Mitsubishi A6M Zero in Swedish service

  • 59 posts
  • Last reply 5 days, 18 hours ago
  • 1/48, Could-have-been, Mitsubishi, Sweden, Tamiya, what-if, Zero
Viewing 1 - 15 of 59 posts
  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Now, this may make you wonder what Stellan is up to after such a long time of not adding to the building activity. A Zero in Swedish service, really? Some may call this a What-if project. Well, it could be depending on how you define a what-if build. This not not merely a nice looking aircraft in unusual markings, this does actually have some historical background. Please, read on.

    As you may have read in an article on the P-43 Lancer, I added some information linking the P-35 to the P-43 to the P-47, all with a Swedish connection https://imodeler.com/2020/09/dora-wings-1-48-republic-p-43a-lancer/ Now, during the time of the outbreak of the second world war the Swedish government was on a hunt for more modern machines for its small air force, well actually any machine would do in the end (but that is another story). Before it came to desperate measures and buying the machines that were available (only Italian ones…) there were all sorts of hopes going on in the upper echelons of the air force. From a written document it is told how Sweden were approached by some Japanese official, totally unofficial though, and it seems like there was an offer to sell some Zeros to Sweden. In the end it came to nothing, apparently as no one could solve the issue of the two countries being at the total opposites of the world and shipping of the said aircraft would be a problem while the world was on fire.

    Anyway, this will be my take on this deal that in the end came to nothing.

    Modern Tamiya model, check.
    Paints of assorted nuances, check.
    Swedish standard decals for national identity and aircraft numbers, check.

    The model will be in dark green upper sides and light grey undersides. This would be in line with normal Swedish painting of the time. The most normal thing would also be to have the aircraft delivered painted and ready for service. I prefer the Mitsubishi paint style with demarcation line low on the fuselage so I will probably go that way. However, nothing is totally set yet so if you have any input I´m happy take part of that.

    3 attached images. Click to enlarge.

  • Pedro L. Rocha said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    I actually find the idea oddly interesting Stellan. But personally going for a winter camouflage would turn it twice as appealing 😉

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Hi, Pedro. Now that would be an interesting idea doing it up in winter camou, never thought of it. Then I could get the scruffy paint job associated with Japanese aircraft. The base for it would still be a green and grey one, though.

  • Spiros Pendedekas said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Hi Stellan! This is great choice and NOT yet another Zero.
    For the scheme choice, I go with you. I am sure that an artist’s depiction of a green over gray Zero in Swedish markings, would have surely been included in the brochure the Japanese would provide to the Swedish during the “negotiations”….

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 3 days ago:

    Haha, just like the side views in a model kit then? Quite possibly, yes. There are many reasons for a green over grey scheme I think. Sweden never used a lot of white camou as we were not at the front line but rather just defending the skies and wanted to be seen. Also most of the year is not snow on the ground. Third would be I like the contrasts of the white numbers and roundels that will adorn this pretty fighter.

  • George R Blair Jr said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    What a great idea, Stellan (@stellan). I love building planes with hypothetical paint schemes. I can’t wait to see this one with paint and decals.

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Thanks, George. I hope my take on the Zero will be in your taste.

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    OK, after a bit of thinking and having a look at the information out there I think I will do a bit of replanning. No Mitsubishi scheme. It may actually look a bit cooler with the curving colour border and the Aotake in wheel wells etc. Had a look at the instructions and plastic before starting cutting, I rather know what I´m in for before doing any harm to the bits… Here is the layout from the box, with the decals I will use. No markings on topside of the wings as per actual instructions of 1940.

    1 attached image. Click to enlarge.

  • Louis Gardner said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Stellan, @stellan
    This is a very cool idea to build this Zero, especially with the markings you have chosen for it. Now that you have decided to build it with the Aotake colored wheel wells, and the different styled demarcation line between the dark green and the light gray colors, it looks more like a Nakajima built A6M …………..which could have been plausible.

    This is going to be very interesting to watch it come to life. Sign me up as watching this one !!! Thanks for starting a build journal here, and welcome to our fabulous Empire of Japan group build.

    I have several of these Tamiya kits started, and they go together quite well. They are a simple model to build, and the fit is very good, especially when you consider the age of the molds. Mine were being built as part of a build journal I started on Operation Vengeance, which was when a flight of US Army P-38’s intercepted and shot down Admiral Yamamoto. This adventure I started has 5 A6M-3 kits, using both Hasegawa and Tamiya versions, a pair of Tamiya G4M Betty’s, and a pair of the new tool Tamiya P-38 F/G Lightnings, and all in 1/48 scale.

    Here’s a link to the build in case you are interested. There’s a lot of good information posted here about the various colors, etc., and it might be of help to you.

    https://imodeler.com/groups/work-in-progress-aircraft/forum/topic/operation-vengeance-tamiya-p-38-miss-virgina-g4m-1-yamamoto-betty-and-a6m-3-zero-in-1-48-scale/

    I need to finish it up, so it might just “migrate” over here to the Empire of Japan as a new build thread.

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Hi Louis, Thanks for a warm welcome to the EoJGB, didn´t realize this build would qualify as the aircraft is not in Japanese service, even if it is of Japanese origin. Anyway, thanks a lot.

    Yes, I figured the Nakajima built Zero would look better and more interesting. It also seems a bit more easy as I have all colours for it. That was responsible for most Zeros built may give it a bit more realism too.

    I´m not sure what you mean with this being an old model. It is the latest of Tamiya´s Zeros and it says 2010 in the print, that was when the A6M5 kit from 2008 was updated with new parts if I get things correctly.

    Thanks for the link, I´ll have a look at your build after I had my tea.

  • John vd Biggelaar said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    A Zero with the three Swedish crowns attached to it.
    That is interesting. WW2 would surely have looked differently.
    For sure I’m going to follow this thread, Stellan.

  • Louis Gardner said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    Stellan
    I was definitely mistaken about my comments about the old origin of the Zero kit you are building. I thought it was based on the original kit that was released in 1973.
    I went over there to scalemates and found a picture of the kit that I thought yours originated from. This is the one that I thought it was based on.

    It turns out that the kit you are building is a much newer version. I learned something new and I hope that my comments didn’t create any undue confusion.

    Please accept my apologies if it did.

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    John, yes, in deed it will look different. Welcome aboard.

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 2 days ago:

    No worries, no confusion here, Louis. If I´m not mistaken that old kit will build into a A6M3 Model 32 with straight wing tips, the newer one will only build into a Model 22 with rounded, foldable tips.

  • Stellan Schroeder Englund said 3 weeks, 1 day ago:

    Nothing new to show yet, just been snipping and sanding plastic. However, Tamiya really got their heads around how to construct a model kit to make it FIT and LOOK GOOD. Boy, I really hope I wont drool glue all over some parts and ruin all tiny rivets. I don´t think I will need any putty anywhere, just a few strokes with a sanding stick. I also note how totally aeroplaneish a Zero looks. Almost stereotypical in its appearance, like a child´s drawing.

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