By Rob Morgan
Skywave’s 1/700th scale Japanese World War II warships are too well known to need comment here, but their range also includes two packs of Japanese naval planes at about £5 a pack. The first is four types from the early Pacific War period, 32 in all, 8 each of the ‘Val,’ ‘Kate,’ ‘Judy’ and Zero ‘Zeke.’ The second pack, ‘Late Pacific War,’ also contains 32 planes, the Zero, ‘Judy,’ Grace,’ ‘Jill’ and ‘Myrt,’ but in different proportions. There are only two ‘Grace’ models and 8 ‘Jills.’ These are lovely models, small and with decals. All are dark green plastic. They have sprues to mount them on a carrier’s deck and apart from the early ‘Vals,’ these slivers need removing for this purpose.
These models are small enough to be mounted on the 32mm circular clear plastic ‘flying sprues’ made by Games Workshop in the UK, and there are others available, I know. The sprues offer two ‘flying’ heights of 25mm and 20mm. The aircraft can be easily cemented to the bases and at angles from the near vertical to the shallow dive, or crashing into the sea. It only requires slight trimming of the clear upright sprue with a craft knife. The planes can be used as late-war kamikaze weapons in 1/700th and 1/600th scale wargames with no difficulty. Cement them to the sprues before painting, add the odd decal, and that’s it: A swarm of kamikazes for a reasonable price.
The Skywave website shows that there were a couple of Japanese 1/700th flying boats issued recently, the ‘Mavis’ and ‘Emily,’ but these might be a little large for ‘divine wind’ duties!