Monday 24 June 2024

50th Sentai Hayabusa Duo in 1/48 by Stéphane Sagols Part 1

In addition to continuing colour discussions and more on Babs kits a season of Army fighter models begins with this dynamic duo of Hiko Dai 50 Sentai Ki-43-I Hayabusa superbly realised from the Hasegawa 1/48 scale kits by Stéphane Sagols. Both are aircraft flown by notable pilots, Isamu Sasaki's Tobi (Black Kite) and the controversial Satoshi Anabuki's Fubuki  (Snowstorm). First up is Tobi.

Stéphane built the models from the box but added some AML photo-etched parts for the wheel wells and Eduard seat belts in the cockpits. He also added wiring in the cockpits and ignition wires to the engine.

Minor problems attended to were filling and reinforcing the wing to fuselage joint at the leading edge and filling joins on the aileron as the wing tips on this kit are separate mouldings. He also filled the landing light aperture as the Ki-43-I did not have a landing light in the wing leading edge. Finally he reduced the thickness of the interior canopy frame for a better fit to the fuselage.

The cockpit interiors, wheel wells and landing gear inner doors were painted with Mr Hobby H63 Metallic Blue Green to represent the aotake finish. AK Interactive 2264 (Air Series) Midori iro was applied to the exterior upper surfaces with white added for the fabric control surfaces. 

Under surfaces were finished with AK Interactive Xtreme Metal AK479 Aluminium with AK488 Matte Aluminium for fabric control surfaces. The anti glare panel was applied with AK Interactive AK2066 Anti-Glare Blue-Black. The 50th used a non-standard Chutai colour sequence with red for the 1st, yellow for the 2nd and white for the 3rd. The small hinomaru on the fuselage was part of the unit's lightning flash, applied before the fuselage hinomaru appeared on other Army fighters as a standard marking.

Sgt Isamu 'Skilled' Sasaki was one three aces in the 50th dubbed 'The Three Musketeers' with Anabuki and Yukio Shimakawa. Sasaki flew the Ki-27 and claimed his first victory over the Philippines in December 1941 subsequently serving with the 50th in Burma for more than two years, claiming 32 victories. He returned to Japan and the Army's Flight Test Centre in April 1944 but continued to fly on operational sorties against the B-29s, claiming six shot down and three damaged. He was promoted to Warrant Officer and awarded the Bukosho, surviving the war to serve in the Japanese Self Defence Air Force (JSDAF) and rising to the rank of Major.

Image credit: All photos © 2024 Stéphane Sagols.

1 comment:

WK said...

What a great model Stephane, thanks for sharing it with Nick and his readers. I really like the faded finish of the Midori Iro along with the reserved chipping and the fuel stains around the filler caps.