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Everything posted by taly01

  1. I have this Grant A1370 kit and the VVSS suspension bogies are the Academy corrected height ones and match the resin aftermarket ones height and real pictures scale dimensions also The cast texture on the turret is nicely randomly rough, and there is almost a full interior and running gear as well, if you want to do open hatches to see inside.
  2. Gakken 52, its probably the best overall book in Japanese, I found it on EBay, I haven't got Maru book yet (its very old now) but have about everything else, Bunrindo etc all in Japanese though. In English there is no in depth technical books on Ki43.... The Aircam/Schiffer book has a decent overall coverage. Osprey Ki-43 Aces is great for history. Pacific Profiles Vol.1 JAAF fighters New Guinea & Solomons, is best for modellers who want authentic paint schemes, and it has indepth history coverage of New Guinea Ops. Underwing very flat!
  3. Finally got the courage to attempt the lower wing of the Hasegawa 1/48 Ki-43 (their I-II-III all use same part). The Hasegawa wing has an un-aerodynamic aerofoil shape on the underwing inboard surface! as well as a fat belly that is much too big. The seperate inboard "butterfly" flap parts are inverted and swapped L-R, then the raised section is sanded down so they fit almost flush. Sanded down the flaps and the under-fuselage profile to lose the side profile hump. I made a error in sanding as I should have been sanding each wing seperately to get a "wing" form L-R with a "spine" down the center. Try again...... This way also shows the underwing aerofoil problem better! I used wet sanding with block along each wing. .......Ouch lost most detail............ Final form.............correct shape....very happy with shape.....but a big job scribing panel lines back and if I choose to make cross braces from ultra-thin plasticard. I learned something doing this, the underwing is actually the hardest thing to fix if you are obsessive for an accurate shape, its a big job but maybe its a good hobby experience? Hasegawa 1/48 Ki-43 lower wing really deserves a new part, I think Hasegawa have about 5 underwing variations for A6M Zero!
  4. Finally got around to try building the Hasegawa 1/48 Ki-43-II (-III) fuselage to try fixing the "hump", primed the top black to see where I sand, sanded front decking more level but need to leave front edge so it matches engine cowling, then rear of fuselage top needs to be sanded inline with front of cockpit, Easier to do than I thought and some panel lines still remain. Fixing the fish belly underwing will be trickier, all Hasegawa 1/48 Ki-43 invented it! Its like a later P-47 extended belly? Also want to make the flaps fits flush.
  5. Here is a finished Ki-43-II Kai, its a partly fictitious plane scheme based on photos of 64th sentai planes in Burma mid'44 to early'45. Here is a view of exhausts from before "fractal-bloom" mottle. This seems to be the common exhaust arangement for Ki-43-II Kai from photo research I have done. (my first build, cowling front got more sanding taper later). The 64th Sentai used many sizes of their arrow symbol from small to broad to large like in this common photo from 44/45 period. so that is what I went with. The finished plane is mostly a 1/48 FineMolds Ki-43-III, but it has Hasegawa cowl flaps cut into open position (thinner than FM), Hasegawa rear canopy (no MW filler port) and Hasegawa early type "tapered" bomb racks (not in FM kit), the headrest is Hasegawa but sanded shorter (the FM one is a bit narrow), Nichimo 43-I Gear doors (fitted better for retracted undercarriage), and the fat upper and lower exhaust pipes were from Tamiya old A6M5c as is the pilot. I brush painted it with an 8/00 brush, took around an hour! I maybe should have used an even finer brush for fuselage sides for an even finer mottle there. The wingtips were sanded to match the 1/48 plan in Gakken Ki-43 book. Maybe took it a touch too far on front edges? Even though I aggressively sanded the front of cowling its still too square for later Ki-43-II on, (but OK for earlier -IIa). UPDATE - I needed to sand front of cowling far more, Finemolds Ki43-IIb cowling piece is slightly oversized diameter and it fooled me into thinking I had sanded enough. Here is a photo from captured Ki-43-II rebuilt by USAAF to show wingtip shape, the Ki-43-II wingtip shape is very dependent on viewing angle! Plus some books seems to use Ki-84 type shape for Ki-43 wingtips? I still have enough parts prepared to make from all my Ki-43 kits to make more composite Ki-43 After correcting the poor fit of a few parts needing sanding, and some sanding shape work on wingtips and cowl front, the FineMolds Ki-43-II (-III) is very nice, and definately the most shape accurate 1/48 Ki-43.
