First Look Review
Hs 123 Painting Masks
Henschel Hs 123 Painting Masks
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by: Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]

To accompany their superb 1:48 kits of the Henschel Hs 123 (see Aeroscale's review of the Hs 123B-1 HERE), GasPatch Models also market a set of painting masks for the early-style 3-colour splinter pattern topsides.

I must admit I’d normally cut my own masks for a colour scheme like this, but I’m working on a project that will, among other topics, cover the use of commercial painting masks - so it seemed an ideal opportunity take the “lazy” option and let GasPatch Models do the work for me.

The set arrives in a resealable bag and contains a sheet of die-cut translucent grey Oramask film and a page of simple instructions. The die-cutting looks good, and spot checking a few masks showed they were fully separated, so there shouldn’t be any need to resort to a scalpel to free items.

The Hs 123 has areas of noticeable compound curves, so it will be interesting to see if the masking film is able to cope with them. If it can’t, you could always use the masks as templates and transfer the patterns onto kabuki tape, which is my prefered medium.

The instructions provide a diagram of the layout of the masks and basic generic instructions for using them. It will be up to the modeller to work out their own plan of attack, because there’s no step-by-step guide included. You’ll need to refer closely to the painting guides in the kits’ instructions and decide on the best sequence, depending on whether your subject has an A or B scheme (with the colours reversed). You’ll definitely want to tackle the bulk of the painting before attaching the upper wing - and, quite likely, the tailplanes too.

GasPatch Models’ painting masks are nicely produced and good value for money, but inexperienced modellers may struggle with the basic nature of the instructions. Nevertheless, the masks should represent a considerable time-saver over cutting out your own patterns and, so long as you’re careful, you should be able to use them for more than one build.

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Highs: Affordable, well produced film-type masks.
Lows: The instructions are pretty basic.
Verdict: These masks will certainly save a huge amount of time compared with cutting your own, but you will still need to plan carefully how you're going to use them before diving in.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:48
  Mfg. ID: 17-48119
  PUBLISHED: May 11, 2018

About Rowan Baylis (Merlin)

I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...

Copyright ©2021 text by Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


Interesting. I have this kit and my first thought for creating the multicoloured splinter camouflage scheme was to use strips of Washi tape, as I would for any Laftwaffe scheme. Then I thought that I might have a go at producing a paint mask set. The problem there is, as you say, the compound curvature of the fuselage which would take me a quite a lot of trial fitting and tweaking. These masks though should be spot as GasPatch will be able to draw the camo on the 3D drawings for the actual model and then "unwrap" them to a flat image. So these should fit perfectly to the model, despite the relative stiffness of the material I might even buy a set for myself, if they do fit accurately, so I'm interested in finding out? Do the instructions even tell you which masks mask out which colour?
MAY 11, 2018 - 11:07 AM

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