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Hasegawa & Matchbox 1/32 scale
Focke-Wulf Fw 190 D9 &
Messerschmitt Bf 109 E-3

by Mario Riccioni


Focke-Wulf Fw 190 D-9

Hasegawa's 1/32 scale Focke-Wulf Fw 190 D-9 is available online from Squadron



Like most people who visit this site, I have been building scale models since early high school. The burdens of adulthood put an end to that many many years ago. Until I discovered HyperScale and similar web sites, my last attempt was 18 years ago with a 1/32nd scale Messerschmitt Bf 109 made by Matchbox. I thought I did a pretty good job; until I came here! Compared to everything I’ve seen in the galleries, my effort was less than stellar!

Nevertheless, HyperScale served as a great inspiration to re-visit the hobby and return my consciousness to the more simple and carefree days of childhood. Inspired by greats such as Chris Wauchop, Klaus Herold and Brett Green, and with the aid of so many hints and techniques generously provided by the many excellent contributors here, I set my sights on a much higher standard than I’ve ever tried to achieve. The materials which are now available from hobby stores astonished me, so I stocked up, bought a small compressor from Repco, pulled out my old trusty Paasche VL airbrush kit and set about the task.




I built Hasegawa's 1/32 scale Focke-Wulf Fw 190 D straight from the box. The modifications were once again taken from the expert advice found here; lower the tail wheel, modify the landing flaps to an angle of 60 degrees, I cut the control surfaces on the tail so that they may be placed in an up position, to lock the tail wheel whilst stationary. I used invisible mending tread for the ariel and adopted the masking tape and wire method to make the harness. Obviously a better result can be achieved with a photo-etched part, but it’s so satisfying to do it this way. The harness looks a lot better in the photo than in front of you, but I’m still pretty happy with my first attempt.


I attempted the stress skinned effect outlined by Klaus Herold. A bit ambitious at my level of development perhaps, but I figured the worst thing that could happen is that I’d bugger up the kit. I’ve been through far more trying experiences than that! At first I thought I’d over done it on the underside of the wings so I went a little more lightly on top. The result is that you can barely notice the effect, so I was way too conservative with the top. I have to question the result for the amount of effort put in on this, though I don’t question Mr. Herold’s technique; brilliantly conceived. I used the Trumpeter rivet wheel. To notice any effect from it at all you have to apply a wash to it, but I believe it adds a lot to the finish of an aircraft kit.


Mr. Mark Softer is a fabulous product. I couldn’t believe how the instrument decal flowed over the dash panel mold. I wish I could’ve got a camera in there to show it to you. It was nearly the undoing of one of the wing decals though. In the wee hours of the morning, (sometimes I did 9 hours straight on the kit) I put a wing cross in the wrong spot by 2 centimeters! I was over tired. Using copious amounts of water and mark softer, I tried to move it and it ended up in a torn and shriveled up globule on the wing! To all intents and purposes, it was wrecked! 45 minutes of toil, cursing and manipulating, I got it in position and it looked perfect!



While it isn’t a show winner, I was so happy with the end result, that I pulled apart the Bf 109, stripping the paint, filing, sanding until it was totally in bits and started again. Predictably, there were some fitting issues with it, but it looks a darned site better than it was. I got a lot bolder with the painting of this one. It never occurred to me to mix different contrasts of the same color to get a weathered finish and it worked even better on this kit than the first; probably because I was a little conservative on the Fw190. I don’t think pre shading works very well, at least not for me; something I’ll have to work on. It was hard finding evidence of the correct color schemes for the Galland 109 from the Battle of Britain period; Matchbox certainly didn’t get it right but I think I have the correct colors for at least one of his aircraft of that period.


I also used plain decal sheets and a printer to make custom markings for the kit. It’s not as easy as it sounds. I made a mess of it at first. I also tried to spray over the decals of both kits to add a realistic fading effect. I went a bit too far in both cases but I restored them slightly using believe it or not, colored pencils! It works. I painted Tamiya flat aluminum before the colors and the sticky tape method to simulate chipped paint. For smaller areas it was the silver artist pencil. I scratch built the wheel wells on the 109 because it didn’t have any; the hard way, just making it up as I went along. Next time I’ll plan it out carefully. They’re not historically accurate, but it’s better than not having any.





In future I’d like to do some 1/35- scale military hardware. My latest purchase though is a Trumpeter P-47, again in 1/32- scale. Initial experiments on an old ‘test’ kit with bare metal foil and Model Masters metal paints are promising, so I’ll use a combination of both mediums. It has been a truly enjoyable return to the hobby and though I’ve got a long way to go, I’m very happy with what I’ve done thus far. Most of the credit must go to all of you my friends. I’m just copying the methods that some of the more innovative have developed. Hopefully one day I may be able to give something back.

Thanks HyperScale.


For photography, I bought a sheet of grass from the hobby shop and tried to add realism to it. I wasn’t so successful; I’ll work on it. The sky is a blue sheet of paper sprayed with a flat white spray can. I let the paint get to the point where it nearly began to run. When it dried, I tipped it upside down and the runs look like the suns reflection on the clouds.


  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
  • 1/32 scale Dora and Emil: Image
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Model, Text Copyright 2008 by Mario Riccioni
Page Created 29 October, 2009
Last Updated 29 October, 2009

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