Aircraft

Reviews of products for scale aircraft models.

ASF-X Shinden II "Ridgebacks" – Limited Edition

Published: November 4th, 2015     
ASF-X Shinden II "Ridgebacks" – Limited Edition
Reviewed by: Clare Wentzel, IPMS# 1096
Scale: 1:72
Company: Hasegawa

Background

According to the instruction sheet, Taiga Heavy Industries was commissioned in 2008, by the Ministry of Defense to begin development of the ASF-X, a larger interceptor aircraft with various data collecting devices. The basic design was a canard with swept-forward wings similar to the Russian Su-47 Berkut. The design evolved to one with STOL characteristics as well. The design featured twin engines in the over/under configuration while the wing tips, horizontal stabilizers and jet exhausts turn downward for STOL operations.

In reality, this model is based on an aircraft that was developed for the Ace Combat Computer Game. The ASF-X Shinden II was created as exclusive downloadable content for Ace Combat: Assault Horizon. In this case, my reference library did not help to provide details for the build. This version represents the well decorated aircraft used by the 19th Tactical Fighter Squadron – Ridgebacks. Other versions are offered with simpler color and marking schemes.

UH-1Y Canopy Mask

Published: November 3rd, 2015     
UH-1Y Canopy Mask
Reviewed by: Floyd S. Werner, Jr, IPMS# 26266
Scale: 1:48
Company: Eduard

The new Kitty Hawk UH-1Y Venom is an awesome model, but it has lots of clear parts. Lots of clear parts. Masking them is a pain. I should know I did it four times and it took a long time to get it just right.

The masks are provided on a sheet of Kabuki tape that is the best masking material out there, in my opinion. The masks are explained on the instruction sheet. You will have to use liquid mask for the chin bubbles.

Lucky for me this set arrived right when I needed to paint a door that I made a mistake on. I used the set to prevent overspray on the freshly polished clear parts while I repainted the door. All the masks fit their appropriate spots perfectly. And when the masks were pulled off the resulting paint was perfect.

If you are going to build this model I hardly recommend that you use the masks, especially with the amount of clear parts. This will save you time, ease your task considerably and provide great results. I’ve used Eduard’s masks on previous builds and absolutely love them.

Highly recommended

AS.34 Kormoran

Published: November 2nd, 2015     
AS.34 Kormoran
Reviewed by: Paul Brown, IPMS# 24085
Scale: 1/72
Company: Eduard

The AS.34 Kormoran missile is a German developed anti-ship missile. The Kormoran 1 was originally designed in the 1960’s for use by the German Navy and was flown on the F-104 and the Tornado. It was also used by Italy. The Kormoran 2 was an updated version of the Kormoran 1, using the same missile body, but with updated avionics, an improved and larger warhead and better rocket motor to give it longer range.

This is another nice set in Brassin’s weapons range and for a change it is not a US or Russian weapon. The set includes one missile body for each of the Kormoran 1 and for the Kormoran 2. Be sure to check which one you are using as they are slightly different, primarily in the exhaust/nozzle area and in the fairings along the side of the missile bodies. The larger rocket fins are apparently different as they are numbered differently while the smaller steering fins are the same on both missiles.

Kawasaki Ki-100 Type 5 Army Fighter

Published: November 2nd, 2015     
Kawasaki Ki-100 Type 5 Army Fighter
Reviewed by: Keith Gervasi, IPMS# 44177
Scale: 1/72
Company: Aoshima

History

Derived from the Ki-61 Hein “Tony” the Ki-100 flew for the first time in February 1945 and without the need for the heavy coolant radiator and other fittings required for a liquid-cooled engine, was lighter than the Ki-61-II thus reducing the wing loading. This had an immediate positive effect on the flight characteristics, enhancing landing and takeoff qualities as well as imparting increased maneuverability, including a tighter turning circle. Pleased by the flight characteristics of the plane the model was ordered to be put in production and the first 271 of the airframes were remanufactured from Ki-61-II Kai and Ki-61-III airframes. Later 118 of the Ki-100 II with an ‘all around view’ canopy were produced. The Ki-100 was the Imperial Japanese Army’s last fighter and in the hands of a skilled pilot was more than a match for allied fighters.

Kawanishi N1K3-J Shindenkai

Published: November 2nd, 2015     
Kawanishi N1K3-J Shindenkai
Reviewed by: Keith Gervasi, IPMS# 44177
Scale: 1/72
Company: Aoshima

History

The N1K was originally developed as a floatplane for forward land bases but by the time it entered service Japan was on the defensive. Kawanishi engineers had proposed in 1941 that the N1K could be a formidable land-based fighter too and a land-based version N1K1-j (J indicated land based fighter modification of the original floatplane version) was produced as a private venture by the company and first flew in December 1942. Due to it being a mid-wing design (because of the floats & large prop) a new design was begun just 4 days after the first test flight. The major defects being addressed were the wing and long landing gear. The wings were moved to a low position, which permitted the use of shorter, conventional undercarriage, the fuselage was lengthened and the tail redesigned. The first flight was on January 1944 and production of the N1K2-J "Shiden-Kai" (Kai standing for Modified) started in April of that year. The N1K3-J Shiden