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  1. For my entry I will be building the following: I won’t be using the kit decals but these rather nice Rising Decals: This one, Capt Shogo Takeuchi, 2nd Chutai, 68th Sentai, Cape Gloucester. Build will mostly be OOB, but I’ll add a bit of detail to the rather sparse Hasegawa cockpit. The camouflage should be a test of my airbrushing skills (or lack of..). I’ll make a start after aI finish the Falklands Sea Harrier, not sure how far I’ll get before I go away to the Northern Territory for the whole of May, first holiday away in two years! AW
  2. Ki-100 | Fine Molds | 1/72 Imperial Japanese Army, 111th Air Regiment, 5th Company, Akeno Airfield Japan, 1945 Finished this on 10/24/2021. This was build pretty much OOB. It was an enjoyable build without much drama. I like to characterize this Fine Molds kit (my 1st) as Tamiya detail with Hasagawa fit. The surface detail was very nice but there was a little slop in the fit, so I had to be careful to make sure everything was aligned properly before applying glue. Since painting all the national markings on my Frank and Tojo went so well, and because I like the look, I decided to do the same on this model even though I had all the decals. I also painted the yellow leading edges and the yellow stripes on the wings, even though Fine Molds supplied decals for those too. Painting the white border around the Hinomaru on the fuselage turned out to be a challenge since the yellow masking tape does stretch a bit, which could make it unevenly spaced if one isn't careful. As it was, I had to make a couple corrections. Still it all turned out looking very nice and I'm quite happy with all the markings. WIP is here Finishing: Gaps filled with CA Paint: Mr. Color RLM81 top / Tamiya silver leaf with Mr. Color Super Stainless Steel highlights bottom / Mr. Color yellow-orange for lines and leading edge / Mr. Color white for roundels and stripes / Tamiya Acrylic Red for Hinomaru / interior surfaces were a custom mix of one drop each of Hataka RLM79a (Sand), RLM02 and RLM82 / Mr. Color semi-gloss clear overcoat Thanks for looking, I hope you like it. Comments, questions and constructive criticism always welcomed!
  3. My next project will likely get some attention -- a lot of you have already told me that you're interested in seeing the Fine Molds Ki-100 come together. This was an adaptation of the Ki-61. My reference books have different accounts: one says it was prompted by a shortage of the liquid cooled engines they were using in the Ki-61, another says it was prompted by the un-reliability of the liquid cooled engine. Whatever the reason, they had Ki-61 airframes without engines and the engineers were clever enough to graft a radial engine on the front of them, producing a fighter that was reportedly better than the Ki-61. Ever since I discovered this plane a few years ago, I've really wanted to do a model of it. So here we go! There are some nice options in this kit. I was going to do the one on the cover, but then I saw the alternate schemes: I decided I'm going to do that last one. I had found pictures of the plane on the cover, but when I changed my mind about which one to do, I found I had collected pictures of the one with the blue stripes while I was researching. That' was a nice discovery! The subject in the picture was not terribly worn and had a semi-gloss look to it. So that will be guiding my finishing decisions. The model has very nice surface detail, and some dry fitting shows that it fits together well. Unfortunately, there was quite a bit of flash to trim off the fuselage. Started out with the cockpit, of course: I was very pleased with the Ki-61 Tony I did a few months ago except for the cockpit color, which I found out after the fact was an old modelling trope. @Corsairfoxfouruncle pointed me to @Stew Dapple's Ki-61 Build which had a well thought out interior color. Since I don't have any Colourcoats paints, I mixed some up to match. The recipe was one drop each of Hataka RLM79a (Sand), RLM02 (Yellow) and RLM82 (which is a bright green -- bleah). It matched what was on the screen, but now I'm comparing pictures side-by-side, mine looks a tad more yellow. Still, it is reasonable and beats the Tan color they recommend. That cockpit and landing gear detail is terrific. No scratchbuilding on this one! I'll post better pictures when I do the detail painting. That's all for now -- off to work!