  6. Just keeping this thread updated in case some makers sees it. I found a "real" blueprint of Ki-43-II wing. It matches the period photos better than post-war book drawings do. Comparing to some book drawings its clear the difference. Actually all four are different! I have done some research on the Ki-43-II Kai exhaust, which like the wingtips is not agreed upon by book publishers. I have modified this drawing to show the only variations I have found in actual photos. I don't believe there was under cowl exhausts on production Ki-43-II Kai as it would burn the tyres. (The Zero A6M5 had trouble with burning tyres and they had metal coverings over their tyres!). Here is a photo from Singapore 1945 at RAF Tengah? by 152 Sqd showing interesting Ki-43-II Kai. Hope some find it interesting!
  7. The Nichimo 1/48 B5N2 has AS radar aerials, fairly finely moulded, as well as an A4 sized multi-view "blue-print" of how the aerials were fitted - depending on which released version of the Nichimo kit it is! AFAIK there were about 3 releases! I can probably upload a scan of the "blue-print" someday if you can't find on or the kit.
  8. I admit he did say the Navy was better trained for navigation over sea etc Its stated the Zero had an exhaust temperature gauge to help set lean cruise conditions, I doubt if the more frugal Army Air Service would have fitted one?
  9. It could be a good project for your Red Roo model company to make a Ki-43-II/III fuselage for the Hasegaswa 1/48 I've heard of many people who are holding off building the kit cause of it. Or they attempt dumb things like me grafting the Has -I rear onto the -II (-III) front (doing one side at a time using the other half as a jig), I gave up disappointed cause the wrong front slope still put me off. The Hasegawa 1/48 cowls are passable although around a 1.xx mm short. I don't think i'll be attempting a survey of the dozen or so 1/72 Ki-43 kits
  10. That handling manual is very interesting! It seems to confirm that underwing fuel "drop" tanks on Ki-43-I were actually fixed and not droppable! I remember reading a Japanese navy pilot saying the armies planes were hopeless for Solomons/Guadalcanal as they did not have the range of Zero. I thought he was talking crap as its always stated max range of Ki-43 is around same as Zero, but if the early Ki-43 underwing tanks were not jettisonable he actually spoke sense.
  11. JAAF planes after 1942-43 usually used variants of "cockpit green", but planes before late-ish 1942 usually used a dull middle blue colour. An RAF report on a shot down Ki-21 early in the war said the interior was a gloomy blue-grey. Some Japanese books show Ki-48 interiors in blue but most are shown green.
  12. Here are some real WW2 photos showing the Ki-43-II -III wingtip shape, its not like any 1/48 model, and I have not seen any line drawing that matches it perfectly! And some new books have poorer wingtip shape than older books like Burindo FAOW! Here is a movie still from the WW2 movie "Kato's Hayabusa Fighter Wing", easily found on Youtube! The ancient Otaki/Arii kit actually has the closest wingtip shape match!
  13. I have adopted the Ki-43 as its so neglected, and in 1/48 its a manageable number of planes to compare, it would be a huge job for example to do a survey of Mitsubishi Zero models. It was interesting how some kits looked good but were dimensionally off in some areas. The Ki-43 should get more interest as it was the main foe for the RAF in Malaya, Burma, India. I am hoping to entice model companies to make a "perfect" Ki-43, perhaps a Ki-43-II Kai as there is not one yet in 1/48. My bunch of Ki-43 are also been canabilised into fewer than I started with but thats part of the fun. I am now keen on the idea of building different manufacturers take on the same plane side by side like you, at the moment a pair of Buffalos, and Ju88C-6!
