Hasegawa 1/350 N.Y.K. Line Hikawa Maru

TRM

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Kit Review

Hobby Link Japan Build Series - Hasegawa 1/350th Scale N.Y.K. Hikawa Maru


The Hikawa Maru
product code: HSGZ28

A review by Todd Michalak (TRM)

for

The Hobby Link Review Series

Brought to you by

Hobby Link Japan

On

Scalemodeladdict.com


The Kit: 1/350th Scale N.Y.K. Hikawa Maru
Manufacturer: Hasegawa Corporation
Distributed thru: Hobby Link Japan

Model Dimensions:

Length – 466.5mm
Width – 57.5mm
Height – 142.5mm


Total parts
- 368 pieces


Background on the Hikawa Maru

Born from the Meiji Restoration of 1868, the Hikawa Maru was to ushe Japan into a new maritime age developing a regular shipping service to American Shipping firms. After a merger of shipping firms with the Nippon Yusen Kaisha (The Japan Postal Shipping Company) better know as N.Y.K., there was little hesitation on not pursuing the opportunity to link its efforts with the Seattle base company Pacific Mail Steamship Company.

Establishing the commission of the Hikawa Maru and her two sister ships, the Hie Maru and Heian, was brought forth in 1891. It would not be until 1929 until the Hikawa Maru would be launched and not until May of 1930 she would make her maiden voyage.

The Hikawa Maru had a distinguished careen preceding the onset of WWII. Notable passengers were to include Charlie Chaplin and King George VI to mention two of the many that had grace her decks.

One month before the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese Government requisitioned the ship for military service. On December 1st 1941, it was ordered that she be converted to a specially-equipped hospital ship. Throughout the war she had made 24 combat cruises. Miraculously, the ship came in contact with magnetic sea mines. Each time receiving only minor damage that would be repaired quickly. At the end of the war The Hikawa Maru would be used to repatriate Japanese citizens back to Japan. Some 20,000 plus repatriates would make the trip aboard her.

The ship would return to the Seattle route in 1951 until 1953 where she began ushering US-Japan exchange students as part of the Fullbright Scholarship Program. And continue this program until 1959 when she was beginning to show her age. In August of 1960, The Hikawa Maru would make her final voyage to Seattle and back, where in 1961 she became a maritime training facility. In 1967 she became part of the Hikawa Maru Marine Tower Corperation until 1977. In this time she had seen over 11 million visitors. 2003 the Hikawa Maru was deemed a “tangible cultural asset” and returned to the N.Y.K. which has spent nearly 10 million USD in restoring the entire exterior and some of the interior sections and since 2008 is open to the public as the N.Y.K. Historical Museum/N.Y.K. Hikawa Maru.



Sources:

http://www.combinedfleet.com/Hikawa_c.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hikawa_Maru
http://www.nyk.com/rekishi/e/exhibitions/hikawa.htm
http://www.ssmaritime.com/hikawamaru.htm
Including supplied documentation within the model kit itself

The Kit

This kit contains 368 nicely detailed parts beginning with the two piece hull



The hull is modeled nicely with special attention to the porthole, gangways and plating to show the steel as it is laid on the ship herself.





The kit contains bulkhead sections used to stiffen the two piece hull while building and modeled pedistals and base plates to mount and display this model when done.





Next to show is the weather decks.



These pieces are molded with the character of wood planking like on the real ship. This detail will bring a nice finishing touch to the model when contrasting the wood coloring of the decks with the whites of the deck walls and hull black.



Moving further into the box we find more of the main structure parts. Walls and additional decks located above the weather deck.





All of the deck sections depicting the same fine mold of wood planking and ship details.







Next, the kit contains parts added to the superstructure sections of the ship.



The beautifully detailed smoke funnel. With molded watertight doors and external ladder along with molded lines of the steel plating.



Other fine molded part like the ships anchor winch.



The ship contains several cranes, stairways and intake funnels.



Containing two sets of all these deck fittings.



Taking a closer look, again we find more detailed parts to help bring a sence of realism to this kit.







Next there is two identical spru-trees that contain the various davits and life boats of this ship.





A closer look reveals extremely nice details inside the life boats



This next piece is the front wall of the ship from the weather deck to the top deck at the bridge. Again, molded doors and rivet details.





Last of the plastic in the box, show us the clear parts.



The is the bridge windows and various other window sections...



...and some searchlights as well.



Next to come in the kit is a small section of chain for the bow section of the ship. This will attach to the main anchor wing adding a nice flair to the finish.



Contained in the kit as well, is a 25 page booklet of the instructions for making the model. Which are easy to follow and complete. There is a second booklet that covers the history of the ship and acts as a reference material when building the model.



There is a full 1/350 scale plan of the complete painting schedule of the model as well as location of all the decal transfers.





On the back of this plan, is the instructions for rigging your model.





The kit contains a small plastic bag which holds the decals and more goodies.



The blue pamphlet is a brochure for the Hikawa Maru Museum in Yokohama, Japan and the small picture of the ship is a keepsake post card of the ship. A nice little souvenir.

Taking a look at the decals, they contain various flag, life ring transfers, the name of the ship for the Bow section and stern and draft marking.





The aftermarket parts

Part of this review I wanted to check out one of the three after,market sets offered by Hasegawa for this kit. The one I chose was the Basic Set.