  4. Hi everybody, here's my second completed model for the year. It's the excellent Tamiya 1/48 HIEN, here represented in the colours of the aircraft flown by Regimental Commander Teruhiko Kobayashi. This kind of aircraft was mainly employed to defend homeland Japan from bombing raids during the last phases of WWII, hence the topic title. The build took me a little over than 3 months, just like my last build, coincidentally a Tamiya kit as well - pretty quick, for my standard Here are some details about the build: KIT: TAMIYA 1:48 KAWASAKI Ki-61-Id HIEN (TONY) AIRFRAME: KAWASAKI Ki-61-Id 24 of 244th Sentai, Imperial Japanese Air Force MARKINGS: Hinomarus and blue stripes airbrushed using self made masks; kit decals for all the rest. PAINTS: Tamiya gloss alu and light blue, decanted from rattle cans; Tamiya JA Green for the mottling; Italeri Insignia Red for the tail and Hinomarus, Tamiya Flat Yellow and Red for the wing leading edge bands, Tamiya Flat Brown and Red for the propeller assembly, Lifecolor Giallo Mimetico for the interiors, plus other assorted paints for the interior details. WEATHERING: tempera washes, black for the movable surfaces and hatches, dark grey for the remaining panel lines. Some oil filtering on the red areas and the spinner/propeller AFTERMARKETS: Quickboost resin cannon and machine gun barrels, Quickboost exhausts SCRATCHBUILDING: Seat belts, with wine bottle foil; gunsight reflectors, from clear acetate The kit is up to the excellent Tamiya standards, beautifully engineered and requiring just a bit of filler here and there, and only along the fuselage halves seam. The level of detail doesn't make you feel the need for AM, even in the cockpit area, IMHO - I indulged in the Quickboost resin gun barrels and exhausts set because they are such a prominent feature on this model, and the kit rendition (especially for the nose cannons) isn't on par with the rest of the kit. Here's the WIP thread, in case you are interested in: My thanks to everybody who followed along, supplying help, tips, insights, praises, etc: as usual, you are a wonderful lot! A special thank you to my friend @Gene K for talking me into building this kit and providing a lot of reference material Let's see some pics (beware: a lot of them! )- with one final note: at the very end of the build I had a relevant mishap, enough to compromise the end result (all my fault, BTW). Those who have followed the build already know, for the other viewers I will not mention it, let's see how bad it looks to you. Hint: more visible in the detail pics. All comments welcome Ciao
  5. Hello mates, here something brand new. This is my little swallow i fell in love with at Nuremberg Toy Fair. Tamiya 1:72. Started on July 05, 2018, finished on September 30, 2018. There are wheels, some etch, masks and exhausts from eduard, as well as the extra separate decals from the house. This was pure fun to build! Cheers, Tom
  6. I came into possession of two kits of the new-tool Tamiya Ki-61 due to a curious set of circumstances occurring as a result of the generosity of both my friend @Cookenbacher and a drunken version of past me who pre-ordered one from HobbyLink Japan one Saturday night then erased the memory of the deed until the kit arrived. Thanks to you both It's the 2018 release and I think the first time Tamiya have kitted this particular type in the proper scale, it will also be the first time I have built a Ki-61 so I hope we will be good company. I have no reason to expect otherwise as Tamiya do have a reputation for good engineering and fit of parts and the reviews I have seen suggest that this kit upholds that tradition. The box(es): ... and the sprues: As you can see the parts count is comparatively light. The surface detail is very nice indeed: A smaller secondary sprue implies possible further releases of other variants: The clear parts are very clear and don't show much distortion: Transfers in their own sealed bag, and instructions: I shall be building options A (a natural metal aircraft with a red tail and stripes) and C (finished in #7 Ohryoku nana go shoku, the Japanese version of Olive Drab, on the topsides and natural metal underneath): Option B is of a natural metal aircraft with green blotching over the topsides, it's a very attractive scheme but I feel I lack the masochistic tendencies that might be sated by giving myself a paint-job like that to do. Tamiya do provide the option to separately buy a set of transfers to replicate this scheme but while I wouldn't criticise someone else for going that route, I don't fancy it myself. There shouldn't be much need for aftermarket stuff as far as I can tell, I don't really like seatbelt decals though (which the kit does provide) so I will instead use some of these: ... which does include Kawasaki-style seatbelts: I also got the Eduard canopy mask set because masking. For the natural metal I will most likely use the Vallejo Metal Colour paints unless I can borrow the samples of the test versions of the experimental Colourcoats metallic colours *cough* @Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies *cough* For the interiors, Colourcoats ACJ04 Interior Buff Green and for the camouflaged aircraft ACJ09 - IJA #7 variant: So I think that's me about ready to go. Cheers, Stew
