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Reviews : Japanese Last Updated: Aug 21st, 2020 - 13:06:35

Mitsubishi Ki-30 'Ann'. Pavla. 1/72nd
By Peter Scott.
Apr 11, 2006, 10:01

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Injection moulded, with etched brass details and vac-form canopy.
Initial impressions were of a finely executed moulding, with very restrained engraving to the main parts.. Smaller parts were not so refined, but there was no flash anywhere. No instruction sheet was available. The plastic surface had a very gloss finish and the first task was to wash the parts in detergent. Firstly, a comparison with available plans revealed that the front cockpit was both 4mm too far back and 4mm too long. As this was a review kit, these problems were not rectified. The absence of the instructions was hardly insurmountable, particularly with only 32 plastic parts, although some of the brass components remained unused. The instrument panel was brass, with a photo film dial backing. The only internal additions essential were bulkheads at the front and rear of the cockpit. However, the cockpit area was noticeably bare and additional details that were added were fuselage stringers, seat belts and a roll-over bar strut. The vac form canopy was very clear and, for this reason, the rear gun was replaced, because the 3-piece brass affair did not look very convincing.
Following construction of the fuselage, which required binding in position because the starboard fuselage part was warped, a!! five flying surfaces were fitted. They were all butt jointed, with no locating pegs. Apparently, this is a feature of this manufacturer. Super gluing the main wings was rather tricky, because the fit was not good. The fixed undercarriage, on the other hand, was a very nice piece of moulding and captured the appearance of the exposed wheels. The engine was then fitted. This was a representation of the front cylinders only, but it painted up satisfactorily. Next fitted was the cowling, which was in two halves, plus the cowling ring. This part was of a smaller diameter than the cowling, so took some blending. The final part in this area was the propeller, which came in 5 separate pieces. This was the only really unsatisfactory part of the kit, it didnít produce an acceptable result, so it was replaced, retaining the spinner. The tail wheel was also too short, although this was tolerated. In the absence of instructions, the decal sheet provided well-printed options for at least 3 units, namely for 16, 31 and 32 Sentai. There was also some additional striping that could be used for 90 Sentai, if that was not its original intention. The white outline to the hinomaru was off centre, although that was not a problem, because aircraft involved in the Sino-Japanese war generally only carried four un-outlined hinomaru anyway. Accuracy and conclusion: This was a reasonably challenging project, particularly regarding the butt joints. It is not the only ?Ann? currently on the market, although I built a resin one last year. That was easier to work with, by virtue of being cast from soft resin, rather than the rather brittle plastic used by Pavla, although it too had similar cockpit problems.

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