Berna Decals 3216: Nakajima Ki-43-II 'Oscar'

Units: See review


About $20.00 by the time I got it to the door


Scott Van Aken

While 1/32 scale has really grown in popularity over the last decade or so, markings are still not all that easy to come by, especially for Japanese aircraft.

This particular sheet is for the Hasegawa 1/32 Ki-43, a rather elderly (in plastic years) kit from the raised panel line generation.

There are markings for three planes all of them starting with unpainted metal. The initial offering is one that is heavily mottled and was assigned to Shigeo Nango of the 59th Sentai, 2nd Chutai. This one has the 'early' exhaust.

Next is an unpainted plane with a red tail and a red forward cowling. This latter item is very unusual as the IJAAF almost never did this. It may be a modern artist's interpretation. It has the later exhaust that aims back along the fuselage.

Finally an Indonesian Air Force plane from 1946. The aircraft also has the 'early' exhaust. This one was pieced together so the forward fuselage is heavily mottled while the aft fuselage is a solid green. I am pretty sure that some of the wing or tailplane pieces were replacements as well as I built the Otaki 1/48 kit in these markings (which I pieced together from various sources and paint) based on photos in the Aircam book, though the instructions show nothing of the upper surface.

This is only one of the disappointments of this sheet. The other is that they do not include wing insignia for the Japanese planes, though it fairness, they did have the full set for the Indonesian offering. Undoubtedly they did this so they would not have to include a separate section of decal for these and recommend using the kit ones (which are often far too bright). However, many of us buy these sheets to replace bad or lost kit decals so this is a real let-down and disappointment.

The decals themselves are nicely printed, but the lack of upper surface info on the Indonesian plane and the lack of full Japanese insignia leads me to not recommend it unless you have a new Hasegawa issue.

October 2017

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