  14. Part 3 of 3 1/48 Otaki/Arii Ki-43-II -------------------------- This kit is the oldest Ki-43 kit still in production and shows its age in its simplified details and low parts count. It is not a great looking representation of a Ki-43-II looking a bit toylike and with some "wrong" looking areas, but after a proper analysis it is generally accurate but let down badly in a few key areas. - Problems Front fuselage tapers linearly (suspect Otaki moulds were based on Zero) and has no "bottle-neck" shape. Wings inner width slightly too broad 1.5mm. Wing outer width slightly 1.0mm too narrow at ends. Wing span 2.0mm short span. Wing tip shape too pointy. Rudder and wing trim tabs oversized. Front edge of vertical tail is 1.0mm too long in front. Horizontal tail inboard end of elevators extend too long 1.5mm. Pilot headrest and cockpit opening 2.0mm too far forward. Pilot headrest shape wrong. Front edges of cockpit opening are square (should be angled). Cockpit interior boxes oversized. Instrument panel wrong shape (suspect Otaki used Zero panel). Propellor spinner cap shape wrong (suspect Otaki based on A6M5 Zero). Propellor blades shape a bit wrong (but are right diameter). Engine oversized, and very low detail. Cowling 1.0mm too long. Cowl top air inlet opening is oversized. (reduce from lower opening by ~50% and straighten). Cowl flaps for engine have oversized gaps between them making them too small. Cowl opening is sized large for an early -IIa that would have side exit exhausts. (Kit is meant to be -IIb late so has rear facing exhausts). Doesn't have a transparent wing edge landing light (for the kits -IIb late design). Canopy is not very accurately shaped. The major problems with this kit are the horrible cowl flaps cast in one ring section, the oversized top air intake in the cowling and the wrong shaped propellor spinner. But with a bit of sanding, plastic bits and putty you can fix most of the problems, except for the main wing shape and Zero shaped fuselage. 1/48 Finemolds Ki-43-II and -III -------------------------------- The Finemolds Ki-43 -II/-III kits have been released many times with different decals and box art, most kit releases include side and rear facing exhausts and early or late cowls and headrests, along with a drop tank option. The Finemolds kits have a low parts count but very faithfully represents the features of the Ki-43-II/-III. NOTE: The main construction problem with this kit is the cowling with aligning the MG decking ports with the front cowl piece and sanding the front cowl piece to be smoothly radiused into the cowl sides. Also the fuselage locating pins are not perfectly aligned (cut off centre and rear ones for easier alignment). Main wing interior also needs minor sanding to smoothly fit wing fillet to fuselage. Rear tailplane stubs on fuselage are oversized and need to be sanded to match the tailplanes after fitting them. - Problems Wing tips need minor re-shaping (make curve more gradual with inflexion at centre of tips). Tailplane stubs on fuselage oversized (need sanding). Pilot headrest for late type too short and too narrow (-II late and -III types). Pilot headrest for early type too long and wide (for -II early type). Engine only a simplified single cast piece. Cowling front for -II late has oversized outer diameter needing alot of sanding (outer diameter of cowl fronts -II early and -III are OK). Late type large under nose oil cooler is a bit too simplified in shape. This is the most accurate Ki-43-II/-III kit. Some attention in assembly is needed but it results in an accurate and proper impression of a Ki-43-II/-III. 1/48 Hasegawa Ki-43-II and -III -------------------------------- These kits are another in the 1/48 Hasegawa series of Ki-43's, it has been released many times with different decals and box art, including a release with early cowl, and one release with 250kg underwing bombs (TIP: 250kg bomb sprues marked Ki-84). The -III kit has a nicely cast resin cowl along with some other specific resin parts. The Hasegawa -II/-III kit is very good but has a major fuselage shape flaw that cannot be fixed. The rear of fuselage has been made inexplicably fatter