1976 - In July 1976 President Gerald Ford was sporting his WIN (Whip Inflation Now) button and New York City was preparing for the parade of the tall ships. It was the bicentennial of the United States and the country was ready to celebrate 200 years of existence. For the US Navy the Big E CVN-65 was still the big kid on the block as the Nimitz and Eisenhower were just coming on line. In 1976 to 1977 Carrier Air Wing 14 CVW14 was assigned to the USS Enterprise

En608pack.JPG (24504 bytes) En675wing.JPG (13554 bytes) En506sheet1.JPG (23356 bytes) En549sheet2.JPG (27720 bytes)

The 1970s were the height of disco with glittering illuminated balls decorating many night spots. It was also the era of the peak of high visibility markings (HI-VIZ) for the carrier aircraft of the USN. No aspiring John Travolta could sport a more peacock attire than the brilliant plumage carried by the carrier birds. The Enterprise carried a wide variety of different aircraft and all of the squadrons seemed to be trying to out do the others in the color and prominence of their markings. Now you can leave your dreary film noir low visibility (LO-VIZ) environment and see aircraft in the manner they were meant to be, in Technicolor splendor. Through the new French firm of Redux you can clothe your 1:350 scale Tomcats, Vigilantes, Corsairs, Intruders, Prowlers, Sea Kings and Whale in coats of many colors. Redux has produced an absolutely splendid two sheet set of decals for CVW14 for USS Enterprise 1976-1977. Here are those Redux decals with additional photographs for comparison of those markings with photographs from the USS Enterprise Cruise book 1976-1977 (not included with decal set).


Fighter Squadron 1  - VF1 - Wolfpack
En685wp.JPG (79991 bytes) En550wp.JPG (87656 bytes) En551wp.JPG (92003 bytes)
En553wp.JPG (77947 bytes) En554wp.JPG (80333 bytes) En645wp.JPG (141040 bytes)
En647wp.JPG (118672 bytes) En671wp.JPG (73298 bytes) En687wp.JPG (115235 bytes) En655wp.JPG (106891 bytes)
En688wp.JPG (108736 bytes) En652wp.JPG (105861 bytes) En654wp.JPG (116187 bytes) En689wp.JPG (75016 bytes)

The Big E carried two fighter squadrons. The F14A was the new, hot fighter as the venerable Phantom had been replaced. Fighter Squadron 1, VF1 Wolfpack certainly stood out in bright reds and yellow. Redux supplies markings for six Tomcats of the Wolfpack. This does not cover every aircraft in the squadron but the quantity provided with each squadron is more than enough to populate a carrier deck in a riot of color.


Fighter Squadron 2 - VF2 - Bounty Hunters
En690bh.JPG (113697 bytes) En621bh.JPG (94325 bytes) En559bh.JPG (91388 bytes) En561bh.JPG (93613 bytes)
En562bh.JPG (91941 bytes) En564bh.JPG (89673 bytes) En565bh.JPG (82444 bytes) En566bh.JPG (98636 bytes)
En691bh.JPG (96176 bytes) En663bh.JPG (93135 bytes) En650bh.JPG (126765 bytes) En694bh.JPG (109773 bytes)

The Bounty Hunters were Fighter Squadron 2 VF2. Decked out in a more formal black and yellow motif than their more gaudy compatriots of VF1, the Bounty Hunters were just right for greeting visitors that came calling to see the Big E. As with VF1 Redux provides markings for six Bounty Hunters.


Attack Squadron 27 - VA27 - Royal Maces
En699rm.JPG (17822 bytes) En539rm.JPG (20979 bytes) En541rm.JPG (14000 bytes)
En543rm.JPG (17085 bytes) En545rm.JPG (17549 bytes) En546rm.JPG (13494 bytes) En547rm.JPG (17237 bytes)
En666rm.JPG (12454 bytes) En670rm.JPG (21090 bytes) En700rm.JPG (17500 bytes) En701rm.JPG (19695 bytes)

Attack Squadron 27 VA27, was one of two squadrons flying the A7 Corsair II off of Enterprise in 1976. The Royal Maces were even more colorful as the CAG had his personal bird sporty Royal Mace markings. There are eight sets of markings for the Royal Maces, CAG 400, Squadron commander 401 and six rank and file aircraft. 


