We went to IPMS Phoenix!! Plus an Exciting Quiz: Guess the Next SWS Airplane!!
Update: September 21st, 2018

Hello, my SWS Brothers!

Lately it's been rainy and gloomy every day. The autumnal rain front, a large low pressure system, always comes to Japan at the beginning of autumn, causing daily rainfall. 

And last week, for the first time in decades, a huge typhoon (Typhoon Jebi, No. 21) directly hit Kyoto city as it passed over to the Sea of Japan. ,
It was an incredibly strong typhoon, with wind speeds over 50m/s (112mph).
As a result, the Volks main building, which houses the headquarters of Zoukei-Mura, suffered serious damage.
The powerful gale winds tore the iron wall coverings off of the rooftop of the 7-story building and blew them dozens of meters away, spreading them all over.
Over a dozen iron coverings, each measuring multiple meters long and one meter wide, were broken off, hitting the street below and buildings nearby.
(I am so sorry to the owners of the cars and nearby buildings that were accidentally damaged.)
The falling debris caused damage to cars driving on the street below and to nearby buildings, but thankfully no one was injured. Even in such an unfortunate situation, that was a true blessing.

The typhoon also brought other sadness.
The gale winds caused terrible damage to the doll museum building and traditional Japanese house and garden at "Tenshi-no-Sato", the birthplace of our Volks Group original dolls.
Much to our dismay, the traditional thatched roof built over 100 years ago was ripped apart, leaving it a mere shadow of its former appearance.
In addition, winds blew rain into the traditionally-constructed Japanese tearoom, the main hall, and throughout the entire building. The majority of the beautifully elegant glass windows, crafted in the 1920s, were shattered. Those windows were made out of precious antique glass that cannot be replaced anymore.
The Japanese garden, which we were so proud of, and which offered peaceful comfort to many visitors, was also affected. Many of the trees and plants were badly damaged, and half of the outer wall that surrounded the garden was completely blown off. 

My home, which is in the suburbs of Kyoto, was also not left without damage. The once-relaxed peacefulness of the space became but a faint memory of the past. My beloved pet dogs Lucky and Taro were sent into a terrified frenzy by the thunder and gale winds.

In addition, the Kansai International Airport, the gateway to the Kansai region of Japan, was completely flooded with seawater, from the runways to the passenger terminal, making take-off and landing impossible. The only bridge connecting the man-made island on which the airport is built on and the mainland was struck by a fuel tanker swept by the gale winds, leaving some 8,000 travelers stranded on the island without electricity or running water.
(After a few days they were all safely rescued.)
Unfortunately, flights continue to be cancelled to and from the Kansai Airport due to the seawater flooding.

Osaka city and Kobe city also suffered serious damage from strong gale winds.
Despite the clear weather after the typhoon had passed, for the next few days JR Shinkansen and train lines were stopped, and highways were closed off. And for some reason, many private cars that were parked on the wharf caught on fire. The majority of them were reduced to ashes.
Many of the port facilities which act as the major hub of goods distribution for the whole of western Japan are still in the midst of recovery efforts.

Then, without a moment to spare to mourn the damage from the typhoon, a huge magnitude 7 earthquake hit Hokkaido. My word... Although it may have been true since ancient times, Japan is truly a country fraught with natural disasters. I would like to express my deepest condolences and heartfelt wishes for all who suffered from these disasters.
I truly hope that everyone can return to their normal daily life as soon as possible.

I was planning to write this blog mainly about all the fun we had at IPMS Phoenix, showing the Zoukei-Mura booth, the convention space, and the SWS kits that were highly popular during the show.

Yet it somehow became a report on natural disasters, which just keep occurring again and again. My SWS Brothers, please be careful and diligent in preparing for natural disasters.

And please rest assured that here at Zoukei-Mura, we will fully recover from the damage caused by the recent typhoon on our own, no matter how many years it takes, no matter how much damage there may be.

Hello Everyone at IPMS Pheonix!!

▋Our booth seems wide and yet cramped. Once again, the Zoukei-Mura booth offers visitors a diverse lineup of goods, including the new F-4J Phantom MARINES kit, optional parts, tools, and CONCEPT NOTE guidebooks.

▋After about four hours, the setup is complete. Just look at that mountain of SWS kits! By the final day, almost all of these items were sold out. Thank you so much to everyone who purchased from us!!

▋As you can see, immediately after the doors open, the Zoukei-Mura booth is crowded by passionate airplane model fans. The renowned professional modeler Mr. Naoki Kobayashi works hard at explaining the products. Thanks to his salesmanship, every single one of the "Old Man's Tools" that we brought were sold out. I am truly grateful.