than the Hasegawa -I kit, also although the front fuselage deck has been correctly raised it also has been made with the forward downslope of the -I, while the actual -II/-III has a flat front decking. The enlarged rear fuselage also makes the "fish belly" look of the Hasegawa -I even worse with their -II/-III. NOTE: The main construction problem with this kit is that it has seperate wingtips. Despite what the kit instructions say its better to install each wing tip piece seperately to each wing half end first, as its assures alignment with the wings outer surface, then after they are solid assemble the upper and lower wing. - Problems Front fuselage incorrectly has a downward slope on front decking for a -II/-III (copied from -I kit). Rear fuselage is incorrectly too fat (should have been left same as Hasegawa's -I which is OK). Combined these fuselage flaws make the cockpit region appear humped which was not in the real plane. Fuselage has droopy "fish belly" under wing that real plane did not. Wing tips need minor re-shaping (make curves more gradual with inflexion at centre of tips). Engine cowling 1.0mm too short. Pilot seat base too narrow. Pilot headrest too long (but is right width for -II late/-III). Propellor spinner in all -II -III kits is a fractionally larger and longer one for a late -III type. Minor adjustment needed to have instrument panel face pieces align (as seen from side). Engine missing "spigot" on front crankcase nose needed for -II/-III (motor is same as in -I kit). Its a great shame that the otherwise good Hasegawa kits Ki-43-II/-III are ruined in appearance and accuracy by the misshapen fuselage that is virtually unfixable, also the "fish belly" under the wings is not easily fixable but http://soyuyo.main.jp/ki43/hayabusa.html has a solution where he cuts into the lower wing centre then flexs it!
  15. Part 2 of 3 1/48 Nichimo Ki-43-I -------------------------- Older kit out of production but available on internet. This kit is very detailed for its age and fits together very well, and makes a nice looking model that captures the look of the Ki-43-I well and has interesting detail in engine and cockpit to build. Although Nichimo have captured many of the design details well the kit actually has many flaws that means it can never be an accurate copy of the real thing. NOTE: A problem a lot of reviewers have is fitting the engine into the cowl and fuselage. The engine is attached to a triangular pipe frame structure to firewall-cockpit floor subframe and to get it to fit you must have the triangular frame ends fully seated, which required some sanding and filing of the frame ends for me. Also trial fit it into the fuselage sides to check. - Problems Fuselage is 2.5mm too long (after cockpit area seems to be where problem is). Fuselage behind cockpit is 0.5mm too fat. Fuselage front section is too linear sloped instead of "bottle-neck" shaped. Engine cowling and front section of fuselage much too oval (stretched vertically). Cockpit canopy "roof" section too narrow. Landing gear doors not hinged too splay out enough at bottom. There should not be a wing edge landing light on Ki-43-I, so paint over it. Most items of the cockpit are oversized ~40%. Instrument panel should not fill front section, machine gun breechs should fit at its sides like on Zero. Seat base is too broad, should be same width as backrest. Pilot headrest slightly too broad and much too long. Cockpit floor is too low, resulting in a hugely long control stick! Engine crankcase nose not long enough. Propellor blades too fat at mid-section and too thin at ends. Propellor spinner cap a bit too long at rear. Pilot figures are cartoonish. Oil cooler ring needs circumferential flat "casting" ring filed off. Most of the problems above can be fixed if you are happy to cut, add, putty and file away at the parts! But you will need a better canopy from somewhere. Unfortunately the lack of "bottle-neck" front fuselage shape, and its excessive front ovality, and slightly too fat rear fuselage is unfixable. 