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  1. Hi All, I just finished my build of the Fine Molds Phantom, in this case the JASDF Kai version. What a beautiful kit, well moulded, superb detail and fitted together wonderfully. My copy came from Frome Model Centre and arrived very quickly. One issue I had was that I took the instructions advice to not use “surfaces primer” too literally and my Tamiya paint was easily scratched during later assembly. I now think they meant avoid sprays like MrSurfacer as the detailing is very fine, but a light waft of Halfords might have been okay. That said, after the joy of building a few modern kits such as this, I’m wondering whether to flog off the stash of “classic” kits, or to pull on that hair shirt and build some! Cheers Will
  2. Cleansing the palette so to speak. Almost an OOB with only adding the open gun purge door, seat harness and triangle patches on top of the Horizontal Stabs. Note the blue paint on the Stabs did not match each other per references. The kit goes together well but carefully watch the spine fuselage top panel and how the front fuselage attaches. I had a problem with a main landing gear "toe in" look to it. The scribing is very fine and a looks all the part to me. Thanks to @Gene K for help with this and as always comments are welcome. The Motive Thin solder flattened for the harnesses
  3. G'day all, Been lurking for a few years but this is my first WIP. I have added an Aires Cockpit, though TBH it probably doesnt need one, Brassin Exhaust and Master pitot. I'm using a Two Bobs Aggressor sheet and will be doing the 203rd Hikotai (Red & White) markings. Just buttoned it up and layed down some primer- a few spots to tidy up and then on to the paint. thanks for looking.
  4. Hi all With the Pembroke end, it's time to start a new project. This time I go to the other side of the world and choose a more modern plane : the U-125A of the JASDF air force. The Sword artbox are always very attractive and I bought several kit for them The first test fit show a kit who should not be too difficult to build.
  5. Hello Friends, Just finished the F-15DJ of the JASDF in the Aggressor Color Scheme of Sand, Brown and Black. Academy F-15E Strike Eagle kit has been used as a donor kit and built into this F-15DJ. The model is built OOB and no mods have been used. The paints used are locally available acrylic paints. It has taken me around 20 days to build this model and I feel that it still is incomplete. Specially the decals and the stencils. Due to the pandemic I haven't been able to get my hands on the Relevant F-15DJ Decals and Stencils. Thus for the time being I just write the stencils and will paint the markings with grey paint and use the decals later on. The Work In Progress build is divided into a 3 part video series. Do have a look and do mention your valuable comments to improve upon in the future. Let me know what you think about the techniques and my ways. . . Do Enjoy the Pictures and the Build . . . . .Cheers Friends . . .
  6. Hi all. Our club theme this year for the annual QMHE show here in Queensland is two seaters and trainers. We're not limiting subjects to only aviation subjects but considering that we mostly build aircraft I've decided on a another jet subject for the display anyway! The more the merrier right??? This is the 1/48 Hasegawa Mitsubishi F-2B. I'm a big fan of the of the F-16 and seeing the F-2 is a close cousin, it was an easy decision to crack on with this build. Additional extras lined up for the build are Afterburner and DXM decals, Finemolds seat belts and pitot/static, Hasegawa weapons and Royale resin wheels. Montex masks will be used on the clear bits. And after seeing the U-125A recently built by @_alfisti_ I just couldn't go past the lovely two tone blue that the modern Japanese jets are famous for. The subject of interest. Some clean up and priming of parts. The full length intake and gear door interiors have some pin marks that I've filled with Vallejo plastic putty. It's good stuff and dries quickly in the stinking heat that we've had recently. The cockpit features nicely raised detail and the Afterburner interior decals registered well with the detail when applied. Below is the pit before any kind of wash or flatcoat. The seats are nicely done though if you don't like black then leave them alone. I tried to dress them up by using black and then varying shades of grey. The stencils near