Kits

Reviews of scale model kits.

Finnish Army K9FIN "Moukari"

Published: March 13th, 2018     
Finnish Army K9FIN "Moukari"
Reviewed by: Gino Dykstra, IPMS# 11198
Scale: 1/35
Company: Academy

I didn't know this when I started working on this review model, but the K9 is NOT an indigenous design from Finland, but is a South Korean design intended to replace their aging M109 self-propelled howitzers. Finland has a long history of buying military equipment from abroad and making it their own, and this is a good example. First operational in South Korea in 1999, it was picked up by Finland shortly thereafter. Capable of hurling a 155mm shell some 50+ miles, it certainly has proven to be an upgrade from Finland's older SP artillery types.

Israel IAI Kfir C2/C7

Published: March 12th, 2018     
Israel IAI Kfir C2/C7
Reviewed by: Dave Morrisette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: 1/48
Company: AvantGarde Model Kits

A little history on this kit. When AMK first issued this kit, Kfir aficionados noticed that the coke bottle shape of the fuselage was not quite looking right. IPMS/USA reviewed the kit last year.

You can see the shape is flat. SO, AMK fixed it and with this new release, the subtle shape is there. Fantastic!

Inside the box, you get 11 sprues of well done grey parts, a clear sprue and 20 weapons all molded as one price and stacked. More on that later. You get a superb decal sheet with marking for six planes:

  • Kfir C2, SMF5201, 10th Fighter Squadron, Sri Lanka AF, Katunayake AB, 2011
  • Kfir C7, #543, "Zohar", The Arava Guardians Squadron, Israeli AF, 1990
  • Kfir C2, NA401AX, ATAC, USA
  • Kfir C2, FAE 905, 2113 Squadron, Ecuadorian AF, 1998
  • Kfir C7, FAC 3043, 111 Squadron, Columbian AF

Note that some of these are C2 versions (Sri Lanka, ATAC and Ecuadorian) while the remaining two are C7 versions. There are a lot of differences so choose up front and make notes as needed on the excellent decal sheet. I chose a Columbian C7 from the 111th Squadron.

M1A2 Abrams SEP V2 TUSK II

Published: February 28th, 2018     
M1A2 Abrams SEP V2 TUSK II
Reviewed by: Marc Blackburn
Scale: 1/35
Company: Academy

Academy has released an update of their previously released M1A1 kit with the release of a SEP V2/TUSK II kit. Based largely on the M1A2 kit (no. 13298) released in 2016, this version provides some updates. Whereas the previous kit provided three different variants, this kit provides two. They appear to be same vehicle, one with the TUSK add-ons and the other with them removed. The only other difference between the two vehicles is the paint scheme, one is desert sand and the other largely in NATO green. For this build, I prefer the cleaner lines of the traditional Abrams, so I am going to focus on the SEP V2 variant rather than the TUSK.

Kawanishi H8K1 Type 2 Flying Boat Model 11

Published: February 25th, 2018     
Kawanishi H8K1 Type 2 Flying Boat Model 11
Reviewed by: Mike Kellner, IPMS# 30864
Scale: 1/72
Company: Hasegawa

When I heard about a new Emily I was excited, as I had built the 1972 issue which had fit problems and a canopy that was too wide. I had sanded off most of the raised detail and scribed in new ones, but overall I remembered it as a tough build.

However, the price of 149.95 for Hasegawa's new issue seemed steep, and as I had already built one Emily, thought I would pass on another. But! when I was availed of this review opportunity, I was all in to try another.

This one turned out to be an almost easy build. Molded in light gray plastic with a four-piece fuselage having a separate bow section, it all comes in a nice sturdy box with good instructions. The only exception was the many decks in the nose section which weren't depicted quite clearly. The kit also includes a complete set of crew figures with separate heads and arms; they're well-done but I elected not to use them.

Nakajima Ki43-II & Ki44-II with Fuel Truck (2 kits) Limited Edition

Published: February 19th, 2018     
Nakajima Ki43-II & Ki44-II with Fuel Truck (2 kits) Limited Edition
Reviewed by: Clare Wentzel, IPMS# 1096
Scale: 1/72
Company: Hasegawa

History

This Limited Edition kit from Hasegawa allows the modeler to produce an interesting diorama related to the Akeno Flying School as it existed in December of 1943. The Akeno Flying School was located on the island of Honshu, south of Nagoya and east of Osaka. It was called the Supreme Flight Training School for the Imperial Japanese Army. Lots of photos of aircraft that were used during training at Akeno include many fighters from the Ki-27 to the Ki-100. By December, 1943, Japan was seriously in need of new pilots. A series of conflicts with opponents across the area of operations had ground down the Japanese Army Air Service and replacements were desperately needed from schools like Akeno. This limited edition kit combo features two aircraft, a Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa and a Ki-44 Shoki, plus a TX40 Fuel Truck. Also included are several figures and a small four wheeled push cart.