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I'll be comparing Gustav's, specifically 1/48 Bf109G/K's

For starters I have the new-tool Eduard in G-2 and G-6 forms in the Mersu Dual-Combo boxing, the classic 1991 Hasegawa kit in K-4 form in their 'Red Tulip' boxing and a 1972-era Fujimi in the 1976 Me109G-K boxing

Aftermarket will be limited, likely only belts. I'll use Eduard decals on the Fujimi because I don't trust the ancient Fujimi decals. And I won't be doing the Mersu box scheme as I'm saving it for the Tamiya G-6

Depending on how this set work out, I may look to build some of the other Gustav's on the market. Tamiya of course, and HB does a G-2, the Academy/HobbyCraft is readily available and Monogram's G-10 can be found without too much trouble. There's also Otaki that's been reboxed by half the planet and a newer Fujimi tool.



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This is a great example of a showdown. Old, Not that old, and new. I love Eduard special edition kits ... the hardest part is figuring out which of the many options to build.

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I seem to treat the Eduard kits like a combination of a kit (or two) and an aftermarket decal sheet. Inevitably I want to build them all. I may use as many as 5 of the decal options in the course of this GB, across multiple kits. It helps that I'm of Finnish and German descent, so a Finnish 109 is very much my sort of thing.

As to the kits, I've broken them open and taken some pictures.

Starting with the simplest kit, the Fujimi. Ironically this is the only one of these kits which is not billed as a single variant, but despite it's claim to being a G-K, it's really a late G2 or G6 only.

Starting with the wings.


The wells are basic, but this is 1972. Biggest weakness though is the poorly shaped small wheelwell bulges, which look more like post-war Spitfire bulges than the kidney-shaped bulges that should be there. The radiators are molded closed (boo) but otherwise the wings are OK.

The tails:


Not bad, but inconsistent demarkation between rudder and fin are the big weakness. Again, this only has one variation of the wood tail and one rudder for the standard tail.

Main parts sprue:


Basic selection of parts. Only one prop and it looks better suited to a G-2 than anything else. Decent cockpit detail for the era, but no wall behind the seat and no representation of the very visible fuel line in the cockpit.

Fuselage sprue


Looks good enough here. The exhaust baffles are crude and symmetrical, which is wrong. Needs some fiddling

Detail sprue:


Looks good, except those exhausts. They're horrid. Pathetic even for 1972.

Clear Sprue


Your basic options. One of each style hood and only the Galland hood can be posed open. Reflector for the gunsight is present, it's a 2 piece gunsite.

Overall verdicts? Not bad for 1972, but the wheel bumps and exhausts are major weak points. Copy or steal a set of Hasegawa small wheel bumps and resin for the exhausts are the likely fixes here.

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Now for the Hasegawa




Wheel wells are still simplified, but the gear section is at least shaped right. Proper radiator setup, slats are separate.




Nice, very nice. Version specific but this is actually a K-4, unlike the Fujimi which claims to be able to build as a K-4, but cannot.


Clear sprues are version specific, so only one windscreen & hood option.

Part Sprue 1



Exhausts are basic, but FAR better than the Fujimi. Cockpit is a mixed bag, trim wheel is better, but the sidewall detail is arguably worse than the Fujimi. Still no gas line..

2 tailwheel options here, neither is for a K-4

Detail Sprue 2


Wheels and bulges for a G-10 or K-4, wheels are quite nice.

Detail Sprue 3



More K specific bits. Missing part is the top cowl, which will be shown later. This has the correct tailwheel and look at those wide blades compared to the skinny Fujimi blades. Also K-specific wheel bay covers and large chin oil cooler, missing on the Fujimi.

Detail Sprue 4



More generic G/K bits, including the usual G-6 tailwheel and various other bits you'd use on most G or K's.

Overall, this is a great kit let down solely by a mediocre at best cockpit. Exhausts are OK, but would benefit from resin.