the headbox are from Afterburner and they'll eventually get some Finemolds belts. Again, this is before they've been hit with a flat coat. The intake is full length right back to the face of the engine. Not quite why Hasegawa didn't opt for this construction with their F-16 kits. Tamiya putty thinned with liquid glues has bene used on the interior seams followed by sanding with a long piece of rolled 400 grit sanding paper. Paint is Tamiya flat white acrylic applied with a larger than normal needle/nozzle (0.4mm) through a H&S airbrush. The paint goes a LOT better than with the 0.15mm smaller nozzle I normally use, perfect for applications in a confined space like this. There was a bit of faffing around with the next part to get the top and bottom fuselage halves to fit. I trimmed a variety of spots on the cockpit tub, instrument panel and cockpit interior and I still had to apply a bit more pressure to get the upper and lower fuselage halves to meet around the tub. Not a big issue but annoying nontheless. I left the parts clamped for most of the week to ensure the glue had gone off completely. You can see in this image where the problem was when gluing the upper and lower halves. Wings, fin and others to go on over the weekend. Apart from the above, it's been an easy build so far. Cheers, Mick
  7. Hi there. Here is my latest model, a 1/72 Mitsubishi F-2A in a colourful 3SQ anniversay scheme. Built from the Hasegawa corresponding boxing. I had to order an aftermarket decal sheet as my kit decals had a green colour shift and Microsol destroyed my blue paint coat on application anyway. MrColor JASDF colour set, DXM decals, Eduard etch, Hasegawa 3D printed exhaust and minor cockpit scratch. Hope you enjoy the plane and stay safe!
  8. Morning folks - I picked up on Ebay a 1980's Hasegawa 1:48 F4EJ and one of the colour schemes is an attractive splinter camo with a colour call out for H305 for the grey and 'blue black' for the darker colour. I wondered if anyone had a suggestion of the blue black colour? thanks Chris
  9. I will release 1/72 JASDF YS-11EB 3D fabricated kit soon. This kit is empty interior except for cockpit unfortunately because I have no data of inside. But landing gear is separable. This is a conversion kit of the YS-11A. Engine nacelle shape, props, fuselage windowm, antenna and mold arrangement is different. And there are radomes on top and under the fuselage.
  10. Time to narrow down my options for at least one build for this GB. The plan at the minute is to do one European and one Asian F-104 (although this may change!) and for the Asian one I have decided to go with an aircraft from the JASDF who were a major user of the type and had them on strength until 1986. The next problem is which JASDF one to do, a single seat J or a twin seat DJ. Both kits are unstarted as you can see below. And both come with very comprehensive and impressive decal sheets. Should be able to build every F-104 to serve with the JASDF from them! The only issue with the sheets is the usual Hasegawa inability to actually make the white on the decals white as it is a creamy colour, might try the "stick them to the window and hope that it lightens them" trick. but if they weren't enough options I have an aftermarket set from Two Bobs (who can make white white). Can't beat an aggressor scheme! Here's a closer look at the options. Very drawn to the one at the bottom, although I am also contemplating another one from the "Panda Bears" in grey and white which looks very smart and had rocket pods under the wings and it doesn't seem fair to only build F-104J's from the one squadron. And then there's the option of a DJ in the camo colours usually worn by Mitsubishi F-1's, oh dear decisions, decisions! At least I have until Saturday to make my mind up! Craig.
  11. Hi all, Here are some (quite a few actually!) pictures of my latest build, it's Hasegawa's well know 1/48 F-104 Starfighter finished in the markings of 202 Hikotai when playing the role of an aggressor for one of their annual Air Combat Meets. These ACM's have produced some very nice and unusual colour schemes and it was difficult to decide which one to build, suffice to say that there will be a few more in the future. Anyway here are the pictures. Here is a link to the WIP and whilst you are there have a look at the other great builds going on in the GB. Thanks for looking in and all comments and criticisms are gratefully received. Craig.