1/48 Hasegawa Ki-43-I -------------------------- This kit is nicely cast in modern Hasegawa style. It adds many subtle Ki-43 details, athough simplifing some other areas. Many parts sprues are used to allow commonality with the Hasegawa -II/-III kits, which has resulted in a clumsy wingtip fitting system. The kit fits together very well and is more dimensionally and shape accurate than the older Nichimo kit, but it does have its own flaws that mean it doesn't surpass the old Nichimo kits on making an impression of a Ki-43-I. NOTE: The main construction problem with this kit is that it has seperate wingtips. Despite what the kit instructions say its better to install each wing tip piece seperately to each wing half end first, as its assures alignment with the wings outer surface, then after they are solid assemble the upper and lower wing. - Problems Fuselage has droopy "fish belly" under wing that real plane did not. Profile of under cowl air intake is too deep below cowl straight section. Propellor blades slightly too narrow. Front engine cowling edge too sharp and not rolled in enough. Oil cooler ring in cowl is slightly too small. There was no wing edge landing light on Ki-43-I so paint over it. Pilot seat base too narrow. Pilot headrest a bit small. With a bit of sanding and putty you can fix most of the problems, the oil cooler ring is tricky to enlarge but you can glue a fine strip around its circumference to widen its size. Unfortunately the "fish belly" under the wings is not easily fixable but http://soyuyo.main.jp/ki43/hayabusa.html has a solution where he cuts into the lower wing centre then flexs it!
  16. Part 1 of 3 Ki-43 notes 2019 As part of Ki-43 research I decided to buy and compare all modern 1/48 Ki-43 kits available side-by-side. This is unfair to model manufacturers as all the kits below do build up into believable Ki-43 models, however I am looking for the best and most accurate so I will harshly judge them by that criteria. There is much commonality among the parts, as in the real plane. The modern Ki-43 kits in 1/48 I compared were- Ki-43-I Nichimo Ki-43-I Hasegawa Ki-43-I Ki-43-II Otaki/Arii Ki-43-II Finemolds Ki-43-II Hasegawa Ki-43-II Ki-43-III Finemolds Ki-43-III Hasegawa Ki-43-III Doing a side-by-side comparison with all of these revealed alot, and I mostly relied on http://soyuyo.main.jp/ki43d/ki43e-1.html for his line drawings and much of his analysis which I direct you to see on his pages. Some interesting points after doing all reviews are- 1) Headrest sizes are one part the kit manufacturers don't agree on! The Ki-43 until mid'43 had a tiny roll bar rather than a full headrest. With the armoured headrest from mid'43 on its size more than doubled and it almost fills up the canopy hood when closed (which is why many pilots removed it to improve the rear view). I don't think any model variants headrest is right in all dimensions! 2) Wingtip shape on the Ki-43-II/-III is very subtle and complex and also not agreed on by model manufacturers and scale drawing makers. From my research I believe it is more evenly rounded than usually depicted (Burindo FAOW and Gakken book drawing of -II/-III wing tip shape are close). The inflexion of the wing tip curvature is on the wing centreline at the wing tip and smoothly rounded front and back (note that wing centreline is not perpendicular to airplane body!) . Spoiler final result! *********************** Ki-43-I 1st Hasegawa 1/48 2nd Nichimo 1/48 (with basic work and canopy = 1st). Ki-43-II 1st Finemolds 1/48 2nd Hasegawa 1/48 3rd Arii/Otaki 1/48 (with intermediate work and canopy = 2nd). Ki-43-III 1st Finemolds 1/48 2nd Hasegawa 1/48.
  17. There are alot of airframe skin samples from actual Pearl Harbor planes linked in this thread already. But I made my own Japanese Ash-Grey ("Hairyokushoku" Zero "grey") and Green-Grey ("Ame-Iro" Val & Kate "grey") by tinting Humbrol 90 (SkytypeS) with black/white/green/blue and testing on old wings (took 4 trials to get right to my eyes!) Quite fun mixing own paint and I learnt alot! P.S. The Nichimo B5N2 Kate comes with a selection of bomb sizes and a Torpedo so you can make all weapon loads (unlike the Hasegawa which only comes with bomb or torpedo in each kit!).
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