Orlik's "Kyushu J7W1 Shinden" crashes

Discussion in 'Kit Reviews' started by sakrison, Jul 5, 2006.

  1. sakrison

    sakrison Member

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    Orlik’s Kyushu J7W1 Shinden, 1/33 scale
    Published 3/2005; designed by? (“Opracowanie modelu”): Lukasz Fuczek

    Maly Modelarz released a 1/33-scale kit of the Japanese Shinden in the mid-1980s (I think). I bought a copy on E-Bay and built it a few years ago. Though short on detail, it was a nice kit that went together well, scaled out accurately, and looked pretty good. It is currently in the Paper Models exhibit at the EAA Museum in Oshkosh WI.

    I’ve always been interested in this unusual airplane and I was excited when Orlik released it in paper, in 1/33 scale. Unfortunately, Orlik’s Shinden is a disappointment, plagued by inadequate instructions, poor fit, and (on my copy, at least) poor color match between parts.

    Orlik’s Shinden comes in A4 book format with 4 pages of colored parts on cardstock, 2 pages of formers and other parts on paper, and two pages of assembly diagrams. The inside back cover shows four views of the aircraft: top, bottom, front, and port side. The inside front cover includes information about the airplane and written assembly instructions, in Polish. The covers are heavier card (about 0.5-0.75mm) and could be used as is or doubled for formers. (I used 1mm card from my scrap pile.) Assembly follows the usual cylinder-former-joiner strip method.

    The assembly drawings are numbered 1 through 24. I don’t read Polish, so I followed the sequence in these drawings. Assembly begins with the cockpit, which is straightforward, except that a few parts are incorrectly numbered and one or two parts are not identified at all. Among these is the gimbal bracket at the base of the control column. While the drawing shows a part there, it’s not identified and it’s not clear what the part looks like. It took me a while to find it.

    Assembly of the nose section is next. This is mostly taken up by the nose wheel well. The formers and bulkheads went together well but I had to do a lot of trimming of formers to get the fuselage skin sections to fit. The nose cone, built next, has four sections that went together well, but that assembly mated very poorly to the wheel well section. The circumference of the nose section is 2-3 mm smaller than the wheel well section it must mate to. The result, even after a lot of trimming and fitting, is a kind of “double chin” on the model, instead of the smooth profile it should have.

    The fuselage section aft of the cockpit is the most complicated and least intuitive part of the assembly. It consists of an inner fuselage section and an outer section that forms the two huge air scoops that direct ram air to the aft-mounted radial engine. There is no diagram to show how this section is built. While the formers and bulkheads do appear on Diagram 24 (which shows all the formers), the drawings give no clue to how this section is assembled or what parts are used. I spent a good long time puzzling over the drawings before I worked it out. Here, again, the fit was poor, requiring a lot of trimming, especially of the longitudinal formers (Pts 39a-c). And the color of the outer fuselage section (Part 40) is a noticeably different shade of green from either of the outer panels adjacent to it.

    I’ve assembled the formers for one wing and they fit well. I have no plans to finish the kit. I am already unhappy with the looks of the forward section. The rear of the plane will be time-consuming to build and I can see some other places where the diagrams are vague.

    The Shinden is a fascinating aircraft and well deserving of a good quality kit in paper. This Orlik kit does not deliver. I can recommend this kit only to modelers with a lot of patience, a good working knowledge of Photoshop, and the wherewithal to make significant design changes to the kit parts.

    This is the first Orlik kit I’ve attempted. This review is not intended to reflect in any way on any of Orlik’s other paper model kits. I have seen favorable reviews of other Orlik kits and I have a few other recent Orlik kits that I look forward to building.

    --David Sakrison — sakrison@charter.net
    Ripon, Wisconsin USA
  2. Amazyah

    Amazyah Senior Member

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    Welcome David

    Thank you David, for the very informative review.
    For a first post your commentary is exceptional and I look forward to any future reviews by you.

    I'm glad you decided to join the forum and I know you will enjoy it here!

    Welcome!

    Russell
  3. rowiac

    rowiac Member

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    David,

    You might want to consider P.Model's Shinden. It's a downloadable PDF for which you pay for the password. It's a nicely designed model in 1:33 scale with wheelwells, although it doesn't have a cockpit and clear canopy, but one could be scratchbuilt easily enough.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.pmodel.net/

    Click on the button that looks like this on the left side of the page to get to the online catalog:

    [​IMG]

    It's on page 5 about halfway down.