  12. Hello everyone, Here's a playlist link to youtube of some videos of planes and helis. Andy will provide much better photos in a separate post but I'm contributing with some videos. The Helicopter landing vid is particularly good. Enjoy! Part of a three week spotting tour in Japan. Totally worthwhile since they practice daily. Today was coincidentally graduation day at the Akeno training base.
  13. (Admin, please remove if posting videos isnt allowed) The Kit The aftermarket Legend Productions ACES II F-15 seats DXM decals Olfa circular cutter + lots of masking sheet /tape (the silly amount of masking required which will become apparent latter in the build) Hasegawa hologram (for the HUD) Hasegawa JASDF weapon set (for the AAM-3) Hasegawa weapon set B (for the ALQ-131) The Plane http://www.airplane-pictures.net/photo/493488/92-8068-japan-air-self-defence-force-mitsubishi-f-15dj/ WIP pics soon to follow. Cheers Shane
  14. Second in my double build, this will be my entry using the older ghost gray scheme. I had already done a Gulf War F-15 about a year ago and did not feel like repeating. Instead, I had in my stash this wonderful and colorful F-15J from Tac Meet 2013. Lots of lightning bolts. Awesome cartoon bear in the fins. This is Japanese creativity at its best! The kit will be built entirely OOP. First steps were the cockpit. I read somewhere that some of the JASDF Eagles kept their avionics bay in the original metallic emerald color so I will keep them as such. There is sadly, no equivalent in acrylic so I used the instructions' recommended Gunze metallic blue-green which is a bit too blue compared to the real thing. Not a big issue frankly.
  15. Hi, Want some wild colour schemes and bizarre partnerships? What about Bangladesh Let 410, Sri Lankan Kfir, Taiwanese B-24, Malaysian A-400, Myanmar MiG-29, South Korean Hawk, Communist Chinese La-11, Indian Navy Do.228, PLAAF Divine Eagle? And on, and on and on.....! Asian Air Arms SIG has been set up to enable modellers to access a huge resource of post-1945 military aircraft subjects from 26 Asian countries: Mongolia to the Maldives, and from Japan to Afghanistan. Huge website http://www.asianairarms.com offers thousands of photos, colour schemes, research, contemporary accounts, kit lists, decal info, photos of members' models and air arms' lists of serial numbers. We exhibit at many UK shows including North East, Midlands and South West. Members are encouraged to display under our banner. Next two shows: Boscombe Down 6th August, and IPMS Avon 13th August. We welcome all, particularly those with specialised knowledge to help add to, and improve the accuracy of, our resources. Costs nothing to join, just click "Join Here" on our website and you'll go straight on to our mailing list.
  16. Afternoon folks - I have on its way an old Hasegawa 1:32 F104J and I am assuming the decals won't be of much use! I've had a quick look around and can't see who does aftermarket decals for Japanese Starfighters in 1:32 Can anyone point in the right direction? thanks Chris
  17. Ok so I'm a big fan of the Phantom and decided a few months ago to do a joint build of Israeli and Japanese F4's. I used the Hasegawa kits for both builds with aftermarket decals from Isra Decal and DXM (stencils). I used the original decals for the JASDF Phantom in the main and considering they were printed in 1986 they came out well. Eduard cockpit aftermarket was also used and Ised Mr Color, Tamiya and Alclad paints for both. I got a lot of help form members on here during the build so thanks for that. The Israeli F4 has a temporary 'load out' as I am awaiting some of the Hasegawa sets. Overall I enjoyed the builds and even more so that the kits costs me £16 and £24 respectively which is great value considering I just paid £60 for the Hasegawa re-hash of the FGR1!!
  18. The last one I'll finish this year is another Sabre Dog. This one is a little different as it is a machine from the 3rd Air Wing of the JASDF,using a set of Flying Papa decals I found in a second hand F-86D I bought in the kit swap at Telford. Just a couple of photos a Photobucket is playing up as usual. Thanks for looking.