Attack Squadron 97 - VA97 - Warhawks
En706wh.JPG (11730 bytes) En524wh.JPG (17870 bytes) En525wh.JPG (15531 bytes)
En612wh.JPG (14083 bytes) En527wh.JPG (14055 bytes) En528wh.JPG (16133 bytes) En529wh.JPG (14412 bytes)
En530wh.JPG (14223 bytes) En664wh.JPG (17066 bytes) En708bh.JPG (21494 bytes) En707wh.JPG (18069 bytes)

The other A7 squadron was Attack Squadron 97 VA97 Warhawks. Although six aircraft numbers are provided, there are three different styles of tail markings for the squadron. Two are very colorful CAG bird markings, three are for special bicentennial markings with red, white and blue stripping surrounding the light blue tail triangle and four standard tail triangles. 


Attack Squadron 196 - VA196 - Main Battery
En718mb.JPG (103154 bytes) En507mb.JPG (111361 bytes) En508mb.JPG (87244 bytes)
En509mb.JPG (74955 bytes) En510mb.JPG (81355 bytes) En615mb.JPG (95895 bytes) En511mb.JPG (69681 bytes)
En512mb.JPG (83834 bytes) En646mb.JPG (105209 bytes) En719mb.JPG (98066 bytes) En659mb.JPG (127607 bytes)
En722mb.JPG (89826 bytes) En725mb.JPG (86415 bytes) En723mb.JPG (121679 bytes) En724mb.JPG (108609 bytes)

For your Flight of the Intruder, Attack Squadron 196 VA196 Main Battery flew the A6 Intruder from the deck of the Big E. You can mark up seven Intruders in four different styles. A CAG bird comes with two variants of tails. Two sets of tail markings with very prominent black triangle with spade in an orange field are provided for the KA6-6D. Plus there are six sets for the conventionally marked squadron aircraft. 


Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 134 - VAQ134 - Garudas
En715gar.JPG (11121 bytes) En583gar.JPG (21853 bytes) En584gar.JPG (14356 bytes)
En587gar.JPG (14078 bytes) En626gar.JPG (16777 bytes) En589gar.JPG (16603 bytes)
En592gar.JPG (17796 bytes) En649gar.JPG (20529 bytes) En667gar.JPG (17611 bytes) En716gar.JPG (15515 bytes)

The EA6-B Prowlers of Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 134, VAQ134 Garudas have enough markings for four aircraft. Although there are six sets of tail markings, there are only four sets of numbers, 620, 621, 622 and 623. 


Anti-Submarine Squadron 29 - VS29 - Dragon Fires
En703df.JPG (17115 bytes) En531df.JPG (20580 bytes) En532df.JPG (14961 bytes) En533df.JPG (15123 bytes)
En535df.JPG (14937 bytes) En537df.JPG (16847 bytes) En538df.JPG (17211 bytes) En705df.JPG (20156 bytes)

For anti-submarine work, you can go fixed wing or rotary wing. Redux provides decals for the S3-A Vikings of VS29 with three different styles of tail markings. One is for the CAG with a rainbow sail on the Viking ship on the tail, one is the bicentennial 13-star American flag as the Viking ship sail and four are the standard yellow and white sails on the ship. 


Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 1 - VQ1 - Batmen
En681bat.JPG (14352 bytes) En574bat.JPG (16549 bytes) En578bat.JPG (14579 bytes)
En579bat.JPG (14106 bytes) En683bat.JPG (23282 bytes) En682bat.JPG (19183 bytes)

The EA-3B Whale of VQ1 Batmen will be ready to launch with this full set of markings. Bird 004 will more than live up to their fine bat tradition with three bat emblems for the Whale and more individual decals devoted to this one aircraft than any other on the two sheets. With markings for the Whale and Vigilantes, you'll get both of the heavy USN jet aircraft originally designed for nuclear attack, which were converted to reconnaissance missions when their original mission didn't pan out.


