David Knights' Weblog

January 14, 2020

Odd space news

Filed under: Technology — dknights @ 9:35 am
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Story here.  There is something deeply weird in Japanese culture right now.  It is as if the men have forgotten or lost interest in pursuing a spouse in any normal fashion. A 44 year old billionaire ought to not have much trouble finding female companionship. Jeff Bezos didn’t have any problem and he was married at the time. (post in memory of Mike Nofsinger)

January 7, 2020

MXY-7 Model 11 Ohka

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 11:58 am
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I’ve been building the Brengun kit of the MXY-7 Model 11 Ohka.  It is finally finished and I got a few rushed cell phone shots of it last night.  The Ohka was one of Japan’s late war attempts to stem the inevitable tide of the US Pacific fleet.  The Ohka (cherry blossom) went from conception to production to deployment in less than a year.  we know that about 755 Model 11s were made.  It is unclear how many were actually used, though some number went down with the carriers Shinano and Unryu and a number were captured intact on Okinawa.  The Ohkas are known to have sunk 3 ships and severely damaged 3 more.  However, none were carriers or battleships and on the whole the effort and cost expended on these manned rocket powered bombs seems to have been a waste of resources as well as their pilot’s lives.

The Brengun kit is relatively new, having been issued in 2018.  In addition to the basic kit, Brengun makes, a separately sold vac canopy, a photo etch set and canopy masks.  I recommend getting the photo etch (though not all of it is usable) and the canopy masks. (always get the canopy masks)  While not perfect, it was a fun build and I like the way it came out.

January 2, 2020

Thankless modeling tasks

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 3:27 pm
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The thing I hate most in aircraft modeling is masking canopies.  Thankfully, technological development has eliminated that hassle, due to pre-cut canopy masks.  One of the other real pains in the but when modeling is dealing with long thin decals, such as stripes or lines.  Their tendency to fold and kink and misbehave is endlessly frustrating.  However, you can’t always avoid subjects with such markings.  In those cases, my preferred solution is to cut the decal and ally it in sections.  This isn’t ideal as you then have the challenge to matching and mating the sections back together on the model.  However, it is still better than other alternatives.  I am dealing with this challenge on the Ohka.  I started applying the stripes last night.  Hopefully I’ll get the entire stripe on soon.

Decal stripes

December 23, 2019

Clearprop Ki-51

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 6:33 am
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I previously praised Clearprop kitsHere Libor Jekl demonstrates what can be done with the Clearprop Ki-51.  Damn.

December 18, 2019

Cool video

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 10:57 am
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Here is a video just uploaded to YouTube showing a recently discovered wreck of a Zero in about 50 ft of water off New Guinea.  The plane is in remarkable condition.  Apparently the pilot crash landed/ditched the aircraft when it ran out of fuel.  The pilot survived.  This looks like it would make a great candidate for recovery and restoration.

December 6, 2019

JAXA doesn’t get enough credit

Filed under: Technology — dknights @ 4:50 pm
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JAXA (The Japanese Space Agency) doesn’t get enough credit.  They have been doing some great space exploration.  See the latest here.

Speaking of asteroids, NASA has been doing some fine work as well.  (Post in memory of Mike Nofsinger)

December 5, 2019

77th Hiko Sentai

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 4:12 pm
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It is amazing what you can stumble on when wandering the internet.  The early days of WWII in South East Asia is an area of particular interest.  As such the activities of the 77th Hiko Sentai and their Ki-27 Nates are right in my wheelhouse.  Thus, I was pretty happy when I stumbled on this.

November 11, 2019

F-35Bs for South Korea?

Filed under: Politics,Technology — dknights @ 2:22 pm
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Maybe.  It only makes sense, and with the South China Sea becoming such a flashpoint, it is unsurprising that Japan and South Korea would feel the need to strengthen their capabilities at sea.

October 5, 2019

Ki-51

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 2:25 am
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This looks good.

October 4, 2019

JAXA

Filed under: Technology — dknights @ 10:20 am
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The Japanese space agency (JAXA), the equivalent of NASA has been doing some amazing science in regard to asteroids.  While they do participate in unmanned cargo resupply missions to the ISS, they do not maintain any manned spaceflight capabilities of their own (well, neither does NASA really).  Frankly, I’d love to see a collaboration between NASA and JAXA on manned spaceflight matters. (post in memory of Mike Nofsinger)

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