1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'

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8 years 5 months ago #1 by Wally
Depending on the availability of code letter & code number decals she'll either be NZ3124 or NZ3116[37]'M'. A Hasegawa P-40 build begins, of course, with trying to create a semblance of complete fuselage using the tail and cockpit sections that join where there are no panel lines. I have found they join much better first-up as fuselage halves than by following the kitset instructions and assembling the whole fuselage and tail before joining them together complete -





This is only the first stage, the tail. My idea is to do fairly 'cementy' joins and use as little filler as possible. All the appropriate M version parts will be attached to each fuselage half first, tail, cockpit rear, exhaust fairing filler & side light (to be sanded smooth). The join still isn't perfect. In my humble opinion it is impossible to get perfect panel line alignment on the starboard half with either the tail or the cockpit rear section. The panel lines are so fine too, and, after B-25 Mitchell, everything is so SMALL! Small areas to sand etc. More pics of the process will follow ...
Cheers, Wally.
PS - I know I shouldn't complain so much about the joins in this kitset. It's vastly superior to anything else and I'm very glad it exists.

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8 years 5 months ago #2 by azaminis
Replied by azaminis on topic Re: 1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'
Good luck with this build mate tbh looking at those joins im glad to be on the watching side.

Kraft durch Freude:Strength through joy.

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8 years 5 months ago #3 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic Re: 1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'
I think I can make the panel joins fractionally better on cementing next time, although it will probably leave slightly more 'gap' in the centre fuselage join, which I would much rather use filler on than these ones. That is the choice one is faced with (in my opinion) with this kitset. I say minimize the panel join work even if it means more work on the central join, which one generally has to do some work on anyhow. So, it came down to a small amount of filler behind the cockpit each side, which cleaned up pretty well. (I gotta get me a scribing tool!) The fuselage joins required no filler at all (which I'm rather proud of).







The cockpit, oil cooler and internal fairings on this kitset are nicely detailed and worth some attention. This is Humbrol acrylic Interior Green, yet another interior colour. What a relief not to have to worry about it's accuracy any more! My oil coolers get a little dry brushing of Tamiya Titan Gold around the rims after Matt Black (inside), Bare Metal (dry brush) and Rust in that order to try to retain some of the mesh look. I used the 'reverse' instruments for the first time and the result is better than the entire panel decals.



Added Eduard PE Seatbelts -







And dinged the drop tank, which I can't resist doing now ...



The cockpit and oil cooler assemblies fit perfectly into the fuselage. It really is a lovely kitset ... which is why the fuselage joins seem to me like such a strange design decision ... this is Hasegawa after all ... not some short run manufacturer. Other WW2 aviation modellers please read my "on the scrounge" posting in 'Model Exchange'. It would be great (for me) to access the code letters by swap rather than having to buy a whole sheet.
See Ya next time, Wally.

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8 years 5 months ago - 8 years 5 months ago #4 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic Re: 1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'
:) What I also do (and recommend doing) with Hasegawa's P-40s is assembling the undercarriage in advance. It is nicely detailed and all fits together and locates really well, which I do first (with the rear struts) and then glue them in place with a pin dipped in Superglue. I find this much easier than trying to glue the parts later when they are already painted. The little side strut is dipped in glue and tweezered into place in the few moments one has before Superglue sets.









Remember: As far as I know (and I have seen this written definitively but can't quote the source) Kittyhawk landing gear DID NOT SPLAY OUTWARDS and was surprizingly upright ... about 90 degrees to the wing lower surface.
All the guidance the Hasegawa 'fit' provides supports this. I locate the rear struts all the way back where the tiny pins on the end of them fit into tiny depressions inside their locator slots. Doing this will elevate the nose of the model nicely (like it is on the real aircraft in photos).
All the major parts assemble nicely although I find the wing-fuselage join quite difficult to all locate and hold in place at once. My response to this dilemma is to glue all the lower locating stuff in place first and then, once nearly set, run Superglue down the upper wing join with a pin and hold it in place. It works okay, just a little cleaning up to do. As predicted, I had some filling to do on the seams, especially the upper cowling, but nothing too major ... and, rapidly and surely, she begins to look like a P-40M Kittyhawk -









Nice touch from Hasegawa being able to turn the rudder either way.
Late last night she got her underside painted with my A/M Neutral Grey (self-mixed), a darker then a lighter shade brushed front-to-rear for (hopefully) a slightly streaky effect. (Probably sounds crazy to all you 'Small Gun' jokers?)





My having fitted the bulbous [radar?] thing (can't think what it is) to the starboard underwing in advance may make the application of white stripes difficult.

Cheers,
Wally.

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Last edit: 8 years 5 months ago by Wally. Reason: Add information

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8 years 5 months ago #5 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic Re: 1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'
Progress -



Shading and the white tail got painted last night and she is ready for gloss clear coat.
She will be NZ3124 at Torokina Dec '43 - Jan '44 with white stripes on the upper wings & fuselage only, white bars added to the wing roundels but not to the fuselage roundels. I just have to find the 'B' decal, which I am pretty sure was a 12" white code letter (what for some reason is commonly called a 45degree code letter), a straightforward 'B' (but I think quite thin?). The nearest I have is J's, K's & H's (from memory) from Classic Airframes Yankee Spitfires MkVc.
Anyone got 2 x 1/48 scale 12" white 'B' decals?
Cheers,
Wally.

