- Mitsubishi A6M5c Zero Saburo
Sakai A6M5c Hasegawa ST4 Injection 1/32
- Work In Progress
I am currently building this kit, and I must
say its proving to be a very un-Hasegawa kit. The fact that
its an "old mold" does not excuse it, for it was
not cheap. I have been disappointed with some kits in my time,
but this one has been almost as disappointing as the Hasegawa
Collectors High-Grade FW-190D. Simply put, Eduards
PE-brass kit will save it some, but Im doing so much other
stuff to it that its turning into a real project. The more
I look, the more I realize I have to rework
modeling, I guess. I am afraid I may lose steam on it because of
all the work.
- The cowl is shaped wrong, and the
carburetor scoop is but a dent. Machine gun troughs are
dimples. I have some great photos of these details
(between Maru Mechanic and my trip to the NASM) and I
couldnt let these details just slip by. I reshaped
the cowl on the trailing edge so it has less of a
bell-shape. I drilled the gun troughs and cut open the
carb scoop and fabricated details to fill it in
- Cockpit detail out of the box was really
cheesy. There is a huge gap on either side of the
floorboard (about ¼" at the rear of the cockpit).
As it stands now, Ive corrected many errors and
added many of the Eduard details and fabricated many of
my own. The kit has provided little more than starting
points for the Eduard details, although I have found some
recoverable inaccuracies in it, as well. Ive added
a lot in the way of wiring, plastic, and other stuff.
Its coming slowly.
- Landing gear appears fair at best.
Fortunately, I still have some old parts from my
childhood-era Tomy A6M2 and Ill be able to recover
nicely, although the Tomy kit is a loss (due to too many
- Overall shape is there; its a Zero.
Its got all raised rivets and raised and recessed
panel lines. As far as panel lines go, theyre fair,
but wing spar panel lines are incorrectly deep and wide.
This seems to be an industry mold darling on Zeros. The
NASM Zeros spar lines are as flush as all other
panel lines, which means very flush. Note the rudder trim
tab is pure A6M2.
- Engine detail is from the back of the cowl
forward. Its reasonably accurate, although the
individually molded cylinders have too few and too thick
cooling fins. I purchased a Williams Brothers 1/32
P&W Twin Wasp (Kit #310) to use its individual
cylinders to fix this. Ill likely have to modify
the cylinders to get it to fit right, but itll make
- Gunnery is very cheesy barrels molded onto
the top wing halves and will require a complete redo.
- Bombs are, as far as I can tell, all wrong
and best left off.
- Canopy does not include the bulletproof
thick windscreen panel.
- Upper cowl area just in front of cockpit
- Test fitting of fuselage halves and wing
halves shows there will be some fit problems due mainly
In summary, I suppose Ive been a little
hard on this kit, and this may be due in part to my expectations.
I just think that a kit with an updated price tag should include
updated molds. Instead, the molds appear to have pitted with age
and it shows with every shot they package and release. A bit of
mold rework AT LEAST would have softened the $30 blow and the $20
for the Eduard details and $5 for the Williams Brothers engine
and the nickel and dime nature of the scratch building and the
$60 in Rogaine
you get the picture. A better kit would
really have cost less in the long run, yet as a 1/32 A6M5c, this
one stands alone.
A6M Kits Page