Cyber-hobby 1/72 Aichi Type 99 'Val'
KIT #: 5045
PRICE: $41.00 SRP
DECALS: Eight options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: New tool kit


The Aichi D3A (愛知99式艦上爆撃機 Aichi-kyū-kyū-shiki-kanjō-bakugeki-ki?), Allied reporting name "Val") was a World War II carrier-borne dive bomber of the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN). It was the primary dive bomber in the Imperial Japanese Navy, and participated in almost all actions, including Pearl Harbor. The Aichi D3A was the first Japanese aircraft to bomb American targets in World War II, commencing with Pearl Harbor and U.S. bases in the Philippines, such as Clark Air Force Base. During the course of the Second World War, the Val dive bomber sank more Allied warships than any other Axis aircraft. The Val was replaced by the Judy mid-war for carrier use, but continued to operate from land bases until the end of the war.


Adding to Cyber-hobby's growing collection of new aircraft kits, many of which seem to have a nautical flavor, is this new one on the D3A1 Val. As most know, the Val is famous for being involved in the Pearl Harbor raid. Though it really did not have as huge an impact on the event as did the torpedo planes, it still did its part and is probably the aircraft that provided the coup de grace on the USS Arizona.

The kit is nicely molded with fine engraved panel lines. I am not that thrilled with the fabric representation on the control surfaces as they seem like something from years gone by, but it is acceptable. I do like that all of the control surfaces are separate, so that those who wish may pose them in a more dynamic manner. There are two canopies available, one in segments to pose open and a one-piece unit. The wing tips can be modeled either up or down as one wishes. For stuff under wings, you have a large centerline bomb and two wing mounted bombs. The rest of the features are listed below: 

- Highly accurate replica of Type 99 Dive-Bomber includes foldable wings
- Cockpit canopy represented by transparent plastic
- Fully detailed rear cockpit
- Amazing levels of detail on engine
- True-to-scale propeller
- Munition pylons fitted beneath wings
- Accurate 250lb bombs
- Antenna realistically portrayed
- Pilot's cockpit interior and instrument panel possess fine detail
- Included 8 different markings

Instructions are well done and consist of five steps. Gunze and Model Master paints are referenced. There are eight markings options, all from the Pearl Harbor raid. All of the participating aircraft carriers are covered and all aircraft are painted in the same basic scheme of light grey with black noses. I am not sure if the Val was painted in the Ameiro color of Zeros as the painting instructions just state 'IJN Grey'. Decals are well done and I have had no issues with Cyber-hobby markings in the past in terms of stick. The red does look a bit on the bright side to me, but perhaps that will tone down once applied. There have been aftermarket sheets available in the past if you want something different.

Though the Fujimi kit is still a nice option, this one takes things several steps higher with greater detail and more optional features. It is a kit that I am sure you will like.


June 2012

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