Zoukei-Mura  1/32 J7W1 Shinden

KIT #:

 N° 1


USD $80  from  VOLKSUSA


One option


Jean Paul Poisseroux


First kit from the manufacturer



The J7W1 Shinden was certainly the most spectacular Japanese fighter from WWII. The unique design appeal imagination, a rear six blades propulsive piston engine, sweep wing, canard surface on the nose are enough elements to attract attention. This aircraft stay on prototype stage with only some flight hours before the end of the war.


The kit appears in a sturdy cardboard box, with an attractive painting on the top. Sides show assembly model and details of the engine and gun areas. A mention “for JAPAN ONLY” seems to put a restriction on the first production batch. Now we know that this kit can be ordered from USA at the linked address in the banner. Box opened, I discover  9 sprues (4 grey for big parts body, wings,3 aluminium for internal details, 1 black for guns, wheels, propeller, gear legs,1 transparent for canopy, dashboard, lights). After inspection I can say that it’s a very well detailed and injected kit. Details are neat and numerous due to the fact that forward and rear areas can be opened to display the guns and the engine. The notice is clear and nice with English instructions when difficulties to understand could appear. The colour chart seems to be for Vallejo range.

The starting point is the MITSUBISHI HA 43-42 18 cylinders engine. I count not less than 63 parts to complete it; a masterpiece itself. The second stage is devoted to the cockpit with 21 parts with a choice for seats with and without belts. The area just behind will be filled with two bottles and a tank. This assembly is then glued to the fuselage frame and spar wing, which will receive the internal structure for armament on top side and forward gear bay on under side. The two forward fuselage L/R skins glued at this stage start to bring the model to life. The armament construction start with the assembly of the four 30mm gun (5 parts each), and the notice will be a great help to insert them in place, follow the order! Due to the rear gravity centre, you’ll have to find place to put weight in the nose, or as an extra piece, you’ll buy the metal boxes from the manufacturer. The wing consists of two upper surfaces and a one piece under surface to glue to the spar.

It’s time now to install the engine with the help of its tubular support. Though the special exhausts and exterior skins are placed, we can still admire the power plant at this stage of building. Now the external panels can be put in place or left away; the nose cone, the two armament panels, and the three covers around the engine. Gear legs, doors, wheels can now be installed. A metal wire is inserted inside the forward unit to reinforce it. The notice is clear about this stage. Doors and actuators are finely detailed here. Come back to the wing now with the canards on the nose, vertical fins on the wings and ailerons and flaps in up or down position. The last sequence is for the six blade propeller and the canopy which can be can be glued now,( the canopy can be put in place close or open). The very last bits to add are the antennas and the navigation lights.

The decoration is simple; the prototype one’s. upper surface green, under surface grey with the inner part of the leading edge of the win in yellow and the six Hinomaru in usual position.  


This J7W1 SHIN DEN is the first production in this scale, clever engineered and very well detailed. This first kit is a success to my eyes. I recommend it, even if it stayed on prototype stage.


Famous Aircraft Of the World n°108 (original) and up date version.

Jean Paul Poisseroux

June 2010

Thanks to VOLKS INC for the review kit. Click on the link to get yours.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly, please contact me or see other details in the Note to Contributors.

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