Kawasaki Ki-61-Id Hien - (Tony)

Published: June 6th, 2018     
Product Image
Box Art
Reviewed by: 
Blaine Singleton, IPMS# 50734
Scale: 1/72
Company: Tamiya
Price: $21.99
Product / Stock #: 60789

History

The Hien was notable not just as the sole Japanese fighter in the Pacific War with a liquid-cooled engine, it also fought numerous battles against incoming B-29's in defense of the Japanese home islands. In December 1940 Kawasaki Aerospace Company produced a prototype 1,175hp engine, Ha-40, a licensed version of the Daimler-Benz DB 601 engine. This liquid-cooled engine was more powerful and had less aerodynamic impact than comparably-sized air-cooled engines. Engine production could not keep up with airframe production so eventually a radial engine was fitted to the airframe and the aircraft designated the Ki-100.

In the Box

Instructions

The instruction booklet is divided into five pages of clearly marked parts and their construction sequence. Illustrations for the parts and their construction sequence were very clear and crisp. The instructions contained 12 separate steps to complete the model. Included with the instructions is a drawing for paint and decal applications for two paint schemes of the aircraft.

Sprues

Contained in the box were two different sprues molded in light grey. Panel lines were very scale-like. The fuselage has inscribed panel lines and access hatches. Detailing of the parts was very nice and crisp. There was one clear sprue for the canopy and landing light. There is no option to build the canopy in an open position.

Decal Sheet

The sheet is printed by Tamiya and is very clear and thin. The decal sheets included decals for two different models of the Tony, instrument panel, seatbelt, and green camo to be applied to the whole model if that is the style you wish to build. The green camo decals come in a separate "Detail-Up Part Series" package allowing for the base coat of a metal finish applied, then the entire green camo via decals.

Building the Model

Cockpit

The instrument panel has raised lines to indicate the instrument locations. They are good enough to paint the panel and come back with a dry brush method to make them stand out, or you have the option to use the supplied decals to cover the panel.

Cockpit Painting

I chose to spray Mission Models black primer over the whole cockpit area and sides of the fuselage. I came back and painted the area with Mission Models Yellow Zinc Chromate shot at an angle. I did not spray a heavy coat of yellow to allow some of the black primer to show through as a little shadow effect. After that dried I sprayed the whole area with Alclad Aqua Gloss. Using Tamiya Panel Liner Dark Brown, I could highlight areas of the cockpit.

Main Gear / Wheel Wells

The wheel wells for the main landing gear had some detail that was brought out with Tamiya panel liner after I sprayed the wheel wells with Mission Models Yellow Zinc Chromate.

Propeller and Hub

I sprayed the propeller with Mission Models Japanese Prop Brown and tipped the blades with kit-supplied yellow decals.

Final Assembly

I cleaned the clear canopy parts with denatured alcohol and dipped them in Future and let sit for 24 hours, then dipped again, and let stand for 48 hours. The canopy clear sections were masked with AIZU #2 7mm tape around the inside of the canopy frames and then the middle clear area was filled with liquid mask.

Aircraft construction went extremely well, all the parts fit with just a tad of C/A putty required by the radiator, other than that it was a breeze. Easy construction.

Painting

I decided to paint the model in the Dark Green version of the kit from the 19thAir Group Luzon, Philippines, 1945. I primed the model with Mission Models white 60%, mixed with a poly10 mix 40% and 4 drops of Liquitex Flow Aid. Once the primer dried for 24 hours, I gently "rubbed" the primer with a wet 4000 grit finishing sponge to smooth the surface.

The first layer of paint I applied was the underside which I chose to use Mission Models Dark Aluminum. The paint when applied will show pre-shading if you choose. Figure on spraying 4 light dry coats of the Dark Aluminum before you get the coverage you want. Between each layer of paint give it a couple of minutes to off gas and the body of the paint will change by smoothing out. Once the Dark Aluminum was applied I let it dry for 24 hours.

The final layer of paint was applied with Mission Models Deep Green Japanese WWII paint 60% and 40% poly10 mix, I let that paint dry for another 24 hours. I sprayed the model with two coats of Mission Models Gloss mix, 60% clear gloss and 40% mission thinner and let that dry for another 24 hours to give the decals a nice surface to stick to.

Landing Gear

The struts of the landing gear were sprayed with Mission Models Dark Aluminum having attached the parts to a paint board of wood with Sticky putty. I then weathered them with Tamiya dark brown panel liner. Tires for the aircraft were sprayed with Mission Models Paint Tire Black and weathered with grey dust pigments by Vallejo.

Decals

Before applying the decals, I make sure to spray at least 2 coats of Mission Models clear gloss on the model and let it dry for 24 hours. When all the decals are applied I then sprayed the model with three more gloss coats of Mission Clear to help blend the decals with the rest of the model's surface. These decals were applied very easily and came off their backing paper in about 30 seconds. I used MicroSol and MicroSet for decal setting solutions.

Weathering

Tamiya Black panel liner was used for the edges of flight controls. Panel lines access hatches and covers were highlighted with Tamiya dark brown panel liner.

Summary

During construction, all the parts fit together very well and very little C/A putty was used. This model came together better than any other model I have built.

The model gets excellent marks for:

  • Detail
  • Engineering
  • Fit
  • Enjoyment from building this kit

The cockpit is highly detailed and it was a shame that the canopy could not be built in the open position. All the nice detail could not be seen under the canopy.

Thank you to Tamiya and IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review this model.

  • Overhead view
    Overhead view
  • Underside
    Underside
  • Front view
    Front view
  • Right side
    Right side
  • Cockpit
    Cockpit