  19. F-15J Eagle 1:72 Platz JSDF Aircraft Series Since its introduction into service in 1974, the F-15 Mig Killer has developed a fearsome reputation as an air superiority fighter. With over 100 kills to its name, half of them being with the Israeli Air Force, not a single F-15 has been lost in air-to-air combat. Despite the introduction of more capable aircraft in the 21st century, there is still a place for the proven F-15 on the front lines such was the foresight in its design some 40+ years ago. The need for a replacement to the F-4 was identified in the mid 1960s to counter the threat of existing and new aircraft that were being designed by the Soviet Union. Initially, the request was for an aircraft that had both air and ground capabilities and considerably heavier and faster than the F-4, however this was changed to focus on air superiority in both close and long range scenarios following analysis of air-to-air combat in the US Air Force in the 60s. With 4 manufacturers entering the competition to supply the USAF with an aircraft to meet their F-X requirement, the F-15 won with the decision being made in 1969. Powered by P&W F100 engines, it had a power weight ratio greater than 1, low wing loading to improve manoeuvrability, a radar that could identify low flying targets amongst ground clutter and operate beyond visual range and had all round visibility for the pilot improving visibility significantly compared to the F-4. Not least, one of the lessons learned was that a gun is necessary, so a Vulcan M-61 cannon was installed. With the first flight taking place in 1972 of the F-15A, the first of 483 F-15Cs flew in 1978 benefiting from additional internal fuel, ability to carry the ungainly conformal fuel tanks, the APG-63 PSP radar that could be reprogrammed to suit new weapons, stronger landing gear to cope with a greater maximum weight and new flight systems. In 1985, the F-15s coming off the production lines were to become part of the MSIP (Multi-stage Improvement Programme) that would allow ease of adaptation for developing weapons systems. Whilst the US are the largest operator of the F-15, first blood was achieved with the Israeli Air Force in 1979 developing an enviable reputation against Syrian Migs over Lebanon and went on to use the air-ground capability in the 80s. During the Gulf War, the US followed up this success with their F-15s again in combat with Mig 21s, 23s, 25s and 29s. Of the 39 air-air victories scored by the US Air Force in the Gulf War, the F-15Cs had claimed 34 of them. Over 170 F-15Cs will remain in service for many years to come yet. More recent upgrades to the aircraft are a new AN/APG Radar that link to the helmet mounted sighting system as well as the latest evolutions in armament to ensure that the F-15 remains a potent weapon. As well as Continuing service with the US and Israeli Air Forces, the F-15 also continues to operate with Japan and Saudi Arabia. For the JASDF the first two Eagles were constructed in the US, the rest of the F-15Js were then constructed in Japan under license. Starting in 1982 and ending in 1998 165 Eagles were delivered. In December 2004, the Japanese Government approved a Mid-Term Defence Program (MTDP) to modernize the F-15J to J-MSIPs over five years in accordance with new National Defence Program Guidelines. The upgrade is being implemented in phases, but ultimately the upgrade will include a new ejection seat; replaced IHI-220E engines; more powerful processor; uprated electrical generation and cooling capabilities to support more avionics and the Raytheon AN/APG-63(V)1 radar which has been produced under license by Mitsubishi Electric since 1997. The new radar will support the new AAM-4 missile. The Kit It is good to see this new tool kit from Platz. Following their new tool F-1 & T-2 kits it is good to see the Eagle is up to that standard. In the box you get five main sprues and two smaller sprues of grey plastic, one clear sprues and a decal sheet. Of note straight away is that the wings have a lap type joint to the main fuselage rather than a but fit which should be stronger, and easier to hide the join. The exhausts are 21 parts for each engine which should be enough detail for anyone! Full intakes and exhaust are provided. Intakes can be passed in two positions. There is also an innovative pin support to attach the front fuselage to the main body (typically a weak point in F-15 kits). The panel lines will be to deep for some people but not for the reviewer. Construction starts shockingly in the cockpit area! The ejection seat is a five part affair (but no belts). Once