▋Hey! My respected and close friend Joe comes from Tucson to join the efforts. After the IPMS convention ended, as per custom he gave us a guided tour of the Pima Air & Space Museum. Thank you, Joe!

▋This is my American SWS brother John, who came with his wife Lyn to volunteer their help for the Zoukei-Mura booth. They donated an incredible 500 specially-made pen lights bearing the Zoukei-Mura logo again this year. On behalf of everyone who was lucky enough to get one, cheers to brother John's generosity!

▋And here we have Mr. Poncini, who came all the way from Switzerland to the convention. Thank you for always stopping by the Zoukei-Mura booth. I will be participating in the IPMS UK convention this November, so I look forward to meeting you there once again.

▋Oh man...! This gentleman is Phillip, the famous high-quality handmade knife craftsman. He crafted many knives again this year to be sold to Japanese modelers through Volks. We're counting on you every time!

▋This man holding the 1/32 Hs-129 mock-up is Radu, the owner of RB Productions, who came in from Ireland. That sophisticated resin kit and optional parts are popular in Japan, too!

▋You know what this is! It's the Zoukei-Mura Raffle, which has now become a staple event of the IPMS conventions. All those who answered the questionnaire received a free pen light specially made with the Zoukei-Mura logo! And those answerers who were lucky enough to be chosen by lottery received SWS T-shirts, kits, and CONCEPT NOTE guidebooks. We're looking forward to your participation in the next one.

▋It seems like just as soon as the convention began, today's the last day. And as you can see, almost all of the Zoukei-Mura booth's products were sold out. Zoukei-Mura, launched in Japan, is like the final anchor in the race. We will continue to create the ultimate plastic aircraft model SWS kits, so please look forward to what the future has in store.

Toryu Arrives at IPMS Telford!!

▋In response to the Boeing B-29 "Superfortress," all of the armaments of the majestic Ki-45 Toryu were removed. It was then used in kamikaze attacks as part of the Japanese Air Force First Kaiten Special Attack Unit led by Second Lieutenant Miosaburo Yamamoto of the 4th Sentai (Air Group).
At long last, Toryu arrives as an SWS kit. Its approaching initial release marks the first 1/32 scale Toryu kit in the world.
Go ahead and recreate with your own hands the fate of this twin-engine aircraft, outlined by beautiful curves!

▋SWS 1/32 Kawasaki Ki-45 Kai Tei Type 2 Two-Seat Fighter "Toryu"
●Injection plastic kit (grey and clear molded parts) ●Number of Parts: 560 ●Decals: 1 Sheet
●Choose between assembling the Ki-45 Kai Tei (late production type) or the Ki-45 Kai Hei, Tei (Tai-Atari Special Attack Aircraft)

Price:13000 JPY(+fee) Release: Around late December 2018

▋At the Zoukei-Mura booth at the IPMS convention in Phoenix, the figure of the "Toryu" was constantly under the fiery gaze of the passionate aircraft modelers. You can see from the photograph the fine details that can only be found in SWS kits, including the detailed 37mm cannon at the nose and all of the equipment in the cockpit.

▋From the mounting of the upward-firing cannons to the appearance of the cannon refill and ejection, to the detail of the gun turret in the back... Finally, you can see the Toryu as a three-dimensional structure before your very eyes. The fuel tank, bulletproof armor, the positioning of the control cable, and the skillfully-designed landing gear mechanism... This is a world that can only be found within SWS kits.

You read that right!! It's hard to believe...
the SWS 32 Toryu (Ki-45), released at IPMS Telford?!

And as an aside...
This November, I will be heading to Telford to participate in the show for the first time in years!!
I will whip my old bones into shape and travel all the way to the far-off United Kingdom, just to deliver this kit to you!!!

The early release of the SWS Ki-45 Toryu is not yet completely certain, but it looks like we will be able to release a limited number of kits at the Zoukei-Mura booth in Telford, as long nothing unexpected stands in our way!
To everyone who already saw a preview of the fine finished product at the IPMS Pheonix convention: you can at last add this kit to your collection!!

However, please understand...

We won't be able have the instruction manual professionally printed in time for the convention, so we will have no choice but to sell the kits with a manual printed by us at Zoukei-Mura included.
(But don' worry. Although the printing method may be different, the content of the manual will be the same as the one included in the normal kits.)

Be one of the first in the world to get their hands on the newest kit, Ki-45 Toryu!!
The kits will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis, limited to one kit per customer.
To secure your kit now, please make a reservation, sent to the email address below.
(We will only bring a very limited number, so please refrain from cancelling on the day of the convention.)

Also, please forgive us if for some reason we are unable to sell the kits at the convention.

We plan to sell the Toryu Ki-45 kits worldwide starting around the end of December 2018.

Make your reservation here for buying the Toryu kit at the convention in Telford.