Reconnaissance/Attack Squadron (Heavy) 1 - RVAH1 - Smokin Tigers
En676st.JPG (18972 bytes) En567st.JPG (15560 bytes) En568st.JPG (15124 bytes)
En570st.JPG (17008 bytes) En571st.JPG (13774 bytes) En572st.JPG (16052 bytes) En573st.JPG (13748 bytes)
En665st.JPG (18514 bytes) En669st.JPG (14559 bytes) En678st.JPG (17093 bytes) En680st.JPG (19492 bytes)

For the heavy reconnaissance Vigilantes of RVAH1 Smokin Tigers, Redux provides four different tail markings, ten cigar chomping tiger emblems and a host of other markings found on these atomic bombers turned reconnaissance aircraft. 


Carrier Early Warning Squadron 113 - VAW113 - Black Hawks
En710bh.JPG (13897 bytes) En515bh.JPG (22797 bytes) En516bh.JPG (21151 bytes)
En517bh.JPG (15253 bytes) En518bh.JPG (14602 bytes) En519bh.JPG (12026 bytes) En520bh.JPG (16291 bytes)
En521bh.JPG (16657 bytes) En523bh.JPG (12232 bytes) En651bh.JPG (18198 bytes) En662bh.JPG (9823 bytes)
En672bh.JPG (15461 bytes) En713bh.JPG (15494 bytes) En714bh.JPG (16683 bytes) En711bh.JPG (13834 bytes)

Unglamorous, the slow propeller driven E2-B Hawkeyes of Early Warning Squadron 113 VAW113 Black Hawks provide critical coverage in preventing the Big E from being ambushed. There are markings for five of these big birds with prominent dark gray panels on their upper surfaces. 


Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron 2 - HS2 - Golden Falcons
En697gf.JPG (12541 bytes) En580gf.JPG (17724 bytes) En581gf.JPG (19615 bytes)
En582gf.JPG (19040 bytes) En643gf.JPG (18909 bytes) En698gf.JPG (23474 bytes)

Whether it is rotary wing anti-submarine mission or a Search and Rescue SAR mission for a downed pilot, the SH-3D Sea King helicopters of Helicopter Squadron HS2 Golden Falcons are your "Go To Guys". With prominent American flags you get markings for three helicopters. 


Stars & Markings
En593star.JPG (25064 bytes) En594star.JPG (22372 bytes)
En595star.JPG (21415 bytes) En596star.JPG (13701 bytes) En597star.JPG (16339 bytes)

Also included separate from some squadron markings sections, the wing and fuselage markings and other markings are included in other, stand alone sections. The instructions have French text but the full color plan and profiles of each aircraft type are more than sufficient to show the locations for the different markings. 


Instructions
Ent599cov.JPG (9629 bytes) En600inst1a.JPG (14806 bytes) En601inst1b.JPG (11646 bytes)
En602inst1c.JPG (15558 bytes) En603inst1d.JPG (12333 bytes) En604inst1e.JPG (17225 bytes)
En605inst1f.JPG (11457 bytes) En627inst2.JPG (8521 bytes) En628inst2a.JPG (21050 bytes)
En629inst2b.JPG (18217 bytes) En630inst3.JPG (7646 bytes) En631inst3a.JPG (15403 bytes) En632inst3b.JPG (16564 bytes)
En633inst4.JPG (7657 bytes) En634inst4a.JPG (17695 bytes) En636inst4b.JPG (15612 bytes) En637inst4c.JPG (16200 bytes)
En638inst5.JPG (8687 bytes) En639inst5a.JPG (14710 bytes) En641inst5b.JPG (14794 bytes) En642inst7.JPG (7009 bytes)

This decal set is big, bold and spectacular in every measure. Superb production values, with great quantity and magnificent quality the Redux two sheet decal set for Carrier Air Wing Fourteen CAW14 USS Enterprise in 1:350 scale is a work of glorious detail and color. Since the 1976 Enterprise still had the bee hive island, rather than the modernized island of the Tamiya 1:350 scale Enterprise kit, it is time to start a "Normandy Campaign" to force Jacques of L'Arsenal to produce at back date set of parts for the Tamiya Big E for the bicentennial Big E with bee hive bouffant. In the meantime you have more than enough plumage for a whole aviary of peacocks. Where can you get this set? Ohh, L'Arsenal, of course.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________