; Last modified on Wednesday, May 18 2016