|1/25 Type 5 Chi-Ri Japanese Tank|
|Kit Number: 7/08|
|Reviewed by Greg Perry, IPMS# 45865|
This kit represents Japan's prototype medium tank developed near the end of the war in preparation for the anticipated invasion of allied forces into Japan. Only one prototype was built and its fate after its acquisition by the US after the war is unknown. Theories are that it was lost at sea or scrapped for its metal during the Korean War.
The model comes in A3 book size and is computer drawn. There are 7 pages of parts. Instructions are provided in Polish only with six pages of construction illustrations. Laser cut frame and track parts are available as extra building aids. Since this was a prototype, the model is printed in a brown color with no camouflage patterns. The overall look of the kit does not look complicated for a paper model, but looks can be deceiving.
The kit was computer generated and, for the most part, the fit was good. Unfortunately, there were a few major build issues evident. These issues were many due to some printing and parts labeling issues. Some of the parts were printed on regular thin bond paper and should have been printed on thicker stock. Build time was a little over two months, due to these issues and the overall complexity of the road wheels and the track.
In addition to the printed parts, the additional materials are needed to complete the model: 1 mm cardboard, 0.5 mm cardboard, Bristol board (thick card stock), 4mm diameter rod (wood, metal or lollipop sticks) and various diameters of bead wire. I also used some black construction paper to use behind some cutouts for the engine compartment and lookout holes.
Since it might not be obvious how a tank can be built out of paper, I have included some pictures of the model in progress. Please keep in mind that this model is 1/25 scale and not 1/35. I have included a picture of the tank next to a Honda civic model to give you some size reference.
The Polish instructions are incomprehensible to me so I had to rely on the drawings and illustrations to build this model. I did not have much trouble doing this with this project.
I really did enjoy this build, but would have enjoyed it more if the printing issues were not evident. As such, I can only recommend this kit to those with some paper model building experience or with extensive scratch building experience.
I would like to thank IPMS with the opportunity to provide this review and also thank Modelik for publishing such a unique and challenging subject.