1/48 Hasegawa B5N2 "Kate"

Gallery Article by Sodasorb on Aug 17 2020



This is the Hasegawa B5N2, Type 97, Model 3 Carrier Attack Plane. The B5N2, also known by the Allied Reporting Name Kate, was the Imperial Japanese Navy's main Torpedo and Horizontal bomber in the early stages of World War II.

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My model depicts a first wave B5N2, B1-318, off the Carrier Soryu on December 7, 1941. This particular Kate carried the Type 99 bomb. The Type 99 heavy armor-piercing bomb was made from a large main battery battleship shell and was made specifically for the Pearl Harbor raid. B5N2s carried both the Type 99 bomb and the Type 91 aerial torpedo to attack Battleship Row at Pearl Harbor. The outer row of U.S. battleships were torpedoed while the inner row of battleships closer to Ford Island had Type 99 heavy bombs dropped on them. Some sources believe that B5N2 B1-318 crewed by the Imperial Japanese Navy's best bombardier, PO1c Nobru Kanai, dropped the Type 99 bomb that hit the U.S.S Arizona causing the massive explosion that sunk the ship with a heavy loss of life. 

The Hasegawa B5N2 assembles without difficulty and has very good detail. I painted the Kate with a base coat of Mr. Color Gray Green over sprayed with Tamiya Acrylic Japanese Navy Green. This particular Kate had a non factory applied camouflage and I tried to capture that by airbrushing thinned JN Green in a random pattern. Decals are from the kit. This was a trouble free build and is another welcome addition to my Naval Air collection. 


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Photos and text by Sodasorb