This is the 1/48 scale Hasegawa Ki-45-KAI in the markings of the 3rd Chutai/53rd Sentai based at Matsudo airfield, November 1944.
A full build article of this model appears in March ’09 issue 161 of Tamiya Model magazine.
I have added a bit of grain to these photos through Photoshop just to take away that ‘digital sharpness’.
This was a commission build of one of my favourite I.J.A. aircraft.
This is a beautiful kit with virtually no vices. (None that I can remember anyhow.)
Hydraulic lines were added to the undercarriage legs and an ignition wiring harness was added to the front of each of the Ha 102 engines.
The interior is straight out of the box. I think I probably added a simple scratch-built harness to the pilot’s seat but can’t be sure.
I was so impressed with this kit that I built one for myself.
I built this one in the colours of the aircraft flown by 1st Lt Takumi Yamamoto of the 8th Hakkou-tai, ‘Kinnou-tai’, Special Attack Squadron, based at Nielsen Air Base in the Philippines.
Lt Yamamoto flew this Toryu on its Kamikaze mission on December 7th 1944. This and eight other Nicks were destroyed while attacking U.S. forces in Leyte Gulf.
I built this kit back in the ’90s when it was first released. At the time I was very proud of the result which, if memory serves me correctly, won me a first place trophy at my local IPMS monthly competition.
After sitting in open shelves for a dozen or more years the old girl was looking pretty dusty and sad but still relatively intact so I decided it was time for a facelift.
The type of scheme that I chose was one that had fascinated me for many years—ever since the mid ’70s when I purchased a slim publication on the Arado Ar 234 which contained a photo of a rather battered Ar 234 standing in a damaged hanger at Manching airfield. Behind this aircraft are standing three Ju 88 G night fighters, two of which have their tails painted with this rather peculiar, dark outline. I always assumed that this paint job was done in an attempt to fool Mosquito pilots into believing that they were in pursuit of an earlier marque of this aircraft or even another Mosquito and the ensuing, if only brief, moment of confusion gave the Luftwaffe pilot time to make an escape. I have never been able to find any other explanation.
After a careful but thorough clean-up of the model and the removal of the old decals the search commenced for some markings. Fortunately Brett came to my rescue by giving me an old set of Ministery of Small Aircraft Production decals which contained the markings for an aircraft carrying this scheme. I can’t remember which NJG this plane belonged to and as I have not been able to find any pics of this subject the paint job is purely speculative. The model was painted in a typical scheme following the method that I believe was used for many late war Luftwaffe night fighters, this being RLM76 lower and vertical surfaces, and a solid coat of RLM 75 Grey Violet on all the upper surfaces and canopy frame. The 76 Light Blue was then sprayed over the Grey Violet leaving irregular patches of the darker colour. These darker patches were toned down a bit with a thin overspray of the RLM76. The tail was carefully masked using Tamiya masking tape and the dark silhouette was then sprayed black. A very thin mix of Tamiya Flat Black and Red Brown was then applied to all panel lines and very gradually built up to form the heavier exhaust and gun dust staining.
The decals were applied and once set the entire model was given a coat of flat clear and she was done. Hope you like it.
This is a test shot of Revell’s new 1/32 Me 109 G-6. The model was built straight from the box by Brett Green and painted and weathered by me. I did add a few enhancements which included a new D/F loop, an FuG 25a ventral aerial, a new wire on the end of the Morane aerial mast, the canopy’s locking handle and retaining wire (with tension spring), the grab handles on the inside of the windscreen frame and the radio aerial wire.
Decals were sourced from Eaglecal and slightly modified to represent a JG 53 Bf 109 G-6/U2 found by advancing American troops at the Henschel Aero Engine Works in Attenbaum near Kassel. I assume that if it was based there it was probably performing factory defence duties or maybe it was just there having a new engine fitted; which I think is the more likely scenario due to the mismatched camouflage on the engine cowling. There are a couple of odd inaccuracies with this kit but these will be dealt with fully by Brett in ADH’s new ‘How To Build’ book (below), which is due out soon and will feature this and at least three other full builds.
Zimmerit. I was supplied with Tamiya’s self adhesive zimmerit but was not happy with the result it gave so I replaced it with my own, using white superfine Milliput and a small screwdriver. This was a very time-consuming job but was worth the extra effort. In this shot you can also see weld beads that were added using stretched sprue softened with liquid cement and textured with the point of a scalpel blade.
This shot shows some of the extra detail added. This includes brass and copper wire replacement hatch handles, hinge bolts cut from plastic rod, hooks for hanging the tow cables made from P\E scrap and a bracket to hang the sledge hammer from plastic card.
With construction complete the model received a coat of dark yellow and the tracks were painted a mixture of Tamiya red brown with a touch of flat black.The contact points of the tracks were coloured with a Prismacolor silver pencil.
The camouflage colours were sprayed quite subtly as per my reference and a bucket from the spares box was appropriately beaten up and hung from the jack bracket. The kit’s string tow cable was replaced with copper twine.
A couple of spare track links were hung from the tow cable hooks on this side.
The tracks, road-wheels and generally all lower areas were liberally coated with a mix of pastel chalk dust and turpentine.
All the raised detail received a very carefully applied wash of oil based black/brown. This included a heavier but no less careful application to the detail on all the running gear.
The spare track links (front and rear) received a very heavy dusting of pastel chalk powder.
Lots of scratches were added with the aid of a very fine brush and a very sharp 6B pencil.
More wear and scratches.
Finished! Or so I thought.
At this point I realised that I had forgotten to apply the tactical number decal to the rear end.
This is the story of how I rejuvenated my 1984 model of one of my favourite Ray Harryhausen monsters.
This is my original paint job, which I was pretty proud of back in 1984. The head, jaw, arms and legs were posable which meant the join lines were very visible. This feature was always unpleasing to my eye.
The original acrylic paint was removed by spraying the entire model with Isopropyl alcohol and scrubbing with an old toothbrush. This process took quite few hours more than I anticipated and resulted in exposing many, tiny air bubble holes, particularly on his arms, which would have to be filled.
Before any filling of the joints was started I decided to put some hair on his legs. This was done by scratching each individual hair into the vinyl, using a panel scribing tool. After many hours a very pleasing result was achieved, but I don’t think I’ll be doing it again in any hurry!
Some manicuring was necessary to make his fingernails more representative of the movie original. This was done using a motor tool set to a fairly slow speed and fitted with a very fine, round dental burr (thanks Alice).
In this and the next two shots his head, jaw, arms and legs have all been glued in position and filled with Milliput epoxy putty. Note also the new Milliput horn tip and dental work.
Some extra warts were added to his back using small drops of CA glue.
The filled joints around his neck and jaw were given a coat of liquid filler to make sure that there were no gaps left. You can also see in this shot the tiny holes on his arms have been filled using Milliput.
After studying the movie for hours the new paint job was applied and he is finished.
He now stands proudly in the bookshelves right next to my ‘Clash of the Titans’ gorgon, Medusa.
Revell 1/72 Focke Wulf FW 200 Condor w/Hs 293 Glide bombs
The Eduard exterior P/E detail set 72 463 was used on this model. This made a big difference, especially the radar antenna!
Hasegawa 1/72 Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X of 455 Squadron R.A.A.F. while based in Scotland.
These aircraft were mainly employed in the anti-shipping role.
Tamiya 1/48 Dornier Do 335
A beautiful kit with very little extra detail added.