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  1. In a desperate response to the ever increasing presence of US strike forces over Japan the Rikugun Sanbo Hombu (Japanese Army HQ) in July 1945 ordered several Air Training Divisions to augment air defence. The Akeno Kyodo Hikoshidan formed the 111th Sentai around a cadre of experienced instructors equipped with Type 5 Fighters (Goshikisen). Ki-100-I Otsu 16280 flown by Lt Mamoru Tatsuda of the 2nd Daitai, 111th Sentai My occasional visitors will remember that I love exploiting vintage kits. Otaki are among my favourites, motivated by the considerable number of Japanese models which I bought in the seventies and eighties. Another, more heroic reason is my penchant for challenging projects. Otaki kit OT2-15 from 1974 As it happened I acquired this kit twice, the second one being an Arii re-issue. I misbelieved that the one in my possession was a Ki-100-I Ko with the high-back fuselage. Now I had a couple of outdated kits (I wished one at least were from Hasegawa), so latterly I decided to take them on. It proved to be a lucky providence that I owned two! Overall dimensions of the Otaki product are accurate, and their classic rendition of engraved panel lines and rivets appears to be more or less in the right place. Some proportions of the fuselage are miscarried, however, as are the nose profile and the wheel wells. This is where my duplicate kit comes in. The following pictures describe some modifications - for those with an asterisk* I cannibalised secondary parts. Other areas were improved with aftermarket help (engine, cockpit, wing racks, landing flaps, gear doors, canopy) - Not only were the various modifications quite demanding but also the complex tail markings which were masked and brush-painted. I struggled with the Sora iro blue #34. Finally I resorted to Tamiya X-14 Sky Blue toned down with a thin medium grey overspray. For the olive-brown #7, Colourcoats ACJ22 Ohryoku nana go shoku is an excellent choice. It has a rich volume and covers and dilutes very well. I hope my efforts make this classic kit look 40 years younger (I wish it were true for me, too...). Other attractive Kawasaki fighters are featured here. Michael REFERENCES KAWASAKI ARMY TYPE 5 FIGHTER, FAMOUS AIRPLANES OF THE WORLD NO.23, TOKYO, 1990 KAWASAKI ARMY TYPE 3 "HIEN" & TYPE 5 FIGHTER, MECHANIC OF WORLD AIRCRAFT 2, JAPAN, 1994 I.J. ARMY KAWASAKI TYPE 3 & 5 FIGHTER, MODEL ART NO.428, TOKYO, 1994 JAPANESE AIRCRAFT INTERIORS 1940-1945, ROBERT C. MIKESH, MONOGRAM AVIATION PUBLICATIONS, STURBRIDGE 2000 KAWASAKI KI-100 GOSHIKI-SEN, AERO DETAIL 32, GIUSEPPE PICARELLA, TOKYO, 2009 KAWASAKI KI-61 HIEN / KI-100, KAGERO MONOGRAPH 18, LESZEK A. WIELICZKO, LUBLIN, 2014 KI-61 AND KI-100 ACES, NICHOLAS MILLMAN, OXFORD, 2015
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