Mitsubishi Type 11 G4M (Betty)
Japanese heavy bomber
Kit No. 0000. 1:48th scale
Known for high standards in kit manufacture Tamiya have excelled themselves this time with a large long range bomber code named Betty, I can't pronounce it's proper name either. I have long remarked how aircraft modellers only have to build the outsides of airplanes while truck modellers have to build all the interiors as well, that has changed with this model for it is large enough to do justice on the inside and Tamiya have certainly done that here. The light grey mouldings are beautifully crisp, highly detailed with engraved panel lines that are quite subtle when painted, a full interior is provided, front and back end even the fuselage halves have ribbed detail on the inside. The interior builds into a big structure with three bulkheads two of which have short wing spars built on to give accurate locations and angles, always a problem with large planes, the same goes for the tail planes in fact I notice How Tamiya have engineered the kit so that joins are very subtle particularly the clear nose and tailcone, the remaining clear windows all fit into recessed areas so gluing should not be a problem but masking may well be as there seems to be acres of glass but True Details can rescue you here as they provide a set in their fast frames series set No 41303. The engine nacelles have structural details for the undercarriage bays and the legs are real sturdy pieces, the engines themselves are nicely done and you get a choice of open or closed cooling gills plus flame dampers for night flying. Flaps are moulded separately and can be mounted up or down then there is a choice for the weapons bay, a full load of bombs or a recessed torpedo or you can have it closed parts are provided for all these options.
Instruction sheets are always good from Tamiya very clear very precise and this is no exception my one little gripe is in the paint listings, only Tamiya names are given and not the real name or number be it federal standard, RLM or BS Nos, in this case it is no problem as the Japanese title is given for the camouflage colours. There are markings for six aicraft on the decal sheet from Scalemaster nicely printed with virtually no carrier film on show, some are green and brown some are just dark green on the upper surfaces so you can make your model quite distinctive if you wish.
One of the best kits I have come across in many a year I am not a Japanese WW11 enthusiast but I could not resist this one, a bit expensive but you get your moneys worth I think.