assembled this is placed in the cockpit tub. The rear bulkhead to the electronics bay is added along with separate rudder pedals, control column and instrument panel. The sides for the electronics bay are then added into the appropriate fuselage halves, the cockpit ub added, and the front fuselage can then be closed up. The front coming for the instrument panel is then added along with the nose cone. Platz recommend 3g of weight be added, though I would be tempted to cram in as much as possible. The final part to add to the front fuselage section is the innovative pin which will be used to attach this subassembly to the main fuselage. Construction then moves to the main fuselage. The full length intake/exhaust assembly is then made up. The engine faces and exhaust faces are added in and they can then be closed up. It is probably best to paint the insides before closing them up. The main top/bottom parts of the main fuselage can then be sandwiched around the intakes. Even if you should wish to use intake blanks/exhaust covers you will have to make these parts, not only do other parts attach to them, but the provide rigidity for the main fuselage. Side parts are then added along with front intake parts to complete this sub-assembly. Next the variable intakes are assembled. Here there are a choice of parts depending on whether you wish to mould them drooped or not. The next major step is to attach the forward fuselage to the main one. As mentioned Platz have engineered a pin and hole arrangement here to ensure a sturdy fit between the two. This is further reinforced by the addition of a top part which carries the canopy hinge mechanism. As someone who has suffered a front fuselage detachment on another well know Japanese branded kit, I can appreciate the thinking Platz have done here. To finish up the fuselage the canopy can be fitted in either the open or closed position, as can the air brake (though I suspect most will leave both of these items until last). The next area to be constructed is the exhaust nozzles. Each nozzle consists of a main ring to which five petals are attached. Each petal has three control arms. This makes each exhaust a 21 part affair. No lack of detail here! When complete these can be added to the rear of the main fuselage assembly. The tail parts can be added at this point. Standard ones and upgraded J/APQ-1 parts are included. The modeller will need to check their references on these unless they can read the Japanese text for instructions! The main wings can then be added. While they have upper and lower parts the lower part is more of an insert so the leading/trailing edges are one moulded part and wont suffer from being too thick. The outer flaps are moulded separately. The single part tails, and tail-planes are also added at this point. Next up on our list of sub-assemblies is the landing gear. There is a single part leg for the nose gear, with a single part wheel. The only other items to be added are the landing lights. The main gear is slightly more complicated. Each leg is a four part affair, with the wheel split between the tyre and the hub (which should make painting a lot easier!). Once made up the landing gear can be attached to the fuselage along with gear doors. The last items to be constructed are the underwing stores. Three fuel tanks are included, as are four AMRAAMs and four Japanese AAM-4 missiles. These are attached to the airframe along with a host of antenna and small fuselage fixings which are generally left until last to avoid breaking them off. Decals Decals are provided for six different JSADF Squadrons. 42-8834 201 Sqn. 42-8945 304 Sqn. 22-8931 203 Sqn. 22-8931 306 Sqn. 42-8945 204 Sqn. 42-8834 23 T Sqn. There do seem to be more Squadron insignia on the sheet though than are mentioned in the instructions. Photoetch It should be noted that the photoetch parts DO NOT come with the kit, they are available as a separate item. The parts supplied on here are; underside of the main airbrake, instrument panel, seat belts, inside upper parts of the intake tunnel, front and rear missile launcher faces (if you are not going to use the missiles), HUD; and a variety of blade antennas. Conclusion This is welcome kit from Platz, a great improvement on the older kits available, and a great kit of the new modern JSDF Eagle for those of us who like to model modern Japanese subjects. It is a shame Platz have not included the PE parts in the kit as they will enhance it. Hopefully Platz will bring us some of the more colourful schemes the JASDF apply to their Eagles. Overall Highly Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  