Junkers Ju-52

August 2019 | Dios Kurniawan

This model kit is one of the most exciting but is also one of the most difficult I have ever attempted: Italeri 1:72 Junkers Ju-52. This Nazi-era transport plane has a unique three-motor arrangement which gives the aircraft a very distinctive look.

The quality of the kit itself is not up to my standard: many parts such as the wings, engine cowl and flaps did not really hold together. I had to take multiple attempts to glue the parts, because they fell off easily.

The actual aircraft featured in this kit is a Minesweeper variant. It has a large metal ring under the fuselage (see it here) which works to detonate magnetic mines in sea. In my opinion, the ring would make the plane look unattractive, so I chose not to install it on the model. Cockpit window frames are also difficult to paint, so I simply left them unpainted.

Luftwaffe Ju 52
Ju 52 sitting next to a Luftwaffe Fw190 fighter. As you can see, Ju 52 is a huge plane.

I like WW2 planes, but because of its difficulty, building this one was not really the kind of fun I was looking for.

Singapore Air Show 2018

March 2018 | Dios Kurniawan

Last month I went to see the biennial Singapore Air Show 2018. I visited on the public day, with focus on the aerial display. Unfortunately, the aerial display would only be displayed twice and they were pretty short, less than 45 minutes each.

F-15s and F-16s belonging to Singapore Air Force are the star of the show. TNI-AU Jupiter Team was also present.

The static display was less interesting. The only star for the show – for me – was the gigantic A-400M. I wanted to get inside the plane but the queue was just too long. Other than that, only Gripen and Apache that stole my attention, but those two were also present in the previous years.

Malaysian Air Force Heavy Lift A400M

Taking aerial photos was my main goal of coming here so I brought my Lumix GX85 camera with 300mm lens. However, it turns out that a mirrorless is not as good as a DSLR camera for capturing fast-moving jets at airshows. Plus, the heat that day was unbearable, making it difficult for me to concentrate to take good photos.

A pair of RSAF F-16Cs performing a high angle-of-attack pass

TNI-AU Jupiters in action

RSAF’s F-15SG in a special ceremonial paint scheme

1:72 Mustang Model

January 2017 | Dios Kurniawan

I am always fascinated by WW2 war machines, but I rarely built aircraft models from this era. So few months ago I bought an Academy 1:72 model kit of a P-51D Mustang, one of the most formidable fighter planes in the war. It is an inexpensive yet quite detailed model. It took me 3 months to finish it.

1:72 model kit

This P-51D (tail number 415255) was a miniature of real-life fighter flown by Lt Colonel Gordon M. Graham of the USAAF in the European theatre, circa 1945. He scored at least 16 kills against German fighters, as shown in the stickers near the cockpit.

Painting was done mainly with a brush, and weathering effect was done with a 6B pencil. I did not install the landing gear and the drop fuel tanks, because I wanted to allow the model to sit flat on my desk. I am quite happy with the end result.