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H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat

Hasegawa 1/72 H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review January 2018 Manufacturer Hasegawa
Subject H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat Scale 1/72
Kit Number 02257 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Beautiful engineering and detailing Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $129.95

First Look

H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat
H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat
H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat
H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat
H8K1 Type 2 Model 11 (Emily) Flying Boat

During the late 1930s, the United States and Japan were expanding their presence in the Pacific. With little infrastructure available to support land-based aircraft operations, both countries invested in flying boats and amphibians. Even Juan Trippe, founder of Pan American Airways, had invested heavily in flying boats to extend commercial air service into the Pacific. Even as the Imperial Japanese Navy was putting the H6K (Mavis) flying boat into service in 1938, they were looking for even more capabilities. The IJN gave Kawanishi the requirements for such a heavy flying boat with greater range and load capacity and the resulting aircraft became the H8K (Emily) flying boat. While the prototype first flew in early 1941, Kawanishi required another year to sort out the aircraft's sea-handling problems.

Entering service just after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the H8K was pressed into an ambitious mission to conduct a second attack on Pearl Harbor. Even with its impressive range, it couldn't reach Pearl without a refueling stop which came in the form of a Japanese submarine that rendezvoused with two H8K1s at French Frigate Shoals. The attack took place on the 4th of March 1942 with the aircraft bombing Pearl Harbor, but due to bad weather, the raid wasn't successful. This attack took place a little over a month before Jimmy Doolittle took his squadron of B-25s off the USS Hornet to bomb Tokyo.

You can tell when a particular kit is a project of love for a given manufacturer. Such a kit usually has more detail and engineering invested than their 'average' kit subjects. Such is the case with this Kawanishi H8K flying boat. If you follow the Hasegawa kit line, you know that they first produced the H8K in 1/72 scale back in 1967 which, according to its kit number, was their 21st kit subject. They have certainly come a long way since then! That kit was regularly reissued over the years with the last edition being released in 2016.

In 2017, Hasegawa released a new H8K that comes from all-new tooling. The kit was engineered to produce the H8K2 (which was released first) followed by this kit representing the H8K1. When you see the kit box, you'll know that it is a sizeable project just from the depth of the box. The kit consists of eleven parts trees molded in gray styrene (duplicate trees not shown) plus two trees molded in clear parts. The surface detailing is scribed and as you would expect for new tooling, there is no visible mold flash. Looking at the instructions, this is the first aircraft kit I've seen in some time that does not start off in the cockpit. Instead, the instructions have you build up the four engine/cowling assemblies followed by the huge wings. Work on the interior doesn't begin until Step 8.

Among the features and options in this kit:

  • Detailed engine assemblies
  • Large main spar assembly that also provides a reinforcing bulkhead inside the fuselage
  • Continuous upper deck from the cockpit to the dorsal turret
  • Detailed flight deck, flight engineer, and radio operator stations
  • Choice of closed waist blisters with guns stowed or open blisters with guns ready
  • Optional beaching gear
  • Window masks
  • Optional crew figures
  • Optional underwing bomb or torpedo armament with racks

The markings included in this kit are for two examples:

  • H8K1, NI-13, 802 Naval Flying Group, 1943
  • H8K1, W-47, 802 Naval Flying Group, 1942

Unlike the average Hasegawa kit, this tooling offers some nice details and options. The upper deck has nice details including crew stations, stowage, and navigator's map table, though much of this will not be easily seen after assembly. The nose compartment also features a station for the observer/nose gunner. Unlike most kits on the market, this one provides 11 figures in appropriate poses for their in-flight roles. The decals include instrument faces for the flight deck instrument panel as well as for the flight engineer's station. Another nice touch for this kit is the inclusion of dye-cut window masks which are essential to paint the numerous frames in the flight deck transparency.

The only issue I have with this kit is that there are no instructions/diagrams for rigging the outrigger floats. The box art shows the rigging, so I suppose we'll have to work from that instead.

The painting instructions use GSI Creos colors and provide the mix ratios for replicating Kawanishi interior green if you don't have newer premixed Kawanishi color set released by GSI Creos in their Mr.Color series.

This is going to be an interesting project given the impressive effort Hasegawa has done with this tooling. I do wish they had a tow tractor to connect to that rear tow bar.

My sincere thanks to HobbyLink Japan for this review sample!

Here is a list of paints Hasegawa identifies for the colors of this kit and the equivalent colors from other brands:

 
AMMO
AV
GSI
HAT
LC
MIS
MRP
TAM
TES
XTRA
Red
0049
71.269
C003
H003
N003
A276
C276
LC006
MMP003
002
LP07
X07
1705
 
Silver
0195
71.062
C008
H008
N008
A003
C003
LC074
MMM006
128
LP11
X11
 
X038
Gold
0198
71.066
C009
H009
N009
 
LC025
MMC003
153
LP62
X12
1744
X507
Copper
0199
71.068
C010
H010
N010
 
LC078
MMC004
154
XF06
 
 
Flat White
0050
71.101
C062
H011
N011
A101
C101
LC001
 
 
LP04
XF02
1768
 
Flat Black
0046
71.057
C033
H012
N012
A041
C041
LC002
 
020
LP03
XF01
1749
 
Bright Blue
0103
71.088
C065
H015
N015
 
 
 
 
LP06
TS93
 
 
Steel
0191
71.065
C028
H018
N018
 
 
MMM002
030
X10
1780
X502
Gelbraun
0013
71.272
C044
H027
N027
 
 
 
 
XF57
 
 
Dark Green
0069
 
C124
H036
N036
 
 
MMP112
 
LP31
XF11
2116
 
Wood Brown
0079
71.293
C043
H037
N037
A213
C213
UA082
MMP130
387
 
1701
 
Flat Base
 
 
C030
H040
N040
 
 
 
 
LP22
X21
 
 
Flesh
RAL 8031
0026
71.117
C051
H044
N044
 
 
 
 
LP30
XF15
 
 
Red Brown
0015
71.041
C041
H047
N047
A147
C147
U205
MMP012
036
TS01
XF64
2096
X807
XA1807
Neutral Gray
0239
71.051
H053
A054
C054
UA071
MMP103
039
AS07
XF53
1725
X133
XA1133
Sandy Brown
 
70.876
C019
H066
N066
UA505
 
 
 
XF60
 
X224
XA1224
Dark Earth
0070
71.323
C022
H072
N072
A206
C206
UA519
MMP078
108
AS22
XF52
2054
X002
XA1002
Dark Green
0206
71.324
C361
H073
N073
A016
C016
UA520
MMP077
110
AS09
XF81
2060
X001
Burnt Iron
0187
71.073
C061
H076
N076
A106
C106
 
MMM01
147
LP54
XF84
 
X508
Tire Black
0033
71.315
C137
H077
N077
 
UA733
MMP040
 
LP65
XF85
 
 
Mahogany
0035
71.039
C042
H084
N084
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Clear Red
 
70.934
C047
H090
N090
 
 
 
266
LP72
X27
 
 
Clear Green
 
 
C138
H094
N094
 
 
 
268
X25
 
 
Interior Green
Mitsubishi
 
 
C126
 
 
MMP109
 
XF71
 
 
Interior Green
Nakajima
 
 
C127
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Red-Brown
Propeller
 
71.040
C131
 
 
MMP115
 
TS01
XF64
 
 

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