Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Kawaguchiko Motor & Zero Fighter Museum

Visited yesterday the Kawaguchiko Motor & Zero Fighter Museum which is open to the public every August. We heard that Harada-san had almost finished restoring a "Hayabusa" so we wouldn't miss this chance to see this beauty from up close. 
Harada-san first saw the cockpit and parts of the main wing at a British museum more than 20 years and after lengthy negotiations he managed to purchase the parts in 2013. Since there are no surviving blueprints of the type he worked with three engineers and many war-time photos to recreate as accurate as possible designs based on which the missing parts were fabricated. The restoration of the cockpit and the main wing was completed last summer with the rest of the aircraft last month. The result as you will agree is absolutely stunning!!!  
We hope to see the aircraft finished in some cool camouflage scheme and markings.

Friday, 11 August 2017

Japanese Aircraft Online Model Contest 005 - MICHAEL FURRY

1/48 Hasegawa E8N1 Dave
A Dave from Hasegawa? I did not expect that but it was a nice change from their continuous re-releases with different decals.
 At first glance one notices that this kit has multiple insert pieces and that usually means trouble. Not so, dry fitting has proved thus far that the engineering is quite precise. The directions have you assemble the cockpit tub then fit this into one fuselage half and finally, close up the other side. Doing this would have left noticeable gaps between the fuselage sides and cockpit sidewalls. I glued the cockpit sidewalls to the fuselage halves using clamps(this made paining easier too). Dry fitting proved that the floor and bulkheads can be sandwiched between the fuselage halves and more or less "float" without using glue. I made a bulkhead to blank off the rear of the fuselage and used Eduard photo-etch seat belts. I did not spend a great deal of time detailing the cockpit since very little can be viewed, even though it is an open cockpit. I pre-shaded the cockpit parts black then mixed RAF interior green with some dark green for the cockpit color. I used a mix of green and black water color to highlight the shadows, then dry brushed light gray and finally dark gray to simulate some wear.  
Thank you for looking,

Michael Furry, Harrisburg, PA, USA

Michael forgot to mention that he received this kit from Arawasi as the winning prize for the previous modeling contest.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Japanese Aircraft Online Model Contest 005 - PAT DONAHUE

Hasegawa 1/48 Mitsubishi F1M2 "Pete"
Scratch built details, Colorcoats and Xtracolor enamels
Hasegawa P/E parts used for rigging
Pat Donahue - U.S.A.


Friday, 4 August 2017


The USA IPMS 2017 convention held in Omaha in July featured quite a few very nice build of Japanese subjects.
More pictures of the show on my blog page plasticnostalgia.blogspot.co.uk
- Allan Jeffery -
Our friend Ro Annis sent over a photo of the new Zoukei Mura "Nick" in 1/32 presented in Omaha.

ZM have explained that they release models of aircraft that have survived the war which can be visited, measured and their various details can then be incorporated in the model design. So their new release is a Kawasaki Ki-45 Kai "Toryu" (Nick) based on the survivor at the National Air and Space Museum. Taking into consideration that they have already released the "Shinden" also found in that museum, perhaps a future release by ZM would be a "Gekko" in 1/32?
In any case, the "Toryu" model gives them many many options with the different variants, the camo patterns and unit markings. If they rescale it in 1/48 as they have done with the "Shinden" we might end up with the best "Toryu" in both scales. Price wise though we might need to dig very deeply into our pockets.  
And since we are talking about new releases here's another I stumbled on.

I don't know about you but do you feel we needed a new kit (Choroszy have already released one in the same scale) of this prototype aircraft in what-if markings when there are so many other Japanese aircraft either of very old models or no models at all?

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Japanese Aircraft Online Model Contest 005 - DEREK COOPER

Here is my entry for the current on-line model contest. 
Continuing with my obsession with Japanese aircraft under new management, this is a "Rufe" that was captured by ATAIU-SEA at the end of the Pacific War. Evidently it was given to the French Aéronavale, but sank at the start of its first mission on 19 September 1945.
The kit is from Hasegawa painted in Tamiya acrylics, with decals from Rising Decals' "Dying Sun Part IV".
With best wishes,
Derek Cooper


Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Japanese Aircraft Online Model Contest 005 - FABIO BALZANO

Hello dear nippo-maniacs!
For this new competition, I present you two classic hydro from Hasegawa in 1/72 scale:
the Aichi E-13 "Jake" and the Nakajima A6M2-N "SuiSen” (Rufe).
The first one was built with lighter modifications.
I just added and improved some details, such as mooring hooks, pitot tube, crew steps, but above all the propeller hub, which in this first version had no spinner.
The canopy, too thick and not exactly accurate, was replaced by a vacuform of the Clear-Vax Canopies Falcon line, N.18 Imperial Japanese Naval Air Force WW2 Part 1.
The decals are among those proposed by the kit. They represent an E-13A1 of the heavy cruiser "Atago", in the Philippines in early 1942.
 The model was set up by placing it on a catapult, always Hasegawa, detailed with some small missing parts, visible on the box-art.
Unfortunately, the model dates back to the mid-1990s when, according the sources, the aotake was correct for the crew cockpit..
Even the Rufe is practically OOB, with small self-built details.
I wanted to represent something different, and here's the idea of ​​a plane between Aleutians Islands's snow.
With Internet it is easier to find information, but there is again a little mistake.
I finished this kit in the early 2000's. Now the latest chromatic research seems to confirm that the flat part behind the pilot should be black, while here I used the green Nakajima of the cokpit.
The tail codes of the aircraft, out from original decal sheet, refers to a specimen of the 5th Kokutai, in Kiska, October 1942.
The figure was obtained by joining the head of a Japanese ESCI soldier to the body of a mechanical R.A.F. Airfix. The present accessories are both self-built (pilot ladder and wooden case), which come from Hasegawa and ESCI (cans and metal box).
A great source of documentation to complete this model was the "Pacific Wrecks"site.
Best regards from Italy
Fabio Balzano