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8 years 5 months ago #6 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic Re: 1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'
:ohmy: More progress. I'm going a little heavier on the paint chipping on this one, especially around oft removed panels, inspection hatches, canopy slides and walkways - (strangely it is more apparent to the camera than the naked eye) -








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8 years 4 months ago - 8 years 4 months ago #7 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic 1/48 P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III' NZ3124[B]
Decals finally arrived from the USA. Their postal system is failing I think? This is P-40N-1 Kittyhawk NZ3124 - the only other RNZAF P-40 to match NZ3072 with 6 enemy aircraft destroyed, based on this photograph of NZ3121[H] & NZ3127[V] at Ondonga. Although the photo is undated in 'Air-to-Air' it refers to the combat entry for 9 Jan 1944 -



The aircraft have white stripes and, though they appear narrower than say Ventura decals ones, they are not the original RNZAF type joining the bulbous inner wing leading edge protrusion. The cowling stripe joins the wing stripe and the fuselage stripe is the long version. Consequently neither the Hasegawa 'South Pacific' kit decals nor Ventura's P-40Ns 'Pacific & NZ Based' are suitable, so I dug out Microscale '1/8" Parallel White Stripes' I purchased years ago and applied them. Very delicate decals despite taking about 10mins to release from the paper. I elected not to put white stripes on the underside of the wings. Some had them, some didn't it seems -









The fuselage roundels, without white bars, nonetheless appear to be smaller than the original roundels applied to P-40Ms, NZ3124 being an N-1 with M style canopy. The wing roundels do have white bars -







Colorado Decals (Carpena?) 'French Codes White' sourced from eBay provided a suitable 'B' - and I now have 2 sheets of white code letters & numbers in a variety of sizes if anyone wants specific ones.



I also purchased XtraDecals 1/48 RAF Codes 24" & 30" Gray at the same time, looking for an 'M' to go on the fuselage of NZ3116[37] (my next P-40 build) but they are too dark. The same seller on eBay, rebelalpha, has a good selection of codes so I have ordered RAF 24" Codes Sea Grey, which appear lighter, and if they don't work there is RAF codes 'Sky' available too.
AND, to my own mild horror, I also purchased yesterday off TradeMe (what appears to be) HobbyBoss's newly released 1/48 P-40M - an upscaled version of their 1/72 'easybuild' kitset by the look of it. But it has engraved panel lines, boxed in wheelwells and correct proportions ... and such is my aversion to the Hasegawa fuselage join ...

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Last edit: 8 years 4 months ago by Wally. Reason: more info & pic

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8 years 4 months ago #8 by Azza
Looking great Wally. Looking forward to seeing her all finished :)

On the bench:
1/72 Tamiya F-16CJ

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8 years 4 months ago - 8 years 4 months ago #9 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic Re: 1/48 RNZAF Kittyhawk NZ3124[B]
For more subtle panel lines I've gone back to my old fave lead pencil for this one -





added exhaust staining and just a little oil leakage, nothing too extreme -







Credit where it's due, one has to acknowledge Hasegawa's lovely attention to detail on this kitset, like the long-range tank cradle and rear undercarriage doors actuator. From that point of view nothing comparable is available - (I'll shortly be 'build reviewing' HobbyBoss's new release P-40M 'Easybuild' kitset for comparison ... should be interesting ...?)





NZ3124 should be finished and in the build gallery later this week.
Cheers,
Wally

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Last edit: 8 years 4 months ago by Wally. Reason: add pic as per last edit

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8 years 4 months ago #10 by Andrew
Replied by Andrew on topic Re: 1/48 Hasegawa P-40 'Kittyhawk Mk III'
It's coming along nicely Wally B)

Look forward to seeing the finished pics

It's a wasted trip baby. Nobody said nothing about locking horns with no Tigers.

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8 years 4 months ago - 8 years 4 months ago #11 by Wally
Replied by Wally on topic NZ3124[B] - 1/48 Hasegawa P-40M
I was really pleased the canopy open position worked with this one, I couldn't get it to work on my NZ3060 build. (I think perhaps I hadn't seated the cockpit rear side windows enough). The position is correct according to photos I have, although of course the injected canopy is rather thick. Final detailing included a scratch built interior rear-view mirror -



and fitting the incredibly fine but much appreciated little glass bits ... and she's finished -



More pictures in the Build Gallery.
Cheers,
Wally.

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8 years 4 months ago #12 by Dads Army
Replied by Dads Army on topic Re: NZ3i24[B] - 1/48 Hasegawa P-40M
Fantastic Wally!! I have been watching your builds and I like your style of painting / weathering. Very realistic B)
Maybe I need to step out of my comfort zone? :)

"Rough as Guts Production's"

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