The Komatsu G40 was produced for the Japanese Navy during WWII and had the distinction of being Japan’s first ever domestically-produced bulldozer. It was developed as a means to speed up airfield construction, which had up to that point been done by hand. Komatsu based its design on their existing farm tractor and it was equipped with a 50hp gasoline engine as well as a hydraulic dozer blade. About 150 were built from 1943 to the end of the war and they were sent to engineering units in the northern and southern fronts. It also influenced the design of postwar Japanese construction machinery. Only one is known to exist and is in the Komatsu Museum.
For the Modeler: This review covers the Tamiya Kit #32565 in the 1/48 Military Miniature Series (Number 65), released in March of 2010. This was an all-new molding and original release of this kit and is still readily available. The kit contains 50 parts molded in Gray on two sprues. There are 4 decals and a Photoetch emblem included. The instructions are in multiple languages as is common in Tamiya kits. Paint color callouts reference Tamiya brand paints. For a 1/48 scale you get a quite detailed build that constructs in seven steps. The moldings all look very good with no flash or troublesome ejector pin marks. The kit also includes a driver figure— a man in shorts and soft cap. Like many of the Tamiya 1/48 figures, the detail on the face and hands is weak. To ease construction assemble the model except for the tracks and dozer bade, and then paint all three sub-units before final assembly. Tamiya calls for TS-66 (Kure Naval arsenal Grey) as the main color. Overall size is: Length: 3”, Width: 1-1/2”, Height: 1-1/2”.
Covered in this Review: If you want to perfect your build; basic construction; preparing parts for better finishing; alternate assembly sequence suggestions for fit and ease of finishing; complete paint and adhesive selections and applications; test fitting; operator seat and controls assembly and detailing; engine construction and detailing; track construction and detailing; decal preparation and application; dealing with heavy sprue tabs; detailing the hydraulic machinery; operator figure construction and color details; applying the photo-etch parts; are all fully examined in this 10 page, full-color Step-by-Step review in PDF format.
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