Hasegawa 1/72 A6M3 Type22/32 "Iwakuni Flying Group" Combo

KIT #: 00949
DECALS: Three options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: 2 complete kits


The A6M3 type 22 was actually preceded in production by the clipped wing type 32, often called the Hamp. The Type 32 had clipped wings to improve the roll rate and make the aircraft more maneuverable. It was discovered during the Solomons campaign of 1942/43 that the range of the type 32 was inadequate for the long range battles that took place there. This lead Mitsubishi to install 45 liters of fuel in tanks outboard of the guns in the wings. In order to add a bit more range, the folding wing tips of the type 21 were reintroduced into the type 22. In all other respects, the aircraft was the same as the type 32. A subtype, the 22a had long barrel wing cannon. Production of the type 22 commenced in December of 1942 and approximately half of the production until July 1943 had the longer barreled guns, as did late model 32s. Starting in July, all type 22s were so fitted. Production continued until late 1943 or early 1944 when the type 52 started being produced. There was no type 42.

Now I know that these are not new kits. In fact, they come from the mid 1980s so in some books, this makes them classicsis. However, the molds have held up quite well and inspection of the parts shows only a small amount of flash. You do get two complete kits in the box, a Type 22 with the standard wings as shown in the sprues shot and a Type 32 with the clipped wings that is not shown. The only difference in the kits are the wings sprue.

If you've built any 1/72 Hasegawa kits in the last decade or two, then this one will look most familiar to you. An acceptable cockpit with decals for instruments, fine engraved panel lines and enough bits and pieces to make sure that you are doing the proper version. This means that there will be bits left over. Some may not like the one piece canopy as it limits what can be seen of the interior. However, for those who want to spend a bit more, then there are cockpit upgrade bits and vacuform canopies available to show off the work you have done. I have to tell you these are not complex kits and you can build one rather rapidly as things go.

Instructions are typically superb as one has come to expect from Hasegawa with colors given in Gunze paints. You get two sets of instructions, one for the Type 22 and one for the Type 32. Decals are provided for four different aircraft from the Iwakuni Flying Group; two Type 22s and two Type 32s. Three of the planes are in the 'Mitsubishi Green' we know is actually ame-iro, a caramel color that I used on a 1/48 A6M2 a short time back. One of the Type 22s is as shown on the box art with Dark Green upper surfaces. All four options have the yellow wing leading edge ID band that will need to be painted. The decals are well printed and are of the most recent type, which means they will perform superbly.


If you are wanting to build a collection of Zeros in 1/72 scale, then this kit would be a great place to start as it offers two of the major early/mid war types.

April 2010

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