This contains railings and stairway sections....



...and life rings and watertight doors.







[size=10pt]Conclusion[/size]

This is a review of Hasegawa’s 1/35th scale N.Y.K. Line Hikawa Maru. A wonderfully crafted model kit depicting a great subject in history, this ship has all the detail that you have come to expect from Hasegawa Hobby Kits. Fine moldings, carefully added details along with plenty of nice extras, make up the lady of the sea. I recommend this kit for anyone young or old who enjoys building ships of any era. The Hikawa Maru will make a fine addition to anyone’s collection.

Special thanks goes to Hobby Link Japan for this review.



If you are interested in purchasing this kit, please go to Hobby Link Japan at www.hlj.com



Kit and aftermarket products:

N.Y.K. Line Hikawa Maru - http://www.hlj.com/product/HSGZ28

Basic Upgrade Set - http://www.hlj.com/product/HSGQG49

Super Upgrade Set - http://www.hlj.com/product/HSGQG50

Wooden Add-on http://www.hlj.com/product/HSGQG51

Japanese Passenger Ships #04: Hikawa Maru by Model Art - http://www.hlj.com/product/MDABK-15
 

JohnSimmons

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Right on!! I'm sure this will be another gem T, still don't envy you with all that PE though lol
 

Chris S

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Yip !!! ,What he said ,nice review T ,looks like another cracking ship build ahead :D

Chris.
 

TRM

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Thank you Chris and John!! That PE is a bit daunting but excited to dig in and have some fun with this!!!

Thanks for stopping by!!! ;)
 

adampolo13

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Oh man, another HLJ build. SMA keeps getting better and better!!! TRM, great review!!!
 

Quaralane

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There are a LOT of pieces in that. Good luck with her.
 

Biskup

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This is a nice ship and model already so I will be watching what will you make out of it :)
 

TRM

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adampolo13 said:
Oh man, another HLJ build. SMA keeps getting better and better!!!
Thanks Adam!! That summed it up right there!!! ;D

Hi Q, thanks for stopping by!!! There is a fair amount of pieces there but Hasagawa does make a sweet kit and should go together fine! ;)

Hey Lukasz!! Thanks for coming along for the ride!! I hope to get into the box this weekend and start!! ;D ;D
 

Eastrock

It's All About The Fun!!!
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Another Gem on your list Dive Master TRM

going onboard on this build :)
 

noname

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Great job so far T and you haven't even started! :D I want to try a ship myself sometime and this should be a fun guide. Look forward to it.
 

TRM

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Glad to have you aboard ER!!! Thanks!! ;)

Thank you kindly Matt!!! Count me in when you have at a floaty thing!!! ;D
 

TRM

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LOL...yes indeed spud!! One of them things it seems!! ;D
 

TRM

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Well, I can't wait any longer!! Time to start building!!!

Here we go!!! ;D

Starting to build any model, I like to read through the directions several times often making notes in the margins of trouble spots and changes. Also, when I have aftermarket parts like photo etching, I will highlight the part changes. With building the Hikawa Maru, the photo etching is made by Hasegawa as is the kit too, which makes this process virtually seamless.



I will use this cross referencing throughout the entire build. This will help me stay on track and not forget to change parts when needed and keep me aware of areas that will require painting before assembly. You can see in the picture above, I wrote the corresponding photo etch part number on the instruction sheet and highlighted these. This makes it really easy to remember that a PE part is to be installed so I do not get too far and forget something.

Following the directions to the kit I began to assemble the hull section. This is a two piece section that, when test assembled, has a great fit.



Minimal clean up of the hull pieces is needed.




Time to assemble the hull. Taking the numbered bulkhead sections and installing in one half of the hull now the two halves can be joined.





Before gluing the sections of the hull, you should always dry fit the pieces to ensure they fit well. With this kit, there are to holes in the hull where the shaft that is part of the base holder will be needed to be opened. Carefully drill out the hole and use a needle file to complete the job.



Now the hull ready to get her decks.



Next step is removing two bow sections of the weather deck and the stern section. Again minimal clean up and checking with a dry fit, they are a perfect match.





From this point, I am feeling this is going to go together quickly. Hasegawa, as we know, makes a tremendous kit. These pieces are fitting like a glove and I am thinking the PE is the only area that will cause a shift in gears. I hope to get the bulk of the big sections together so I can take my time on the small stuff!!

As always, thank you for following along!! ;)
 

ComfortablyNumb

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Great post TRM! Nice photos and text -and really looking forward to watching your progress!

Cheers bud! -Tim
 

JohnSimmons

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Yeah nice update T, great close up shots. Looking at the PE still makes me shudder lol.
 

TRM

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Tim - Thank you for stopping by and for the the kind words glad to have you along for the ride!! ;)

MJ - Thanks Bro!! The PE is a bit daunting but after looking the sheet over, this is some really quality stuff! A lot thicker than the last ship and the directions are detailed! Yeah....still makes me shutter too!! ::)
 

rookie

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Great review T, looking forward to following this build.

Very interesting subject too. Are you going to put it together as a liner ?, intersted to see how far you go with the weathering on it.
 

TRM

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Hi Ya Rook!! Thanks and I happy you could tag along! I am leaning towards the weathered side...just maybe not the "overly" weathered. She is a looker and might look great as she did in her hay-day....20's &30's. ;D
 

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