Hasegawa 1/72 N1K1 'Kyofu' (late)

KIT #: 51337 (AP 37)
PRICE: 1500 yen when new
DECALS: One option
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: 1997 Release


Kawanishi's N1K was originally built as a single pontoon floatplane fighter to support forward offensive operations where no airstrips were available, but by 1943 when the aircraft entered service, Japan was firmly on the defensive, and there was no longer a need for a fighter to fulfill this role. It was powered by the Mitsubishi MK4C Kasei 13 14-cylinder radial engine. The vast majority of the 97 built served in the home islands.


I'd like to think that this was the first tooling of this kit in this scale, however, there have been several very short run and vac kits produced before it. However, it is the first mainstream injected kit and typical of Hasegawa, it is very well done.

Cockpit is fairly spartan with the usual seat, stick, and instrument panel . There is no sidewall detail and the instruments are represented by decals. The canopy is a single piece so cannot display it open without cutting. Wings are a single lower section with two upper sections. The engine is a simple face on a blanking plate, which is fine for this aircraft as there is a pretty large spinner that will hide most detail.

Typical of Hasegawa's floatplane kits, this one comes with a six piece beaching trolley. A nice touch is a large plastic weight that fits into the main float. The difference between the early and late aircraft is basically the cowling. The later version has separate exhaust stacks while the early plane uses a collector exhaust.

Instructions use Gunze paint references and are what we expect from Hasegawa. There is only one option, and that is the box art plane from the Sasebo Naval Flying Group. Decals are nicely printed with white areas that are off white. The kit includes all the float markings as well, which is a nice touch.  


Overall, this is a nice looking kit that should provide no issues during construction. It would probably be wise to leave off the floats until after everything has been painted.  

May 2022

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