244th Sentai Part 1
Lifelike Decals, 1/48 scale
Reviewed by Brett Green
HyperScale is proudly sponsored by Squadron.com
Any new release from LifeLike decals is something to look forward to. They research their decals thoroughly, have a happy knack of choosing interesting and colourful subjects, and they always offer comprehensive additional information.
This time around, LifeLike has revised and re-released three sets of 1/48 scale decals originally released in 2003 and covering aircraft of the Japanese 244th Sentai. The majority of these aircraft are Nakajima Ki-61 Heins.
If this rings a bell, that's because Tamiya has just released a brand new 1/48 scale kit of the Ki-61 Hien type I-Tei. Of the eight subjects on this decal sheet, four are for the Tei version - bingo! Of course, they are equally appropriate for the older Hasegawa kits too.
LifeLike's original 244th Sentai decal sets sold out some time ago, so these are very welcome reissues.
The subject of tonight's review is Part 1, Item No. 48-003(R).
Two of the eight options are finished in natural metal while the remainder have various styles of green mottle. All but two of the aircraft feature an all-red tail.
Details of the specific aircraft are as follows:
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Hei 3295. Flown by Teruhiko Kobayashi from Chofu AB in January 1945.
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Tei 4424. Also flown by Teruhiko Kobayashi from Chofu AB in March 1945.
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Tei 4424. Flown by 2nd Lt Shunzo Takashima of the 159th Shinbu-tai from Chofu AB in early May 1945.
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Hei 43. Ki-61 Hien type 1-Hei. Flown by an unknown pilot from Chofu AB in March or September 1945.
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Hei. Probably flown by Corporal Seiichi Suzuki from Chofu AB in February 1945.
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Tei 57. Flown by 2nd LT Tohru Shinomiya from Chofu AB in December 1944.
Ki-61 Hien type 1-Tei 57. Flown by an unknown pilot from Chofu AB in March 1945.
Ki-61 Hien type 1- Otsu 45. Flown by Corporal Kiyoshi Ando at Narimasu AB in January 1945.
Four folded A4 pages are included in the resealable plastic bag. The first doubles as the cover and the profile page.
Next up is one double-sided sheet of detailed information on each specific aircraft. Data on colours, markings, operations and pilots are included. A further single sided sheet covers references and a discusssion about the often depicted clover-marked Hien Tei. Reference is wrapped up with a single-sided page on the colours and markings of the 244th Sentai, including speific information about propeller and undercarriage door markings, stencils and more.
The decals are printed by Microscale and appear to be in perfect register. There is a full-sized sheet for the unique markings, with a smaller sheet of national markings, red markings and white numbers, and a third, yet smaller decal sheet with yellow wing leading edge, undercarriage and propeller markings.
This is a high quality release in perfect time for Tamiya's beautiful new 1/48 scale Ki-61-I-Tei.
I have been searching for alternative markings for Tamiya's new 1/48 scale Ki-61 for the last few weeks, but I found that specific information on the Tei type was quite hard to pin down. When these decals arrived, my wishes for reference and alternative markings were answered in one go!
LifeLike's 1/48 scale 244th Sentai Ki-61 decals are throroughly researched, beautifully printed and offer a nice range of options for anyone building the Tamiya or Hasegawa kits.
Thanks to Lifelike Decals for these samples.
Text and Images Copyright © 2017 by Brett Green
Page Created 24 January, 2017
26 January, 2017
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