P-38L Lightning & F-35A Lightning II

Their first flights are seventy-one years apart and the airframes differ dramatically. The original Lightning cost $97,147.00 per unit ($1,301,476.00 in today’s market) compared to the Lightning II’s $85,000,000.00-$116,000,000.00 price tag. We have certainly come a long way since the iconic piston driven age and I’m sure in another seventy years, we will look back at the F-35 like it was a bargain. 

The similarities are few and far between with the two kits. They are both airplanes at least. I thought it would be a neat photo op to get them both together. The builds themselves were both lengthy and detailed so they are the same in that regard. I think it’s a good family picture that shows a little history of American aviation.  


31 thoughts on “P-38L Lightning & F-35A Lightning II

  1. The P-38 remains one of my all-time favorites. The F-35, not so much. At least until (or if) they get all the bugs worked out of that program, and even then the cost overruns have been horrendous.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am always amazed when I visit your blog! The time and effort you put into each build is incredible. All the little details and pieces. I’d probably loose pieces all the time to my dogs. Fabulous job photographing them too!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I have many missing parts somewhere in this world. Usually the parts I lose are small and not an issue when they get lost. I have, however, lost major parts and had to buy a whole new kit just for the one part.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It doesn’t happen all too often. I have a “spares” box that I add to with the leftovers. I only save parts that I think I can use. Weapons, seats, canopies, wheels, and anything cockpit related is a staple that gets saved no matter what. After those pieces, then I will really look at what is left and usually toss most of it. I used to save EVERYTHING but it just got to be too much. If there is a small part that goes missing, I can usually fabricate one out of an existing part or scratch-build one.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wonderful work! Yes, price tags are different… The F-35 flies in our area and is even noisier than the F-4… Every time the Thunderbirds flew around Vegas, the phones at the hangar would light up (I was their Chaplain from 1998-2000) and people would complain… we used the same words then that I do now when people gripe… Hey, it’s the sound of freedom baby!

    Liked by 1 person

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