20. Hi mates, Here's my plan for the F-4 Phantom II Group Build. I'm quite late in getting started due to working on a trio of 1:72 WWII fighters. They will have to be set aside so I can finish this new project in time. So here goes. I've always loved the anniversary scheme that Japan applied to one of their F-4EJ-KAI Phantoms - here is the only photo I have of the actual bird: After burrowing through my stash, I came up with the Revell of Germany F-4F kit in 1:72 scale, which just happens to be one of the best Phantom kits around, and one of the few in 1:72 that has a semblance of intake trunking. But, it's an F-4F, not an F-4EJ, so I had to do some research. As it turns out, the biggest difference is in the wing, F-4F's being slatted, and F-4EJ having the early "hard wing." Looking at the Revell kit, I see they include both wings, so that shouldn't be a problem. The stabs are the non-slotted variety, which is also correct for the F-4EJ. There are some other lumps and bumps that I'll need to attend to, but I think this kit will work. I found an aftermarket decal sheet from Platz, and although it's designed for a Hasegawa kit, I'll give it a try. I also have an Aires resin and photoetch cockpit set for the Revell kit. I'm thinking there may be some instrument panel differences between the F-4F and the F-4EJ, but nothing major. So here is where we will start: If anyone has any additional advice on the differences between an F-4F and an F-4EJ, please feel free to send me a PM. Thanks! Cheers, Bill
  21. T-34 Mentor JASDF Trainer Aircraft PLATZ 1:144 The years following the end of WW2 were very unstable in the Far East, especially in Korea, and Japan needed to rebuild her forces for reasons of national defence. The need to re-establish a military force was becoming paramount and therefore the Japanese government authorised the formation of the Japanese Defense Force. This was later split into Army (JGSDF), Air (JASDF) and Maritime forces (JMSDF) with the USA providing T-6 Texan trainer aircraft in order for the Japanese forces to train new aircrew ready for defence. Japan needed to re-establish her industries as these had been lost when they were disbanded in 1945; however new companies were emerging, with some using elements of the original infrastructure that still remained. One such company was Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd (FHI) and they undertook a programme which would give them more autonomy in the development of aircraft, rather than relying solely on the USA whose attentions had been severely distracted by the Korean War and now with the emergence of a major conflict in Indo-China/Vietnam. FHI obtained licence to construct Beechcraft T-34A Mentor trainer aircraft and work started at their factory in Utsunomiya City, Japan in 1962. The T-34 Mentor was a two seat, piston-engined trainer aircraft designed and produced by Beechcraft. It was a development of a civilian trainer called the Beechcraft Bonanza. A total of 162 licence built T-34A's were built by FHI; 121 for the Japanese Air Self Defense Force (航空自衛隊, Kōkū Jieitai or JASDF) and 37 for the Philippines. FHI further developed the T-34 into a four-seat version, designated the LM-1 Nikko which was operational from 1962, and a turbo-prop two-seat version designated the T-3 in 1974. The Kits This is another welcome addition in the trainer aircraft series from Platz. As with their previous kit, the T-6 Texan, there are two kits in this box. Each kit contains a two part fuselage, a single piece main wing, tailplanes, propeller and undercarriage components etc. The cockpit area is open and clear for the fitting of a small deck containing two seats that is also included in the kit. There are two instrument panels for the cockpit which gives a bit more detail in this tiny little area. The propeller has a stub fit which passes through the separate front cowling unit and is to be glued to a backing piece behind. This will allow for the two bladed prop to be moved/rotated to a position as desired by the modeller. Panel lines on this kit are recessed and rather fine and they appear to be quite good representations, rather than some kits that have heavy channels as panel lines. The main undercarriage can be assembled raised or lowered with separate parts for each configuration. Two A4 size portrait sheets provide a short history, in Japanese and English, plus an illustrated assembly process chart. This model is diminutive, only 2.2 inches (55mm) long, so there is not much explanation needed to assemble the kit. The canopy is a single piece unit but