Hasegawa 1/200 KC-130H Hercules 'JASDF'
135 yuan RMB on taobao
Two kits in the box
Most people would have heard of the mighty Hercules, probably the most
successful and widely used transport aircraft since World War II. Almost
every air force in the world bar Russia and China uses this thing.
Several countries use the C-130 as an air-to-air tanker, too. Unlike the
propeller powered tankers of the early days of inflight refuelling, the
turboprop powered Hercules can fly fast enough to tank jet fighters safely
(it probably helps that modern jet fighters can safely fly at slower speeds
than in the early days, too). The Hercules can also go slow enough to safely
refuel helicopters, giving them more versatility over larger jet tankers
like the KC-135 or KC-30A.
Japan has one of these tanker Hercules on its roster. What's noteworthy,
though, is that the refueling pods used by Japan look different to those
used by most of the other Hercules tankers. So it's pointless to buy this
kit to make another country's tanker: you'd have to scratch build the
refueling pods anyway so you might as well get a cheaper boxing.
There are two kits in this "limited edition" Hasegawa
boxing of its venerable but still very nice 1/200 Hercules kit. One is
moulded in the light grey you see in the photos here and the other in a blue
plastic similar to the blue-grey colour that some JASDF Hercules are
apparently painted in.
The kit has nicely engraved panel lines, a poseable main cargo door, neat
little propellors and undercarriage and a clear canopy section which takes
careful painting. The new sprue contains the parts for the two underwing
refueling pods and is as nicely moulded as the rest of the kit.
Apparently, Japan only has one of these in service so far, although pictures
are available of two separate aircraft (with different codes, anyway). The
kit gives you markings for the overall grey plane on the box lid, and for a
complex three tone tactical camouflage scheme. The decals are nicely done,
consistent with current Hasegawa quality.
You can see that scheme in the build review I did of another, non-tanker
double boxing of the base kit a few years back,
right here on MM.
Another boxing of the great 1/200 C-130. How can you go wrong?
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