One of two recent Rising Decals sets for Japanese bombers, RD72106 offers nine schemes in 1/72 scale for the Mitsubishi G4M1 Type 1 Land-based Attack Aircraft 'Betty', ( 一式陸上攻撃機 - Ichi Shiki Rikujoh Kohgeki-ki) , known as Ichi Shiki Rikko (一式陸攻), all in the early war kumogata (雲形 - cloud shape) camouflage of green and brown.
The nine schemes are as follows:-
- H-324 of Misawa Ku 2nd Chutai based on Saipan in July 1942 in a weathered scheme of D2 Green Black and H2 Brown (Tea colour) over natural metal. H-324 has a broad white fiun stripe and narrow white fuselage band.
- F-352 of 4 Ku 1st Chutai at Rabaul in February 1942 in a weathered scheme of D2 Green Black and H2 Brown (Tea colour) over natural metal with bomb bay doors removed
- K-310 of Kanoya Ku 1st Chutai at Thủ Dầu Một airfield, Indo-China in December 1941 in D2 Green Black and H2 Brown (Tea colour) over natural metal with bomb bay doors removed. Lt Haruki Iki, 3rd Chutai leader flew this 1st Chutai spare aircraft armed with a Type 91 torpedo in the attack on the Royal Navy capital ships HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse
- K-357 of Kanoya Ku 4th Chutai at Davao, Philippines in January 1942 in D2 Green Black and H2 Brown (Tea colour) over natural metal. Both K-310 and K-357 have narrowwhite fuselage bands.
- T-315 of Takao Ku, 1st Chutai at Clark Field, Philippines in March 1942 in a weathered scheme of D2 Green Black and H2 Brown (Tea colour) over natural metal
- T-302 of Takao Ku 1st Chutai at Vunukanau airfield, Rabaul durin 1942 in a weathered scheme of D2 Green Black and H2 Brown (Tea colour) over natural metal. Additional tail codes are included for T-302, T-310, T-311 and T-313 all in the same scheme. All have a white fin leading edge.
The sheet includes sufficient plain hinomaru for two aircraft together with white tail codes, stripes and fuselage bands for the nine options. As they appear on the sheet the hinomaru are not a bright red but rather dull and slightly brownish like the old IPMS 'meatballs'. It remains to be seen how they appear applied over the camouflage colours. Also included are fuselage data plates for two aircraft. The instruction sheet includes suggested upper surface camouflage patterns for the Misawa, Kanoya and Takao Ku aircraft. Suggested paints are Gunze Mr Color # 124 Dark Green (Mitsubishi) for D2 and for the tricky brown a mix of Mr Color paints 40% # 7 Brown + 30% # 4 Yellow + 30% # 6 Green, or to approximate FS 20122 Brown. The brown is a Munsell Yellow Red (YR) but the perception of yellowishness vs reddishness in the undertone is problematic.
A topical choice for the recent and impressive Sword G4M1 kit (box art shown below, with a second 'late version' due for release this month) or to update an older Hasegawa G4M1 in the stash (re-released in April this year as a limited edition with splendid new box art by Kazuhiro Kato and a 1/32 scale metal figure of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto - shown below). With thanks to Mirek of Rising Decals for the review sample.
Image credit: Colour chips © 2023 Aviation of Japan; G4M1 box art © 2023 Sword Models and Hasegawa Corp.; All others © 2023 Rising Decals