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Hasegawa's 1/48 scale
Aichi B7A2 Ryusei Kai (Grace)

by Bruce Salmon

Aichi B7A2 Ryusei Kai (Grace)


Hasegawa's 1/48 scale Grace is available online from



My model of the Grace is that of one from Yokosuka Air Corps on Iwo Jima, 5 July 1944. Perhaps this aircraft may have been destined for a later Kamikaze mission.




Aftermarket Products Used

Eduard PE set (48 220) Aichi B7A2 Grace
Squadron (9592) Aichi B7A2 Grace vac-u-form canopy

Cockpit / Fuselage

Most of the small PE set is destined for the cockpit but even that does not add much here. I added extra wiring to make it look a bit busier. The upper rear section of fuselage just behind the cockpit is a bit narrow hence I could only display the rear sliding canopy partially open. I modelled the bomb bay doors closed but now wish I had them opened – perhaps I can “operate” at a future date…


These are quite large so I decided that something had to be done to add some interest here. The flaps lowered would certainly do the job but I couldn’t find any references for what they looked like in the down position. The next best alternative was to cut out and reposition the ailerons. As you can see they are both drooped (yes this is on purpose). Apparently they could actually be lowered by about 10 degrees to increase lift!



The elevators were also cut out and dropped to add a bit more life to the model. The cavernous wheel wells got some wiring and a new pitot tube was constructed from brass tube and wire. Wings attach positively to the fuselage with no putty needed.

Engine and Cowl

The PE harness was first added to the engine then the whole painted black, given a wash and lightly drybrushed with Humbrol H11 Silver to metalize it.

The engine is quite hidden once the cowling goes on.

Little Bits

I did not add the torpedo as it was oval in cross section and I couldn’t find a replacement. Afterwards I find out that these later torpedoes actually WERE oval in cross section!

I replaced the kit canopy sliding sections with vac-form parts. Even though the kit has separate sections they will not fit in the open position. These were then masked (a laborious task) using Bare Metal Foil and painted at the same time as the aircraft.



The propeller was painted using Humbrol H160 German Red Brown and the machine guns hollowed out at their ends with the point of a knife.

Landing gear was given the PE treatment, brake lines added and then painted. A light spray with Tamiya XF57 Buff on the tyres simulates dirt and wear.


Painting and Markings

First on is the lower surface colour which was then post shaded with lighter patches. Next the upper surface was sprayed freehand and also post shaded lightening by adding more H226 and white. Once dry the Hinomarus and leading edge stripes were masked, sprayed and also post shaded. Lastly, a gloss varnish was applied only where the decals would go.


I used enamel paints mixed as follows:

  • Interior: 9 - Tamiya XF71 Japanese Interior Green / 1 – Tamiya XF2 White

  • Upper Surface: 10 - Tamiya XF11 JN Green / 2 - Humbrol 226 Interior Green / 3 – Tamiya XF2 White

  • Lower Surface: 1 – Tamiya XF12 JN Grey / 1 – Tamiya XF2 White

  • Hinomaru: 6 – Humbrol 153 Insignia Red / 1 – Humbrol 113 Rust

  • Leading Edge Stripes: 10 – Humbrol H154 Yellow / 1 – Humbrol 82 Orange Lining / 1 – Tamiya XF2 White

  • Exhaust Pipes: 2 – Tamiya XF2 Black / 1 – Humbrol 113 Rust


The only decals used are the tail codes, gear door numbers and ID stencil; everything else was masked and painted. The decals responded well to Mr Mark Softer.


After a coat of satin varnish the model was given an overall wash using a mix of raw umber and burnt sienna oil with some panel lines darkened with further washes darkened with black. A few oil stains were drybrushed on. Chipping was achieved by using Tamiya XF16 Flat Aluminium applied with a fine brush and worn areas drybrushed with a H11 Silver and raw umber oil mix. Exhaust and gun staining was with Tamiya X19 Smoke. A matt-ish varnish was then sprayed to finish the job.

Final Assembly

Lastly the little bits go on: Rear machine gun, canopy sections glued in place with white glue, wing machine guns, gear doors, propeller, aerial mast and wire.



I also attached the PE retractable steps but have since broken most off and lost them.



This is a very well engineered kit and is quite straightforward to build. Any extra detailing you may wish to do is mainly limited to furnishing the cockpit and turning out a skillful paint job.

Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2007 by Bruce Salmon
Page Created 13 December, 2007
Last Updated 24 December, 2007

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