    Roger
  4. OldSalt

    OldSalt Member

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    Good news! Orlik has English instructions for the Shinden on their website. Bad news! The Polish instructions were translated into English by someone who spoke only Turkish. Thank you for the excellent review. I have this Shinden, as well as the XP-56 and the XP-55 by Orlik in my "wierd planes to build someday" pile. Maybe I'll wait a little longer before tackling them...
  5. sparrowhawk

    sparrowhawk Member

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    Thanks for the warning. I got the MM Shinden and the Orlik and I always thought that nearly everything is better than 1980-ies MM kits.- I have made some bad experiences with the Birma Spitfire MK VIII!

    Greetings, Martin
  6. sakrison

    sakrison Member

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    P-Model Shinden

    For those of you who, like me, can't read Japanese, P-Model's offerings are also available at http://www.e-papermodels.com.

    No worries,
    --David
  7. sakrison

    sakrison Member

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    "Missymouse" records similar problems with Orlik's A-55 Ascender. Too bad. I have a few more Orlik kits (none built) but will think hard before purchasing any others.
  8. rjm

    rjm Member

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  9. bilas

    bilas New Member

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    I started that thread on the Lithuanian site. I have moved further in construction than last pictures show but not much. I have finished fuselage.
    My patience ran short when I tried to assemble inner part of wing. Skin doesn't fit formers the way, in my opinion, it should. Correction of wing formers in drawing software should fix this problem. Just, I can't find will of doing this yet.
    I don't want to go and verify every problem Sakrison reported but in general it looks like he is right.
  10. cbg

    cbg Member

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    @David,

    Just as an aside to this thread, I've come across a free polish translator called Poltran.com that's somewhat useful, although it translated "Opracowanie modelu" as "Elaboration of model".

    I have the Orlik Pe-2 and you guys are making me a bit gun-shy about getting into it due to your (and others) experience(s). I'll let you know how it goes. . .

    Greets,
    cbg
  11. phlipmbirner

    phlipmbirner Member

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    Greetings all,
    I'll say something in defence of Orlik. I've been working on the JELCZ W640 JS which is a dump or tipper truck. I'm about one third of the way through it. The model is extremely detailed. The fit on this model has been near perfect. That is saying a lot taking into consideration the fallible human element that has been working on it for nearly two years. It says a lot when a paper model can still keep my attention and keep me building it for that period of time.

    If I read my JELCZ model cover correctly this is the 7th model released or produced by Orlik. Perhaps the intitial releases were more carefully beta tested or had better designers. Perhaps it's because it's a different creature: vehicle vs. airplane. I don't know, but I'm impressed with this one.
    Phil
  12. sakrison

    sakrison Member

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    I also have a few other Orlik kits and I will eventually get to them. Reading other posts and sharing experiences with other modelers, it's clear that Orlik has produced some excellent kits. Now if I could just figure out which ones those are...

    Input on any and all Orlik kits would be much appreciated. And if the specific designer is a factor, it would help to track that, as well.

    Thank you to everyone for the feedback on my review of the Shinden and on related matters.

    No worries,
    --David
  13. bilas

    bilas New Member

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    I just received another kit designed by Lukasz Fuczek author of Shinden. This time publisher is GPM. Has anybody attempted to or built J2M3 Raiden?
    I wanted to start this plane right after I receive it but after seeing familiar design I put it on hold.
  14. bilas

    bilas New Member

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    I just received another kit designed by Lukasz Fuczek author of Shinden. This time publisher is GPM. Has anybody attempted to or built J2M3 Raiden?
    I wanted to start this plane right after I receive it but after seeing familiar design I put it on hold.
  15. sakrison

    sakrison Member

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    Lukasz Fuczek Strikes Again!

    Funny you should mention that. I've been working on this kit, not realizing it was by the same designer. For the most part, the kit has gone together well and looks good. I've completed it to the point of attaching the wings. What's left is building the landing gear, attaching the tail feathers, and adding small details. I'll post a longer review but, for now, here are 3 glitches to watch for.

