Microscale Decal | 32-20: Ki-61 Tony
Reviewed by Kevin Williams
This sheet from Microscale, while certainly not new by any means, nonetheless offers up some very attractive schemes for the Ki-61. Being sheet number 32-20, this sheet is actually quite dated, and was designed for the only extant kit of the Tony back in that time frame, the somewhat iconic Revell offering. All together, six Heins are represented, three in a dark green over silver, two all bare aluminum, and one silver with dark green mottle coarsely sprayed on all upper surfaces. (Note: No indication is generally given of control surfaces being painted a different color, but since this seemed to be a standard practice with the Ki-61, I'd assume that they are. References therefore, should be carefully checked regarding any of these six schemes.)
The six different air frames that are depicted on this set, those being (in no particular order):
- 39th Flight Training Company, dark green over silver
- 244th Sentai, overall silver with dark green mottling
- 26 Sentai, dark green over silver
- 37th Fighter Group, overall aluminum with dark green mottling on tail
- 59th Air Combat Regiment, dark green over silver
- Akeno Fighter School, overall aluminum, pale green rudder
(Note: the free interchange of the terms silver and aluminum, is somewhat confusing to me, as I cannot definitively say if one or the other is correct, but again, careful attention to references may be prudent, and clarify matters greatly.)
As can be seen in the scan above, no national insignia are included, save for the two fuselage meatballs with a yellow outline. Decals, though aged, are nonetheless quite sharp and crisp, with great opacity and register, as well as vibrant color. Plenty of very basic stenciling is also included. My experience in the past has been that despite the age of the decals, having been stored in a cool, humidity free environment, they'll undoubtedly work flawlessly, and are very thin, as thin as most of the better contemporary decal sheets available.
Instructions are very basic, and typical of the time in which Microscale printed these. A two sided paper (black & white) accompanies the sheet, and though profiles are offered, it's still a bit awkward to visualize the schemes. (I suppose I've grown to be rather spoiled by the full color artwork that accompanies more current offerings.)
Recommended without reservation.
Review copy courtesy of my stupidly large decal stash.
For those with a genuine passion for Japanese aviation subjects, I heartily recommend a visit to J-aircraft.com
Further Recommended Reading/Reference Material
Osprey Publishing: Ki-61 and Ki-100 Aces
Model Art: I.J.Army Kawasaki Type 3 & 5 Fighter
Maru: Type 3 "Hien" & Type 5 Army fighter
Monogram Aviation: Japanese Cockpit Interiors, Part 1
© Kevin Williams 2016
This review was published on Tuesday, June 07 2016; Last modified on Tuesday, March 14 2017