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And finally the Eduard.

Since this includes both a G-2 and G-6, there's a LOT of plastic in this kit.

It's broken up into 3 separate items. Wings, Fuselages and the very comprehensive set of F/G/K parts.

For starters, here's the first wing set, it's for either a G-6 or late G-2, so 2 are included in this boxing.



And the second wing sprue, this is for the other G-2 options (yes, 3 wings in this boxing)



The difference here is the missing wheel bulges. Very nice.

G-6 Fuselage



3 fins, 3 beule, 1 rudder and two top cowls are included here.

G-2 fuselage


This is clearly an insert in the same mold, as it includes Beule and gun troughs that are unused on the G-2.

Clear Sprue (x2)


3 windscreens, 5 hoods, a couple armor variations. This covers pretty much every canopy from the E-4 to K-4 (as the late E and F-2 use the same hood) Gorgeous. And there's a FUEL LINE! Hallalujeah!

Detail Sprue 1



2 chin scoops, 3 fins, 2 tailwheels, 2 tailwheel struts, exhausts, etcs. All extremely nice. You'll have a good portion of a detail set left over.

Detail Sprue 2



More of the same, pretty much covers all the variants that Eduard might do.

PE and Masks:


Nice, but not obligatory. The only bits I see here as a real win are the belts, everything else is 'nice to have' not necessary.

Overall, from a box view the Hasegawa's visibly better than the Fujimi in most regards, but it's not that large a difference aside from the wheel bulges and exhausts. The Fujimi actually has nice raised rivet detail, while the Hasegawa has nothing but panel lines. The Eduard is light years ahead of the other two in surface detail. Frankly most of the extra parts are just from Eduard's actually good in plastic cockpit and the coverage over every variant in the box.

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And now for getting started on the cockpits.

First up is the Fujimi again.

On the sidewalls, some chunky detail has been added. 



And the floor has the cannon breech, rudder pedals, stick and seat added. Still need to add the firewall. As you can see it mounts onto the wing lower section rather than being fitted to the fuselage. A bit odd, but not unheard of. Airfix does this on a number of recent kits like the Hurricane



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Now for the Hasegawa

Basic floor assembly:



The Hasegawa pit is definitely closer to a real Gustav than the Fujimi, but very simplified. In particular the seat is weak, if closer to the actual design than the Fujimi's bucket.

The inclusion of a proper dual-wheel trim wheel is a bonus, but otherwise the sidewalls are more than a tad simplistic and suffer from being entirely molded on, going the other way from the Fujimi's chunky detail

At this point you can actually close up the Hasegawa fuselage, since eveything internal is inserted after the fact. So I've done exactly that.



And finally, I got started on the wings by installing the large wheel bulges (yet another thing the Fujimi doesn't offer in a supposedly all-Gustav kit)



Note the utter lack of any surface detail beyond panel lines, unlike the Fujimi's delicate raised rivets and Eduard's even more delicate inlaid rivet detail


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Next up is of course the Eduard pit. As this is infested with pre-painted PE, I've not fully assembled it prior to it being ready for paint, unlike the other two.

The base unit is very nice. PE for the trim adjustment chain and part of the mechanism, and your choice of PE or plastic rudder pedals. I went PE.



Note I've installed the seat back, but not the bucket. That's because installing the PE belts will be blocked by the trim wheel. The three sanded bits on the lower left get pre-painted PE

The right sidewall gets one plastic section installed before paint, correct sidewalls are molded into the fuselage unlike Hasegawa.


The other two bits you can see mounts for will be either pre-painted PE or is not painted RLM66 (oxygen regulator, which is blue + pre-painted PE). Decals are an alternate option for most of the pre-painted PE on this side.

The other side is as molded+PE, but all PE is added after paint.

You really need to look at what's assembled, then figure out your paint & assembly strategy, the instructions tell you what to do, not when.

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Back to the Fujimi.

