Tuesday 1 August 2023

Pat Donahue's Model 22 Zero in Field Camo

Pat Donahue has waited very patiently for over a year for these images of his Solomons Campaign Model 22 Zero in field applied camouflage to be shown here. Here it is as the first of a series of Zero models long pending. And representing a most unusual scheme too, interpreted from a photograph as shown below. When I first saw the images of this model I presumed it to be 1/48 scale but it is in fact the Tamiya 1/72 scale kit which Pat built to the IPMS/USA new Basic Kit Build rules which replaced the older out of the box rules.

Pat added an antenna wire as it is shown in the instructions. The kit decal seat harness was also used, cut closely off the sheet but not immersed in water just carefully draped over the seat with the edges painted in a tan to match the decal colour.

The amber gray airframe colour is a mix of Sovereign Hobbies Colourcoats paint with the green being Xtracolor from Hannants. All markings were painted on, and the kit stencil decals and aftermarket codes were used.

Pat's model represents a Solomon’s based Zero that had been repainted in the field. There was much conflicting information of the model type and tail codes. Some assert that it was a model 22A but all the photos Pat had of this machine and others like it showed no extended cannon barrels. There are many different ideas of the actual tail codes applied and Pat hopes he got it in the ballpark, as the original markings were censored in the photos. He commented that he would pay some real money to see some correctly exposed photos of those field applied schemes other than "105"! And I suspect he is not alone!

A stunning model which belies the small scale and is testimony to Pat's skill. With special thanks to Pat for sharing the images and details of his model and for his patience in waiting so long  for it to appear here. Pat's previous field camouflaged Zero models can be found here and here

Image credits: All model photos © 2023 Pat Donahue; Photo via Pat Donahue. 


Jim Anderson said...

Great job Pat. Your field applied camouflage looks convincing. Appreciate taking the effort and research in portraying this subject from a photograph is noteworthy. The overspray on the yellow ID panels has just the right touch. Skilled use of an airbrush especially in the divine scale! Thank you Nick for the presentation.


Baronvonrob said...

Brilliant workmanship on display!..the airbrush work is very realistic and yet sublime…truly inspiring!

Gratitude to both Pat and Nick !!!

Guillermo said...


Great job, you really apply unusual camouflage that I've never seen before.

Well, I hope you have another to publish soon.



Michael Thurow said...

Excellent modelling, Pat! It's great to see more models in unusual but well-researched schemes. Your choice of colours looks very authentic.

Kevin Bade said...

Flawless. Just incredible in all aspects of building and finishing. Thank you Pat and Nick.

WK said...

Excellent work Pat, this and your previous field camouflaged Zeros are spectacular. I especially appreciate the research you have done with the given sources and trying to mimic it to the best of your abilities. One thing in particular that you did right is to paint and decal the aircraft in factory colours first and only then apply the camouflage. Too many times I see Hinomaru or "no walk" lines apparently painted over field camo. Thanks for sharing this with us and thanks Nick for sharing this on your site with commentary.

Woody K

R. Vieira said...

Outstanding modelling, Pat! Congratulations! Your airbrushing standards are truly superlative. Besides from the research work and all the effort to replicate a subject from a real period photograph in 1/72 scale, the end product finish is both subtle and realistic.
Many thanks to you, for sharing your superior modelling skills with us, and many thanks Nick, for publishing this beautiful model on your blog.

R. Aballe

Alex said...

Difficult scheme but the excellent paint job! Excited the field camouflage. Thanks for sharing.

WilliamR said...

This is an amazing piece of work. It's an overused term but it's difficult take in that this little gem is 1/72nd scale. The interpretation of the photograph is exemplary. Well done Pat.

William Reece

Mark Smith said...

I can add very little, and only echo the superlatives Mr. Reece and others have offered here regarding this project. I like this the best of the three field camo schemes you have presented on A of J, and that's saying something! Thanks, Pat and Nick, beautifully presented.

Mark Smith