Saturday, February 10

A 35th scale Zero & the Akagi's bridge from Border Model...

To add to their recent Kate & Akagi deck in 1/35th scale, Border model have shared images of their latest two kits. The A6M2 Zero + the Akagi Bridge at the time of the battle of Midway with a Zero on board are the subjects. We look at what we know in our preview...

A 35th scale Zero & the Akagi's bridge from Border Model...

To add to their recent 1/35th scale kit of the Japanese carrier Akagi & Kate torpedo bomber, Border model have a new companion or alternative The other Japanese aircraft that modellers love, the Zero, either by itself or with the Akagi in 1/35th scale are their latest two releases.

A6M2 Zero
From Border Model
Kit No. BF-006
1/35th scale
Full interior with engine kit
Stressed skin details
3 marking choices
The Subject: Mitsubishi A6M2b
While chief engineer Jiro Horikoshi acknowledged having studied Allied designs, his Mitsubishi A6M2 was largely an original, a refinement of his already proven A5M fighter. He had crafted the A6M2 with the sleekest and lightest possible airframe to compensate for the limited power of the 940-hp radial engine the Japanese navy had selected. The result was an astonishingly fast, nimble and far-ranging creation, the first carrier-based fighter capable of besting land-based opponents. Entering service in 1940 (2600 on Japanese calendars), it was designated the Rei shiki Kanjo sentoki (“Type 0 Navy Carrier Fighter”). Japanese pilots foreshortened its name to Reisen (“Zero Fighter”), and its Western opponents likewise knew it as the “Zero,” though its Allied code name was “Zeke,” in keeping with giving male names to Japanese fighters.

A cutaway drawing showing he details in and outside the Zero A6M2b
From its combat introduction in China in September 1940 until encounters with improved Allied fighters in 1942, the Zero dominated the skies over the Pacific. It was also the most-produced Japanese warplane of World War II, with 10,939 built. Shocked by its performance, Western aviation experts declared it a copy of foreign aircraft. Despite airframe and weapon enhancements and the installation of more powerful engines, it ultimately succumbed to the weaknesses inherent in its weight-saving design and by early 1944 was being downed in steadily increasing numbers—taking with it a generation of experienced pilots. By then the limitations of Japanese industry thwarted production of a replacement fighter in adequate quantities, forcing the Zero to fight to war’s end. 

Carrier A6M2 and A6M3 Zeros from the aircraft carrier Zuikaku preparing for a mission at Rabaul
The kit:
We only know from the boxart the features of this kit so far, and of course the history of their recently 1/35th scale aircraft releases. This is a kit with a full engine and external stores, with drop tanks and bombs included. 

The kit will also feature the recent trend of stressed skin surfaces with that "oil canning" effect that looks pretty good in this scale. The Zero will feature three marking choices of these early zeros...

Battle of Midway (June1942)
Akagi Bridge w/flight deck + A6M2 Zero w/Interior
From Border Model
Kit No. BSF-002
1/35th scale
Full interior with engine kit
Stressed skin details on the aircraft
3 marking choices on the aircraft
Setting the scene:
An A6M2 Zero fighter pictured on the flight deck of the Imperial Japanese Navy aircraft carrier Akagi around the time of the Pearl Harbor attack on 7 December 1941. Akagi was one of six Japanese flattops that launched their aircraft on that fateful Sunday morning. She was later sunk by SBD Dauntless dive bombers during the Battle of Midway in June 1942.
Mitsubishi Zero Model 21s aboard IJN carrier Akagi (赤城) two days prior the attack on Pearl Harbor. The aircraft in the foreground, 'AI-101', would be flown by PO1c Tadao Kimura as part of the second wave strike force.
Zero Model 21 tail code ‘AI-102’, piloted by Lt Saburo Shindo, starts its take off run along the deck of the carrier Akagi as part of the second wave attack on Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941. 
The Kit:
The long title "Battle of Midway (June1942) Akagi Bridge w/flight deck + A6M2 Zero w/Interior points to a time after pearl Harbour, so the bridge will have to include your own mattress padding that the kit doesn't seem to provide. We do not know about the marking choices yet, but seeing that the Midway battle is mentioned, we would expect some kites from that timeframe and place to be included.

We know nothing about the price, date or other details just yet. But more will come in the next few weeks we are sure!

This kit is not on their website yet, but Hobbylink Japan always get their kits. Check out the Border Models website for more information...