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Brian Powell
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Tamiya A6M2b Zero Fighter

May 10, 2024 · in Aviation · · 10 · 293

Trigger Warning! This model represents a historical impossibility, so if that kind of thing upsets you, cease and desist at once!


This is the 1/72-scale Tamiya A6M2b Zero with DEAD Design Models canopy masks. Decal options are for three different aircraft. I chose to build Lt. Fusata IIda's aircraft, mostly because I like the light blue stripes. I also decided to try my hand at rather severely weathering this aircraft with significant paint chipping. The problem, however, is that Iida's aircraft crashed on 7 December, 1941, after attacking NAS Kaneohe Bay (in an apparent Kamikaze attack after Iida's was damaged). More than likely, this particular aircraft was nice and shiny on the day of its demise, and so we have a grave historical accuracy. We'll have to view this model as a counter-factual Zero.

I wanted to simulate some paint chipping, and had read here about the existence of a red-brown primer that was applied over the duralumin. I tried the closest color I had on hand, XF-9 (Hull Red) but this turned out to be a little too dark at first. I went over it with some Gray Green (the base color) with a sponge and that softened things a bit, though now it looks a little like rust.

Additional weathering included brown enamel panel line wash, some light oils (tans, grays) on top, and some darker oils (umbers, grays) on the bottom. All in all, quick and easy build. Thanks for looking.

Reader reactions:
7  Awesome 1 

10 responses

  1. Excellent job and excellent weathering skills, Brian! While the specific bird had no time to weather, it is always nice to see a weathered Zero!

  2. It's yours, and you are free to do whatever you want with it.

  3. Brian, I agree with Bill, it's just a hobby...HAVE FUN! And despite all that you did a great job!

  4. From the pictures, it's difficult to tell this is a 1/72 scale model. You must be using human hair for the arial wire. Excellent work on this one.

  5. Really good work done on this Zero, Brian @bapowellphys
    Although the aircraft was likely to be new, I think the weathering approach does make it look much nicer than without it.

  6. Very nice work!

  7. I like it! Nice work on the weathering "practice." A really good-looking Zero.

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