A6M2 302 Kokutai
A6M2 302 Kokutai

Long time ago I come upon on interesting topic on one Japanese aviation discussion board. It was about night fighting A6M2. That was various samples of machines, both Mitsubishi or Nakajima built and all of the was uniform cover in very dark color. First info was that that was black painted machines and later was more clear that all of them was actually overall green painted machines. Unit which use it was 302 Kokutai and most machines had tail marking but some not. Source for this was “IJN Air War Over Japan” by Yoji Watanabe (1980) page 196 and MODEL ART special IJN Camouflage #510 page 181.

Appearance on the market of the Eduard kit of A6M2 bring back my interest to build this kit. Alongside with basic kit, Eduard always make many additional sets dedicated to extra detail the basic kit. Or to make build simpler, like with some products, Look is good sample. To manage this build, I have obtained from Eduard following products:

648695 A6M2 undercarriage legs, bronze
EX821 A6M2 mask
644128 Look for A6M2
FE1238 A6M2 seatbelts steel
648693 A6M2 wheels
3DL48050 A6M2 space
D48098 stencils for A6M2
648694 engine for A6M2
82211X overtrees A6M2
D48100 national insignia for A6M2

It is impossible to use all of this sets in one kit so explanation here goes for the those selected and used. Rest will be used for sure. Here will be focus on the same sets use, not on kit build.

First here selected is 644128. This is cockpit interior for the A6M2 kit and come into plastic bag. Inside is four resin painted parts and one small painted etched parts. In PC vocabulary, plug and play material. Nothing to do, just remove it and place in place where it have to be. Very simple for use and can be considered even by novice builders. They replace some elements, such as instrument panels and two consoles and enrich other, like this small etched parts elements. No painting at all, apart from basic cockpit interior elements. Etched parts come into light on seat, rest goes on interior.

A6M2 302 Kokutai
A6M2 302 Kokutai

Engine for Eduard kit, 648694, is real art of model production. This is boxed set and inside is resin cast engine, resin propeller shaft and small etched set. Instruction is small and simple and the same can be told with engine build. Build goes so fast and painting is simple, almost all is black, engine gear box is grey. Design is so simple and build is so strait that I would recommend it even to less experienced builder. And definitely bring details forward.

EX821 A6M2 mask is definitely need for the blank kit I have. This is small yellow masking sheet, with pre cut elements to cover transparent cockpit canopy but also other parts like wheel hub and navigation lights. Most interesting is that mask are provided to cover outside of the canopy but also inside. So you can be able to complete paint cockpit canopy, outside with camouflage color and inside with interior color. Idea is so great and look well on kit with open canopy.

Who want kit to stand strong, let him use 648695 A6M2 undercarriage legs, they are made of bronze. Set come in box and inside is four resin parts and two bronze legs. Painting of this set is camouflage colors for the resin landing gear door elements and black or metallic blue for the landing gear. I use metallic blue as well my sample machine is Nakajima built. Preferred to be mounted at very end of build. Legs look impressive!!!

A6M2 302 Kokutai
A6M2 302 Kokutai

Final set described here is D48100 national insignia for A6M2. It bring roundels for the kit, two types, plain red and with white border. It come in plastic bag and simple but good instruction leaflet. There is described three options for the markings options. Nothing special to add, perfect print decals, easy slide to surface and capture all details.

As you note, not all above mentioned sets is used in this build and they will be used in some future. What I have to note is easy way to use this material, precise manufacture and great level of authentic. My big thanks goes to Eduard who provide me this material for build and review.

Srećko Bradić

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