JGSDF TYPE 10 Tank Photoetch (Tamiya kit)

Published: June 29th, 2017     
Product Image
Product image
Reviewed by: 
Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/48
Company: Hauler
Price: $16.00
Product / Stock #: HLX48379

This photo etched brass and nickel set is designed for Tamiya's 1/48th scale JGSDF Type 10 modern tank, kit 32588 in the Tamiya line: https://www.tamiyausa.com/items/plastic-model-series-20/1-48-scale-milit...

Tamiya's line of 1/48th scale military vehicle kits are designed to be easy to assemble, in that they are brilliantly engineered for excellent fit of parts, the parts count is relatively low, and they lack any sort of photo etched parts commonly seen in many recently released armor model kits.

Hauler's PE set for the Tamiya kit is almost diametrically opposed. In many instances, its use requires the modeler to carefully remove various details from the Tamiya kit, and then fold up, often origami style, lots of parts. Often tiny parts. This set is a carpet monster's delight, and there are dozens and dozens of tiny little PE grab handles, for instance, that need to be cut off the frets with extreme caution (to avoid damaging them), and then ever so carefully picked up with pointed tweezers, and put into place on the model. One false move, and they are flying through the air, and into the carpet, never to be seen again.

Hauler starts the modeler off utilizing this set by constructing a replacement rear hull exhaust louver unit. The large rear hull part in the Tamiya kit, Part B10, needs to be cut up and the center section removed. Great care is obviously required here to make the cuts just so, and then glue the plastic bits retained onto the back of the hull. Next comes the replacement Hauler louvers. A large part, Hauler B7, is bent up origami style. A photo etched "hold and fold" tool is a must here. PE Part B7 creates the "shell" of the louver unit, and then the modeler must bend to fit an additional 11 individual parts to make up the "guts" of the exhaust louver. Everything must be very carefully aligned, or it will neither fit the model properly nor look good. Hopefully finding success at the start, the modeler then moves onto the turret fixtures.

Firstly, the Type 10 tank has lots of little grab handles festooned about its turret. Tamiya depicts these as little raised "lumps", while Hauler instructs the modeler to carefully scrape/sand off the lumps, and replace them with tiny one-piece grab handles. These grab handles are: A/ extremely tiny, almost like spider web. B/ attached to the fret in two spots, requiring the modeler to cut them off by applying just enough pressure to remove them, but not so much pressure as to distort their shape. C/ once off the fret, they must be ever so carefully attached to the plastic Tamiya turret with the barest amount of adhesive, all the while keeping the PE part from flying away off the end of the tweezers and into the carpet. Some might argue that grab handles should be round, while PE parts are flat, but with a light misting of primer, they should "round out" somewhat?

Hauler also provides the modeler with a series of flat panel parts with raised detail portraying the various nuts and bolts seen on these panels on the real tank. The key is to get the panel parts off the PE fret without warping the parts, as they need to be applied dead flat to the Tamiya turret parts. Wherever on the real vehicle there is also a grab handle on these panels, Hauler has created the PE panel parts with little holes, making attachment of the grab handles very easy in this instance. Provided you can get the grab handle off the fret without damaging it, something given their small size is fraught with danger.

Around the base of the Type 10's turret, are a series of hinged doors. Each door has what appear to be two locking handles, and also three additional grab handles/tie downs. Hauler instructs the modeler to scrap off the molded-on grab handle "lumps", while only partially removing the locking handle lumps. All to be replaced by tiny little PE parts. And there are a couple of dozen of both that need to be removed from their frets, lined up symmetrically, and carefully glued in place. Hauler provides a little PE drill jig to enable the modeler to line things up appropriately, utilizing a drill bit with a 0.2mm tip!!

Next comes detailing of the commander's turret top exterior machine gun. Detail needs to be sanded/scraped off the Tamiya parts, and 10 very small PE parts require rolling, being bent, and generally oragami'ed into shape. With extreme care and dedication to the task, all these parts can be fashioned together to make a very nice machine gun.

Now comes the turret basket: fashioning one large and one smaller single piece mesh part, and fitting them carefully into the Tamiya kit's plastic basket frame. Fairly easy to handle, but the mesh is very fine, so be careful when painting the model, to make sure the mesh doesn't get clogged with excess primer and paint.

Then comes the hull headlight guards. Plastic needs removing from the Tamiya parts, and then the spider web thin headlight guards need careful removal from their frets, ever so carefully bent to shape, and then with the merest hint of glue, attached to the hull. There are also screens for the lower hull front lights, and these turned out to be the easiest parts in the whole PE set to install!

Finally comes the installation of the rear hull deck tool holder parts. Fairly straight forward, although once again plastic needs removing from the kit parts, in order to accurately install the PE parts. Nothing too difficult, though once again the parts are very small.

This brass and nickel photo etched set from Hauler is not for the faint of heart. It is loaded with extremely fine tiny parts, as well as larger parts that need very carefully bending and folding to get the best results from them. A fair amount of sanding and scraping is required of the Tamiya parts, to make way for the replacement PE parts. For those of you who are willing to put in the care and attention to detail required of such PE sets, then this Hauler set will allow you to take a very nice Tamiya kit, and make it much more detailed. I can highly recommend this Hauler set, but only if the modeler has had practice using PE already, due to the tiny size of many of the 1/48th scale parts included in this set. My sincere thanks to Hauler for providing IPMS USA the opportunity to review this product.

  • Kit contents
    Kit contents
  • Exhaust area
    Exhaust area
  • Left side
    Left side
  • Rear view
    Rear view
  • Right side
    Right side