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thierry laurent

Ki-115 Tsurugi

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Hi folks,

Some days ago I got the LEM resin kit of the Ki-115. The kit is VERY nice:

- Excellent shapes and seemingly accurate dimensions. It looks like they used the only set of detailed plans I know (also available on the web).
- Good details with a fully riveted airframe
- Nice level of detail
- Excellent casting (I really had to look after them to find some very small air bubbles)

The kit does not ask for a lot of improvements. Besides some basic improvements detailed hereunder, I recommend purchasing a set of RB belts as the kit has none.

Directly, out of my head, I'm thinking at the following attention points:

- The engine is correct but as for any other kit needs adding the wiring
- The exhausts ends are not hollowed but they are so thin, I am not convinced it would have been possible to cast them otherwise.
- The cockpit could have been a little bit more detailed. But this is essentially a classical matter of adding cables, wires and some missing details or elements here and there. The only point that annoys me is the floor as the full airframe had none! This is not terribly difficult to correct (just time-consuming) but could have been correct from the start (ten minutes of search on Google gave me a view of the actual structure).
- Be prepared to add your own reinforcement parts for the seams between the wings, elevators and fuselage. Note that dry-fitting shows excellent assembly but simply butt-joining the parts with glue seems a little bit too risky to my eyes!
- The kit has no instructions, just a CD with many pictures of the kit. So take your time to analyse things comprehensively. By the way, I got from the web copies of the instruction sheets of the 1/48 and 1/72 injected kits. This will help in assembling and painting.

Last, the references about that plane are VERY limited. I have yet to find one good book dedicated to that plane. So, except some rare pictures from preserved airframes, the sources look to be quite limited. The old Monogram book from Mikesh has some elements but if somebody knows a good book about the plane, I would be interested in knowing it.

Hope this helps.


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One point I should have explained better: as the plane had no cockpit floor, the two supports linking the seat sides to the upper edge of the rear bulkhead should be added. This can be easily done out of two plastic strips. For a similar reason, the systems fixing the control stick or the lever located on the port side of the seat should also be recreated with some bits of plastic.



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This page gives some other interesting pictures such as the lever located on the port side of the seat (bomb launching?):




The sketches here give an overview of the pit components:




The instructions of the Special Hobby kit to get some color and scheme inputs:




and to end some scale plans:





If LEM had used all of such inputs, their kit would have been nearly perfect...!

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