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A6M Zero

Hasegawa 1/72 A6M Zero Photo Feature

By Dave Manter

Date of Review January 2014 Manufacturer Hasegawa
Subject A6M Zero Scale 1/72
Kit Number N/A Primary Media Styrene

Photo Feature

This 1/72nd scale Hasegawa Japanese Zero kit was started by a very good friend of mine. Unfortunately, he passed away before he could finish it. It was sitting on his work bench when I helped the family clean out his modeling room.

He taught me so much about the hobby. He loved building 1/72nd scale aircraft. Almost everything he built was finished without any weathering at all. We would enter numerous modeling contests and he would very seldom win anything at all, but he kept on entering. I asked him about this several times and he would always give me the same answer:

"Build what you like, how you like. And if someone else (the judges) thinks it's as nice as you do, maybe you will get an award, but never build for anyone but yourself."

I got away from this simple idea and found myself building just for competition. Now to be honest, I won and I won a bunch! At first it was awesome, but then I realized that I could win by selecting the right subject matter and applying a killer paint job. But as the awards kept piling up, I knew something was missing for me. One day I watched my friend looking around for a base to use for an airplane that he was just about done with. The next thing I saw was him pulling a gold medal plaque down from his wall and using a rather large screwdriver, he proceeded to pop the medal off of the plaque! He now had his base! He just didn't care about the awards.

Almost a year ago now, I started to build for myself again. I still enter some of the local contests but my national competition days are over. I am building just for me now. I have had more fun since then with the hobby than I had had for the last several years.

When I saw the unfinished plane sitting on his workbench, I knew that when I was ready, I would finish it for him.

I did add a little weathering to the kit, but I don't think he will mind. He is probably laughing at me right now!

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