Hasegawa 1/48 FW-190A-7 'JG-1'

KIT #: 09902
PRICE: $24.99 on sale ($43.00 SRP)
DECALS: Three options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Limited Edition. 2010 boxing


Fw 190 A-7 was based on the Fw 190 A-5/U9 prototype, and entered production in November 1943. The A-7 was equipped with the BMW 801 D-2 engine, again producing 1,700 PS (1,677 hp, 1,250 kW). Designed to combat the USAAF's heavy bombers the basic armament was upgraded to include two fuselage-mounted 13 mm (.51 in) MG 131s, replacing the MG 17s. Because the larger-breeched MG 131s had to be mounted further apart, the upper gun cowling, just in front of the cockpit, was modified with faired bulges and a new upper engine cowling was manufactured. This left insufficient room for the three cowling toggle latches, which were moved to the side panels. The rest of the armament fit stayed the same as earlier versions; two wing root-mounted 20 mm MG 151s and two outer wing-mounted 20 mm MG 151s. The Revi gunsight was updated to the new 16B model. The additional weight of the new weapon systems required strengthening of the wheels, adding a reinforced rim to better deal with typical combat airfield conditions. The A-7 was usually outfitted with the centreline-mounted ETC 501 rack. There were several major Rüstsätze for the A-7, many including Werfer-Granate 21 WGr 21 rockets. A total of 701 A-7s were produced from November 1943 to April 1944, according to Ministry of Aviation acceptance reports and Focke-Wulf production books. For aircraft spotters, the major difference externally between the A-7 and later A-8 version is that the A-7 still has the long pitot tube about halfway along the leading edge of the wing.


This is a continuation of the various FW-190A kits that have been produced by Hasegawa. Over the years there have been dozens of limited edition boxings, some with resin and some, like this one, with little more than a new decal sheet.

There is little that is much different between all the versions aside from things like upper engine cowlings, lower wing gun shell ejector chutes, canopy and a few other bits and pieces. This one does not include the 'blown' canopy that was part of the late A-8 versions and has only the cowling for the larger 13mm guns. One thing about Hasegawa is that they rarely give you anything in the kit that is not used in making the variant that is boxed.

Some very minor surgery and hole opening will be needed on this one and in line with others in this series, the five piece cowling will need care in assembly. You'll also need to fill in some holes and panel lines as Hasegawa has chosen a near 'universal' fuselage to do the A-5 to A-9 'long fuselage' versions. I should point out that the cockpit is quite well done and while there are resin aftermarket sets for it, the 190 has a very small cockpit opening and resin is really not needed, aside from the AMS folks in the group. What is needed are some seat belts and one can either make them from tape or use one of the many etched aftermarket sets.

Instructions are the usual well done versions with Gunze references. I also noticed several small drawings to help with alignment and getting parts installed properly where they might be reversed. A nice touch. Markings are for three aircraft. All of them are in RLM 74/75/76 with various levels of side mottling. All have a broad red tail band and though there is a decal, this would look better if painted. Two options, red 23 and red 13 are the plane of Heinz Bar from April 1944. One has a white rudder with his tally on it. The third option is for the technical officer in January 1944 and this one has the white and black striped cowling. Decals are provided for the black stripes, but again, I'd paint these on as getting the decal to conform over the lumps on the side of the cowling will be problematic at best. The white bits in this case will need to be painted on in either case. All the markings options have yellow lower cowlings. The decals are very nicely done and include instrument decals for those who want to use them in place of the raised panel detail. These are the 'old school' decals with white that is actually off white.


I'm sure many of you are wondering just how many limited edition boxings of a kit we need. Well, this is Hasegawa's way of doing business and it has worked well for them over the years. Many who buy their kits use what comes in the box in terms of markings so it provided these modelers with new subjects all the time. I have no data to back this assumption, but I'll bet that the majority of kit buyers build the kit just as it is provided with no aftermarket pieces at all. In any rate, it makes into a very nice model without any of the additional fuss and fiddly parts that are hallmarks of other companies.




Thanks to me for getting this one on sale.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note to Contributors.

Back to the Main Page

Back to the Previews Index Page