    Part 18, the inside skin of the cockpit, also forms the joining strips for the outer skins, parts 20 & 39. But the lightweight paper #18 is printed on is too thin and the outer skins push inward leaving a gap--especially between parts 19 & 20. I had to fix this after the fact by cutting apart the sections and reinforcing those joining strips with scrap from the heavier paper in the kit. An easier way would be to laminate or photocopy part 18 onto heavier stock. That will probably require trimming the cockpit formers just a bit. Do lots of test-fitting.

    Second, the wings are built as a single unit that fits into the well of the fuselage. But built per instructions, they don't fit. You have to trim a chunk out of the center section trailing edge to clear bulkhead/former #2. This will be covered by part #69, so it doesn't affect the end result; it just seems a bit of careless design. It's probably easiest to build the wings as instructed, then trim the center section to fit. That's what I did.

    The third problem is more annoying: When you line up the yellow lighting bolt on the main wing fairings, parts 70R and 70L, with the lightning pattern on the fuselage, the front of the fairing wraps too far around the leading edge of the wing and the rear outboard edge of the fairing doesn't reach the trailing edge of the wing. Comparing it to the printed part to the cover photo, the portion of the kit's fairings aft of the wing seem correct, but forward of the wing's trailing edge, they're wrong. The front of the kit fairings also wraps too far around the leading edge of the wing. (The model pictured on the cover apparently wasn't built from the kit contained inside.)

    The best way to fix this would be to cut the fairing in two--fore and aft--and apply it in two parts. (Photocopy the fairing and test-fit before you cut the kit part.) With some careful trimming and test-fitting, that should give you a good result.

    I didn't figure that out until after the fact. I photocopied the fairing and spliced a filler piece along the trailing edge. It worked but not very well. Unfortunately, I don't think I can redo it without destroying the fuselage. Rats!--that mars an otherwise nice-looking model.

    (I had a %$#@! headcold while I was working on it. If I'd felt better, I'd have spent more time working out a better solution. There's a lesson there, I think.)

    No worries,
  16. sakrison

    sakrison Member

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    Lukasz Fuczek Strikes Again!

    Funny you should mention that. I've been working on this kit, not realizing it was by the same designer. For the most part, the kit has gone together well and looks good. I've completed it to the point of attaching the wings. What's left is building the landing gear, attaching the tail feathers, and adding small details. I'll post a longer review but, for now, here are 3 glitches to watch for.

    Part 18, the inside skin of the cockpit, also forms the joining strips for the outer skins, parts 20 & 39. But the lightweight paper #18 is printed on is too thin and the outer skins push inward leaving a gap--especially between parts 19 & 20. I had to fix this after the fact by cutting apart the sections and reinforcing those joining strips with scrap from the heavier paper in the kit. An easier way would be to laminate or photocopy part 18 onto heavier stock. That will probably require trimming the cockpit formers just a bit. Do lots of test-fitting.

    Second, the wings are built as a single unit that fits into the well of the fuselage. But built per instructions, they don't fit. You have to trim a chunk out of the center section trailing edge to clear bulkhead/former #2. This will be covered by part #69, so it doesn't affect the end result; it just seems a bit of careless design. It's probably easiest to build the wings as instructed, then trim the center section to fit. That's what I did.

    The third problem is more annoying: When you line up the yellow lighting bolt on the main wing fairings, parts 70R and 70L, with the lightning pattern on the fuselage, the front of the fairing wraps too far around the leading edge of the wing and the rear outboard edge of the fairing doesn't reach the trailing edge of the wing. Comparing it to the printed part to the cover photo, the portion of the kit's fairings aft of the wing seem correct, but forward of the wing's trailing edge, they're wrong. The front of the kit fairings also wraps too far around the leading edge of the wing. (The model pictured on the cover apparently wasn't built from the kit contained inside.)

    The best way to fix this would be to cut the fairing in two--fore and aft--and apply it in two parts. (Photocopy the fairing and test-fit before you cut the kit part.) With some careful trimming and test-fitting, that should give you a good result.

    I didn't figure that out until after the fact. I photocopied the fairing and spliced a filler piece along the trailing edge. It worked but not very well. Unfortunately, I don't think I can redo it without destroying the fuselage. Rats!--that mars an otherwise nice-looking model.

    (I had a %$#@! headcold while I was working on it. If I'd felt better, I'd have spent more time working out a better solution. There's a lesson there, I think.)

    No worries,