strangely has four tabs, two each side (they look worse in the photo than by normal viewing) which will need a little sanding and polishing back to recover the transparency of the glass. It's not much but worth mentioning. The last but not least is the inclusion of stand for those who wish to depict the model in flight mode. There is also a small clear piece, part no. 14, which can be used as a support under the rear fuselage if you end up with a tail-sitter! Decals Quite a comprehensive decal sheet is included with the kits; with 12 pairs of hinomaru (red circle) national insignia; 2 sets of walkways and anti-glare patches, plus a whole host of side letters, serial numbers and colourful emblems etc. With so many hinomaru and markings available it is helpful that Platz has provided some good placement guides. The first is an A3 size sheet, on the reverse of the instruction sheets, and shows placements for 8 different aircraft. Beware! the lettering on the sides of the fuselage are in Japanese script and not that easy to distinguish each force they belong to. I have provided some details here; they are from left top to bottom then right top to bottom: 109 - early Navy, the Maritime Guard (Kaijyo Keibitai 警備隊) in 1954 107 - Army, (Rikujō jiei-tai 陸上自衛 隊) JGSDF in 1954 109 - Navy, (Kaijō Jieitai 海上自衛隊) JMSDF in 1954 7109 - Army, (Rikujō jiei-tai 陸上自衛 隊) JGSDF in 1954 0323 - Air, (Kōkū Jieitai 航空自衛隊) JASDF in 1973 0297 - Air, (Kōkū Jieitai 航空自衛隊) JASDF in 1960 0390 - Air, (Kōkū Jieitai 航空自衛隊) JASDF in 1970 0781 - National Defense Academy (Bōei Daigakkō 防衛大学校) NDA in 2014 The second is a colour display that has been printed on the base of the box containing the kits. This shows two aircraft, 390 & 297 already shown in the sheet above, with each providing the colour demarcations. It is important whilst applying the decals to differentiate the japanese texts for all these models and hopefully the list I have provided above may help to avoid an embarrassing mix up of incorrect writings on the sides! Conclusion These little kits can be built as any of the three forces; Army, Air or Maritime and even a Defense Academy version. The look of the sprues suggest that these are from short-run moulds; which possibly means that there won't be a massive production of these and should be of interest to anyone who builds and collects trainer aircraft in 1:144 scale. Review sample courtesy of
  22. Hi all, This is my first post of a completed model on Britmodeller so please be gentle with me! It is also my first time using photobucket so I apologise in advance if you get lots of copies of the same picture. This is Italeri's CH-47 built and painted as a CH-47J of the JASDF. I think the camouflage makes it look completely different, which is what attracted me to it in the first place. I hope you all like the end result.
  23. Hi all, I have a question for the F-104 experts out there. What are the differences between the cockpits of the TF-104 and the F-104DJ? The reason I ask is because I'm thinking of using Aires' TF-104 1/48 cockpit in my Hasegawa F-104DJ. Any insight would be very much appreciated. Many thanks in advance!
  24. Kawasaki C-1 Hasegawa 1:200 The Kawasaki C-1 is a twin-engine cargo/transport aircraft built solely in Japan for the Japanese Air Self Defence Force (JASDF). The Japanese were still using outdated World War Two era Curtiss C-46 Commando transports as late as the mid-1960's and a replacement was needed to modernise the Japanese air force's airlift capability. A new aircraft requirement was issued to the major aircraft building companies and a consortium came forward with designs for a modern, short-range military cargo/transporter; which would also have the capability for air drops by having wide cargo doors. The consortium was the Nihon Aircraft Manufacturing Corporation (NAMC), consisting of Mitsubishi, Fuji, Shinmeiwa and Kawasaki aircraft building companies. The final design was given to Kawasaki as the main contractor; with the other companies supplying various major components, to supply two prototype aircraft and one static test airframe. The two prototypes were designated the XC-1 and first flew in November 1970 The first operational aircraft entered service with the JASDF in 1972 and a total of 31 aircraft were constructed as the C-1. Of these, four have been lost (ser: 58-1009, 68-1015, 58-1010 and 88-1027) and one has been converted to an AEW/ELINT (ser 78-1021) and is currently in use as to train EW crew. Some, if not all of the C-1's had an upgraded avionics set fitted (SKE fit) which was a rectangular unit with a small radome