Tonight, I’m happy to report that my 1/24-scale Yakatabune model is finished. The kit was from the Japanese kit manufacturer Woody Joe and compliments my 1/72-scale Higaki Kaisen and 1/24-scale Hacchoro models. If you are a member of Model Ship World, you might have followed the progress of the build over the last few months.
It wasn’t a difficult model to build, but I ended up adding some extra details that took me a little while to figure out. I am still planning to provide interior lighting, but need to figure out how to properly make a couple large hanging lamps. Once I get that figured out, I’ll remove the deck house and its roof and install the wiring, which I made room for.
The model was pretty much built straight from the kit, though I did make a few simple modifications, most of which deal with color/paint scheme. The wood color comes from the use of wood dyes that I mixed to my own liking. The paint scheme is based on classic Japanese paintings of Yakatabune from the Edo Period.
The kit included a very rudimentary interior, providing a simulated tatami room floor with table. So, added a few items of my own like zabuton seating cushions, and shamisen – a 3-string musical instrument that I play.
Right now, you can’t see much of the interior because it’s dark inside with the roof on. However, I did make the roof removable, and may display it that way. In the future, I hope to have a few sake cups out on the table too!
Other small changes were that I increased the length of the Ro slightly (the long sculling oar), reduced the size of the rudder, and added a simulated bamboo pole, which sits on the starboard side. The pole would have been used by the boatman to navigate the boat near the shore.
As I’m sure I mentioned before, Woody Joe’s is an excellent kit that’s not officially marketed in the U.S. The instructions are in Japanese, but they are very well illustrated. If you want to buy the kit, I recommend shopping at Zootoyz.jp. It’s about $170 shipped. Ω