  7. Here is a quick photo of my latest build in progress. The kit is Hasegawa's 1/72 Ki-61 combo set featuring 2 kits from the 244th Sentai. I am going for a natural metal finish using Alclad II lacquer. The canopy has been masked and sprayed with the interior color. I will probably hit the canopy again with a clear lacquer gloss coat to protect the undercoat as well as provide a glossy surface on which to spray the Alclad II. There was some seam clean up needed behind the cockpit and especially on the underside where the leading edge of the wings met the fuselage. I used Mr. Surfacer 500 for the seam work, and then sprayed the entire model with a well thinned coat of Mr. Surfacer 1500 to act as a primer for the Alclad II. Since the panel lines were rather shallow to begin with, the primer coat neatly made them disappear. To remedy that, I used a scribing tool to deepen the panel lines and make them a little more pronounced. After the scribing was complete, I started to sand and polish the primer coat with micromesh cloth to reduce surface imperfections. . But more importantly, it has been my experience that one needs to have a glass like sheen on the surface in order to yield maximum results from Alclad II. I know it is recommended that one use gloss black as a primer for Alclad II, however it has been my experience that having a glass like surface is the most important factor driving success with Alclad II. The micromesh cloth polishing started with 6000, then moved to 8000 and 12000 respectively. In the photo, the starboard wing has been completed. The rest of the model remains to be done. Every natural metal finish attempt with Alclad is a new experience and I learn something each time. Hopefully this attempt will yield good results. I am open to suggestions / friendly critique as always. Cheers!
  8. AZmodel is to release a family of 1/72nd Kawasaki Ki-61-I Hien "Tony" Source: http://azmodel.cz/avizo/AVIZOAZ-EN-0116.pdf V.P.
  9. Aoshima is to release in April 2016 two 1/72nd Kawasaki Ki-61 Hien "Tony" kits. Sources: http://www.aoshima-bk.co.jp/product/?s=&when1-year=2016&when1-day=04&when1-daynum=01&when2-year=2016&when2-day=04&when2-daynum=30 https://www.facebook.com/Aoshima.Bunka.Kyozai.Co.Ltd - ref.14 - "razorback" - 「三式戦II型飛燕角型風防」 -http://www.aoshima-bk.co.jp/product/4905083022290/ - ref.15 - "bubbletop" - 「三式戦II型飛燕涙滴風防」 - http://www.aoshima-bk.co.jp/product/4905083022467/ V.P.
  10. Happy New Year all! Last year I completed the illustrations for Osprey's Aircraft of the Aces #114 on Ki-61 and Ki-100 Aces, written by Nicholas Millman of http://www.aviationofjapan.com. Since the book has meanwhile been published, I'd like to show you a few samples. Research by Nick and myself. All images © Osprey Publishing. Ki-61-I Otsu of the 78th Sentai: Ki-61-I Tei of the 244th Sentai Detail of the score board: This graphic gives you an idea of the amount of research that goes into each profile: Ki-61-I Hei of the 56th Sentai: Colourful Ki-100-I Otsu of Akeno's 111th Sentai: Ki-100-I Otsu of the 5th Sentai: A close-up of the tail unit and "Nine-headed Dragon" inscription: A Ki-100-I Ko of the 59th Sentai with P-51 victory marking under the cockpit and 3rd Chutai markings on both vertical and horizontal tail planes: Sample line drawing of a Ki-100-I Otsu: For those who are on Facebook, I have an artwork page at https://www.facebook.com/AviationArt.Aero and a group dedicated to the Ki-61/100 at https://www.facebook.com/groups/Ki61Tony/ Many thanks for looking! Ronnie Olsthoorn
  11. Hi mates, How do the available Kawasaki Ki-61 kits compare in 1:72 scale? Hasegawa, DML, Fine Molds, RS (I think we can leave out the old Revell kit and others of that ilk). Short nose, long nose, fastback, etc. I'm not finding a lot of reviews on-line, but that just may be me today. Any and all advice is appreciated! Cheers, Bill
