Tuesday, December 13, 2011

萱場 かつおどり

かつおどり by pixiv artist cana@非地デジ化

The Kayaba Katsuodori was a Japanese concept plane of WWII. It is usually described as a ramjet interceptor armed with two 30mm cannon. Fantastic Plastic translates katsuodori as "energy", but I personally think the name refers to Sula leucogaster. The Katsuodori was supposed to take off powered by four solid fuel booster rockets, accelerating until it achieved the necessary speed for the ramjet to function. Due to various technical issues the plane never got off the drawing board, and the project was shelved in 1943. More information about the Katsuodori can be found at Hikoki: 1946 (under "Other Aircraft").

There are two models of this airplane that I am aware of, both in resin. One is from ANiGRAND Craftswork in 1/144 scale, and the other is from Unicraft Models in 1/72 scale.

The Unicraft box art is very attractive, but I was totally disappointed by this kit. There are supposed to be 15 resin parts and a vacuform canopy, but I only received 13 parts (I'm missing a pair of wheels).

The parts are cast in a hard orangish resin with very rough and irregular surfaces. All the parts have air bubbles in them, and every piece is covered with flash, particularly the ill-defined cockpit opening which is practically sealed by the stuff.

I don't think I've ever encountered a resin kit as awful as this one. Unicraft bills their kits as "for experienced modelers", but I think they have "experienced modeler" confused with "miracle worker". It will probably take so much effort to make this kit into a decent looking model that I was wondering if it wouldn't be easier to learn how to use a CAD program to create a 3D model and just have it printed out at Shapeways... except now I find out that tomorrow (Dec. 14), Meng Models will be releasing a 1/72 injection plastic kit containing two Katsuodori for half the price of the Unicraft kit!

絶望した! Unicraft に絶望した!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I would say Unicraft Kits are expensive trash at all, if you have any other choice never ever pick this brand.