added above the cockpit immediately in front of the front of the wing (see box image above). The SKE provided all-weather navigation capability and enhanced accurate cargo-drop and parachuting. A further test aircraft, designated C-1FTB, was produced to provide Short Take-Off and Landing facilities (STOL) and this had four over-wing engines fitted. The Kit(s) This is a re-release of a 1990's issue but Hasegawa has produced this model as a "Combo" set, and consists of two kits of the C-1 Transport. At 1:200 scale 'The One True Scale' (TOTS), this is a diminutive model with the length only measuring 145mm (5.6in) however the detailing is nicely defined as the image of the sprue below shows. Panel lines are nicely engraved, almost discretely due to the model size, but this detail may possibly get lost if the kit is brush painted, especially if a primer is also applied. An interesting feature is that the nosewheel doors are integral to the fuselage piece and moulded in the open position. Any build to be finished as an in-flight version would need these to be removed and a piece of plastic sheet fitted. I can understand the logic here though as most aircraft tend to be built wheels down plus such small (tiny) parts could get lost or damaged if they were separate components. Two variants can be built from the kit, a C1 and a C-1SKE; the latter by fitting the small rectangular part in the lower left of the sprue below. the real thing has a lowering cargo bay ramp, plus two clamshell doors to provide the wide access/egress of the plane but these are all one part on the fuselage. Any requirement to have these open in a loading scenario would require a fair amount of cutting and the scratchbuilding of a new ramp and clamshell doors. The next sprue, or sprues as there are two identical sets, contain the engines, engine holding braces, the main and nose wheels. There are also turbofan blades which fit in the front of the engine openings and they look quite detailed for such small items. This is a small kit so there aren't many parts, 44 grey and 1 clear canopy. There are window openings in the fuselage sides but the kit does not come with any clear parts for them. A suitable clear glue/fill medium could possibly be used to represent the glass section. The decal sheet is very nicely produced and is quite full of, mostly, serials. Of the 31 Kawasaki C1's produced there are 25 complete sets of serials available on the sheet. Considering that 4 aircraft were lost and one converted to the EC-1 then I think there are enough serials two make any of the remaining flying airframes. A special set of decals is included which represents aircraft of 402 Hakkai (Squadron) for their 50th Anniversary, an example being 10-1007 as shown on the box art above. There are also 7 sets of squadron tail emblems, although the C-1's were only allocated to 402Sqn, at Iruma, and 403Sqn, at Miho, and these are decals number 29 for 402Sqn and 39 (or 31) for 403Sqn on the sheet below. Also adorning this packed decal sheet, remember how small this kit is, are walkway markings, Hinomaru's (red disk, national markings), fuel points, rescue/warning symbols etc., etc. A very comprehensive set indeed. Conclusion Although this is a very small model, or two of them, the detail appears to be very detailed an crisp. The instruction sheet is in international picture-view layout and is comprehensive, however the sheet is quite small and it can be difficult to identify exactly where the placement of decals should be. I would recommend scanning or photocopying the instructions to a more viewable size for this. The build is quite simplistic and shouldn't be an issue and I would think the best part will be to apply the intricate 3-tone camouflage patterns, depending on which formation and era you choose to build them. I plan to build an early C-1 plus a later C-1SKE. These are nice kits and they are attracting me to other models in 1:200, if they are as good as these. Highly recommended to those who find pleasure in building and collecting small scale model aircraft. Review sample courtesy of UK distributors for .
  25. Well the kit finally arrived from my good friend Lloyd in Arkansas, it took 20 days to get here, I guess it was held up by all the snow we had in the UK the other week. So no more dallying it's time to start. First the obligatory box top and sprue shots Lloyd had snipped a few parts from the sprue and put the wing halves together but she is well within the 25% limit. I'll be starting as per the instructions with the seat and cockpit
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