  12. I am bound and determined to get through my shelf of doom kits and clear off some builds. This is the third Ready for Inspection I posted today. This is the Hasegawa 1/32 Kawasaki Ki-61-1 Otsu (Tony) Shinten Seikutai. The build thread is here http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234963835-ki-61-hien;-done/. The kit was a delight to put together. There was just enough detail to make it look good, but nothing overboard that would never be seen. The only issue I had was self-induced when somehow, I lost one of the main landing gear struts. How I did this I don’t know, but SAC metal undercarriage came to the rescue. It looks exactly the same as the kit strut and fits in exactly the same manner. I did this kit to practice/learn to airbrush. (A black and terrible art that is fighting me every step of the way. Once I take a baby step forward, and I am then thrown down to the ground and pushed back a yard by the demons that control air brushing and scoff at my learning this evil, mystical voodoo.) Although for this kit, the paint went down well, even the silver under belly. I just barely weathered this plane to give it a not factory fresh, but not that far from it. I gave it some scraps and scratches, and a coat of dirt, but not the extreme weathering seen on some Japanese planes. That I will reserve for the ZM Raiden that is still being built. Here is the finished product. And here it is in its new resting place. As always, all comments welcome.
  13. Kawasaki Ki-61 Type I-TEI, #5262, Chofu, April 1945, Pilot: 244th Senai commander Capt. Teruhiko Kobayashi (reserve a/c) Kit: Hasegawa (in the meantime clearly superseded by Fine Molds and RS Models) Photo-etched parts: Eduard Wheels with rubber tires: Equipage Decals: Life Like Decals “244th Sentai Pt.2” Built in 1997 and finished initially as that dubious "Shamrock Tony" much discussed around 2000. Partially repainted and completely re-decalled in 2004. Although the level of painting and weathering leaves something to be desired being obviously below that of my more recent models presented here and the exact colours might remain somewhat controversial, lot of corrections and extra detail (wheel wells,ventral radiator, drop tanks - just to mention a few...) were done and so I dare to present it to your attention...
  14. Ki-61 Hien "Tony" 1:72 Revell The Kawasaki Ki-61 Hein or "Tony" was used by the Imperial Japanese Army air Force in WWII. This was the only mass produced Japanese fighter to use an inline liquid cooled engine. Production aircraft would use a Kawasaki licensed DB 601 engine. The Ki-61 was a more lightly armed fighter for general duties rather than its more heavily armed cousin the Ki-60. The ki-61 looked so different from normal Japanese designs that American pilots first reported combat against Japanese Bf 109's and Italian designed fighters. One of the main problems was that the DB 601 engine required a degree of manufacturing sophistication not normally seen with other Japanese engines and reliability suffered from this. Initial encounters with Allied aircraft caught pilots off guard though as they were not able to dive escape like they had with the lighter Japanese fighters. In addition unlike other Japanese fighters the Ki-61 had self sealing fuel tanks and was not a "flammable" as the other fighters. However increasing Allied numbers coupled with larger attacks on the Japanese forces negated many of the advantages. Due to desperation in the latter part of the war Ki-61's were stripped of armament and used in ramming attacks on American B-29's. Only three know airframes are now know to exist. The Kit The kit is a re-release by Revell from the original Revell USA moulds as evidenced by "Revell Inc Venice CAL" moulded onto the underside of the topleft wing.. The original was released way back in 1963 so is older than the reviewer! On the whole the moulding of the kit is actually quite good considering the time frame. Surface detail consists of fine raised panel line and rivets, with some recessed detail on the wings tail. There are a couple of sink marks on the lower wing where the pins are to slot into the holes on the top wing. Also a couple on the upper wing where the landing gear attachment points are. The modeller will not be able to do much with these which will not remove the surface detail. There is a little flash on some of the parts but its not too bad. Construction starts by placing the pilot on his seat like part. This,the tail wheel and propeller boss are added to the fuselage and it is sealed up. Next the Exhausts, intake and tail planes are added. The wings are a conventional single part lower and double upper. These are constructed and added to the fuselage. The radiator is then added to the underside. The wing assembly is added then to the fuselage. Landing gear is added along with the gear doors for the main and tail wheels. In all a simple build. Decals The decals look good for this, they are matt and have very little carrier