SCALE ModelWorld

IPMS Telford 2018 Kit Reservations

Product NameEvent Price
SWS 1/32 Kawasaki Ki-45 Kai Tei Type 2 Two-Seat Fighter "Toryu" £110
  • *Only reservations for the 1/32 Toryu kit will be accepted.
  • *Limited to one kit per person.

How to Reserve an SWS 1/32 Toryu Kit at IPMS Telford 2018

How to Reserve an SWS 1/32 Toryu Kit for the IPMS Telford 2018 Show
Please email the following address by October 28, 2018 (Sunday) at 23:59 (JST) in order to reserve a kit.

  • * In order to prepare the reserved items, we cannot accept any reservations received after October 28, 2018
  • * Please pay for your kit at the venue (IPMS Telford 2018 Zoukei-Mura booth).
  • * Only cash payment (in GBP) can be accepted.
  • * Reserved kits must be picked up on November 10th (Sat) 2018 from 9:00 to 15:00 at the Zoukei-Mura booth.
  • * In case pickup is not possible in the above mentioned time, please let us know via email when you make your reservation or no later than the reservation deadline (Oct.28).
  • * Your reservation will be cancelled if you don't pick up your item before 15:00 on November 10th (Sat) 2018.

Mail us at the following address to reserve and pick up
the Toryu kit at IPMS Telford 2018:
Thank you for your reservations!
We have met our reservation limit, so we are no longer accepting reservations for the 1/32 Ki-45 Toryu kit for pickup at Telford.
There will also be a limited number of Ki-45 kits available for sale at the Zoukei-Mura booth.
We look forward to seeing you there!
Reservation Deadline: By October 28, 2018 (Sunday) at 23:59 (JST)

Come one and all!!
I personally will sharpen your blades at the IPMS Convention!

For all customers who own the "PRO-ZETSU Series Plastic Modeling Chisel" and/or "PRO-ZETSU Plastic Shaping Knife" from the Zoukei-Mura Old Man's Seven Tools Series:
If you bring the tools to the convention, I will sharpen the blades for you before your eyes.
Of course, the service is entirely free of charge. Ten minutes is more than enough time. By all means, please come by!!
(I'm sorry, but I don't have any experience sharpening non-Zoukei-Mura blades, so I will refrain from doing so.)

▋Please bring your PRO-ZETSU Chisel or Knife to the conventional space. I will show you the sharpening and care methods for your tools before your eyes.
With proper sharpening, the sharp cut of both of these tools can be enjoyed for even longer.

The Final Mock-Up of the Henschel Hs 129 on Display!

The "tank killer" Henschel Hs 129, now in 1/32 scale size!!
At last we have gotten to this point in the development, after facing difficulty after difficulty.
As per our usual, this is a kit that model maniacs worldwide can appreciate! And now, you have the chance to directly see and touch that unbelievable craftsmanship!
Please ask me personally at the convention. I will hand you the mock-up kit to see and feel for yourself.
I am sure you will feel deeply moved by the truly unique engineering of the Hs 129, and its history of fiercely-fought battles. Be sure not to miss out!!

▋This is also sure to draw attention at the IPMS Telford show. At last the SWS 1/32 Hs 129 has come this far. Please see for yourself the impact of its presence, the fascinating engineering of each part of the aircraft, and most of all, the quintessential SWS kit sensation of "it feels like I'm really building an actual airplane."

▋Here is the crème de la crème of SWS kits, as always.
When you take a close look at the details and the suspension of the "Gnome et Rhône 14M" 14-cylinder air-cooled engine, you are seeing the results of the hard work of the engineers in the method of fitting the armament to the aircraft!
The world's first 1/32 scale Hs 129! The day when its spectacular intensity steals your heart is ever approaching.

▋If you looked at this photograph and thought to yourself, "I want it!", you and I are of the same mind. I just can't contain myself. In my mind's eye, all I can see are images of the Hs 129 flying over a group of tanks at low altitude, sweeping them all out. That is also just like you. It's when imagining scenes like that when I truly do not wish to be a tankman soldier.

The Development of Focke-Wulf Fw 190 has come this far!!

The development of the Fw 190, which has been fraught with hurdle after hurdle, has at last reached a turning point.
How should we bring you the SWS take on the famous "butcher bird"?! In search of the answer, we happily enjoyed an indescribable continuation of hardships.
But where there's a will, there's a way. Just like those wise words, we have begun to see a terrific form of the Fw 190, fit for an SWS kit.

It will still take time until its release, with the confirmation of details, negotiation and meetings with the mold manufacturers, and more. But it looks like we will be able to bring you a kit worthy of all that hard work.
The release will let one weight off my shoulders. To all of the worried Fw 190 fans, now it's just a matter of time and patience.