The cockpit bits have been it with primer and a coat of MMP RLM66

Next up is to deal with the exhaust situation. There's two problems here, the utterly terrible and completely fictional exhausts, and the exhaust deflectors.



That's thick, but at least correctly shaped. unfortunately the deflectors are symmetrical on the kit, and the real thing is not, with the curved section only on the left side of the cowl to protect the supercharger intake

Luckily, the Eduard kit includes two sets of exhausts, one all-plastic and one intended for use with the PE deflectors. I'll use the PE deflectors on the Eduard build, so I can rob the other set for this one.



The eduard set is a little simplified for molding reasons, the Fujimi is a dogs breakfast.

Since the guards are molded onto these exhausts, I can just remove the ones on the fuselage rather than trying to fix them. The asymmetry is an easy fix, the thickness is not. So off they come


A little cleanup and some fettling and I'll have good exhausts in the Fujimi, fixing one of the two main warts of this kit.


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While I was pondering just how to get the Eduard exhausts into the Fujimi Fuselage, I glued the fuselage together and selected the tail.



Then it was some detail painting on the Hasegawa cockpit, to prepare for sidewall installation. The sink mark on the cannon breech is annoying, but invisible, so I didn't bother filling


Hasegawa instrument panel, which will get a decal as well before installation


And minor detail painting on the Eduard before the next bout of Photo etch install


Eduard cockpit needs another coat of RLM66







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Wing tops on the Fujimi.


Sadly, one slipped a bit after clamping and will need some cleanup

Wing tops on the Hasegawa





note don't glue the top surface to the top of the radiators, or it won't align on the fuselage. An engineering miss for Hasegawa

Closeup of the Hasegawa instrument panel after installation. That's a decal on a detail-painted panel.



And spare Eduard exhausts fitted to the Fujimi to replace the horrid stock items. A nice improvement although I will say that Hasegawa's exhausts are nicer than the all-plastic Eduard, but not as nice as the Plastic+PE Eduard



Lower rear wing joint on the Fujimi. Very nice fit here, but I had to glue here, wait for it to dry then glue the front as the curve of the fuselage doesn't quite match the wing.






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The much more complex Eduard cockpit has that build lagging the other two as I'm building round robin. I work on one until it needs to dry, then set it aside and work on the next.

I'm on vacation this week, so LOTS of build time.


The basic pit is all but done now.



Just need to fold down the seatbelts after they dry. note I decided to go zero aftermarket on this trio, so no belts for the other two (that would be the biggest win in improving the Fujimi and Hasegawa cockpits)

Left sidewall done, panel still needs 3 parts added



Right sidewall all but done. I'll need to fix that regulator....


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And moving along,

Some touchup on the bottom of the Hasegawa, then it's time to start painting it.



Since the eduard exhausts mount from the inside (boo hiss), I'm getting the basic nose scheme on so I don't have to do any gymnastics around painting near the exhausts (or gun barrels, as they again mount from inside)


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I was pretty busy last week with a conference followed by Thanksgiving, but have been puttering away.

Did some more painting on the nose of the Eduard



Cleaned up some seams and added the intake on the Fujimi



Started on the wing for the Eduard. Interesting to note that the wing lowers are setup for locating pins, but the early G uppers do not have locating pins. I'll need to check if the bulged upper wing has the pins.



Got the cockpit installed into the Eduard fuselage



And started gluing up the fuselage. No locating pins on the G2 fuselage either, and as that's a shared mold with the G6, I'd expect it doesn't either. I worked my way slowly around to ensure the best fit.