film. They say "Made In Italy" so can we assume Cartograf? One decal option is provided with the kit. cn 3295 Commander T Kobayashi, 244th Sentai, Japan 1945. Conclusion The kit is from a bygone era, when toolings were simple, the detail sparse, and the target market were boys with their pocket money that would build, paint and play with the kit the same day. Its re-release into a market that has moved on appreciably in the last 50 years could be better understood if it were the only moulding of the Ki-61 in this scale, but as it isn't, reboxing it with new decals does little to endear it to the discerning modeller, if they aren't approaching the purchase with their eyes opened as to its failings. Neither is it a suitable kit for a novice, so It would seem that it is most likely to find favour as a trip down memory lane to relive the glory days of your youth. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit
  15. Kawasaki Ki-100-I Koh (Tony) 1:48 Hasegawa History Originally powered by a Kawasaki Ha-140 inline engine and designated the Ki-61 the aircraft was redesigned in October 1944 to be fitted with a Mitsubishi Ha-112 twin row radial engine and re-designated the Ki-100. The ability to fit a wide radial into a narrow fuselage came from studying an imported Fw-190. At first, there were problems with the aircraft now being found to be very tail-heavy, but the removal of a large lead counterbalance, which had been placed in the Ki-61-II-KAI's rear fuselage to balance the increasingly heavy Ha-140 engine, restored the center of gravity (cg). As a result, on 1 February 1945, the new model was flown for the first time. Without the need for the heavy coolant radiator and other fittings required for a liquid-cooled engine, the Ki-100 was 329 kg (725 lb) lighter than the Ki-61-II, reducing the wing loading from 189 kg/m² (38.8 lb/ft²) to 175 kg/m² (35.8 lb/ft²). This had an immediate positive effect on the flight characteristics, enhancing landing and takeoff qualities as well as imparting increased manoeuvrability and a tighter turning circle. The army general staff was amazed by the flight characteristics of the plane, which surpassed the Hien's in all but maximum speed (degraded by a maximum of 29 km/h [18 mph] by the larger area of the radial engine's front cowling), and the model was ordered to be put in production as the Army Fighter Type 5. The company's name was Ki-100-1-Ko. All of the airframes were remanufactured from Ki-61-II Kai and Ki-61-III airframes; the integral engine mount/cowling side panel was cut off the fuselage and a tubular steel engine mount was bolted to the firewall/bulkhead. Many of the redundant fittings from the liquid-cooled engine, such as the ventral radiator shutter actuator, were still kept. The first 271 aircraft, or Ki-100-1-Ko, with the raised "razorback" rear fuselage were rolled out of the factory between March and June 1945. A further 118 Ki-100 I-Otsu were built with a cut-down rear fuselage and new rear-view canopy from May through to the end of July 1945. This version also featured a modified oil cooler under the engine in a more streamlined fairing. The engine was reliable in contrast to the mechanical nightmares of the Nakajima Ki-84, Kawasaki Ki-61, and Kawanishi N1K-J that kept many aircraft grounded. Although slow in level flight for 1945, unlike most Japanese fighters, the Ki-100 could dive with P-51 Mustangs and hold the speed on pullout. Two problems which hampered the effective employment of Japanese fighters towards the end of the war were unreliable electrical systems; that of the Ki-100 were less problematic than most other aircraft types, although the fuse-boxes caused problems; and poor radio communications, which was generic throughout the war. The armament was two fuselage-mounted 20 mm Ho-5 cannons, each with 200 rpg. These were complemented by two wing-mounted 12.7 mm (.50 in) Ho-103 machine guns with 250 rpg. Army units to be equipped with this model included the following Sentai: 5th, 17th, 18th, 20th, 59th, 111th, 112th, 200th and 244th and the 81st Independent Fighter Company. Along with the previously named Army air units, pilots were trained through the Akeno and Hitachi (Mito) Army Flying Schools. Many of the Akeno and Hitachi instructors, who were often seconded from operational units, flew combat missions (this deployment was a notable spreading out of the very few fighters that were operational, but many of these wings were only partially re-equipped). The Ki-100 made its combat debut on the night of 9 March 1945 and suffered its first loss on 7 April 1945, when a Ki-100 flown by Master Sergeant Yasuo Hiema of the 18th Sentai was shot down by a B-29 after "attacking the formation again