I'm doing my best to be patient, so please join me in that effort.

▋As you know, the "butcher bird" was fitted with a BMW 801 D-2 engine, and ours will look like this! You can admire the engine on its own, fit it to the fuselage and open the cover—and you, with your advanced skill, will surely recreate the detailed wired harness, won't you.
In that sense, an SWS kit is like a blank canvas. I am sure that with your passion, you will create a work at the same level as a museum model.

▋The true excellence of the engineer Kurt Tank shines in the engine, with its suspension system and air cooling fan, and the exhaust thrust.
How did he incorporate the landing gear, looking at the machine guns and cannon equipped to the upper fuselage and main wings? Everything about the Fw 190 is just fascinating.

▋And check out the cockpit, where you can see the Luftwaffe's distinctive rationality coming out, from the flight control and the instrument panel to the optical sight. In your hands, in what ways would you further enhance the reproduction of the Fw 190?
Please give us a little more time before we can deliver you an Fw 190 like you've never seen before.

The Highly-Anticipated 1/72 and 1/144 Horten Ho 229 Will Soon Be Released!!

The long-rumored SWS 1/72 Horten Ho 229 at last approaches its new release. I am sure that its incredible presence and craftsmanship will reserve it a place in your most treasured collection.

The fantastic moment when the 1/72 size takes its place on your shelf next to the 1/32 and 1/48 is soon approaching.
The release is expected to occur sometime between the end of the year to the beginning of the new year. In the worst case scenario, it may be delayed until April.

▋The "Luftwaffe's mysterious flying wing" 229 breaks from flight formation, going into attack mode, headed for Lancaster under heavy bombing!
I am truly glad that such a scene did not actually occur.
The 1/72 and 1/144 scale size Horten Ho-229, last resort of Luftwaffe, are at last entering the final stages of development.

▋Is this photo of a 1/32 scale model? Or maybe it's 1/48 scale?
No, this is actually a photo of a mock-up of the soon-to-be-released 1/72 scale. To the right side of the photo is the 1/144 scale model. On the left edge, you can see the wing of the 1/48 scale model on display at the IPMS Phoenix convention. Even at the 1/72 scale, an SWS kit is an SWS kit.

Yes! Zoukei-Mura SWS Makes Your Dreams Come True!!

I will bring you the same sleepless nights I experience.
That's right!! Your dream is my dream.

QUIZ: Guess the next upcoming SWS kit!!

We're reproducing "those" airplanes in 1/32 scale- they are sure to surprise you!!
Guess the name of the airplanes from the following hints.
Three lucky winners with a correct answer will be sent one kit of that very airplane. If there is a surplus of correct answerers, winners will be chosen by lottery.
We will be accepting answers from all over the world at this email address:

Guess the Next SWS Airplane Quiz

Rules of Participation:

  • 1.Answers must be sent by email. One answer per person, please. Those who send multiple answers will be disqualified, even if they send in the correct answer.
  • 2.You must include in your email:
    -Name, Age, Address and Country, Telephone Number, and your favorite type of scale modelling. Replies without all of this information will be disqualified. We will use your contact information for sending the winners their prize. We will not use the information for any other purpose or disclose it to any third party.
  • 3.The deadline is November 11, 2018. Only emails received by that date will be qualified to win.
  • 4.We will announce the winners after the deadline on this blog.
  • 5.Please understand that it may take some extra time in the case of sending the prize overseas.

By the way, I would be happy if you include your thoughts on SWS kits as well in your email.

Guess the Next SWS Airplane Quiz
(Include the numbers with your answers.)
1. Luftwaffe. Liquid-cooled single-seater fighter airplane.
Answer: (     )
2. Luftwaffe. Twin-engine airplane.
Answer: (     )
3. U.S. Air Force. Liquid-cooled single-seater fighter airplane.
Answer: (     )

Please fill in the parentheses above with the airplane names.
Three lucky winners will receive the kit of the airplane that they correctly answered as a prize once it is released. (You do not need to answer all of the airplane names correctly to be qualified to win.)
(If there is a surplus of correct answerers, winners will be chosen by lottery at random.)

Send your answers to the "Guess the Next SWS Airplane Quiz"
to the address below.
The deadline has now passed. Thank you for your responses!
Deadline: Answers must be received by November 11, 2018 23:59 (JST)

This concludes this Old Man's Blog, written during the rainy spell after the typhoon.
I hope that wherever you are living, no typhoons, earthquakes, eruptions, or landslides occur.

We will not lose to these natural disasters, and continue to make even more fantastic plastic models.

Please take care. Let's meet again here on this blog. Goodbye.

Hideyuki Shigeta
President, Zoukei-Mura

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