Monday 24 December 2012

Best Wishes for Christmas and the New Year

To all friends and readers. Thank you for your continued support, correspondence and contributions during 2012. Peace and Goodwill to All.

Image credit: © 1936 'No Landing Place' by Sqn Ldr J S Millman, MBE., RAF.

Wednesday 19 December 2012

Airfix Dinah Re-pop in 2013

The venerable Airfix 1/72nd scale Mitsubishi Ki-46-II "Dinah" recce-twin is due to make a re-appearance during 2013, complete with two new warpaint options. This is a good but simple kit of a fine looking subject and a welcome re-release, although I understand that there has been no revision or updating of the mould. Hopefully some of the aftermarket boys will dip their toes in the water and provide a pair of accurate spinners and props to replace the kit's un-typical items and perhaps if we are really lucky new cowlings and separate engines. Airwaves already market a photo-etch set for the interior (shown below) which includes flap details.

The beautifully moulded Hasegawa kit, quite hard to find now, suffers from a slight hump-back shape that spoils its looks and if it re-appears in the UK again will probably be prohibitively expensive. The LS Ki-46 series now marketed by Arii and still available from Japan at a very competitive £6 is another good kit but trickier to assemble due to the provision of different versions, the nose joint in particular being difficult to disguise and the position of the pilot's seat to windscreen and instrument panel problematic. Another issue with the LS Ki-46 family, although it doesn't affect the Ki-46-II, is that the Ki-46-III makes no provision for the larger engine cowlings of that version. The engines and cowlings are the same in all the kits. What you get in effect is a Ki-46-III fuselage married to Ki-46-II wings and engines. The Airfix Ki-46-II, picked up from your LHS and with a little work and TLC, including re-scribing panel lines if that floats your boat, will still put a good looking model of this charismatic twin on your desktop.

Also of potential interest to Japanese aircraft modellers in the UK, Humbrol are expanding their range in 2013 and bringing production back to the UK for quality control purposes. RLM 02 Grau (Matt 240 in enamel and acrylic) is included in a new series of 13 welcome Luftwaffe colours which, going by the colour chip on their website, might be useful for the Ki-46 kit as well as their recent A6M2! Also due from Humbrol is a new series of enamel washes and weathering powders. 

Image credits: © 2012 Airfix & Hornby Hobbies Ltd; © Airwaves via Hannants