The Mother of all Zeroes…prototype #1 (ichi-ban)
Hasegawa’s limited-release Zero prototype in 1/48th scale. Built this one a while ago when first released, an easy build. AFAIK there are no images in existence of this machine so we can only hope Hasegawa got it right. The engine/cowling was different with a two-blade prop and the fuselage is shorter but it looks like a Zero alright. Longitudinal stability was not good, so a strake was added under the rear fuselage, legnthening the fuselage was later used as the cure. According to designer Jiro Horikoshi, the new machine was painted in “ash green” so I used Model Master Japanese Army light green for this. It was fun to do a nice, shiny-clean airplane. To me this is some good looking bird, excellence in form and function.
8 additional images. Click to enlarge.