and again". Allied aircrews soon realised that they were facing a formidable new fighter. Although far fewer Ki-100s were available than the Ki-84s, it was perceived to be one of the most important fighters in the inventory. However, during interception of the high-flying B-29s (the B-29 raids soon became low-level missions) the new Japanese fighters struggled as the Ha-112-II engine performance decreased at high altitudes. The most effective way to attack the Superfortress was by making very dangerous head-on attacks, changing their approach path as they neared the bombers. A failure while attempting this was deadly, because of the concentration of defensive fire from the bombers. In this type of combat, the Navy's Mitsubishi J2M Raiden was superior. An overall assessment of the effectiveness of the Ki-100 rated it highly in agility, and a well-handled Ki-100 was able to outmanoeuvre any American fighter, including the formidable P-51D Mustangs and the P-47N Thunderbolts which were escorting the B-29 raids over Japan by that time, and was comparable in speed, especially at medium altitudes. In the hands of an experienced pilot, the Ki-100 was a deadly opponent and, together with the Army's Ki-84 and the Navy's Kawanishi N1K-J, the only other Japanese fighters being able to defeat the latest Allied types. The Model The original version of this kit was released in 1996 but other than the 1999 release of the re-tooled version with the cut down rear fuselage there isn’t any other information on the provenance of the moulds. But, judging on the simple nature of the build it looks to date from the original. That said, if this kit is from the original moulds then they are holding up very well. There is no sign of flash or sink marks and only a few moulding pips. On the inside of each wing tip there are a number of small nodules which will need removing to ensure a good fit. The six sprues of grey styrene and three sprues of clear are very well moulded with finely reproduced panel lines and fasteners. The styrene does appear to be rather soft, so be gentle when sanding and filing. The instructions are well printed, clear and easy to read. The build takes place over twelve operations and looks fairly straight forward. The build begins with the cockpit, which consists of the floor, seat back, seat bucket, seat adjustment lever, rudder pedals, and front bulkhead. Before the cockpit can be fitted to the fuselage, the two side walls need to be installed, along with the hydraulic valve control box, (most parts are actually labelled in the instructions), on the port side wall. With these and the cockpit fitted the instrument panel, with associated decal is fitted to the underside of the coaming. Also fitted at this stage are the upper cannon barrels, exhausts, oil cooler intake, single piece engine cylinders, and gearbox cover. The fuselage halves can then be closed up. To complete the fuselage the cowling nose ring and cannon troughs are attached. The single piece lower wing and two upper wing sections are joined together, after which they can be fitted to the fuselage, along with the horizontal tail planes. Each main undercarriage is made up of a single piece oleo, including the scissor link, single piece main wheel/tyre and the outer bay door. Also constructed at this point are the two drop tanks, each made up of two halves and the pylon. With the model on its back the main undercarriage can be fitted along with the inner bay doors and their associated retraction links, single piece tail wheel, belly fairing, drop tanks and oil cooler exhaust door. The final parts to be attached are the three piece propeller, consisting of the three bladed prop, back plate and spinner, the rear decking after of the cockpit, including radio and headrest, single piece canopy, aerial, pitot probe and landing light cover. Other than painting, the build is complete. Decals The Hasegawa printed decals look pretty good, although perhaps a tad thick, so will need some softener and setting solution to get them to bed down properly. Register is good as in the opacity, and there isn’t much in the way of carrier film. Two aircraft are depicted on the decals, both flying with the 59th Flight Regiment, aircraft No 47 and aircraft No. 153 Conclusion I’ve usually chosen the Ki-61 as one of my favourite Japanese aircraft and didn’t realise the Ki-100 was derived from it. That said it’s a good looking aircraft and will look great next to the inline engined variant. It isn’t a complex kit by any stretch of the imagination, but with a nice paint job, it will look good in any collection. Recommended Review sample courtesy of UK distributors for
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