And most of the wing on the Eduard. I've got a alignment issue at the right front wing/fuselage interface that I suspect will clear up when the oil cooler is installed, so that corner isn't glued and the right wing upper isn't installed either



Got the windscreen on the Hasegawa, as well as the oil cooler and gunsight. A little masking and it will be ready for paint. I'm undecided as to whether or not the hood will be open here (the Fujimi will be closed due to design, the Eduard will be open)



I need a picture of the Fujimi, which is in the same state as the Hasegawa right now (windscreen on, needs masking)

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Finally got some time at the paint booth (I had a balsa wing framed up on that bench, so it's been blocked for months), so both the Fujimi and the hasegawa got the canopy masked and I shot RLM66  overtop for the inside colour



Since then I've shot primer and started on the RLM76 (which is very hard to discern from the grey primer, should have used white or off-colour primer instead)

Edited by mawz

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Getting some RLM75 down now



And realized I don't have any of the other necessary colours in stock, so it's off to the hobby shop for some RLM74 & 83

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And was just going through my pain stash and realized that I do in fact have some RLM74 in MM Acryl (a brand I don't really use anymore) and not only that, I have some RLM75 as well in Acryl (and oddly, in Italieri, a paint line I liked but it seems nobody else did).

That quickly lead to the realization that the Valljo Model Air RLM75 isn't even vaguely RLM75, it's more of an olive green-grey than Grauviolet. So I repainted the RLM75 with the Acryl and then did the RLM75 part of the Fujimi as well.


Acryl on the left, Vallejo on the right. Not even close and it's the Vallejo that's fictional.


Fujimi with RLM75 mostly down (right one this time). I'll mask & shoot the MM Acryl RLM74 and then touch up the 75

Still need 81 and 83 though, or to be exact, just 81 (as 83 is now known to be a dark blue and not used on fighter camo, that was always 81).

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Most of the paintwork done on the Fujimi


Just need to mask & shoot the RLM04 Theater markings and then the core painting is done.

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Back to the Eduard

Inside of the chin oil cooler assembled, PE+plastic


And completed, including the super-fiddly front flap adjuster



And installed in the nose


The fit in the nose is better than it looks here, after the wing is clamped.

As expected, the oil cooler install fixed the wing fit challenges, so I'll be able to install the other wing upper surface soon.

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If anybody's wondering about the colours on the underside of the Eduard, I got ahead of myself when shooting the nose initially and forgot that the Ilmavoimat repainted to RLM65 undersides when they went to the green/Black/blue scheme from the stock RLM scheme. It will get the correct RLM65 all around.

Both RLM 65 and 76 are Vallejo, so far the only usable colours from my Luftwaffe set by them.

I picked up a few bottles of paint for the Hasegawa. Only need 81/83, but figured I'd grab the trio so I had them all



And yes, I know RLM83 is actually dark blue, but that version matches so many references that it's more useful to me.

The Eduard is looking like a real plane now





Elevators & ailerons installed.



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Glad to see you have resumed this build. I was travelling when you started updating this again and missed it.  Sounds like a real ordeal trying to get accurate colors. 

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On 2/26/2020 at 1:31 PM, Kurt H. said:

Glad to see you have resumed this build. I was travelling when you started updating this again and missed it.  Sounds like a real ordeal trying to get accurate colors. 

I wouldn't call it an ordeal, just a case of 'never trust a Vallejo official colour match', which I should have remembered because it's bit me before in the past (For example their Medium Sea Grey is US Neutral Grey, the paint is a good match for the latter colour, but MSG is a completely different colour and far lighter)

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Pics to come tomorrow, fixed the Fujimi scheme today, it had accidentally got hit with some overspray from a P-39 I'm also working on.

Then work on the Hasegawa. MMP's interpretation of RLM81 is a fairly olive dark green, and their 83 is a lighter and greener colour. Originally followed the callouts by RLM number from Hasegawa, backtracked because I was unsure of the split (mostly 83/75, a bit of 81 on the tail) and decided I wanted to stick with the callout, so I need to reshoot the 81.

Then for the Hasegawa it's painting the inner crosses, as they are 83 and white rather than just white or white & black. That will take some mask & measurement.

The Eduard got the outer flaps and slats. It's ready for a bit of paint on the underside before I complete the radiator/inner flap install.

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