Previous posts and comments have touched on the fidelity of shape of the Hasegawa 1/48th Hayabusa. Not the most scientific approach but sufficient to demonstrate how the angles of the line changes on the kit are too great. The apparent tapering of the lower cowl exacerbates the problem. The result is that the model does not capture the true appearance of the original. The elegant beauty of the aircraft is lost. It won't worry everyone but it is certainly enough to put off the Hayabusa buffs!
Image credits (from top): 1 Author's Collection; 2 FAOW 1/72 Bunrin-do; 3 James F Lansdale via j-aircraft.com; 4 & 5 via eBay model builder unknown
If I may add two other comments on this kit.....
Hasegawa molded a recessed area to seat the rear canopy in the fuselage....IMHO this results in an even greater "hunchback" look to the fuselage behind the cockpit.
Also, the way the wing tips are engineered creates an issue with the ailerons.....to remove the seam you need to partially destroy the fabric effect. They did this to facilitate the -I and -II wingtips on the same upper/lower wing parts....A far better solution would have been to mold the wingtips as separate pieces, and also do the same for the ailerons.
I have seen some of these built with great paint finishes which I can appreciate....but the outline of this kit does little to remind me of the actual aircraft....
Gents, I find both your comments rather disturbing, as I have few of those kits in my stash.
Now I must look for possible correction steps.
Which scale drawing set would you recommend? I have both FAOW and Model Graphix books.
Thanks for the additional comments about this kit.
I have some in the stash too so I know how you feel! I suggest that you sell them on eBay and invest in the Fine Molds kits which are readily available and not too expensive. I don't think correction would be straightforward or cost effective. Alternatively use them as suggested by Mark in his comments on the 4 January post as a "parts depot" for the Fine Molds and/or Nichimo kits!
To answer the question about the separate (improved) cowl fronts that were available from Fine Molds...
When new they were available for about 300 yen each, there was one for the -II and -III. I bought one of each....
They also appear in the newer releases of each model, such as the Manchukuo markings.
It is an improvement over the original part...but....sigh. Dare I say that the cowl part that is molded to the fuselage halves is quite accurate for earlier -II's, but not the correct shape for later -IIand all -III versions. The part as molded is quite "cylindrical" in cross section, later versions had a more "barrel" shape to the cowl itself.
As I said earlier....1/48 modelers could sorely use a "definitive" family of Hayabusa....
there might be a cheap solution to the FM cowling problem. The Arii/Otaki Oscars seem to have a reasonable engine cowl. It certainly captures the barrel shape much better than the FM kit. I bought some Otaki Oscars (for about $5) just for their engine cowlings with the intention of grafting them onto the FM kit. With the insertion of the intake cut from either the FM or Hasegawa kits (Has. only fit for parts) I think they are a pretty good representation of a later Oscar cowl. At least much better than the standard FM cowl.
Hi Tim Tam,
Thanks for the excellent suggestion- the ARII/Otaki kits are cheap and to be honest I had totally forgotten about them....
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