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Violet Lightning

Here is my 1/32nd Hasegawa Kawanishi N1K2-J Shiden Kai “George”.
Hasegawa sure does a great job with their kits and the Shiden Kai is not exception.
The model is fantastic. I can’t fault it in any way. Great detail and exceptional fit. A great pleasure to build.

The model was built out of the box except for adding grab handles and foot pegs to both sides of the fuselage, the undercarriage position indicator pegs on the upper wing and the red sliding canopy seal and EZ thread for the aerial wire. Hasegawa included a beautifully sculptured pilot figure. I am not good at figure painting but the pilot figure is so good I just had to paint him the best I could and seat him in the cockpit. This to me adds a bit of interest to the built up model.

I did a bit a research on the internet for the paint colors of the Shiden and found the best mix for Kawanishi Navy green was 50/50 mix of Tamiya XF11 JN Green and XF70 Dark Green 2. Once painted with this mix it looked a near perfect match to restored Shiden museum aircraft. As for Kawanishi interior green, I read that FS 34127 was the best match. For this paint shade I mixed 30/70 Tamiya XF4 Yellow green and XF62 Olive Drab.

I used the kit decals for Squadron Leader Lt Naoshi Kanno of the 343rd Naval flying group. I painted over the white aircraft number “15” on the fuselage Hinomaru with Tamiya X8 Lemon yellow paint to match the color picture I found on the internet. I have include this picture.

The salt chipping method was used and looks realistic to my eye. I also riveted the model with a RB rivet tool.
I used an old bottle of Floquil Bright silver for the natural metal areas and Tamiya XF12 JN Grey for the fuel tank, elevators and control surfaces.

12 additional images. Click to enlarge.

15 responses to Violet Lightning

  1. Really nice wear and tear.

  2. Great build and paint job, I particularly like the figure!

  3. Well done on this one too, Michael. The paint chipping is in scale and you controlled it nicely.

  4. Great weathering and chipping on this one, Michael.
    Well done.

  5. Magnificent work is on display here. This would have been a great one to build as part of our Empire of Japan group.

  6. Nicely done,great weathering!

  7. Great reproduction of the original. You’re right about this being a superb kit.

  8. 🙂 … Greetings … 🙂 :
    A very good rendition of the “GEORGE”. Good coloring and a very noticeable wear and tear on the weathering, nice work Michael.

  9. Fantastic job, Michael.
    Great weathering too!

  10. Very nice! Chipping medium?

    • Jimmy, I used slightly damp table salt applied with a tooth pick over a silver enamel base coat. Then sprayed the colour camouflage coat. Let that dry over night and then with a dry cloth rub off the salt and that leaves a nice chipping effect on the model. Hope you find that useful.

  11. Thank you gentleman. I really appreciable all of your very kind comments about my Shiden Kai.

  12. Very realistically weathered and chipped, Michael. The overall build is also first class – including riveting!. May I ask if the salt method leads to the fading effects around the chipping? I think it is important to have that discoloration in addition to flaked off paint to be realistic. Did you do any further washes or weathering of the exposed or painted metal or did the salt method do everything required? I will be experimenting with this myself and I find your results very impressive.

    BTW, I haven’t been able to find plans for the Shiden Kai showing rivet patterns. What did you use for reference when you did the riveting?

  13. Thanks Colin. It makes me very happy you like my Shiden. Yes the salt does make the paint work fade and discolor around the chipping. I have used Tamiya acrylic paints. I don’t know if it has the same affect with enamel and lacquer paints. I don’t use them. The drier the salt/ water mix the less the discoloration there is and I used this method on the upper cowling, as there is I presume less foot traffic compared to the wings.
    As for the riveting this is my first attempt. So I was just experimenting with this model and I made no attempt with any accuracy. Just wanted to try it out and see how it all worked out. Sorry I can’t help with any rivet pattern plans.

  14. Looks great! Love the chipping and weathering. Fantastic build.

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